An Easton man was arrested Friday after a 10 month investigation by Easton Police regarding a rent-to-own scam.
Joshua Leventhal, 41, of 48 Forest Edge Road, Easton was arrested on ten counts of larceny over $250 by false pretense.
Police Chief Allen Krajcik said Leventhal is accused of scamming people from around the country on a rent-to-own scheme in which he offered to purchase property and then rent it to the victims on a rent to own basis.
He would take a “commitment deposit” usually of $1,000 and then the transaction never went through, Krajcik said.
Leventhal contacted people through several websites including www.rent2ownconnect.com, www.hslhomes.com, and on craigslist.com, he said. Most of the victims have lost between $1,000 and $8,000 in the fraudulent transactions.
"Often the victims were people who had bad credit or who were losing their homes and Leventhal offered them a chance to either stay in their current home or help sell that one and get them into another home at an affordable price," Krajcik said.
Police arrested Levanthal on a warrant in his home Thursday morning, Krajcik said.
"Easton Police, assisted by several Norton Police officers and members of the Metropolitan Law Enforcement computer crimes unit, also executed a search warrant on his home and seized records, computers and cell phones," Krajcik said.
The 10 month long investigation was conducted by Easton Detective Sergeant John Lynn and the Bristol County District Attorney’s Office.
Krajcik said his force is aware of a large number of victims and believe there are many more
"The incident remains under investigation," he said. "If you believe you have been a victim, or know someone who was involved in this, please contact Easton Police at 508-230-3322."