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Foreclosure Firms Rewarded For Forging Documents

Foreclosure Firms Rewarded For Forging Documents

Those arguing against a foreclosure moratorium, or even a deeper investigation into the fraud surrounding the evictions of literally thousands of homeowners have largely rooted their arguments in a theme that there was no “intentional” fraud and that the documents at issue were “fumbled” rather than forged.

I wonder how they’ll respond to this report that details how employees of Florida’s largest foreclosure shop were given jewelry, cars and houses from the foreclosure firm in exchange for altering and forging key documents used to obtain foreclosures.

The allegations come from the Florida Attorney General’s Office and are just the latest in a string of bad-to-worse stories concerning the ethics and reliability of the home banking industry.  According to witnesses for the Florida Attorney General’s Office, lawyers, bankers and process servers developed a secret system designed to speed up the foreclosure process that included members forging signatures and changing dates on key documents used in support of reclaiming homes from families.  Staff members would sign as many as 500 documents at a time without reading them.

In exchange those involved with the fraud had their personal mortgages paid, cars bought and other personal bills covered. 

The foreclosure firms would bill lenders for multiple people working on the files, even if that was not the case.  Lenders then passed these on to the very homeowners they were evicting.

That’s right.  The banks made distressed homeowners pay for the fraud that was kicking them out of their homes. And now Bank of America announces that it plans on resuming foreclosure proceedings, hoping I suppose that noone is paying any attention to these latest reports.

So far the response from Congress to this whole mess has been tepid at best.  And should leadership change hands in November what does the ranking Republican plan to do about the foreclosure process?

Why, he plans to investigate the homeowners, naturally.

Despite report after report of intentional fraud and abuse by the banking industry Darrell Issa has his sights set on struggling Americans and just why they were allowed to take out loans to try and purchase homes.  It could not be any clearer that the Republicans have no interest in doing anything other than simply making it easier for predatory practices to continue and to make sure that taxpayers foot the bill.

I guess I’d be more outraged if I didn’t expect this exact thing from Republicans.

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photo courtesy of respres via Flickr

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30 comments

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5:53AM PDT on Oct 26, 2010

Republican'ts will play up mightily the wedge and social issues: gays, abortions, creationism in schools, etc. -- but will do little or nothing to resolve the true issues of justice -- the corrupt financing of politics, foreclosure rip-offs, big energy pollution, banking and finance regulations, and so on. The U.S. is more and more losing its sense of right and wrong, its national resilience and sense of fairness, largely because an elite of neo-con brainwash experts have figured out how to play like a piano just enough of the public to vote them into power. If the voters who will support them believe that NOW, at long last, social and economic justice is at hand, that jobs, fiscal responsibility and prosperity will return -- then they are sadly mistaken and tragically deluded. Vultures do not have manners, conscience or a true sense of community. The working class will be abandoned and the middle class disenfranchised, not so much to foment revolution but enough so that the top percentages will have more for themselves. Just watch.

8:02AM PDT on Oct 22, 2010

I knew I would never be able to own a house in the US. But I own a beautiful place where I am now and it is all mine.

9:39AM PDT on Oct 21, 2010

I have to pipe in on the other side (not the side of the bankers, I hasten to add). The bankers are culpable on both ends of this debacle, that is undeniable.

What I want to point out is that, not everyone SHOULD own their own home and shame on the banking industry for putting people into their own homes when they are not equipped to handle a mortgage.

I bought my first home when I was in my early 20's, it didn't take me long to realize that it was going to be a daily struggle. Although my mortgage balance was under $40K, I still found myself working 60-100 hours a week (in the human services field - another sad story) to make sure that my mortgage and other bills got paid. Some people are not willing to do that and others are not willing to give up their flat screen tvs and big cell phone bills to ensure that their mortgage gets paid. If they were, the question of foreclosure wouldn't even be coming up.

I may stand alone, but I don't have much sympathy for the people who pulled out all of their equity when the market was good, spent the money and are now whining because they are paying on a $300K mortgage for a house that is now only worth $150K. That is not the definition of hard times (IMHO). Those people took that money and spent it. Was it the fable about the tortoise & the hare, or the ant and the rabbit...in any case, the moral is, as it has always been; if you don't prepare for a rainy day, YOU ARE GOING TO GET WET!!!

7:31AM PDT on Oct 21, 2010

I was caught up in the foreclosure scam thing about 7 years ago. (long story) After trying a legal route to no avail I finally got tired and just grin and bare it. I rent and have rented now for over 6 years and really don't plan to buy again since disability barely gives me enough to make ends meet and getting too old.

5:46PM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

Who says crime doesn't pay? Roast them ALL at the stake.

4:37PM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

I think a bank will screw you outta anything they can, becareful ev1!

11:57AM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

Gee, Big Surprise, Not! So kind of us to have bailed them out in the first place. No good deed goes unpunished.

10:32AM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

Will Americans wake up in time? From the look of things, probably not. The dems and reps are two sides of the same coin, and we put them there. Get out and vote for anyone BUT a dem or rep. They want you to believe we only have two choices, but that's not true. Want real change not just empty rhetoric? Vote for the green party or a libertarian, and watch the roaches scatter. It will be business as usual until we the people change it. We need to vote them all out, now, it is our only hope of survival.

10:19AM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

No surprise about the fraud "bonuses" just that it got uncovered. They're taking a page out of Wall Street's play book. WHY are none of these crooks in jail, or awaiting felony convictions?

9:30AM PDT on Oct 20, 2010

Makes me sick. It's hard to understand how anyone could see the suffering of poor people and People of Color and then reward selfish, brutal people for taking us out? As a therapist in the Inner City, day after day I talked to hardworking people who only wanted a safe place for their kids where toddlers didn't have to know to jump into the bathtub at the sound of gunfire, or step over the newly murdered on the way to work. Wanting a house. What a horrific wish. And then we reward the people who preyed on the poor? I think fear makes privileged people think that those who have less are less. At some subconscious level they KNOW it could be them. It could. Watch out what you ask for; it could come--to you.

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