Feds: 2 men got $56M on false documents

April 19, 2010 11:14:07 AM PDT
Authorities say two men who allegedly secured loans to buy and develop Loop property they never bought now face charges of defrauding the bank. The now-defunct CIB Bank in west suburban Hillside lost approximately $56 million.

Romel Esmail, 50, formerly of Chicago, and Bassam Haj Yousif, 42, of Oak Park, were each charged with two counts of bank fraud and three counts of making false statements in bank loan documents.

The indictment was unsealed Friday in an effort to help locate Esmail, who has been a fugitive since December.

Authorities say Esmail and Yousif told the bank they were buying and developing two Loop properties between 1999 and 2003 and produced false documents showing they were involved in those projects. Authorities say nieither man had a part in either development.


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