Daily Archives: August 17, 2012

Chinese companies pull out of US stock markets

BEIJING (AP) — Just a few years after Chinese companies lined up to sell shares on Wall Street, a growing number are reversing course and pulling out of U.S. exchanges.

This week, Focus Media Holding Ltd., announced its chairman and private equity firms want to buy back its U.S.-traded shares and take the Shanghai-based advertising company private. The deal would value Focus Media at $3.5 billion, according to financial information firm Dealogic.

Smaller companies also are withdrawing from U.S. exchanges. In a sign of official encouragement, a Chinese business magazine said a state bank has provided $1 billion in loans to help companies with listings abroad move them to domestic exchanges.

The withdrawals follow accusations of improper accounting by some companies and a deadlock between Beijing and Washington over whether U.S. regulators can oversee their China-based auditors.

Some Chinese companies say they are pulling out of U.S. markets because a low share price fails to reflect the strength of their business. Withdrawing also eliminates the cost of complying with American financial reporting rules.

Focus Media “has been seriously undervalued on U.S. stock markets” and being taken private will help to promote its “long-term strategic development,” said a company spokeswoman, Lu Jing.

 

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Geithner Retaliates Against DeMarco; Accelerates Wind Down Of GSE Treasury Backing

From Bloomberg:

The U.S. Treasury Department today announced plans to accelerate its winddown of its backing of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

 

Treasury amended its terms as conservator of the government-sponsored-enterprises. Treasury said the plan also includes a “full income sweep” for Fannie and Freddie.

 

The GSEs have been under conservatorship since 2008. Both Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac reported second quarter profits earlier this month.

 

Republicans in Congress have called for an end to the two taxpayer-owned companies, which now own or guarantee about 60 percent of U.S. home loans. Treasury Secretary Timothy F. Geithner has said he will propose a plan to overhaul housing finance that could include dismantling or altering Fannie Mae and McLean, Virginia-based Freddie Mac.

Oppenheim Law Exposes Wall Street’s ‘Dirty Dozen’ Banks in New Infographic

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., Aug 16, 2012 (GlobeNewswire via COMTEX) — via PRWEB – Confidence in Wall Street is at an all-time low.

It’s no wonder considering how many Wall Street executives continue to display poor moral leadership,according to real estate attorney and Yahoo! Homes blogger Roy Oppenheim.

“When Dimon refers to JPMorgan Chase as a ‘port of safety’ in New York Magazine, right after his trading department lost billions, it proves that he is out of touch,” he adds.

Oppenheim, who actually started his career on Wall Street, points to what he calls perhaps the largest industry-wide systemic tax fraud as the latest example of how the banks have become too big to fail.

By sifting through the banks’ own annual reports, along with other public data, Oppenheim Law has compiled a list of what they call the Wall Street Dirty Dozen banks.

“This is a group of twelve banks that have perpetrated the most egregious case of deception at the expense of the American people,” explains Oppenheim, “It is just the latest unethical practice they have employed, and their only excuse seems to be that every other major bank did it too.”

These ‘Dirty Dozen’ banks could be potentially liable for a trillion dollars worth of back taxes from their use of REMICs (Real Estate Mortgage Investment Conduits) to illegally disguise and manipulate their need to pay corporate income taxes, according to Oppenheim.

Read the rest of the article here.

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‘Sharpie parties’ fuel rampage on foreclosed US homes

* Teenagers get invitations to vandalism parties, descend on foreclosed homes

* Invitations posted on Facebook, Twitter

* Homes wrecked with “Sharpies,” arrests made

By Tim Reid

LOS ANGELES, Aug 16 (Reuters) – In the age of Facebook and Twitter, a new crime has hit America: “Sharpie parties,” gatherings of party revelers armed with “Sharpie” magic markers and lured by social media invitations to wreak havoc on foreclosed homes.

Five years into the U.S. foreclosure crisis, Sharpie parties are a new form of blight on the landscape of boarded-up homes, brown lawns and abandoned streets. They are also the latest iteration of collective home-trashing spurred by social media.

At least six Sharpie parties were reported in one California county in recent months, where invitations posted online drew scores to foreclosed homes.

The partygoers are handed Sharpie pens on arrival by their hosts and urged to graffiti the walls – a destructive binge that often prompts other acts of vandalism including smashing holes in walls and doors, flooding bathrooms and ripping up floors.

