Weekly Top Ten Real Estate Hot List Tue: 10-30-2012
If you think your own life is complicated, relax. Here’s a case of complication that even a vivid imagination can’t improve upon. It has a mix of Sister Wives minus the religion, tax fraud schemes reminiscent of those that bring down mafia bosses, and wasteful expenditures of boatloads of cash just to satisfy overwhelming bouts of ego.
It all started with Don Ettore, who owned the now-defunct housing firm Qualstan Corp. He had built a 5,000 square foot contemporary home on this lovely property overlooking the Scioto River. However, when Ettore, a dyed-in-the-wool midwesterner, went on his first trip to Europe, he was over-awed by the centuries old architecture and was apparently consumed by the history, romance and beauty of being able to run his hand over the sides of a thousand-year-old wall. He wanted it for himself, or at least the likeness, but unable to move to Europe, he decided to go home and redo his contemporary estate into a grand castle of . . well, . . yore. But, poor man, he died before it was completed and National City Bank repossessed the house.
Enter stage right, the character of Thomas Parenteau, a custom homebuilder who bought the property from the bank, arranged through his real estate agent mistress, and went on to complete Ettore’s plan. Then things started to get sticky. Last year Parenteau was sentenced to 22 years in prison for bank fraud, tax conspiracy, money laundering and other crimes. Along with him eleven people have been convicted so far for taking part in his schemes, fully expecting to reap huge monetary rewards for their involvement. This guy was such a master at persuasion, he even managed to have his wife and mistress (and his out-of-wedlock children with her) living at this mansion at the same time! In the end, it was the testimony of his mistress that ended his rampage of fraud.
Having grown from 5,000 square feet to 26,000 square feet, this elaborate mansion of 12 bedrooms, 14.5 baths, guest house, boathouse and dock and bestowed with every conceivable luxury, is listed at $3.99 million, down from $4.7 million. Comes with a plethora of cocktail party small talk.