Recently uncovered documents in Cook County show that Carlton Jenkins, younger brother of Charles Jenkins, pastor of Fellowship Missionary Baptist Church, 4543 S. Princeton Ave., purchased a property from the church for $10 and then took $209,000 in loans out on the property the same day.
As Investigated By Chicagocrusader.com Records at Cook County Treasurer Maria Pappas’ office revealed that Fellowship has paid all of the property taxes on the single-family home at 4461 S. Princeton, although it is in Carlton Jenkins’ name. A source with knowledge of the situation and additional documentation obtained by the Crusader shows the church—founded by Rev. Clay Evans—paid for all of the maintenance on the property and insurance since it was first deeded to Jenkins in 2007. A sign posted on the home states the property is managed by the church. On June 17, 2005, a married man named Anthony Oliver sold the property to Fellowship for $10, according to then-Cook County Recorder of Deeds Eugene Moore’s office. On Feb. 26, 2007, that same property was sold to Carlton Jenkins—listed as an unmarried male—for $10 according to documentation. The younger Jenkins then took out a 30-year, $198,000 mortgage on the property the same day with First NLC Financial Services LLC, which is based out of Deerfield Beach, Florida, the state in which the brothers are originally from. Again on Feb. 26, 2007, Carlton Jenkins took out an additional $11,000 mortgage loan on the property through Fellowship’s credit union at an interest rate of three percent. Carlton Jenkins promised to pay the church $197.66 a month from April 2007 until March of 2012, according to a document from Moore’s office. Obtaining multiple loans simultaneously for a total amount greatly in excess of the actual value of the property is called, “shotgunning.” It is a fraudulent practice that lenders first started seeing nationwide in late 2006 in the heart of the nation’s housing crisis. The current market value of the property Jenkins owns is $117,820, according to the Cook County Assessor’s office. A person with direct knowledge of the situation tells the Crusader Carlton Jenkins never lived at the property as was required in the mortgage agreement, a copy of which the Crusader obtained. The agreement states that within 60 days after the execution of the security instrument, Jenkins was required to live in the property for at least one year after the date of occupancy, unless the lender agreed in writing to something different. To not do so, would constitute occupancy mort- gage fraud, according to federal laws. Lenders typically charge higher interest rates for non-owner-occupied properties as opposed to those where the borrower lives on the property. The same source says Fellowship paid for all of the rehabilitation of the property when it was first purchased—around $20,000—because the property was unlivable at the time. The source believes the FBI and IRS need to look into the matter because church funds are being misused. First NLC Financial Services, LLC, who did the loan for Jenkins, offers independent non-prime mortgage services in the United States. The company originates, underwrites and funds mortgage loans secured primarily for single-family residences and markets those loans on a cash basis to institutional loan purchasers. It markets the loan products to a network of independent brokers through its wholesale channel. Between March of 2005 and February of 2006, Fellowship acquired at least eight properties within a quarter mile of the church. Most of the properties were vacant lots, with the exception of the home Jenkins bought and another property that Fellowship owns at 233 W. 45th Place. As of last week, the house Jenkins bought from Fellowship is current on all property taxes. Two checks dated March 22, 2013 and Sept. 6, 2013, show Fellowship paid $1,384.70 and $750.02, respectively, to Treasurer Pappas’ office for 2012 taxes. A church financial expenditure report the Crusader received showed that Fellowship paid State Farm Insurance $1,613 for an insurance policy on the residence Jenkins owns. The Crusader contacted the IRS and FBI for comment regarding this matter. A spokesperson for the IRS said it is against the law for any IRS employee to comment on or discuss information about a taxpayer. The prohibition includes commenting on circumstances, such as compliance or non-compliance with federal tax laws that could be construed as comment or discussion about a specific taxpayer. A spokesperson for the Chicago FBI office said policy does not allow the agency to confirm or deny any current investigation taking place, but did say mortgage fraud is something the agency takes very seriously. Attempts to reach Carlton Jenkins and his wife, Vonkesha, at the couple’s home were unsuccessful. The person who answered the phone at Fellowship said they would have no comment for the Crusader because of recent articles written about Rev. Charles Jenkins before abruptly hanging up the phone.