Pre- Divorce: Lawyers, Judges and Crooked Real Estate Agents Steal More from Families than Burglars and Drug Lords
Pillars of the community. They belong to Rotary, non-profits and are the faces on real estate signs all over town. They publish newspapers, run local farms, invest your money, broker loans on the family home and fix your kid's teeth, but in their side hustles these folks make deals with divorce lawyers that harm kids and families involved in divorce or custody cases all over California.
Few people realize that by the time a divorce case is filed, a soon to be former spouse may have been planning to cheat their betrothed long before a formal action is filed in court. Not the bedroom kind of cheating, but the kind that will conceal millions in assets, property and off- shore accounts during a divorce. This is not a rich person problem, but an issue of public corruption where family court judges are in on the scheme.
Divorce lawyers profit from inciting conflict between spouses. They mingle with other divorce lawyers to talk about cases and maximize how much they will make from them.
Documents linked to popular Morgan Hill Orthodontist Bas Wafelbakker's 2017 divorce case appears to indicate Gilroy divorce lawyer Andrea Fortino has been placing clients in private judging while her assistant, Melissa Tamayo, stands lookout for Edward Jones investors and Filice & Company, a Gilroy based property management firm supplying housing for what is believed to be one of the largest human and sex trafficking rings that provides labor to Silicon Valley teach firms and Salinas Valley farmers connected to Dole Food Company and Tanimura & Antle.
This pattern is seen all over the state, it just has different bad actors playing crucial roles in the scheme.
In Santa Clara, Monterey, Santa Cruz and San Benito counties, families involved in a divorce case that comes in the crosshairs of Ms. Fortino find they are victims of false domestic violence allegations, and public corruption fueled by real estate fraud.
For years, Melissa Tamayo collected information on prospective renters and their employers while she was employed with Gilroy based property management firm Filice & Company. This information was used by divorce lawyers to move equity out of family homes to what has become a rental business related to human trafficking cases that provide free, or cheap labor, linked to Salinas and Imperial Valley's large scale commercial farmers.
In 1996 Annie Fortino started practicing law in Gilroy. That same year, Patty Filice dropped her broker's license and began to launder money and properties through Intero real estate. Ms. Filice has sold over 400 properties in the Gilroy, Morgan Hill and San Jose area without a license for over 26 years and is known to give kickbacks to get appointed in a divorce case to sell off a family home. Using a network of real estate agents and divorce lawyers Patty was a top producer for what has become a criminal enterprise. Top referrers include Santa Clara County lawyers Mark Erickson, Elise Mitchell, Jason Pintar, Richard Roggia, Sean Onderick, and Nicole Ford. In San Benito, Michele Hales is exclusively running properties into court ordered sales . In Monterey Debra Crawford and Rory Coetezee are bringing in divorce cases through former Commissioner Irwin Joseph.
Most insidious are family law attorneys who get court appointed to represent children, but do little for those children and more for what has become a criminal enterprise funded with billions connected to California's real estate industry. Heather Allan assures properties belonging to families where she represents children, move through title companies such as Orange Title. Elise Michell, uses her appointments to represent children to assure kickbacks moving through Giacalone " Design " or " Electrical" as well as securing lenders willing to write loans on properties brought to the enterprise through the family courts. David Luca, Michael Smith and Nicole Ford have brought in lenders willing to write bridge loans that keep properties in the names of buyers posing as strawmen until the properties can be converted to LLCs or other offshore businesses that launder the properties and provide kickbacks that help fund the enterprise and reward judges willing to look the other way..
Former Morgan Hill mayor turned divorce lawyer, Laura Perry, uses her political connections to make ensure Patty Filice and others in Morgan Hill can operate with impunity and where Santa Clara County allows Ms. Filice to operated without a license with impunity as long as she is selling properties connected to the county's family and probate court cases.
In 2017, private divorce attorney Sharon Roper took a job in Santa Clara County courts, where she began to groom lawyers and litigants to convert equity in the family home to the pockets of divorce lawyers. Roper, and an army of divorce lawyers, are known to tell divorcing couples that using her as a private judge would be faster and easier for a divorce or custody case. However, once an innocent souse agrees, Roper and a mob will assure court orders force the sale of the family home to pay out equity to lawyers who kickback fees to the political campaigns of the judges who issue the orders and make sure lawyers get paid.
Roper is even known to act as a private judge in the divorce case of family court judges who are in on the scheme, Judges Mary Ann Grilli. Judges Stuart Scott and James Towery are ripe for exposure for the private judge cases they failed to properly assign or control.
Photo (below) : Judge Mary Ann Grilli divorce case before Sharon Roper.
Attorney Walter Hammon appears to be in on the most corrupt cases, representing DOJ employees, DA employees and even spouses of the judges where he assures the cases are secreted.
How to Tell If Your Spouse Is Planning a Divorce :
If you have money, community owned businesses or equity in the family home, your divorce is ripe for the family court mafia. This is not a gender issue, it is incited by divorce lawyers and fueled by court corruption no mainstream media will expose. Here is how to detect it before it is too late:
Too Late Once A Divorce Is Filed
If your spouse files for divorce and drains the bank accounts, or sets up a domestic violence case to get you thrown out of the house , it may be too late.
Here are some tips that may help save you from a corrupt divorce:
1. Find others online in your area by searching the name of the divorce lawyer your spouse hires.
2. Record everything - the property, how your spouse talks to you, personal belongings. (Best to pretend you are preparing for fire insurance because if you end up in a modern family court case, it is worse than your home getting burned down}.
3. Check court dockets and review cases of your ex's divorce lawyer. See if their cases are using private judges, minor's counsel appointments or certain custody evaluators.
4. Look for patterns with certain judges- how long cases are lasting on the court docket.
If a case drags out more than a year,. your former spouse has already put you in the mob. Changing lawyers will only hurt your position so try to minimize turnover. From the outset of retaining a lawyer make sure they are willing to immediately file a request for attorney fees, support requests and other orders to get your divorce done fast. Make sure you are clear on what you will get for your retainer. Do not allow your lawyer to write letters, emails or make phone calls that result in charges and no results. Note you will pay for settlement discussions only once and if it is so off the mark, know you are in trouble. Do discovery early and if your ex's lawyer does not cooperate, make sure your lawyer issues subpoenas and compels information you are entitled to get under Family Code Section 721 and 1100.
If you find others from this site, or other blogs, don't tell your lawyer, or let them come to court to support you. They will be tracked, the lawyers are watching and talking and you don't want to be labeled as one to speak out about corruption, or you will face retaliation.
Whatever you do , do not use a real estate agent, or a private judge, used in other cases you find on the local court docket.