Brazen Home Theft Ring Busted in Broward County

Marty Kiar, the Broward County Property Appraiser and Sheriff Gregory Tony, the Sheriff of Broward County, announce on Tuesday, March 14, 2023, a comprehensive investigation, which included the Fort Lauderdale Police Department, into a real estate property theft criminal enterprise, involving over 12 million dollars of property in Broward County, Florida, concluded with the arrest of the third cohort. The three ring leaders of the operation, Tyrone Jones, Michael Dupree, and Yury Domatov are all in custody. We expect additional arrests to follow in the coming weeks.

Broward County Commissioner Tim Ryan alerted the Broward County Property Appraiser when one of his clients was visiting a property he owned in Dania Beach and ran into the fraudsters who were posing as the owners of the property. This chance meeting started the long-term investigation that unraveled the scheme to defraud innocent property owners. During the scheme, the trio and other co-conspirators, filed civil lawsuits against elderly victims, multiple banks, and others. In court documents, they indicated the properties were dilapidated eyesores and uninhabitable. They filed a lawsuit against a 76-year-old widow who lived in Dania Beach in an attempt to steal her home. The lawsuit alleged the home was abandoned and poorly maintained. The property was in good condition and was the elderly victim’s home for over 26 years.

Some of the lawsuits were against banks for bank-owned property. Instead of serving the actual banks with the lawsuits, the lawsuits identified Michael Dupree, a convicted felon, as the bank’s agent authorized to accept service of the lawsuits on behalf of the banks. Michael Dupree, allegedly posed as the representative for the banks and accepted service of process at a dilapidated mobile home in Hillsborough County, Florida.

The banks, which included U.S. Bank, Deutsche Bank, and Bank of Mellon were never actually served with these lawsuits. The cohorts then filed fraudulent court documents posing as representatives of the banks and others in which they would tell the court that they did not want the properties. In other cases, after fraudulently accepting service of process allegedly on behalf of the banks, they never filed responsive pleadings. As a result, the courts awarded the properties to members of the criminal enterprise. In most cases, the banks never even knew these properties were stolen from under them or taken over by the trio of alleged criminals and their co-conspirators. In at least three cases, the three main subjects moved in and made these properties their homes. One even attempted to register for the Broward County Property Appraiser’s Owner Alert Program, which notifies verified property owners when a deed or other documents are received by the property appraiser transferring ownership of their home. All three arrestees are charged with multiple crimes involving Deed Fraud, Filing Fraudulent Court Filings, First Degree Grand Theft and Identity Theft.

Marty Kiar, the Broward County Property Appraiser, and Sheriff Gregory Tony, of the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, want to thank Chief Patrick Lynn, of the Fort Lauderdale Police Department and State Attorney Harold Pryor, for their assistance and dedication by providing valuable resources that were crucial to these investigations. These crimes will not be tolerated in Broward County, and we will work tirelessly to protect the homes of Broward County residents.

Be the first to comment!

The comment must be no longer than 400 characters 0/400