Oak Brook man who led Western Springs bank headed to prison
Updated: April 1, 2013 6:09AM
An elderly Oak Brook man was sentenced to more than a year in federal prison Tuesday for defrauding a Western Springs bank out of more than $650,000 by secretly obtaining loans through business acquaintances.
Former Western Springs National Bank & Trust chairman James A. Regas pleaded guilty in July 2012 to making false statements in regulatory documents about his personal interest in loans, and U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman sentenced him to 1 1/2 years in prison Tuesday, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.
Regas, 82, paid a total of $681,617 in restitution, and Feinerman imposed an additional $60,000 fine because of Regas’ “sustained course of conduct,” according to a statement from federal prosecutors.
The Oak Brook resident admitted signing and having a bank employee submit a false call report with the FDIC, knowing it contained false information about the delinquency status of loans, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.
Between 2004 and 2009, Regas referred business associates to Western Springs for loans without disclosing his iwb financial partnerships or that he would benefit from the loans, prosecutors said. He submitted false conflict-of-interest statements denying any financial relationship with the borrowers.
The loans enabled Regas to use bank funds without having to apply for loans, thus evading federal restrictions on insider loans, the U.S. Attorney’s office said.
Western Springs lost more than $680,000 in unpaid loans, and federal regulators closed the bank’s two branches in April 2011, when its assests were purchased by Heartland Bank and Trust Company.
Regas will begin serving his sentence in 90 days, the release said.