Realtor standing trial for grand theft

December 30, 2008 12:45:46 PM PST
A former realtor accused of bilking members of San Francisco's Hispanic community out of nearly $800,000 will stand trial on multiple counts of grand theft, prosecutors said Monday.

A San Francisco Superior Court judge ruled Monday that Edwin Parada, 30, should answer to eight felony counts of grand theft and an allegation of taking money in excess of $200,000, according to the San Francisco District Attorney's office. The ruling came at the end of Parada's five-day preliminary hearing in the case.

Prosecutors allege Parada, who was arrested in July, persuaded at least eight people -- who came to his real estate office in the Outer Mission neighborhood looking for help buying, selling or refinancing homes -- to give him the money as either an investment, a loan or for him to hold for unspecified reasons.

The alleged crimes took place between 2005 and 2007, prosecutors said.

Prosecutors said Parada, who also owned several restaurants in the area, gained notoriety in the community through a Spanish-language radio program he hosted on real estate and religion.

An investigation in Parada's activities is ongoing, according to the district attorney's office. Anyone who suspects they may also have been victimized is asked to contact San Francisco police.

Parada remains in custody on $750,000 bail and is scheduled to return to court Jan. 13.


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