Glendale police Friday sought possible additional victims of a man who allegedly swindled people out of money in an apartment rental scam.
Wail Balkhi, 22, of Glendale was arrested Wednesday on a warrant after he was charged with four counts of grand theft by false pretenses, the Glendale Police Department reported.
Balkhi, who is being held on $250,000 bail, is due back in court in Burbank on Aug. 17, when a date is scheduled to be set for a hearing to determine if there is enough evidence for him to stand trial.
According to police, the crimes occurred between June 8-15.
“Balkhi met with at least eight victims who answered online ads for an apartment listing in the 100 block of West Wilson (Avenue) in the city of Glendale,” according to a police statement. “During these meetings, Balkhi directed the victims to complete rental paperwork and sometimes gave tours of the apartment. Balkhi collected funds from these victims under the guise of collecting a security deposit and/or first month’s rent. After collecting the funds, Balkhi ceased communicating with his victims and never returned their funds. Balkhi was evicted from his apartment days later.”
Balkhi was taken into custody by members of a U.S. Marshals Service task force.
“There is reason to believe Balkhi has engaged in additional thefts through similar acts,” police said.
Other possible victims were urged to call Detective Alex Lee at (818) 548-3101.