Las Vegas Sun

August 21, 2014

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Father of Las Vegas quints faces real estate fraud charges

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Julie Jacobson

Deon Derrico speaks about the birth of his quintuplets during a news conference, Friday, Sept. 20, 2013, at Summerlin Hospital Medical Center in Las Vegas, following their births two weeks earlier in Phoenix.

State prosecutors say Deon Derrico, the father of Las Vegas’ famed quintuplets, has swindled two homeowners — and maybe more — of their property as part of a real estate fraud.

Derrico has been charged with forgery, theft and false representation, according to a criminal complaint filed by the Nevada Attorney General’s Office in December.

The 43-year-old Detroit native made the news last year after his wife gave birth to five babies, bumping the number of children in the Derrico household to nine. The family’s brood soon appeared on the national morning news shows and took center stage in local media, including being featured in a cover story in the March 9 issue of The Sunday, a sister publication of the Sun. The parents say producers are courting them for a reality television series.

But the embattled dad is now set to appear in North Las Vegas court Wednesday for a preliminary hearing to address the charges, which include 13 felony counts.

Though the charges stem from the stories of two victims, the state attorney’s office said in a statement this case may be just the beginning:

“We believe there may be more victims. We encourage them to file a complaint with our office (here)."

Authorities say Derrico has several aliases, including Derrick Derrico, Marlo Abbott and Damon Mitchell. With a co-defendant named Olujuwon Bryant, Derrico fraudulently took over two homes by filling forged quitclaim deeds at the Clark County Recorder’s Office and then renting the houses for profit, court records say.

A quitclaim allows the owner of a home to grant his property to someone else. But the homeowners named in the court documents had no idea they were transferring their property to Derrico, prosecutors say — because he forged their signatures on the quitclaim deeds.

In one instance, according to the complaint, Derrico filed a quitclaim deed with the signature of property owner John Marshall. His wife, Gertrude, told investigators that would have been impossible because he was dead at the time the deed was dated.

Reached by telephone Monday, Derrico said he couldn’t say much about the case.

“My legal team anticipates a victorious ending,” he said.

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