Turn to Tara: Alleged housing scam targeted immigrants

Posted: Updated:
GREENBURGH -

Some immigrants in the Greenburgh area say they fell victim to an alleged rental scam targeting Spanish speakers.

Jorge Ordonez says his trouble started after he responded to an ad hanging in a laundromat for an inexpensive basement rental along Orchard Street. He claims the place wasn't in great shape, but found the $1,000 monthly rent affordable.

Ordonez says he then handed over a $1,700 deposit to Jeffrey Pena.

Pena was nowhere to be found despite News 12’s repeated attempts to reach him.

Other immigrants say they were also trying to move in to the same unit and fell victim to the alleged scam.

"I went to court four times and he never showed up," says Pedro Verta.

News 12 has discovered a legal paper trail dating back to 2016, with other reported victims who won judgements in small claims court.

Sylvia Zuniga says she too never got her security deposit back.

"Maybe I’m not going to get my money back, which is bad, but I don't want this to keep happening to other people," she says. 

  • Turn to TaraMore>>

  • Got a problem? You should Turn to Tara. Here's how.

    Got a problem? You should Turn to Tara. Here's how.

    Thursday, September 14 2017 4:26 PM EDT2017-09-14 20:26:15 GMT
    Turn to TaraTurn to Tara

    Do you need to Turn to Tara?
    Tara has your back and wants to hear from you. Reach her by email, Twitter or Facebook.

    Do you need to Turn to Tara?
    Tara has your back and wants to hear from you. Reach her by email, Twitter or Facebook.

  • Turn to Tara partners with Documenting Hate to report on hate crimes

    Turn to Tara partners with Documenting Hate to report on hate crimes

    Thursday, December 7 2017 2:02 PM EST2017-12-07 19:02:17 GMT
    Turn to Tara and News 12 are partnering with Documenting Hate -- a collaborative journalism project led by nonprofit investigative newsroom ProPublica -- to track and report on hate crimes.Turn to Tara and News 12 are partnering with Documenting Hate -- a collaborative journalism project led by nonprofit investigative newsroom ProPublica -- to track and report on hate crimes.

    Turn to Tara and News 12 are partnering with Documenting Hate -- a collaborative journalism project led by nonprofit investigative newsroom ProPublica -- to track and report on hate crimes around the country. Have you been the victim or witness of a hate crime or bias incident? Tell us your story. #dh-form-embed { width: 500px; }

    Turn to Tara and News 12 are partnering with Documenting Hate -- a collaborative journalism project led by nonprofit investigative newsroom ProPublica -- to track and report on hate crimes around the country. Have you been the victim or witness of a hate crime or bias incident? Tell us your story. #dh-form-embed { width: 500px; }

  • Westchester Medical Center shooting was the 1st in its 5-decade history

    Westchester Medical Center shooting was the 1st in its 5-decade history

    Wednesday, August 8 2018 5:51 PM EDT2018-08-08 21:51:41 GMT
    Turn to Tara is investigating how a gunman got inside the Westchester Medical Center Wednesday morning and killed his wife and himself when guns are prohibited inside the facility.Turn to Tara is investigating how a gunman got inside the Westchester Medical Center Wednesday morning and killed his wife and himself when guns are prohibited inside the facility.

    Turn to Tara is investigating how a gunman got inside the Westchester Medical Center Wednesday morning and killed his wife and himself when guns are prohibited inside the facility.

    Turn to Tara is investigating how a gunman got inside the Westchester Medical Center Wednesday morning and killed his wife and himself when guns are prohibited inside the facility.

sorry to interrupt
your first 20 are free
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please enjoy 20 complimentary views of articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.
you have reached your 20 view limit
Access to News 12 is free for Optimum, Comcast®, Spectrum Networks® and Service ElectricSM customers.
Please login or create an account to continue enjoying News12.
Our sign-up page is undergoing maintenance and is not currently available. However, you will be given direct access to news12.com while we complete our upgrade.
When we are back up and running you will be prompted at that time to complete your sign in. Until then, enjoy the local news, weather, traffic and more that's "as local as local news gets."