Guilfort Dieuvil of Palm Beach, Florida was arrested of Thursday after an investigation purportedly revealed that Nationwide Investment Firm Corporation, a Palm Beach-based company of which Dieuvil, 38, is president, was defrauding customers and failing to fulfill other duties. Dieuvil was booked into Palm Beach County Jail on charges including acting as a loan originator without a license and obtaining property by fraud, according to news reports. It is not clear whether Dieuvil has since been released on bail bond.
Sources indicate that Dieuvil was arrested after the Florida Office of Financial Regulation launched an investigation into Dieuvil's business in cooperation with area police departments in April. The investigation came following a string of complaints from customers, including allegations that Nationwide tricked them into giving up ownership of their homes. Dieuvil previously told the press that he was dealing with the claims through negotiation. It is not clear whether this approach has resolved any of the customer complains. Several former customers are reportedly in the process of filing lawsuits.
Nationwide Investment Firm Corporation evidently specializes in foreclosure rescue, helping homeowners negotiate deals with lenders that allow them to keep their homes. One description stats the Nationwide defends clients in legal proceedings and helps to broker loan modifications or short sales to that aim. According to reports, Nationwide owns 73 area homes in Palm Beach, Miami, Fort Lauderdale and other surrounding areas. Dieuvil himself is lives in Boynton Beach and was a licensed mortgage broker until his license expired at the end of 2010, according to reports. It is not clear whether he founded Nationwide, nor is it clear whether similar charges are forthcoming against any other company officials.
Reports indicate that Dieuvil and his company are currently facing legal action by several former clients who claim that Nationwide swindled them out of their homes. The company is also facing charges from community associations claiming that Nationwide failed to pay maintenance fees on the properties it owns and moved tenants into the residences without the required approval. The former claim reportedly came to light after clients began sending letters to state officials and hiring lawyers to pursue legal action against Nationwide. Some of the complaints reportedly stated that Nationwide tricked them into signing over the deeds to their homes, resulting in debts for properties they did not own as well as possible eviction.
Jossette Dimanche, one woman who is suing Nationwide, purportedly claims that she worked with the company in August 2010 in order to negotiate a loan modification for her Lake Belvedere Estates house. She says that she moved out of the home and signed over the deed to Nationwide in hopes that she could settle the debt, and that Nationwide started renting out the residence, according to news reports. However, the loan modification reportedly never came through, and according to Dimanche's lawyer, she cannot take action through the bank since she no longer has the deed to the home. It is not clear whether Dimance worked with Dieuvil directly.
Reports indicate that similar claims stemmed from areas across Florida. The investigation involved several area police departments as well as the Florida Office of Financial Regulation, along with other agencies. Read about other Palm Beach fraud cases here.