PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. (WFLA) — A Plant City man is accused of making fake deeds for six properties.
Detectives with the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office’s Economic Crimes Unit (ECU) said Michael Bogsted was creating the fake deed to make money. Investigators said he made at least $327,000 from the six properties.
Detectives said the investigation began in January 2019 when they received information about fraudulent activity.
Investigators learned that Bogsted, a self-employed licensed real estate broker in Florida, targeted at least six properties that were going to tax auctions, appeared to be abandoned, or were owned by homeowners who couldn’t pay taxes on the property.
Detectives said Bogsted would create fake deeds, fictitious release of mortgages, and satisfaction of mortgages by forging signatures and utilizing fictitious notary stamps.
Then he would electronically file the fake deeds through an online real estate transaction website, transferring ownership to various entities in order to obtain control of the property on paper, the sheriff’s office said.
Detectives said Bogstead would sell the property to an unsuspecting third party or take a mortgage out on the property.
On Tuesday, detectives found Bogsted at his home in Plant City and took him into custody.
He was charged with scheme to defraud and taken to the Hillsborough County Jail.
Investigators said the market value of the six properties in 2019 was approximately $1,071,000.