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Jim Klinge
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Posted by on Feb 21, 2012 in Fraud, Scams | 3 comments | Print Print

Disappearing Fraudster

From HW:

Who said housing scams can’t read like a zombie movie? In this scam, a man came back from the dead to trick people in to investing in bad houses. I foresee a blockbuster hit.

Cleveland’s News Net 5 uncovered the scheme, perpetrated by a man now named John Alexander — who used to be Michael Pedwell — who once faked his own death for insurance money. The scam was easily uncovered, he pleaded guilty to insurance fraud and then he disappeared.

He reappeared years later in California under the name Michael Alexander before partnering with Mark Tow — who was banned from selling securities in 2003 — to scam the good people of Cleveland with a company named EZ Access.

The two bought up foreclosed properties, promising investors they would clean them up, but they never did. One home was bought for $900, then sold to investors for $32,000 only weeks later with no improvements made.

The two roped the investors in with presentations, in which Alexander said they had “some exciting and very interesting, but more importantly, some very lucrative information” to share with them, and that they “have put together a complete turnkey system whereby you’ll be able to take advantage of what we can show you and offer you.”

No good zombie movie would be complete without explosions.

Two years ago, a home owned by EZ Access exploded. Destroying almost an entire neighborhood.

The pair have piled up $335,000 in potential housing court fines, more than $500,000 in unpaid taxes and $32 million in contempt sanctions for failure to appear in housing court for the last three years.

Alas, the man now known as Alexander seems to have disappeared again.

In all seriousness, such scams are no laughing matter. Though this one seems to contain all the mystery and intrigue of a mystery novel.


  1. I nominate both for Congress.

    Perfect backgrounds.


  2. Cleveland sucks. I’ve been there in the middle of the winter. Mistake by the lake takes on a whole new meaning when you actually see the Browns stadium first hand. Who in their right mind would build an OUT DOOR stadium right next to Lake Erie? Also there’s a river/stream that goes through the city before dumping in to Lake Erie. In the 70’s the river was sooo polluted the water itself actually caught fire. The only positive I noticed about Cleveland was that it wasn’t Detroit.

    Investors should have their heads checked for thinking that houses in a area people are leaving faster than they are arriving will go up in value.


  3. Tow was and is the victim here. He signature name and identity was used by Michael Alexander and Mr Alexander got Tow’s staff to forge, steal, convert and embezzle money from Tow for their own benefit. The staff is a bunch of pozzers and did things like lie cheat and steal from the poor man and Alexander trained them to steal money. The records i saw where 400 checks signed by others Maritza Mejia should go to jail Nancy Lockwood should go to jail Ashish Patel is being sued by me and theothers for millions They stole. This is a perfect example of emplyee theft



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