Private company ventures into fraud investigation in South Florida condominiums

Article Courtesy of  El Nuevo Herald

(Translated in English by Google)

By Enrique Flor

Published April 2, 2019

The size of condominium fraud in South Florida is such that it simply overwhelms the local police effort. Hence, a private company has decided to open a niche to position itself in the investigation of fraud in residential complexes.


Two former detectives from the Economic Crimes Division of the Miami Dade Police Department were hired as key parts of the South Florida Property Owners Consulting LLC (SFPOC), and after a three-week investigation they managed to compile the evidence that led to the police to arrest the president of the board of directors of a condominium in Cutler Bay, south of the county, accused of mishandling the money of the owners.

Orlando León, 55, was arrested in January on charges of theft and organized fraud, according to public records.

According to the inquiries, León used money from the association to install air conditioning in his apartment.

Le Club at Old Cutler Condominiums


The vice president of SFPOC, Luis Ruiz, said that the compiled accounting documentation was subjected to a financial analysis that established that Leon installed air conditioning units using money from the owners association. Then the case was taken to the police, his detectives corroborated the documentation and on Thursday, January 31, they proceeded to arrest Leon.


Carlos Luffi, leader of the police squad to stop the condo fraud in Miami Dade, confirmed the police intervention and the arrest of Leon, whose version could not be obtained. In the office of that condominium they said on Tuesday that Leon was not there but that they would send him the message.

Ruiz said the case came to SFPOC from Elizabeth Pons, a Colombian lawyer who graduated from Harvard law and owns an apartment at Le Club at Old Cutler Condominiums.

"Faced with suspicion of improper acts at the condominium meeting, I began to investigate that the president of the association committed bad management, and took money in his favor," Pons told El Nuevo Herald. "In 2018, I went to the DBPR (Department of Business and Professional Regulation) and no complaints arose. They were totally ineffective. From there I went to the police and I learned about the existence of SFPOC, made up of retired detectives from the police. "

Ruiz indicated that the cost of SFPOC services fluctuates between $ 1,750 and $ 2,500.

"The bigger the condo, and the more documentation we have to check the price will increase. But we have never charged any client more than $ 2,500 so far, "said Ruiz. "An audit could cost them 10 times more, but what we offer is to draw a route so that the authorities proceed to effectively solve the neighbors' complaint."

Orlando León


Pons stressed the use of multiple investigative resources that lead to discovering the existence of illegal activities leads him to conclude that the amount charged by SFPOC "is quite reasonable".