CAPE CORAL, Fla. - Cape Coral Police have arrested two suspects and are looking for two others who were involved in an intricate scheme to defraud multiple lending agencies of vehicle loans and then misappropriate the new vehicles. Bruce Norman Hamlin (DOB: 09/15/1956) was charged with four counts of Fraud – False Statement in Title Transfer while Neal Andrew Direnzo (DOB: 02/01/1980) was charged with one count of Fraud – False Statement in Title Transfer. Both suspects were charged with Fraud – Swindle to Obtain Property more than $50,000.
A joint investigation by the Cape Coral Police Property Crimes Unit and the State Attorney’s Office identified several suspects who were working together to defraud lending agencies via vehicle loans. According to Cape Coral Police detectives, the suspects would apply for multiple vehicle loans, make a handful of payments, and then have a local towing company attach a lien to the vehicle. The tow company would notify the respective lending agencies of a “legal” hold on the vehicle. When the lending institutions failed to respond (which was part of the scheme), false certificates of title were obtained. The suspects then took possession of the vehicles and sold them for profit. More than $200,000 in loan monies were misappropriated. Cape Police have recovered several of the vehicles.
Cape Police are searching for two more suspects involved in the scheme. Scott Stephen Friga (DOB: 01/14/1974) and Ismatilla Ubaydullaev (DOB: 07/08/1970) are still at large. A mugshot of Friga is attached; however, no image of Ubaydullaev is available. If anyone has any information on the whereabouts of these two suspects, please contact Crime Stoppers at 1-800-780-TIPS. If a tip leads to the arrest of a suspect, the caller will be eligible for a $1,000 reward. Callers also can contact the Cape Coral Police Department at (239) 574-3223.