Luxury apartment, Viking suites, bounced checks and an arrest warrant

Wednesday, April 17, 2019

A San Francisco man who is wanted in multiple states for financial fraud, swindled the Minnesota Vikings out of about $70,000 and used a similar scheme to move into a luxury apartment for about a month, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Wednesday.

Daniel Escamilla, 39, was charged with three counts of theft by swindle and one count of theft by false representation. Escamilla’s whereabouts are unknown and the complaint was issued as a warrant so he can be arrested.

According to the complaint, on Sept. 5, Escamilla signed a contract with the Vikings to rent a luxury suite for the game against the San Francisco 49ers. Escamilla paid for it with a personal check in the amount of $37,000 and he attended the football game on Sept. 9.

On Sept. 13, the Vikings contacted Escamilla and told him the check had been returned because the account was closed. He apologized and said he would send a new check immediately and said he also wanted to rent the suite for the Sept. 23 game against the Buffalo Bills and several other games, the complaint states. On Sept. 17, Escamilla sent checks of $35,000 and $190,000 from a different bank account.

The Vikings did not cash the checks because the bank informed them that those checks, too, were from a closed account. Team employees did an internet search on Sept. 19 and discovered that Escamilla had been accused of a similar offense in another state, according to the complaint. The team lost the $35,000 for lack of payment for the Buffalo game.

Minneapolis Police investigated and discovered that both of the accounts Escamilla used were opened using false social security numbers and were closed in May 2018 and July 2018 because Escamilla repeatedly wrote checks without sufficient funds, the complaint states.

The investigation also found that on Aug. 10, Escamilla signed a lease for a large apartment at the Nic on 5th apartment complex. He did not provide a security deposit or pay any rent but did host a party there prior to the 49ers game, according to the complaint. He was evicted on Sept. 26 and left the premises.

He has an extensive history of arrests and convictions for financial fraud cases in other states and there are active extradition warrants out for Escamilla, the complaint states.

Criminal Complaint (PDF)