A notorious Orange County, California loan modification firm owner that operated under several names has surrendered his real estate sales license to the Department of Real Estate (DRE). Curtis Melone of Laguna Beach can no longer practice real estate in any capacity as him and his firm remain under intense legal pressure from authorities. This comes after his firm was order to cease and desist by the DRE in February of 2009.
In January, the California State Bar took over the loan modification firm after an Orange County Superior Court Judge ordered the company to officially shut down. The Bar had worked in concert with the California Department of Justice, the DRE and the Orange County District Attorney’s Office in the investigation. The Bar seized all files and computers as they shut down all phone and internet services.
Curtis Melone and his partner, Christopher Fox were accused by the Bar of operating several loan modification and debt companies. Names like Guardian Credit Services, Green Credit Solutions, Green Credit Services, Erickson Law Group, Green Credit Law and PacWest Funding. The State Bar acted in accordance with a state law allowing takeover of businesses of non-lawyers who portray themselves as attorneys.
The California State Bar has acted aggressively in going after rogue lawyers or firms that represent themselves as attorneys. A total of thirteen lawyers have resigned and six firms have closed as a result of the State Task Force Bar investigations formed specifically to protect consumers from this white collar crime.
Last week, ConsumerAffairs.com reported that they had received numerous online complaints about a company that Curtis Melone operated called Guardian Credit Solution. In the article a homeowner went on the record stating that they had paid his firm $4490.00 to do a loan modification, which was never completed. Soon after signing up with the firm, the homeowner was hounded by Guardian Credit employees to try and lure here into their debt settlement program. The homeowner was fooled and Melone and his company got another $2395.88 of her money.
At this time it is unknown if a criminal investigation of Curtis Melone or his partner Christopher Fox is pending.