Illinois Sues Storm-Chasing Contractors

Prosecutors seeking injunction, damages against Godfather Construction

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Godfather and its subcontractors did shoddy work or failed to perform work at all, prosecutors say. (Published Wednesday, Jun 29, 2011)

    Spring storms did the first round of damage, but a fly-by-night contractor swooped in and made the situation worse last year, Des Plaines residents say.

    Now state prosecutors are chasing those alleged storm chasers -- Godfather Construction -- seeking an injunction and damages for consumer fraud and deceptive business practices.

    "Money's taken from them.  The work is not done correctly, and then they leave," Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez said Wednesday.

    Homeowners say they and their insurance companies paid Godfather thousands for repairs after strong hailstorms pounded the area last year.  But Godfather and its subcontractors did shoddy work or failed to perform work at all.

    "So here they were taking advantage of these people, really victimizing them a second time," said Alvarez.

    In a lawsuit filed Monday, Alvarez's office alleges "the defendants left Illinois and" ... "transferred the company's funds to out-of-state bank accounts."

    The four men named in the complaint -- Thomas Kamin, Steve Anderson, Freddie Miles and Peter Svaras -- were unreachable for comment.

    Prosecutors allege the scheme got its start on Craigslist.