Travez said Mangiardi claimed she would help her get work on major projects.
“I am out there trying to sell my business and there she is saying I have this project with Florida Hospital, so I’m thinking this sounds great,” she said.
After that she claimed a meeting was arranged at the Longhorn restaurant where Perez worked so Travez could meet with the other members of Mangiardi’s team.
According to Travez, those team members included Mangiardi’s sister and brother-in-law as well as someone she claimed was ‘her architect’.
The work never came for Travez, but Mangiardi’s pitch for money did.
Travez and Perez decided to hand over $8,000 for a supposed bid bond for a construction project with Darden Restaurants. In return they got a $16,000 check that bounced.
Bounced checks pop up through the 8 lawsuits filed against Mangiardi and TLM Design and Construction.
Marc and Cathy Bischoff were the first victims to file a civil suit against Mangiardi after loaning her $275,000 in 2009.
They were awarded a settlement in January 2011, but court records show she still owed them more than $184,000 as of April 2011.
Cathy Bischoff said they have not been paid back any of that money yet.
She said they first met Mangiardi through a neighbor who claimed he actually had seen a return on his investment with her. They gave her the money for a bid bond project that came with a promissory note detailing a payment schedule and interest.
The Bischoffs received one partial payment of around $28,000 but soon afterward, Mangiardi defaulted on the note failing give them the remaining principal balance within 60 days.
Chris Guadagnoli gave Mangiardi $75,000 on behalf of his company Stone Tile Direct in 2010. After she gave him a bounced check, he took her to court.
He won his case, but still has not seen any money. On February 27, Judge Robert Egan issued a contempt order for Mangiardi’s arrest because she has not complied with the judgement in Guadagnoli’s case.
Judgements in civil suits against Mangiardi total over $1.5 million but federal investigators told Local 6 that is just a fraction of the money she has taken from investors over the years.
Despite her plea arrangement with the federal authorities being in the works for nearly a year, Mangiardi continuously denied any wrong-doing, telling Local 6 that she had everyone almost paid back and commenting very bluntly about her victims.
In text messages she wrote, “I tell these very stupid people that think if they give bad press and hurt us (when) we have a great building record they put me out of business. How are they to get paid?”
Another message from February 4 stated: “People can claim a lot of things but if Feds can’t make a charge humm you think we might have some very greedy people that might need to get their lives together and stop feeding off innocent people."
Just one month later, she signed the plea agreement admitting to dozens of federal charges.
Local 6 caught up with Mangiardi Friday coming out of a hotel where she’d been staying. Sources claim she has been hopping from hotel to hotel for several months and renting high-end SUV’s.
In a confrontational interview with Local 6’s Mike Holfeld, Mangiardi said she “loved people” and denied stealing from anyone.
“It’s all taken care of. Call Jaeger and Blankner,” she said.
When the lawfirm of Jaeger and Blanker finally returned phone calls late Wednesday they confirmed that Mangiardi had just signed a plea arrangement with the U.S. Attorney’s Office.
However, Local 6 has learned that Mangiardi was allegedly spinning her investment con right up until she signed the plea.
David McKinney and Mark Compton work across the street from the Auto Source Incorporated on North John Young Parkway in Orlando.