Debt Settlement Providers Pocketed Money, Got Prison

Houstonian Nathaniel Chilo, aka Nathaniel O’Neil, 23, now convicted in two separate debt relief scams, has been sentenced to prison again, United States Attorney Kenneth Magidson announced today. Chilo entered a plea of guilty to wire fraud in relation to this case Thursday, Dec. 13, 2012.

Today, U.S. District Judge Lee H. Rosenthal, who accepted the guilty plea, handed Chilo a sentence of 51 months in federal prison to be immediately followed by a term of three years of supervised release.

Chilo operated debt relief businesses in the Houston area under several different names including, but not limited to, Universal Restoration and C & N Recovery. Both Chilo and co-defendant Savannah Rae Williams, 25, also of Houston, have admitted they fraudulently represented that settlements has been arranged for an individual in Georgia, but then used that money for their own benefit.

Chilo was first indicted in a separate scheme perpetrated by him and his father, Jeffery Wayne O’Neil, 55, of Houston. Chilo was arrested in late August 2011 and released on Sept. 14, 2011, pending further criminal proceedings. Among his conditions of release were that he not commit any other criminal offenses nor have a job in credit repair, credit counseling, credit accounts, credit history and credit restoration.

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On or about Sept. 16, 2011, a letter was sent to an individual in Georgia that falsely representing a settlement had been reached in the amount of $32,541.56 with one of the person’s creditors. As a result, the individual’s wife then wired monies to cover the settlement, but neither Chilo nor Williams ever paid the creditor.

A second email was sent the next month which indicated a settlement on another account in the amount of $35,409.18. That settlement was also fraudulent, but thinking it was a legitimate, the victim again wired the monies.

Williams and Chilo never arranged the settlements and never paid the creditors, but used the monies for their own benefit. They have both admitted they fraudulently received $67,950.74.

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Williams pleaded guilty to her role in the scheme in March 2013 and was also sentenced today to three years of probation and ordered to pay $40,894.47 in restitution.

Chilo and his father were sentenced to respective terms of 70 and 78 months in prison in the other case by U.S. District Judge Ewing Werlein Jr. on July 12, 2013. The sentence imposed upon Chilo today will be served concurrently to the previous term for a total of 70 months in federal prison. Chilo will have to pay a total of $130,176.09 in restitution for both cases.

He will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility. – Source

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