ONLY ON ABC7NEWS.COM: Contractor accused of bilking Bay Area residents faces 11-count indictment

ByRandall Yip KGO logo
Saturday, January 18, 2020
EXCLUSIVE: Contractor accused of bilking Bay Area residents faces 11-count indictment
Josef Lubovich faces 11 counts of theft, embezzlement, and diverting construction funds after allegedly bilking Bay Area families out of thousands of dollars with overcharges.

OAKLAND, Calif. (KGO) -- The Alameda County District Attorney's office announced on Friday an arrest warrant for a San Francisco contractor accused of bilking three Bay Area residents out of thousands of dollars. 7 On Your Side first broke this story back in July, and now we have an update you'll see only on ABC7 News.

The Contractors State License Board called for action to be taken against Joseph Lubovich of I.L. Global back in July. Further investigation by the DA lead to this week's filing of an 11-count criminal indictment.

RELATED: Contractor operating under borrowed license accused of taking advantage of 77-year-old Berkeley man

LaVan Patton of Berkeley shows 7 On Your Side the garage door installed more than a year after the scheduled completion date by I.L. Global.

The family says it was only installed after he paid nearly $20,000 -- that's $9,000 more than what was called for in the original contract, which also included a roofing job.

The contractor, Josef Lubovich, faces 11 felony counts including theft and embezzlement from the elderly, grand theft of personal property and diverting construction funds for other purposes.

Ginger Huey, Patton's step daughter, told us: "He continued to ask for more money and my step dad felt the pressure. He gave him more money in order to get the job done."

She says the whole experience has caused undue stress on her father. "He would call him every morning at seven o'clock in the morning and just ask him for money, and he would promise he was going to do the work that he promised to do."

Patton says he hopes Lubovich gets what he deserves. But he also kicks himself for paying out all that money. "I don't know. I wasn't thinking. So that was my fault too," he admits.

The indictment, which also names two other victims, also accused Lubovich did "wrongfully divert funds to use other than for which the funds were received."

The whereabouts of Lubovich are unknown, but in July he denied to 7 On Your Side any overpayments were made and said he fulfilled the contract. The DA has issued a warrant for his arrest.

Patton thanked 7 On Your Side for putting his story on television. "It was a great help. It took pressure off of me. They did a great job."

"Also special thanks to the DA's office -- everyone who helped bring justice for our family," said Huey.

We'll continue to follow this story and update you with any developments.

Take a look at more stories and videos by Michael Finney and 7 On Your Side.