The co-owners of a Chicago realty company that managed dozens of condominium properties have been charged with fraud for allegedly stealing more than $2 million in assessment payments, the U.S. attorney’s office in Chicago said Thursday.
Donald Doering of Wilmette and Jay Strauss of Scottsdale, Ariz., were each charged with three counts of wire fraud in a federal indictment returned by a grand jury Wednesday.
Doering, 63, and Strauss, 75, owned Regent Realty Group Inc., 2130 W. Belmont Ave., that provided property management services to 48 condo associations, according to the indictment. Between 2005 and 2008, the men allegedly used assessments from condo owners to pay off personal debt they had on a real estate project, the indictment said.
They allegedly covered up their fraud by creating false monthly financial reports for the accounts of each property managed, the indictment said.
The Chicago Police Department began investigating Regent Realty in 2008, when condo owners filed 30 complaints after learning that the company had not been paying bills at their buildings for months. Two associations at the time said they tried to fire Regent Realty and move their accounts to new management companies but were told they had little money left, according to a Tribune report.
Doering and Strauss could not be immediately reached for comment.
They have not been arraigned.