December 19, 2013
You tell me. What do the following women all have in common?
- Alicia Holmes
- Alicia Pimentel
- Alicia Xiomara de Pimentel
- Alicia Ferrer
- Alicia De Pimentel
- Anna Alicia
- Sybil Figuerra
- Alicia Figueroa
- Anna Ferrer
According to an Indictment in the Southern District of New York, they're all the same women - presumably Alicia Holmes.
Starting around April 2007 and running through May 2011, the Indictment alleges that Holmes claimed to own or was in the process of purchasing homes valued between approximately $6,255,00 and $17, 000, 000; and, even more breathlessly, that she was soon coming into high-value assets.
Ah yes, the quintessential wheeler-dealer with lots of high-profile deals and waiting for her ship to come in with a boatload of moolah. Of course, wouldn't you just know it, her ship was somewhere still at sea, waiting for the fog to lift, unable to get the clearance to land. Geez, ain't that always the case with these scams? What's a fabulously wealthy woman to do when her fortune is tied up -- only temporarily, that is -- and she's salivating over the prospect of buying some big ticket residential properties?
Holmes told all who would listen about her tale of tempered woe: She needed some funds to tide her over until she was flush with cash -- oh, and by the way, did I mention, just between us, you must keep this quiet, I have access to substantial funds in an overseas trust. Also, Holmes claimed to live in Virginia, North Carolina, New York, Maryland, and elsewhere; moreover, she often lived in fancy hotels with her husband and two sons.
Sadly, some of Holmes' supposed friends fell for her spiel. According to the Indictment, a lot of folks including, hotel managers and staff, real estate brokers, property builders, home owners, and school administrators were duped into handing over their money to her. And why oh why would such a high flyin' jet setter like Holmes need to borrow money from some of the little people? Well, you see, Holmes wanted to buy more residences in the range of a measly $400,000 all the way up the the stratospheric $15,000,000. The problem was that although she technically had the money to finance this by herself, damn, there was some delay, only a couple of days, the overseas trust was tied up, the funds were being transferred but would take some time, and if she could close immediately it could cost her the real estate deal. Unless, well, no, I couldn't, I shouldn't, but, well, maybe you could extend to me a loan or make an investment and we could sort of partner on this?
It's Just A Shot Away
While Holmes was claiming to be this big shot entrepreneur with gazillions of bucks just on their way to her accounts, she was also conning hotel employees into letting her and her family stay at their hotels for months at a time without payments. Darling, can you put a few more chocolate mints on my pillow and get me a few extra bars of soap for the bathroom?
In order to keep the scheme going, Holmes impersonated lawyers, bankers, and an FBI agent. Additionally, Holmes instructed victims not to cooperate with federal law enforcement agents who were investigating her scheme. Hey, she took her best shot. Frankly, so many balls juggling in the air, so many plates spinning on so many sticks -- how long could Holmes keep this going?
I'm Gonna Fade Away
On December 6, 2012, Holmes was charged with one count of wire fraud, one count of mail fraud, and one count of fictitious name or address. On March 1, 2013, Holmes pled guilty to all three counts.
On December 13, 2013, Holmes was sentenced to six years in prison and three years of supervised release; and ordered to forfeit $542,343.51 and to pay $894,205.01 in restitution.
Bill Singer's Comment
As to Alicia Holmes and her ilk. Good riddance. Chalk up another victory for U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara and his staff at
And now, let's change direction and permit me a digression. A tribute, as it were.
On December 18th Keith Richards of the Rolling Stones turned 70 years old. Imagine. Keith Richards made it to 70! Of course, there's that rumor about when the world ends, the only two things that will still survive are cockroaches and Keith Richards -- so, maybe it just goes to show you.
Perhaps the best video performance of the Stones was captured in 1995 at the Club Paradiso in Amsterdam. While admittedly past their prime, the band managed to capture their past glory for at least one song on that night, and the amazing Lisa Fisher was never better. Please enjoy this amazing rendition of Gimme Shelter: