A 40-year-old Bolingbrook man was one of 10 defendants indicted in an alleged $14.5 million mortgage fraud scheme that resulted in $8 million in losses by lenders, according to a news release issued Wednesday by Randall Samborn, public information officer with the U.S. Attorney's Office in Chicago.
Joseph Bateast, 40, of Bolingbrook, identified as a licensed loan originator in the release, was indicted on one count of bank fraud for allegedly participating in a scheme to fraudulently obtain approximately 52 residential mortgage loans totaling at least $14.5 million from various lenders.
The indictment alleges that the mortgages were obtained to finance the purchase of various properties, primarily on the West and South sides of Chicago, by straw buyers who were fraudulently qualified for loans while the defendants allegedly profited, according to information outlined by Samborn in the release.
As a result, he said various lenders and their successors incurred losses of at least $8 million because the mortgages were not fully recovered through subsequent sale or foreclosure. Bateast was one of 10 defendants named in the mortgage scheme.
An 11th defendant who worked as a closing agent for a title company in suburban Westchester was indicted separately as part of the same investigation, Samborn said.
Both indictments were returned Tuesday (Sept. 24) by a federal grand jury and announced Wednesday (Sept. 25) by Gary S. Shapiro, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Robert J. Shields Jr., Acting Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation; and Barry McLaughlin, Special Agent-in-Charge of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Office of Inspector General.
All 11 defendants will be arraigned on dates yet to be determined in U.S. District Court, according to the release.