San Diego County District Attorney Summer Stephan said today that a woman who illegally took possession of an 89-year-old victim’s house and refused to vacate it has been sentenced to two years formal probation and 150 hours of community service. The sentence was handed down this afternoon in San Diego Superior Court downtown.The defendant, Asfar “Benny” Shamlou was also ordered to stay away from the property and victims in this case. The victim’s family is currently in the process of regaining possession of the home.
“This defendant took advantage of an elderly woman in poor health and was brought to justice by our DA Real Estate Fraud team,” said DA Stephan. “Elder abuse comes in many forms. Our office pursues justice on behalf of seniors and works to hold defendants like this accountable for preying on some of the most vulnerable in our community.”
In this case, the victim, who suffers from dementia, had a stroke in 2018 and moved into a nursing care facility. Shamlou, 67, whose website indicates she has a background in finance and real estate investments, identified the Carmel Mountain Ranch home as being vacant and delinquent on property taxes. She illegally moved into the home in early 2021. When confronted by the victim’s family, she told them she had paid the back taxes and that she now owned the home. Shamlou threw away all of the owner’s possessions and even remodeled the home.
The defendant was charged with five felony counts including theft from an elder, burglary, grand theft of personal property, and vandalism. She was convicted of all criminal counts by a jury in December of 2023.
This case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney John Dunn who is the lead prosecutor in the DA’s Real Estate Fraud Unit. Suspected fraud or other real estate related crime can be reported to the District Attorney here.