HAMMOND-Mohammed Shahbaz Khan, age 45, of Bourbonnais, Illinois was indicted for making false claims in connection with his receipt of money from the Hardest Hit Fund, a federal mortgage assistance initiative offered by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program, announced U.S. Attorney Kirsch.
According to the indictment, the purpose of the Hardest Hit Fund was to help stabilize communities in states, like Indiana, that were “hardest hit” by the 2008 economic and housing market downturn. The Hardest Hit Fund program in Indiana is administered by the Indiana Housing and Community Development Authority. In order to receive this mortgage assistance, an applicant was required to be an Indiana homeowner; own only one home; and reside in that home.
The indictment alleges that Khan knowingly submitted false statements about his residency in order to obtain Hardest Hit Fund mortgage assistance on an Indiana property, while living elsewhere. Over 18-months, Khan allegedly received $29,926.46 in mortgage assistance, to which he was not entitled.
“Today, an Illinois man was charged with defrauding a long-term federal economic stability program, intended to help people stay in their homes, knowing that he did not qualify,” said Christy Goldsmith Romero, Special Inspector General of the U.S. Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Program (SIGTARP). “We commend the Office of the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Indiana for standing with SIGTARP to combat fraud against homeownership preservation programs.”
The United States Attorney’s Office emphasizes that an Indictment is merely an allegation and that all persons are presumed innocent until, and unless proven guilty in court.
If convicted, any specific sentence to be imposed will be determined by the Judge after a consideration of federal statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.
This case was investigated by the U.S. Department of Treasury’s Office of Special Inspector General for the Troubled Asset Relief Program (SIGTARP). This case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Molly Kelley.