Two people arrested for involvement in property scam

ALLEGAN COUNTY, MICH. - A man and woman have been arrested on Thursday in relation to a property scam in Allegan County.

Detectives with the Allegan County Sheriff's Office were in search of a man who called himself Steve Sandalford, of Vicksburg, who was suspected of providing a fake name and paperwork to a logging company on March 28. Detectives could not verify the existence of a Steve Sandalford and were searching for him and the white, four-door passenger car he was driving. 

Detectives alleged that the man made it seem as though he owned property that he wanted logged and signed a contract with the logging company, according to a news release. The logging company paid him an undisclosed amount of money and started working on the property.

However, the real estate company that really owned property noticed the work and confronted the logging company, leading them to realize they had been scammed. 

Detectives say the man suggested to the logging company that he was a military veteran who received "preferential treatment" on properties and loans and was "flipping the property after logging" to make money.

A similar incident happened in Three Rivers in early March. This particular suspect may have committed other scams in Southwest Michigan recently. 

After numerous tips from the public, a man and woman were arrested on April 6. Detectives also recovered a portion of the money stolen from the logging company. The names of the two people arrested will released after their arraignments. 

Anyone with more information is urged to call detectives at the Allegan County Sheriff's Office at 269-673-0500.

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April Stevens is a multi-platform producer for WZZM 13. Have a news tip? Email news@wzzm13.com, visit our Facebook page or Twitter.

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