Indy attorney enters plea in Elkhart building fraud scheme

Posted on Jan. 4, 2013 at 12:00 a.m.

SOUTH BEND — An Indianapolis attorney indicted on fraud charges involving an Elkhart building leased to a state agency has reached a plea deal with prosecutors.

Paul J. Page pleaded guilty Friday to felony wire fraud in federal court in South Bend. The Indianapolis Business Journal reported Page has agreed to testify against real estate broker John M. Bales and Bales’ partner, William E. Spencer.

Prosecutors would drop 13 other charges against Page if he cooperates.

Bales and Spencer worked with Venture Real Estate Services, which leased an Elkhart building to the state in 2006 for use by the Department of Child Services, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Page bought a business for sale in Elkhart and leased it to the state. He used a bank loan and money from a company to which Bales and Spencer were connected, even though that violated Venture Real Estate’s contract with the state, according to the U.S. Attorney’s office.

Page has agreed to forfeit the office building, which he’s said he co-owned with former Marion County Prosecutor Carl Brizzi. Brizzi hasn’t been charged.

Information from: Indianapolis Business Journal, http://www.ibj.com.

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