Scottsdale home builder accused of swindling $5M - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Scottsdale home builder accused of swindling $5M

Michael Porter is charged with seven counts of felony fraud and seven counts of felony theft, which could mean years behind bars. Michael Porter is charged with seven counts of felony fraud and seven counts of felony theft, which could mean years behind bars.
SCOTTSDALE, AZ (CBS5) -

Investigators spent two years building a case against Valley homebuilder Michael Porter. The criminal investigation is so complicated that investigators gathered 40,000 pages of evidence - dealing with bank accounts, multiple victims and millions of dollars.

The charges against Porter are serious: seven counts of felony fraud and seven counts of felony theft, which could mean years behind bars.

"This allegedly happened in May 2005 through June of ... it looks like August of 2008," said a Valley judge during Porter's initial appearance in court Wednesday.

CBS 5 Investigates began looking into Porter three years ago, as the complaints began to stack up.

"The subcontractors were calling us saying that they weren't getting paid, that we owed them a lot of money," said Howard Weber, Porter's former business partner at Woodbridge Custom Homes.

Weber told CBS 5 Investigates during a 2009 interview that they built high-end, lavish homes in North Scottsdale. And the company did well during the boom. But then money started disappearing.

"We found out that he was taking money and putting it into his own account," Weber said.

CBS 5 Investigates followed the money trail to Sin City, where sources say Porter dropped thousands at lavish hotels and casinos like: The Venetian, Caesars Palace, MGM and The Wynn - back in 2007 and 2008. That was around the same time contractors said Porter was telling them he had no money to pay them.    

"Mike wants to be rich and famous," said Mike Pile of Pinnacle Window and Doors. "I mean, he lives the lifestyles of the rich and famous."

They said Porter flaunted his money.

"Nice houses, nice cars, nice clothes, trips to Las Vegas, private planes to go to Vegas," Pile said.

Porter's attorney said there is no money.

"He does not have any liquid assets," she said during court Wednesday.

But Porter did post $50,000 bond after court.

Porter, a Canadian citizen, will be required to surrender his passport during his next court appearance Oct. 8.

Copyright 2012 CBS 5 (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.

News Headlines

Sidebar: Arizona mug shots

SLIDESHOW:  Mug shots More>>

  • FOX19 HeadlinesMore>>

  • China paves way for Xi Jinping to extend rule beyond 2 terms

    China paves way for Xi Jinping to extend rule beyond 2 terms

    Sunday, February 25 2018 4:05 AM EST2018-02-25 09:05:47 GMT
    Sunday, February 25 2018 4:49 PM EST2018-02-25 21:49:01 GMT
    Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks during a joint press briefing with French President Emmanuel Macron, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein, Pool)Chinese President Xi Jinping speaks during a joint press briefing with French President Emmanuel Macron, at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018. (AP Photo/Mark Schiefelbein, Pool)

    China's official news agency says the ruling Communist Party has proposed removing a limit of two consecutive terms for the country's president and vice president.

    Full Story >

    China's official news agency says the ruling Communist Party has proposed removing a limit of two consecutive terms for the country's president and vice president.

    Full Story >
  • North Korean envoy, in South, opens door to US talks

    North Korean envoy, in South, opens door to US talks

    Saturday, February 24 2018 11:15 PM EST2018-02-25 04:15:38 GMT
    Sunday, February 25 2018 4:48 PM EST2018-02-25 21:48:56 GMT
    (Korea Pool/Yonhap via AP). Kim Yong Chol, center, vice chairman of North Korea's ruling Workers' Party Central Committee, arrives to attend the closing ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, at the Korea-transit office near the Demilitarized Zon...(Korea Pool/Yonhap via AP). Kim Yong Chol, center, vice chairman of North Korea's ruling Workers' Party Central Committee, arrives to attend the closing ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics, at the Korea-transit office near the Demilitarized Zon...
    North Korean delegation led by a controversial former general arrives in South Korea to attend the closing ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.Full Story >
    North Korean delegation led by a controversial former general arrives in South Korea to attend the closing ceremony of the Pyeongchang Winter Olympics.Full Story >
  • NWS confirms tornado hit Clermont County

    NWS confirms tornado hit Clermont County

    Sunday, February 25 2018 4:38 PM EST2018-02-25 21:38:29 GMT
    A ripped-off roof landed on this tree and pickup truck in Brown County Sunday. (FOX19 NOW/Dave Reed)A ripped-off roof landed on this tree and pickup truck in Brown County Sunday. (FOX19 NOW/Dave Reed)

    Tornadoes may have roared through parts of Clermont and Brown counties overnight, the National Weather Service said Sunday morning.

    Full Story >

    Tornadoes may have roared through parts of Clermont and Brown counties overnight, the National Weather Service said Sunday morning.

    Full Story >
Powered by Frankly