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Business

Robert C. Morgan, the embattled Rochester developer who faces federal mortgage fraud charges, has transferred about half of his properties to a joint venture with a Pennsylvania company, according to court documents. An affiliate of the joint-venture partner also has taken over management of at least one of the properties, according to the documents. The joint-ventur…

Buffalo

Rochester developer Robert C. Morgan has sold the Cheektowaga property containing the area's first Chick-fil-A restaurant, reaping $2.825 million in cash from the deal. Morgan — through Morgan Cheektowaga LLC — sold the restaurant at 1753 Walden Ave. to Bruce 5 LLC, which is controlled by Bernadette O'Connor of Long Island City in Queens. Located just west of the Wal…

Business

If the Securities and Exchange Commission was hoping for quick action against Robert C. Morgan, there are signs it won’t get its way. The federal agency last month filed a securities fraud lawsuit against the Rochester developer, accusing him of running a “Ponzi-scheme-like" operation that used newer investments to pay off earlier investors and loans instead of buying p…

Business

A federal judge on Wednesday denied a request by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission to freeze the assets of Rochester developer Robert C. Morgan as the government pursues its securities fraud case against him. But U.S. District Court Judge Elizabeth Wolford allowed other protections, including issuing a temporary restraining order barring litigation against Mor…

Watchdog

Mike Donoghue has known Rochester developer Robert Morgan for more than a decade, as a personal friend and a partner in a relocation business. So it was only natural five years ago for the owner and president of Rochester-based Premium Mortgage to put $500,000 of his own money into investment funds that Morgan had just started. "I knew he had funds, and I asked if I co…

Buffalo

Rochester developer Robert C. Morgan is facing criminal charges and a separate federal lawsuit accusing him of mortgage, insurance and securities fraud. Now, an attempt by the Securities and Exchange Commission to freeze Morgan's assets has made it difficult for him to retain a defense team, attorney Joel M. Cohen told a federal magistrate on Wednesday. Morgan, found…

Business

One of the nation's largest commercial banks is now trying to foreclose on two of Robert C. Morgan's apartment complexes in upstate New York – including the Raintree Island Apartments in the Town of Tonawanda – even as a federal grand jury indicted Morgan and his finance director on mortgage and insurance fraud charges. U.S. Bank, a subsidiary of Minneapolis-based U.S. …

Business

The U.S. Attorney's Office wants to seize two Buffalo apartment complexes as part of its criminal case against Rochester developer Robert C. Morgan and three other defendants. The Securities and Exchange Commission wants to freeze Morgan's assets — including an investment fund that holds a loan for Morgan's interest in a redevelopment project at Gates Circle. One com…

Business

The No. 2 executive at Rochester-based Morgan Management and Morgan Communities pleaded guilty Monday to federal fraud charges for artificially inflating insurance costs for damages on Morgan properties. And he blamed his boss – Robert C. Morgan – for making him do it. Scott W. Cresswell, 59, of Ionia, N.Y., admitted in federal court in Buffalo to conspiracy to commi…

Courts

A Rockland County attorney who was convicted of a felony for his role in a mortgage fraud scheme that affected M&T Bank was sentenced to four months in prison, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of New York announced Thursday. Laurence Savedoff of New City, N.Y., was sentenced by Chief U.S. District Court Judge Frank P. Geraci Jr. following Savedoff…

Business

A lender for a Town of Tonawanda apartment complex whose owner is at the center of a federal mortgage fraud investigation wants to foreclose on the property after an auditor determined it also received false information. SteepRock Capital, in court documents, called loans for Raintree Island Apartments "toxic" because of the criminal case and accused the owners of provi…

Amherst

The federal fraud indictment that points an accusatory finger at two executives of Rochester's Morgan Management and two mortgage brokers also creates unwanted attention for two other players in Buffalo's real estate industry. While Brett Fitzpatrick and Aaron Siegel have not been charged or even named, last week's indictment alleges fraud occurred with one of their pro…

Business

The last of four Buffalo and Rochester defendants charged in an elaborate scheme to defraud lenders and investors out of millions of dollars in commercial real estate loans pleaded not guilty Tuesday morning to bank and wire fraud. Kevin Morgan, a vice president at Rochester-based Morgan Management and Morgan Communities, was arraigned before U.S. Magistrate Judge Kenne…

Local News

Staged apartments. Fake loans and leases. And a woman who pretended she was a tenant but couldn't let inspectors into a bedroom because her boyfriend was "sleeping" there. The fraud charges leveled Tuesday against two Buffalo commercial mortgage brokers and two relatives of Rochester apartment mogul Robert Morgan shined a bright light on the underbelly of the murky worl…