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MI AG Schuette Files Criminal Charges After Investigation Uncovers Fraud Connected To McCotter Petitions

DETROIT – Attorney General Bill Schuette today announced four congressional staff members will face criminal charges as the result of an investigation by the Attorney General’s Public Integrity Unit into the alleged fraud surrounding nominating petitions filed in May 2012 on behalf of former Congressman Thaddeus McCotter.
The Attorney General’s investigation lasted ten weeks; it included interviewing 75 witnesses, procuring sworn statements from nine people, and reviewing thousands of records, including 136 nominating petitions filed with the Secretary of State.
“As your Attorney General, I have a duty to enforce the law and ensure public integrity,” said Schuette. “In this case, the process of obtaining signatures and filing petitions to participate in the democratic process was perverted.
“This was not simply keystone cops run amok – serious criminal acts were committed, and following a thorough and complete investigation, felony charges have been filed.”
Schuette alleges that members of McCotter’s Michigan staff were involved in a deliberate fraud involving a pattern of copying and altering petitions in order to qualify the five term congressman for the 2012 Michigan ballot. McCotter staffers Don Yowchuang, Paul Seewald, and Mary Melissa Turnbull, and former staffer Lorianne O’Brady, each face various criminal charges for their roles in the election petition fraud.
“In a position of public trust, the elected official has a duty to be engaged and involved, and must ‘mind the store,’” said Schuette. “Here, former Congressman McCotter was asleep at the switch. He failed to mind the store and appears to have provided no supervision whatsoever to his staff members.
“As a result, the McCotter crew acted as if they were above the law, that the law did not apply to them. They are sadly mistaken. Election fraud will not be tolerated and this brazen attitude of indifference by public servants is disgraceful.”
Schuette today revealed examples of petitions that were allegedly manufactured electronically by transposing signatures collected in previous election years on to 2012 nominating petitions. In several cases, the fraudulent petitions were also copied and submitted to the Secretary of State as originals. Schuette indicated that everything on the petition forms appear to be exactly the same except for the dates, which appear altered. Schuette’s investigation also revealed evidence that duplicate petitions were knowingly submitted to pad signature numbers and that multiple petitions were falsely certified by defendants who did not actually circulate them.
“If the defendants in this case had put the same amount of energy into collecting signatures as they did executing this elaborate scheme to manufacture fraudulent petitions, the outcome could have been different. Unfortunately, they chose to go down the road of felony election fraud, complete with cut and paste jobs that would make an elementary art teacher cringe. Now they will face the consequences of their actions,” said Schuette.
The following charges have been filed against members of former Congressman Thaddeus McCotter’s Congressional Staff:
Don Yowchuang, Deputy District Director, 33, of Farmington Hills – 17 charges filed in Livonia’s 16th District Court:
o Ten counts of Election Law Forgery, a five-year felony;
o One count of Conspiracy to Commit a Legal Act in an Illegal Manner, a five-year felony; and,
o Six counts of falsely signing a nominating petition as circulator, a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail.
Paul Seewald, District Director, 47, of Livonia – Ten charges filed in Livonia’s 16th District Court:
o One count of Conspiracy to Commit a Legal Act in an Illegal Manner, a five-year felony; and,
o Nine counts of falsely signing a nominating petition as circulator, a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail.
Mary Melissa Turnbull, District Representative, 58, of Howell – Two charges filed in Troy’s 52-4 District Court:
o One count of Conspiracy to Commit a Legal Act in an Illegal Manner, a five-year felony; and,
o One count of falsely signing a nominating petition as circulator, a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail.
Lorianne O’Brady, Former Scheduler (Employed by McCotter at the time of the Alleged Crimes), 52, of Livonia – Five Charges filed in Livonia’s 16th District Court:
o Five counts of falsely signing a nominating petition as circulator, a misdemeanor punishable by up to 93 days in jail.
Since being created in February 2011 by Attorney General Schuette, the Public Integrity Unit has filed 206 charges against 35 defendants in various cases of corruption in state and local government. To date the unit has secured convictions against 13 elected officials and public employees and continues to pursue convictions of 19 others.
A criminal charge is merely an accusation and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.
Copy of the report and sample fraud chart below…
Be sure to scroll down on the Fraud report to see the example with the little scissors…
SOURCE: http://www.michigan.gov

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“MERS is not a “holder” under the plain language of the statute,” says the Supreme Court of the State of Washington

Deadly Clear

Finally, the Rule of Law is followed by the brilliant masters of the Washington state Supreme Court system. Yea! This ruling affects over 67 million MERS mortgages – whether in foreclosure or not.  As good as it is – there are still more facts that need to be adequately plead and addressed by the Court(s).

The Washington Supreme Court ruled unanimously today in Bain (Kristin), et al. v. Mortg. Elec. Registration Sys., et al., No. 86206-1 defining the statutes to determine that MERS (Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. – the mortgage industry’s controversial document-recording system) was not entitled to be a beneficiary in Deed of Trusts and

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