Attorneys are coming out with their defense for an indicted Illinois state representative charged with bank fraud. IPR’s Tony Arnold reports.
State Representative LaShawn Ford was indicted late last year on 17 counts of bank fraud and lying to the bank.
He’s accused of getting a 500-thousand dollar increase to his line of credit with a now-failed bank. He allegedly said he’d use the money to flip properties on Chicago’s West Side but prosecutors say he used the money on car loans, to pay back a casino and for his 2006 campaign. The charges stem from loans taken out before Ford was elected to represent Chicago’s West Side in Springfield. Tom Durkin is Ford’s attorney. He says prosecutors wouldn’t have charged Ford if he hadn’t been elected to public office. “He is the only person, to my knowledge, to ever get charged with anything out of the whole ShoreBank collapse. Which I find odd,” says Durkin. ShoreBank provided loans to low income parts of Chicago, Detroit and Cleveland. It shuttered after the housing collapse. No trial date has been set yet for Ford.