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Feds indict part-owner of troubled St. Louis apartment complexes

Federal authorities said the owner obtained loans to purchase local apartment complexes and others using "false documents."
Credit: SLBJ

ST. LOUIS — Federal authorities on Thursday charged a part-owner and manager of TEH Realty with fraud, alleging he obtained loans to purchase local apartment complexes and others using "false documents."

The Israeli company owns complexes around St. Louis, but has seen some of its properties put into receivership as it faced complaints about lax maintenance, even attracting the attention of U.S. Sen. Josh Hawley. Its local complexes included Blue Fountain Apartments in north St. Louis; The Woodlands in North County; and Southwest Crossing in Carondelet.

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Missouri said Michael Fein, an owner and vice president of TEH Management, from 2016 to 2018, on behalf of a TEH-affiliated firm, entered into an agreement to purchase the Pinnacle Ridge complex in North County. Fein, the feds said, got a $2.8 million loan from a lender by submitting false documents, including inflated rent rolls and income statements for Pinnacle Ridge, and inflated summaries of real estate owned by TEH companies.

A similar scheme took place in 2019, the feds said, with the Hanley Crossings complex, also in North County. They said Fein got a $5.2 million loan from the the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development, Federal Housing Administration, also by submitting the inflated summaries of ownership.

Earlier, in 2016 and 2017, Fein got a $12.5 million refinance loan from a financial institution and Fannie Mae, the Federal National Mortgage Association, to refinance the outstanding loan on a Kansas City complex, the U.S. Attorney's Office said, adding that he also submitted false statements for that transaction. 

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