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Man accused of using fake religious organization to run foreclosure rescue scam

Michigan Attorney General's office

Michigan’s Attorney General says a Detroit man defrauded more than 100 people in southeast Michigan with a fake mortgage rescue scam.

Bill Schuette says Anthony Carta ran the scam through a phony religious organization called Freedom by Faith Ministries.

Carta promised homeowners facing foreclosure he’d settle up with their mortgage lenders, for a fee. But he would pocket that money instead.

Carta is accused of stealing more than $300,000 this way. He’s being charged with conducting a criminal enterprise and two other felonies.

Joy Yearout, a spokeswoman for Schuette’s office, says Carta came to investigators’ attention when he tried to scam his own employee.

“Carta promised her he would help her stay in her home when she was facing foreclosure, and that didn’t happen,” Yearout says. “So when she found that out, she contacted our office.”

Yearout says investigators believe there are more victims of Carta’s scam out there, and encourages them to contact the Attorney General’s office.

Yearout says people looking for foreclosure assistance should never pay money to a third party – they should be able to talk directly with their lender for free.

The Michigan State Housing Development Authority also offers free foreclosure counseling at locations in every county.

Sarah Cwiek joined Michigan Public in October 2009. As our Detroit reporter, she is helping us expand our coverage of the economy, politics, and culture in and around the city of Detroit.
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