Warsaw scam report leads police to arrest Florida man

Police say they tracked a scam from northern Indiana to Orlando, Fla., and arrested a man.
Posted on Feb. 19, 2013 at 12:00 a.m. | Updated on Feb. 19, 2013 at 9:50 a.m.

WARSAW — Police tracked a possible scam of a Nappanee woman to a man in Florida and arrested him.

According to a press release from the Kosciusko County Sheriff’s Department, Derick Cordero, 32, of Orlando, Fla., was found in his residence and taken into custody by the Orange County Sheriff’s Office S.W.A.T. Team Thursday afternoon, Feb. 14. He is being held on a preliminarily charge of felony possession of cannabis with intent to sell or deliver.

The arrest stemmed from a report made by Martha Mikel, who lives on S.R. 19, Nappanee.

She went to the Koscisucko County Sheriff’s Department to report that Cordero had contacted her, persuading her into paying more than $4,000 in fraudulent closing fees for a time-shared property located in Florida.

The Sheriff’s Department detectives tracked Mikel’s payment to a mailbox in Beverly Hills, Calif., which was forwarded to Orlando. Police obtained records that showed Cordero’s signature on a cashed check. After a initiating surveillance, the Sheriff’s Department acquired a search warrant on Feb. 13. But before executing the search warrant, police saw Cordero conduct a drug transaction at his residence, according to the press release.

After getting a search warrant, approximately 30 Florida officers, along with Kosciusko County Det./Sgt. J.D. Ayres, entered Cordero’s home. They found approximately $30,000 in pre-packaged marijuana ready for distribution. The Orange County Sheriff’s Office Cyber Crimes Unit also secured various documents, computers, and cellular devices owned by Cordero for further analysis of other potential victims.

Cordero has an active felony warrant from Kosciusko County for theft/fraud with a $10,000 bond, but is still in custody in Florida on the drug charges, according to the press release.


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