From the nypost.com:
Occupy Wall Street protesters announced with great fanfare last month that they moved a homeless family into a “foreclosed” Brooklyn home — even though they knew the house belonged to a struggling single father desperately trying to renegotiate his mortgage, The Post has learned.
“They’re trying to take a house and say the bank is robbing the people because the mortgage is too high — so contact the owner!” fumed Wise Ahadzi, 28, who owns the home at 702 Vermont St. in East New York.
Occupiers “reclaimed” the row house on Dec. 6 and ceremoniously put out the welcome mat for a homeless family.
But Bank of America, which has been in and out of foreclosure proceedings against Ahadzi since 2009, confirmed to The Post that he is still the rightful owner.
Meanwhile, the family that OWS claimed to be putting into the vacant house has not yet permanently moved in. And it turns out the family is not a random victim of the foreclosure crisis, but cast for the part, thanks to their connection to the OWS movement.
OWS last week said it has spent $9,500 breaking into the house and setting it up for the homeless Carrasquillo family. A photo of the smiling family covers a window, under the slogan, “A place to call home.”
The head of the family, Alfredo Carrasquillo, 28, is an organizer for VOCAL- NY, a group that works with OWS. His Facebook page shows him in a “99 Percent” T-shirt at an OWS protest in November.
The Post visited the Vermont Street home last week — six weeks after OWS announced that the Carrasquillos were moving in — and the family was nowhere to be found.
In fact, the only people occupying the house were occupiers themselves.
“They only stay here sometimes,” a protester named Charlie said of the Carrasquillos. “There’s not enough room for the kids.”
The occupier refused to say how many others were inside, but at least two more protesters could be seen at the house, along with mattresses on the floor, during The Post visit.
“We’re almost done with the basement,” he said of the renovations.
The real property owner is livid because he could be raising his two little girls, Imani, 3, and Kwazha, 10, in the two-story home instead of in a meager, two-bedroom rental in Brownsville while he tries to sort out his mortgage nightmare.
Police notified him in early December that the vigilante vagrants moved into his East New York digs, he said. He immediately ran over to the house to see for himself.
“Oh, don’t call the police!” an occupier begged him.
OWS leaders and Brooklyn Councilman Charles Barron, an OWS supporter, met with Ahadzi before the press conference to discuss the future of his property, he said. Ahadzi hoped that the group would help him regain his footing.
“Why can’t you fight for me?” he asked them.
“They told me I don’t qualify,” he said. “So my lawyer asked what the qualifications are. [They said] I have to be with an organization and they’ll deal with the bank and you have to be homeless.
“They said they couldn’t help me,” he added.
Ahadzi explained that he purchased the house for $424,500 in 2007 before the housing bubble burst and the market price plummeted to $150,000. He claimed he lost his job as a day trader in 2009 and couldn’t meet his mortgage payments.
He packed up and left after foreclosure proceedings began in 2009, he said.
“I paid the mortgage on the house for two years,” he added.
Ahadzi even attended the Dec. 6 press conference at the house when the Carrasquillos were introduced. He wanted to tell reporters his story.
“[OWS] told me not to talk to them [reporters] because they [OWS] had an offer for me,” he said.
At a second meeting after the press conference, however, organizers said they would not pay him for the house. At that point, he told them to leave.
Inside the house the walls are knocked down and all of his belongings, including a stove, refrigerator and bedroom furniture, have been moved to the basement.
“I’m pissed off,” he said.
“I’m trying to get my house back, and they’re trying to take it from me.”