Investigators seize computers, phones from real estate broker Ralph Roberts

Search warrant reveals details of raid
Posted at 6:34 PM, Jun 28, 2017
and last updated 2019-05-29 12:51:26-04

Oakland County Sheriff’s investigators and federal agents seized computers, mobile phones, notebooks and hard drives from the real estate broker who has been at the center of a 7 Action News investigation. 

The 7 Investigators obtained copies of the search warrant that shows what detectives took from Ralph Roberts Realty and Roberts’ company called Probate Asset Recovery in Utica.

Ralph Roberts Search Warrant by WXYZ-TV Channel 7 Detroit on Scribd

Here are some of the items listed on the search warrant return:

  • Apple MacBook Pro
  • Dell desktop computer
  • Dell laptop computer
  • Composition notebook
  • Ralph Roberts’ mobile phone
  • Misc. business records and files

Since last November, we’ve been reporting on a controversial probate court practice that involves Roberts and several Attorney General-appointed Public Administrator lawyers in Oakland, Macomb, and Wayne counties.

Roberts’ employees research properties that belonged to people who have died, and then they get the Public Administrators to open probate court estates. 

Roberts often sells the properties (earning a real estate commission), and his Probate Asset Recovery company regularly bills the estate for 1/3 of the total value of the assets.

In the wake of our investigation, Attorney General Bill Schuette suspended this probate practice for all properties involving foreclosures or properties that owe back taxes.

We have reached out to Ralph Roberts for comment on this, but so far, we have not heard back.

If you have a story for Heather Catallo, email her at or call 248-827-4473.