A real-estate flipper and crypto scammer named Danial Howe has been forced by Iowa regulators to cash in his crypto savings to pay back a couple he victimized. The Torics are from the European nation of Bosnia and have been calling Iowa their home for the past several years. Not long ago, the couple was facing foreclosure due to financial problems caused by growing medical issues.
Danial Howe Loses His Crypto Following Real Estate Scam
Iowa attorneys representing the couple were able to use an old rule from 1945 to force the scammer to cash in on his crypto and pay them back after he allegedly stole their home. Alex Kornya – litigation director for Iowa Legal Aid – explained in an interview:
It’s definitely a feel-good story. Our clients were in dire straits, and they had really been just scraping by… We had to come up with something, and it worked. The court allowed him to sell the cryptocurrency and he did that.
The trouble stems back to September 2020 when Howe approached the Torics and offered to rescue them from foreclosure. The couple was suffering from health problems, which limited their financial prospects and took a toll on their home. At that point, Howe owned a custom motorcycle and auto parts firm that was dealing with approximately 20 separate client complaints per documents filed with the Iowa Attorney General’s office.
As a means of escaping the complaints, Howe sought to change his career path to one that focused on real estate, and it looks like the Torics may have been early victims.
Through a series of YouTube videos, Howe pitched himself as a man who could flip homes. He said he was looking to purchase foreclosed homes or properties that were close to being repossessed. According to attorneys arguing against Howe, what he instead did was trick the Torics into signing over the deed of their home and strip away the equity they had.
Several Homeowners Were Targeted
The Torics are among 14 separate homeowners that fell victim to Howe’s scam. Their story is particularly heart-wrenching given that they had previously lost their first home in the Bosnian War. The experience proved too stressful for Muniba Toric, one member of the couple, who wound up in the hospital for nearly half a year as a result. In an interview, she said:
I stayed four months in the hospital. When I woke up, I couldn’t walk with my own feet, and to this day, I still can’t walk properly.
After a judge found Howe guilty of violating Iowa laws designed to protect homeowners against fraud, it was discovered that he had a large crypto stash to his name. Howe was then forced to cash out that crypto to pay back the couples he had wronged so they could purchase new properties.