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Tag Archives: Fraud

Former Countrywide Employee Behind Bars

A former Countrywide employee is now behind bars and being forced to pay $1.2 million in restitution for stealing and dispersing confidential customer information, including social security numbers. A U.S. district judge sentenced 39-year-old Pasadena resident Rene Rebollo to eight months in prison and 10 months in a community corrections facility. Rebollo, who served as a senior financial analyst in Countrywide's subprime mortgage division, pled guilty to the charges.

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Nevada Announces New ‘Foreclosure Fraud Reform’ Law

Nevada has held the number one spot in state foreclosure rankings for 56 consecutive months. In fact, for the month of August, RealtyTrac reports one in every 118 Nevada homes received a foreclosure filing. While foreclosures cannot always be prevented, the state is taking steps to protect homeowners facing foreclosure. A new ""Foreclosure Fraud Reform"" law will go into effect October 1. It lays out new rules for the recording of foreclosure documents and mandates the foreclosing party prove chain of title.

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Mortgage Fraud Suspicion Rises 88% Since Last Year

The amount of suspicious activity reports related to mortgage fraud filed in the second quarter of this year is 88 percent greater than the amount filed in the second quarter of 2010. Financial institutions sent in nearly 30,000 reports of suspected mortgage fraud over the April-to-June period this year, according to the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. More than three-fourths involved suspicious activity that occurred before 2008, but officials say they're seeing evidence of ongoing fraud.

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Mortgage Litigations More Than Double Year-Over-Year

Mortgage litigations in the second quarter of 2011 have more than doubled since last year, according to an industry report released Monday. During the April-to-June period, mortgage litigations reached 190 cases, up from 75 over the same quarter in 2010 and 151 during the first quarter of this year. Foreclosure-related litigation rose from 29 cases in the second quarter of 2010 to 67 cases a year later. The study also recorded a significant jump in cases involving secondary market transactions.

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Mortgage Fraud Declines: Report

Mortgage fraud grew in the second quarter of the year but was down from where it was a year earlier, according to the Second Quarter 2011 Mortgage Fraud Index, released Monday by MortgageDaily.com. The index, based on criminal and civil cases in which defendants allegedly attempted to deceive real estate lenders into making credit decisions based on fraudulent documentation or false appraisal values, increased to 1261 based on 194 cases during the quarter, up 27 percent from the previous period, but down from 1699 for the same period last year.

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Obama’s Pick to Protect Consumers Testifies Before Senate

Richard Cordray has been hand-picked by President Obama to lead the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). On Wednesday, Cordray stood before the U.S. Senate to make a case for lawmakers' confirmation of his appointment. On the heels of major lawsuits announced by the government related to mortgage bonds, Cordray told senators that regulatory authority is his weapon of choice as opposed to litigation, which can be ""a very slow, wasteful, and needlessly acrimonious way to resolve a problem.""

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NY Delegates Respond to AG’s Removal From Settlement Committee

Twenty-one members of New York's congressional delegation sent a letter to Iowa Attorney General Tom Miller expressing concerns after he removed New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman from the executive committee negotiating a settlement with several major servicers. The state's lawmakers say Miller's decision to oust Schneiderman ""sets a dangerous precedent"" for other attorneys general who, out of fear for what might happen, may choose silence over voicing their concerns with the proposed settlement.

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Freddie Mac Warns of Short Sale Fraud

Short sales are being used more frequently by homeowners, lenders, and investors to avert a foreclosure, and industry data released this week shows that these pre-foreclosure transactions are being pushed through at a faster pace. Freddie Mac says its short sales have risen from about 4 percent of completed workouts in 2000 to nearly 14 percent in 2010. The GSE warns that with the increase in short sale transactions comes an increase in fraud. It's become the top priority for Freddie Mac's fraud investigation unit.

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California Officials Take Down National Foreclosure Rescue Fraud Ring

California's attorney general and the state's Department of Justice have taken down a fraud ring of legal firms and attorneys that officials say swindled thousands of homeowners out of millions of dollars by convincing them to take part in mass lawsuits against their lenders. Attorney General Kamala Harris has sued three law firms, four lawyers, and 14 other defendants. Officials with the state and HUD have seized the defendants' assets and bank accounts.

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National Mortgage Fraud Remains Relatively Steady, Shifts Regionally

On a national level, mortgage fraud risk has declined 2.3 percent over the year but has remained relatively steady for the last five quarters, according to Interthinx's second-quarter risk report. Three states where the risk of mortgage fraud remains highest are Nevada, Arizona, and California. Separately, the FBI released its own report, citing short sale fraud as a growing problem. The FBI says industry insiders and organized crime groups from overseas are the most common perpetrators of mortgage fraud.

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