Four months after signing a lease for a rental property in Palm Bay, Fla., a family of seven has now learned that the lease was fake, the home was in foreclosure, and they had been sending their rent money to a suspected con man, not a landlord, police say.

Dewey Moore Jr., 45, was arrested last week and charged with burglary of an unoccupied dwelling and grand theft. Police are accusing Moore of posting several phony notices for rental properties on Craigslist and then breaking into the homes, changing the locks, and posing as the landlord.

The family of seven discovered they had been duped after the daughter of the property’s actual owners called police to report squatters were living in the foreclosed home.

Police suspect that more homes in the area are involved.

Source: “Police: Family Duped Into Renting Foreclosed Home,” Florida Today (Feb. 8, 2011)