Orange County District Attorney
Tony Rackauckas, District Attorney
401 Civic Center Drive West
Santa Ana, CA 92701
|For Immediate Release|
October 10, 2006
WOMAN SENTENCED FOR DEFRAUDING MARINES AND THEIR WIVES IN REAL ESTATE PONZI SCHEME
NEWPORT BEACH – The wife of a Marine Sergeant was sentenced today for a real estate investment ponzi scheme involving south county residents, many of whom were Camp Pendleton Marines and their wives. Evelyn Oberhuber, 36, San Clemente, pled guilty to 50 counts of grand theft, the fraudulent offering of securities, recording false deeds, and forgery. In a negotiated plea with the District Attorney’s office, she received a sentence of ten years in prison and was ordered to pay restitution to the victims totaling $2,284,000.
Between late 2003 and September 2004, Oberhuber worked as a paralegal for an attorney in Santa Ana. During this time, she opened two bank accounts in the law firm’s name by forging signature cards and diverted tens of thousands of dollars to these accounts for her personal use. Throughout this period, and continuing through 2005, Oberhuber was operating a real estate investment ponzi scheme in which she would solicit funds from friends and acquaintances, many of whom were Marines or Marine’s wives she met at Camp Pendleton, with a promise of high returns. Oberhuber falsely represented to investors that she was purchasing properties on the verge of foreclosure, paying off the loans, and reselling the properties for a profit. In many cases she forged deeds and presented these to her investors as proof of the purchase. A few investors were paid off using funds coming in from new investors, but in most cases the investors were never repaid.
Senior Deputy District Attorney Mark Sevigny of the Economic Crimes Unit prosecuted this case.