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Illinois state lawmaker charged with bank fraud

CHICAGO – Illinois state Rep. La Shawn Ford has been indicted on federal bank fraud and other charges.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for northern Illinois announced the charges Thursday.

It accused the Chicago Democrat of fraudulently obtaining a $500,000 increase and a two-year extension on a line of credit from the failed ShoreBank.

Federal prosecutors allege he falsely stated that intended to use the funds for work related to his real-estate business. Instead, they allege, he put the money toward car loans, credit cards, payments to a casino, and for his 2006 campaign for Illinois State Representative.

The charges do not involve Ford’s position as a legislator.

Ford has operated Ford Desired Real Estate, and has invested personally in real-estate.

His office said Thursday he was not immediately available to comment.

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