Victims of $ 2 million home improvement fraud in Orange, Chatham Counties

The FBI is looking for victims in Orange, Chatham and Durham Counties who may have been betrayed in the past six years by a husband and wife doing home improvement projects.

The Raleigh Resident Agency’s Federal Bureau of Investigations is investigating the actions of Jorge Alberto Garcia and his wife, Helen Smith-Flores, who were indicted by the North Carolina Central District Attorney in connection with a program that defrauded at least 50 elderly victims.

An agency publication estimates the couple illegally cost approximately $ 2 million J & J Home Improvement and JH Home Improvements, Inc. operated between December 2014 and April 2020. Most of the companies operated in Durham, Orange and Chatham counties.

According to the FBI, Garcia was approaching elderly victims in their homes and offered his home improvement services. It is said that he received heavy pay for construction work that either went unfinished or never started. The release describes the victims as largely living on a steady income and often with significant health problems.

Garcia was charged with five criminal contempt on February 14 in Wake County and sentenced to 120 days in prison. The indictment arose out of Garcia’s violation of a court order he signed with the North Carolina Licensing Board of General Contractors in 2017, according to ABC 11.

The FBI is required by law to identify victims of federal crimes it is investigating and to provide information, services and resources to those victims. Those who believe they may be or may have been victims of this program are encouraged to call the 1-800-CALL FBI or email [email protected]. The FBI can reach out to anyone who submits their information and ask for additional information.

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