TAMPA — Five years after authorities began investigating the high-end mortgage fraud scheme concocted by a convicted drug dealer, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement has arrested a 13th suspect.
Agents say Jeffrey Ryan Ayers, 29, of Lithia, was employed by Advanced Mortgage Solutions, a company that obtained mortgages for homeowners to make improvements on their homes.
In 2004, the Tampa Police and Hillsborough County Consumer Protection Agency began receiving reports that workers for AMS's construction company, Florida Beautiful Construction Management, were walking away from jobs without completing the work.
Investigators found that the company forged supporting documents to get loans for low-income homeowners and then pocketed the money without doing the work. The scam topped $13 million before arrests were made.
Ayers, of 17037 Dorman Rd., is charged with racketeering, conspiracy to commit racketeering, and grand theft.
He was taken to the Orient Road Jail and is being held without bail.