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REAL ESTATE: Indicted CEO’s Corona home going up for auction

REAL ESTATE: Indicted CEO’s Corona home going up for auction

Realtors are paying close attention to the status of a home in Corona that is owned by Carolyn Marie Jones, the CEO of high-end blue-jean design company who is embroiled in a $ 15 million bank and bankruptcy fraud case.

The home, located at 1723 Sandtrap, was set to be sold by Auction.com March 4 with an opening bid of $ 510,000. Built in 1999, the two-story home last sold in June 2005 for $ 688,000.

Melinda Harris, a Southern California real estate broker who has kept an eye on the property, says the listing continues to come up on the auction block, and gets delayed. Last week, the sale was postponed again.

The new auction date is April 1.

“It’s like it’s frozen in time,” she said, before questioning if the delays are linked to the federal court case against Jones.

Federal authorities say the foreclosure action has nothing to do with the case. Her trial in U.S. District Court is set to begin March 3.

Jones was taken into custody July 1, 2014 on charges she violated terms of her bond while awaiting trial on the federal fraud case. The federal indictment accused Jones, while acting as CEO of a company that sold denim jeans under the Privacywear and PRVCY Premium labels, used fake financial statements and false tax returns to get a $ 15 million business line of credit from Union Bank.

After Union Bank issued the line of credit, Jones allegedly defaulted on the loan, hid assets and filed for bankruptcy protection. Union Bank recorded a notice of default against Jones’ home on Jan. 7, 2014, title records show.

Jones, detained since July, has pleaded not guilty in the case.

HOMEOWNER PROTECTION FOR WIDOWS, HEIRS

Widowed homeowners and heirs with a legal interest in a home may want to pay attention to legislation state Assemblywoman Susan Talamantes Eggman, D-Stockton, has proposed.

Now in the banking and finance committee, Assembly Bill 244 says the same protections given to homeowners under the California Homeowner Bill of Rights would extend to widows and surviving family members with a legal interest in the home.

The change is aimed at leveling the playing field between homeowners and mortgage servicers, Eggman’s spokesman Christian Burkin said.

Surviving spouses can find themselves in a Catch-22 when they inherit a house and can’t afford to service the loan as it exists, he said. “They’re not being recognized as the owner or legal title holder to restructure or refinance the loan, which is what we wanted to offer to people in the height of the foreclosure crisis.”

Assemblywoman Cheryl Brown, D-San Bernardino, is co-author of the bill.

Contact the writer: 951-368-9423 or dgruszecki@pe.com

Press Enterprise : Business