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Radio Personality Sues Realty Company For Housing Discrimination

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(CBS)

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CHICAGO (STMW) - Radio personality George Wilborn and his family filed a lawsuit Tuesday against the realty company that represented a white Bridgeport couple who refused to sell their home to the black couple.

Willborn and his family attempted in January 2010 to purchase an 8,000-square-foot home in the South Side Bridgeport neighborhood owned by Daniel and Adrienne Sabbia for $1.7 million, according to a suit filed in Cook County Circuit Court.

In Feb. 2010, the federal Housing and Urban Development filed a complaint alleging the Sabbias, who are white, of backing out of an oral agreement to sell their home to the Willborns, who are black.

The suit claims during an interview with HUD, Jeffrey Lowe, a Prudential Rubloff Properties listing agent, disclosed the Sabbias had not wanted to sell the property to an African-American.

In March 2010, Prudential relisted the home for $1.79 million and the property remains listed for sale at the same price as of Tuesday, according to Realtor.com. The case against the Sabbias is ongoing.

Under a consent decree entered Nov. 2010 in suit filed by the Justice Depart,emt, agent Jeffrey Lowe and Prudential Rubloff agreed to pay $30,000 to Dylcia Cornelious, the Willborns’ real estate agent, according to reports. Lowe will participate in a Fair Housing Act educational program, and Prudential Rubloff will provide a copy of the consent order to all its current real estate agents and to any new agents who join the company within the next three years.

In Nov. 2010, the Willborns request was granted to remove Lowe and Prudential from its own suit against the Sabbias.

The seven-count suit seeks a civil penalty for each violation of the Fair Housing Act, damages, court costs and attorney fees.

A spokesperson for Prudential Real Estate and Brookfield Residential Property Services and Brookfield Asset Management, which own assets in Prudential entities, was not available for comment Tuesday evening.

© Sun-Times Media Wire Chicago Sun-Times 2011. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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