Daily Archives: October 22, 2015

Billboards Urge Wall Street Employees to Report Financial Crimes with Whistleblow Wall Street Campaign

Looks as if Whistleblow Wall Street, the campaign about which I wrote last week and am involved with, is getting off the ground in a big way. Several newspapers and media outlets are reporting on the campaign, some more favorably than others.
This Sunday’s New York Post, headlined its business section feature article,”Billboards urge Wall Street employees to report financial crimes.” It went on to say, “the NYPD asks if you see something, say something. And now a bunch of Wall Street gadflies are similarly seeking help in sniffing out weapons of financial destruction.”
By the way, the dictionary defines gadfly, as “a fly that bites livestock,” as well as “an annoying person, especially one who provokes others into action by criticism.”
That’s an interesting description as we are all about provoking justice.
Annoying? Yes, to some. I imagine billboards all over Wall Street asking employees to turn in those they see guilty of malfeasance is annoying to those on Wall Street. The Post is exactly right in saying that the purpose of WhistleBlowWallStreet.com is to help sniff out weapons of financial destruction. Those of us who helped kick off this campaign are very concerned about the future of this country and what could happen if Wall Street is not curbed.

As The Benghazi Turns….The Benghazi episodes….

Trey Gowdy :: It's Gowdy Doody Time

Trey Gowdy :: It’s Gowdy Doody Time

This Benghazi hearing is totally disgraceful, waste of taxpayers’ monies, political, and an embarrassment to this country as well as to Ambassador Stevens and the three individuals that were killed in Benghazi. This has become nothing but a side show hearing between (Hillary) Clinton and the Clown Committee.

U.S. settles with deceased man’s estate, recovers fraudulently obtained TARP funds

The estate of Layton Stuart, the late president and owner of One Financial Corporation, will pay the U.S. government $4 million to settle a lawsuit that accused Stuart of defrauding the federal government out of $17.3 million in funds from the Troubled Asset Relief Program.

Earlier this year, the government sued Stuart’s estate, accusing Stuart, who died in 2013, of making misrepresentations to induce the U.S. Department of the Treasury to invest $17.3 million in Arkansas-based One Financial as part of the Treasury’s Capital Purchase Program.

Read on.

Iceland does what the US won’t: 26 top bankers sent to prison for role in financial crisis

According to Iceland Magazine:

In two separate rulings last week, the Supreme Court of Iceland and the Reykjavík District Court sentenced three top managers of Landsbankinn and two top managers of Kaupþing, along with one prominent investor, to prison for crimes committed in the lead-up to the financial collapse of 2008. With these rulings the number of bankers and financiers who have been sentenced to prison for crimes relating to the financial collapse has reached 26, and a combined prison time of 74 years.

Washington Supreme Court Denies Access to Foreclosure Mediation

KENNEWICK, WA — The Washington Supreme Court ruled in favor of the Washington State Department of Commerce today in Brown v. Commerce, a case addressing the rights of Washington homeowners to access mediation with their lenders under the Foreclosure Fairness Act (FFA). Northwest Justice Project (NJP) and Columbia Legal Services (CLS) jointly represented Kennewick homeowner Darlene Brown in the case to advocate for the equal right to mediation for Washington homeowners whose loans are owned by Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae.

This case involved Darlene Brown, a disabled homeowner in Benton County, Washington, who was in danger of losing her home due to unexpected deaths in her family and resultant loss of income. The mortgage note was owned by Freddie Mac, but because the loan servicer M&T Bank as “note holder” was on the mediation-exempt list, Ms. Brown was denied mediation.

Read on.

NMS monitor: Ocwen failed four metrics n the second half of 2014. In addition, several metrics with timeline requirements were deemed failures


I filed a compliance report with the United States District Court for the District of Columbia (the Court) today that provides the results of my tests on Ocwen’s compliance with the National Mortgage Settlement (Settlement or NMS) servicing standards during the third and fourth calendar quarters of 2014. This report is the first that addresses Ocwen’s compliance on its entire portfolio, which includes both the loan portfolio acquired from the ResCap Parties and all other loans serviced by Ocwen in its mortgage loan portfolio.1

Ocwen failed four metrics in the second half of 2014. In addition, several metrics with timeline requirements were deemed failures in that time as part of Ocwen’s Global Corrective Action Plan (Global CAP) to address its incorrect dating of borrower correspondence. In all, ten metrics were subject to individual corrective action plans (CAP), the Global CAP or both as of the fourth quarter 2014.

This report covers the results of my professionals’ testing of Ocwen’s performance in the second half of 2014 and the development and implementation of the corrective action plans and Global CAP. Ocwen and my professionals have continued reporting and testing on compliance for the first half of 2015, including providing updates on the status of the corrective action plans and the Global CAP, and their associated remediation plans. I will report on the results of those activities in the near future.



Joseph A. Smith, Jr.

Read on.

[Infographic] More than one in three appraisals contain inconsistent property ratings

39% of appraisals contained property quality or condition ratings that conflicted with previous ratings on the same property in the third quarter of 2015, according to a report from Platinum Data Solutions.

For the report, the company analyzed its database of over 300,000 appraisals that were evaluated by RealView, its appraisal quality technology, in Q3 2015.

This infographic shows what the company discovered.

(Source: Platinum Data Solutions)

“More than one in three appraisals contain inconsistencies in property ratings,” said Phil Huff, president and CEO of Platinum Data Solutions. “Causes aren’t easy to determine, so they need to be investigated. Doing this after Uniform Collateral Data Portal (UCDP) submission opens lenders up to numerous issues. Costly delays are just one of them.”

Read on.

Ex-Federal Prosecutor Files Sex Bias Suit Against DOJ

Law360, New York (October 21, 2015, 11:20 PM ET) — A former deputy criminal chief for the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Spokane, Washington, filed a scathing sex discrimination and equal pay lawsuit against the U.S. Justice Department, claiming she was treated differently by male colleagues and ultimately forced to resign.

Former Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Jill Bolton claims she was unfairly put on administrative leave by Michael C. Ormsby, U.S. Attorney for Eastern District of Washington, after he learned she obtained information showing a discrepancy in salaries between her and similarly situated male colleagues. Ormsby characterized…

Source: Law360

Citigroup Accused of Improperly Avoiding $800 Million in New York State Taxes

An economics professor has filed a lawsuit against Citigroup accusing the bank of using an unusual federal tax break during the financial crisis to avoid paying $800 million in New York State taxes.

In a lawsuit transferred to Federal District Court in Manhattan on Oct. 2, Eric B. Rasmusen, a professor of business economics and public policy at the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University, challenged the validity of the unusual federal tax break for the bank’s New York State returns. His claim, originally filed under seal in New York State Supreme Court in 2013, seeks treble damages, or $2.4 billion, under the False Claims Act.

The case says that Citigroup used the federal government’s $45 billion taxpayer-funded bailout to improperly reduce its New York State franchise taxes in 2010 and 2011. New York levies the annual tax — effectively a general corporate income tax — on businesses registered in or doing business in the state.

Read on.