Article Courtesy of The
Tampa Bay Times
By Susan Taylor Martin
Published February 21, 2019
LAND O' LAKES — A Pasco County lawyer once caught on
video as he purportedly altered mortgage records is in jail on a new
felony charge while still facing several older ones.
55, was arrested Friday in a Pasco courtroom and charged
with equity skimming, a type of mortgage fraud. According to
a warrant, he bought at least two properties that were in
default or were soon to be in default on their mortgages. He
collected rents but kept the money for his own use instead
of paying the lenders, the warrant said.
Kalogianis was jailed after a judge revoked his bond on
other charges that were filed in 2016 but that have not yet
gone to trial.
An unsuccessful congressional candidate in 2002, Kalogianis
became one of Tampa Bay's most active foreclosure defense
lawyers after the 2008 housing crash. But the Pinellas-Pasco
State Attorney's office launched an investigation three
years ago after a lender accused him of altering foreclosure
case records to benefit homeowners he represented.
Surveillance videos taken in a Pasco clerk's office in 2015
appeared to show him stamping something on papers in two
In 2016, Kalogianis was arrested on nine felony counts,
accused of what State Attorney Bernie McCabe called a
"systematic, ongoing course of conduct with intent to
defraud'' several lenders between 2013 and 2016. Due to the
alleged forgeries, Kalogianis was able to persuade judges
that Bank of America and other lenders didn't have standing
for summary judgment. As a result, he collected more than
$100,000 worth of fees as the prevailing attorney that he
otherwise wouldn't have received, McCabe's office said.
While facing those charges, Kalogianis was disbarred
in 2017 for his dealings with Jacqueline Drury, a woman in her 70s who
had hired him to handle the sale of her late mother's home. An assistant
to Kalogianis suggested that Drury "invest'' the $227,000 proceeds of
the sale with the attorney.
Former Tampa Bay foreclosure defense lawyer
Constantine Kalogianis is in the Pasco County jail on an equity
According to a court-appointed referee, neither the
assistant nor Kalogianis ever made it clear to the "financially
unsophisticated'' Drury what she was investing in. In reality, the money
was a personal loan to Kalogianis secured by second mortgages on his
then-home and lots in a Pasco subdivision where he was building a
million-dollar house. When the lender foreclosed, Kalogianis stopped
paying interest to Drury and failed to pay back the loan within the
required five years. Drury later said losing the money left her so broke
she had to give up cable TV and couldn't afford to see a dentist.
Court records show that Kalogianis now lives in Danvers, Mass., north of
Boston. According to his Facebook page, he is a land permit consultant
for Sandstone Development in Danvers.