• Five Charged in Mortgage Fraud for North Shore Development

    Three partners in a failed North Shore development project, a loan officer, and a title company executive were charged in a federal indictment unsealed on June 5, 2011. The charges allege that the five engaged in a $15.7 million residential mortgage and construction loan fraud scheme to help finance a failed mixed-use commercial development known as the Center of the Northshore.

    The five defendants allegedly caused various lenders and a title company to lose at least $8.45 million. The proceeds from the loan allegedly were used to make interest payments on multiple fraudulent residential mortgages, and to make interest payments on a $26.2 million loan to finance the purchase of 14 acres in Northbrook. The project intended for the project at the intersection of Dundee Road and Skokie Boulevard ultimately fell into foreclosure.

    A federal grand jury returned an 11-count indictment on May 26, 2011. Charges against the defendants include wire fraud, bank fraud and making false statements to influence the action of a bank. The indictment was unsealed only after federal agents arrested four of the five defendants, and is seeking forfeiture totaling almost $10.5 million from all five defendants.

    If you are seeking to learn about your legal options for a short sale or foreclosure, contact a Chicago foreclosure attorney for more information.

  • Borders Gains More Time to Handle Its Bankruptcy Case

    On June 2, 2011, a bankruptcy judge gave Borders more time to work on organizing its Chapter 11 case. A lawyer for the bookseller said the company hopes to have a plan in place to sell all of the company’s stores by the end of June.

    Another lawyer for Borders stated that the company could eventually create a plan to reorganize, but a plan to sell existing stores to a third party is imminent. Borders say they are in talks with “multiple buyers” interested in “most, up to all” of the company’s remaining stores.

    Border’s official committee of unsecured creditors argued that Borders is taking too long in its case, and that they want to be kept informed as the bankruptcy progresses.

    The book chain filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February, citing increased competition for its products and the growing popularity of electronic books. Borders wanted to emerge from bankruptcy by the end of summer 2011, but obligations to book publishers have made the goal unlikely.  More than a third of the company’s 642 stores have been closed since the filing, and leases are being reassessed on many of the remaining locations.

    Borders has stated that if they reorganize, they anticipate being a much smaller bookseller once they emerge from bankruptcy.

    If you are interested in learning more information about filing for personal bankruptcy, contact a Chicago bankruptcy attorney for more information.