67-year-old woman faces sentencing today for scam

When attorney David Liebrader saw Nancy Edna Nash a few days ago, she didn’t look well.

Nash has reason to feel lousy. District Judge Elizabeth Gonzalez will sentence Nash at 9 a.m. today for selling $2.8 million in unregistered securities to elderly investors.

The defendant could get probation or a maximum of 40 years in prison, the equivalent of a life sentence for the 67-year-old Nash.

Liebrader doesn’t have much sympathy for the defendant, having won a $300,000 judgment against Nash for her involvement in another scam. She paid only half that amount, he said.

The attorney sued Nash in 2004 over selling leases on time shares in Cancún as part of a $428 million scheme that involved Mexican hotels owned or leased by Michael Kelly.

Kelly, 58, was doing business as Resort Holdings International and other corporate names.

Liebrader represented Karl Walentek, a Czech paratrooper during World War II who later became a chef, and his wife, Eva. Liebrader invested in Resort Holdings through Nash.

Investors were told that they could purchase a lease on a time-share room and allow an allegedly independent party chosen by Kelly to rent the time-share unit to others. These investors were promised either a 9 percent or 11 percent annual profit even if the room was not rented.

The federal government has been holding Kelly in a Chicago jail for a year without bond, based on an affidavit alleging fraud in the Mexican time-share scheme.

Nash is not identified in papers filed by the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago nor in a lawsuit summary of the Securities and Exchange Commission against Kelly.

In the case before Gonzalez, Nash pleaded guilty to one of 28 felony violations alleged by the Nevada secretary of state’s office — sale of an unregistered security to a person 60 years of age older. She is accused of illegally selling private mortgage investments to elderly investors, many who lost money.

“She was talked into doing some stuff by a developer in Utah,” public defender Craig Jorgenson said. “She ended up losing some of her own money.”

Jorgenson said he will urge the judge to put Nash on probation with a requirement to make restitution to victims.

“She has no criminal record at all,” Jorgenson said.

John Kelleher, assistant chief deputy attorney general, has said he will recommend prison time for Nash, partly because he doesn’t believe she has assets to pay restitution.

“If she does not receive jail time, there would be no punishment,” he said.

Nash targeted elderly individuals by identifying herself as a certified elder specialist, finding investors who came to her for income tax assistance and offering free lunches at local hotels.

The victims in the attorney general’s case were sold 10-year notes paying 9 percent to 12 percent interest or promised ownership in Clark County houses that would be rented or sold at a profit. But Nash never bought any real estate for these investors, Kelleher said.

In a separate case brought by the Clark County District Attorney’s office, Nash has pleaded guilty to possession or sale of a document showing a false identity. She is accused of possessing a false Social Security number and using a false date of birth in an effort to obtain a Nevada driver’s license in March 2006.

Kelleher said he didn’t have much information about the district attorney’s case, but he said the secretary of state’s office learned Nash had two driver’s licenses with her photos and different dates of birth.

District Judge Stewart Bell is scheduled to sentence Nash in this case at 8:30 a.m. Jan. 17.

She could be sentenced to a maximum of four years in prison for the false identification offense. The sentence could be stacked on top of a possible prison sentence in the separate case or run at the same time as the separate sentence.

Liebrader criticized local officials for failing to stop Nash earlier. They should have obtained a court-ordered injunction or restraining order against Nash’s practices five or more years ago, preventing some of the losses that victims suffered, he said. Kelleher said he didn’t believe the attorney general’s office received complaints about Resort Holdings.

Nash has “just been ripping people off for years,” Liebrader said. He said she was “an unbelievable sales person,” who could have done well had she stayed within the law.

Contact reporter John G. Edwards at jedwards@reviewjournal.com or (702) 383-0420.

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