A Long Beach man charged in the theft of $3.5 million in real estate in San Clemente, Dana Point and Anaheim is set to appear at a pretrial hearing in March.
The hearing was originally scheduled for this morning and continued, according to the Orange County District Attorney's office.
Prosecutors accuse Blair Christopher Hanloh, 46, of using forged documents to take over homes he presumed to be in foreclosure and then leasing them to tenants, according to the district attorney’s office.
Hanloh faces eight felony charges of grand theft, five felony counts of recording false and forged instruments, one felony count of second-degree commercial burglary, and sentencing-enhancement allegations for property theft of more than $65,000, $200,000, $1.3 million and $3.2 million. He also faces a charge of aggravated white-collar crime for more than $100,000 and $500,000, according to the district attorney’s release.
If convicted, Hanloh would face a maximum of 21 years in prison.
Prosecutors allege that Hanloh ran a shell company called Blair Hanloh Trustee of Diversified Management Trust, which, authorities say, he used to handle phony paperwork that transferred peoples’ homes to his name.
Prosecutors say Hanloh would scope out homes to see whether they were in foreclosure, then come back and drill the locks and post abandoned-property signs and “no trespassing” signs.
The San Clemente House
Prosecutors say one of the houses Hanloh took over and rented out to unsuspecting tenants using phony lease agreements was at 205 West Ave. Valencia in San Clemente.
According to the neighbors, 205 West Valencia illustrates the story of the real-estate crisis—from the heady days at the turn of the 21st century to the bursting of the bubble.
Chris Thornburg, who lives with his wife in the house next to the mansion that used to be a beach bungalow at 205, said the property had changed hands several times leading up to the real estate crisis. No one lived in it; it was owned by speculators and “flipped.”
Thornburg, who has lived on Valencia since the mid-1990s, said the house started out as a 1,000-square-foot beach bungalow. As its value kept increasing, owners bought it, held it and then sold it for profit without touching it.
As the bubble swelled, a group of investors came in with architectural plans, tearing down the bungalow and turning it into a massive 3,800-square-foot, 4-bedroom, 3.5-bath mansion, according to real estate website Zillow.com.
The estimated worth posted on Zillow is $1.7 million. The site says the last time the property was sold was 2004.
Look at the formal charges against Hanloh in the criminal complaint uploaded next to the photos above.