Stanford attorney accused of fraud over easement document
Village of Stanford Attorney Mark McGrath has filed a Scrivener’s Error document stating that references to a 2010 easement being temporary were incorrect, which the Edgar County Watchdogs (ECW) recently called tantamount to fraud.
The ECW reported that the original easement document was drawn up in July 2010. The document header reads "temporary easement," and the document refers to a temporary easement three times.
The contract does include a later clause saying that the easement is permanent, but the next statement says that the easement terminated on Oct. 31, 2010, the ECW said. In addition to the document, village board meeting minutes from the time refer to temporary easements, the ECW said.
In 2015, James Veselak, the resident with which that easement was signed, wrote to the village board to say that he did not want the village to continue using his property for a draining easement. McGrath responded by saying that Veselak had signed a permanent easement and filed a Scrivener’s Error document, typically used to correct typos or the like, with the McLean County Recorder’s Office to note that the original easement was not temporary.
“The appearance of this is one of fraud and forgery against the land owners who had previously thought the easements were temporary, but find out that five years later an allegedly fake document was filed against the property without them even being notified of its existence,” ECW co-founder John Kraft wrote in the group’s report.