Father, son arrested for home rental scam

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By Natalie Flanzer By Natalie Flanzer

PEORIA, Ariz. - A father and son allegedly have been renting out homes that did not belong to them and now they face felony charges for the fraud.

According to police, Earl Koskella, 75, and Keith Koskella, 38, rented out five separate homes for well below market value. Each of the homes were in some stage of foreclosure.

Property records show Earl as the owner of the homes as an apparent result of quit claim deeds that he forged.

Earl claims to have a background in the mortgage industry and no criminal record.

Keith has been in and out of prison since 1996 for drug-related charges, aggravated assault and forgery.

The Peoria Police Department warns would-be renters to fully verify a home and landlord's status before signing documents. The county assessor's website will verify whether a home is registered as a rental property.

Police said the lack of a business license or a registration on a property does not necessarily mean a landlord is committing fraud, but could indicate not everything is being done to by the law.

Earl is charged with fraud schemes and aggravated ID theft.

Keith faces a fraud schemes charge and an unrelated charge on an outstanding warrant.