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2 Indicted in Escrow Fraud That Netted Over $6 Million

TIMES STAFF WRITER

An attorney and an escrow company owner, both based in Encino, have been indicted on more than 50 charges alleging that they fudged escrow records to fraudulently obtain more than $6 million between 1989 and 1991, prosecutors said Wednesday.

Lawyer Jerome Eisenberg, 34, and Deidre Nulty, 30, owner of a Ventura Boulevard escrow company, were indicted April 29 on charges that they obtained the millions in cash by improperly inflating real estate values in loan transactions. Prosecutors did not explain how the alleged schemes worked.

Both Eisenberg and Nulty appeared Wednesday in Los Angeles Superior Court before Judge Florence-Marie Cooper, who set the next hearing in the complicated case for June 30. Eisenberg was free Wednesday on $350,000 bail and Nulty posted $150,000 bail, prosecutors said.

Deputy Dist. Atty. Gene Crawshaw said Wednesday that the indictment should serve as a reminder that prosecutors are not reluctant to file charges against a lawyer, especially when the case involves allegations of white-collar crime.

“It’s always troubling when a member of the bar is allegedly involved in criminal activity because that profession needs, demands, the confidence of the public,” Crawshaw said.

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Neither Eisenberg nor Nulty could be located late Wednesday for comment. If convicted, each could face up to 10 years in state prison, Crawshaw said.

Both are charged with 34 counts of escrow misstatements, 12 counts of unauthorized disbursements of escrow funds, three counts of grand theft, two counts of filing a false or forged document and one count of money laundering.

Eisenberg is also charged with one count of perjury and another of suborning perjury.

Eisenberg’s law office is located in the 16000 block of Ventura Boulevard in Encino. Nulty operated Pavilion Escrow, just a few doors down, prosecutors said.

The pair altered escrow records in nearly four dozen transactions and tried to funnel money through various bank accounts controlled by either Eisenberg or Pavilion Escrow, prosecutors said.


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