Rental Scam: Man Charged with Posing as Landlord or Rental Agent to Receive Deposit Money for Fraudulent Leases

A 29-year-old man is facing felony charges after a Cook County Sheriff’s Police investigation found that he took deposits from Polish immigrants for fake rental agreements, Sheriff Thomas J. Dart said today.

Ronald Pierzowski, of Renton, Wash., was arrested March 14. He has been charged with criminal trespass to real property and theft by deception. His bond was set at $10,000 bond during a court appearance on Saturday.

According to the Sheriff’s Police investigation, Pierzowski deliberately placed classified ads in a Polish language newspaper advertising apartments for rent.

Pierzowski posed as the property owner, landlord or as the agent of the property owner for a condominium in the 9900 block of Holly Lane in unincorporated Des Plaines. He did not own that property nor was he an agent for the property owner. From Feb.14 to Feb. 23, 2014, he showed that condominium to at least three people, presented them with fraudulent leases, and accepted more than $500 from each of the victims, as deposits.

Pierzowski’s next scheduled court date is Thursday, March 20 at the Skokie Courthouse.

Detectives believe there may have been more victims. Sheriff Dart asks anyone who may have been a victim to call 708-865-4896.

Sheriff Dart also reminds the public that the defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty by the government in a court of law.

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