Mortgage Daily

Published On: November 27, 2006
Mortgage Database Stolen

Eric Miller jailed

November 27, 2006

By PATRICK CROWLEY

photo of Patrick Crowley
A mortgage broker has been jailed for stealing the customer database of a now bankrupt company.Sales for Denver-based Mile High Capital Group hit $120 million in 2005 and grew to $175 million a year later, the company touted in a press release issued last year.

“I was drawn to Mile High because there was such a fantastic business plan in place,” Jeffrey Dietz said in a July 2005 press release announcing his promotion to company president. “We supply good affordable housing in areas that need housing. We serve the client; we serve the tenant. It’s a win-win situation.”

But prosecutors and securities regulators in Colorado tell a different story.

They said Mile High was a scam that cost investors millions of dollars. Properties investors poured money into were never built, according to the Denver District Attorney and the Colorado Securities Commissioner.

Dietz, company founder Fredric “Rick” Dryer and Richard Darrow, who ran an affiliated company called Replacement Property Solutions, have been named in a 58-count indictment handed down by a Denver Grand jury.

The company was also forced into bankruptcy by state securities regulators.

“The appointment of the (bankruptcy) receiver will serve to preserve and protect the assets of Mile High for the benefit of the investors and customers while the investigation continues,” Colorado Securities Commissioner Fred J. Joseph said in a statement.

Meanwhile, one of the owners of a mortgage brokerage company associated with Mile High, is in jail after being accused of stealing Mile High’s half million dollar database.

Court records filed with the Douglas County Justice Center and the Douglas County District Attorney in Colorado indicate that Eric J. Miller was being held and stood accused of the theft of the database that contained information about customers of Mile High and Investment Property Funding, a mortgage brokerage.

Miller was arrested in Las Vegas in August and was eventually transferred to Colorado. Miller allegedly used the database to contact customers for a competitor.

Mile High and Investment Property Funding worked closely. Mile High would refer investors to the brokerage, which would then arrange financing on the duplex units Mile High was peddling.

Miller has not been implicated in the alleged Mile High scam.

Joseph said Mile High’s scheme “has victimized hundreds of investors, caused huge losses to these investors and created enormous problems in unwinding complicated real estate transactions.”

In a joint statement Joseph and Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrisey said investors were “duped” by Mile High into putting money into properties that did not exist “through a series of fraudulent and misleading statements by Dryer, Dietz and Darrow.”

Mile High “failed to disclose to investors that (it) never owned most of the land on which the residential duplexes were to be located or constructed, nor did Mile High own the land in which it sold the … interests,” they said.

“Investors were told that their funds were being used to pay for land purchases and land development,” according to the statement. “In fact, some of the funds were used to pay for Dryer’s investor seminars. Investors also never knew that Dryer and Darrow were previously convicted felons.”


Patrick Crowley is a feature journalist and blogger for MortgageDaily.com. He is also a reporter, blogger and columnist for The Cincinnati Enquirer.
e-mail Patrick at: PatCrowley@MortgageDaily.com

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