Five Arrested for Theft Related to Contractor Fraud in La.

Louisiana Attorney General Charles C. Foti, Jr., announced that his Special Agents arrested five individuals for theft of funds related to alleged contractor fraud in the New Orleans area following Hurricane Katrina.

On Sept. 23, 2006, the Attorney General’s Special Agents, with felony theft warrants obtained out of Orleans Parish, arrested Dallas Shane McClanahan with “Watertight Roofing” located at 236 Marina Drive in Slidell. Allegedly, Dallas McClanahan received $14,420.00 in February 2006 to install a roof on a New Orleans residence and never provided any materials or performed any roof repair services.

On Sept. 25, 2006, agents with obtained warrants from Orleans Parish to arrest John Franklin Richmond II, owner of “Hardwood Custom Cabinets” located at 10052 Highway 190 Goodbee. Allegedly, in December 2005 John Franklin Richmond II received $3,973.25 in funds from a New Orleans resident as a deposit for installation of custom cabinets. The agents allege Richmond requested an additional $7,173.25 in June 2006 for the custom cabinets. Richmond allegedly did not provide the promised services or cabinets to the homeowner.

On Sept. 25, 2006, with felony theft warrants obtained out of St. Tammany Parish agents arrested Timothy J. Peterson with “AAA Professional Exterior Building Maintenance Services” located at 36304 Teat Blackwell Road Pearl Rive. Allegedly, Timothy J. Peterson received $3,218.00 as a deposit for installation of a new roof for a St. Tammany residence without ever returning to the residence to provide any services or materials for the new roof.

On Sept.25, 2006, Fulbert Louis Sabathier, Jr., a/k/a Louis Sabathier, 725 Ridgewood Drive, Mandeville, turned himself in to Attorney General Special Agents. He was booked into New Orleans Central Lockup. Attorney General Special Agents allege that Sabathier, Jr., with “All-American Renovation & Contracting” was hired by an Orleans Parish resident to construct a fence and trellis on the resident’s property for the sum of $5,875.00. The victim and Sabathier, Jr., entered into a contract and the resident gave Sabathier, Jr. a down payment of $4,000.00 to start the construction. However, after receiving the $4,000.00, Sabathier allegedly fled the area without constructing the fence and trellis.

On Oct. 4, 2006, Nelvin A. Sellers with Sellers Construction, LLC, 3861 Edgemont Drive, Baton Rouge was arrested. Agents allege that Sellers was hired by an Orleans Parish resident to make repairs to the resident’s property for the sum of $13,000.00. However, Sellers allegedly completed a small portion of the work and fled the area without completing renovations to the residence as stipulated in the contract. Sellers was booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison.

If convicted, the suspects face a possible sentence of 10 years in prison with or without hard labor and a three thousand dollar fine.

Attorney General Charles C. Foti, Jr. is requesting that anyone who believes they may have been a victim of contractor fraud to contact the Attorney General’s Criminal Investigation Division at 1-800-256-4506 or the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-800-351-4889.

Source: La. Attorney General’s Office