Daily Archives: June 9, 2016

Bankers, Not Banks, on Trial in Barclays Libor Case, SFO Says

A London prosecutor told jurors they didn’t have to decide whether the banking industry as a whole is guilty of fraud, but just the five former Barclays Plc traders accused of manipulating Libor.

James Hines, a prosecutor for the Serious Fraud Office, made the argument Wednesday as he asked the jurors to disregard testimony by the five bankers that manipulation of benchmarks was an everyday occurrence, not only in the bank but also across the City of London.

“The banking industry isn’t on trial, it is a handful of dishonest traders,” Hines said on the second day of his closing argument.

Alex Pabon, Stylianos Contogoulas, Jay Merchant, Jonathan Mathew and Ryan Reich are on trial for conspiring to fix the London interbank offered rate, a benchmark tied to trillions of dollars in securities and loans, between 2005 and 2007. They face as long as 10 years in prison if convicted.

Merchant, in particular, said the culture of making the requests was fostered by senior managers at the bank despite there being no e-mail or documentary evidence they instructed traders to act dishonestly, Hines said.

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Third DCA Reverses Dismissal in Wells Fargo Foreclosure Case

The way Credo LLC tells it, it practically begged Wells Fargo Bank N.A. to take its money—millions for a seized waterfront estate once belonging to disbarred Miami Beach attorney Sally Sawh.

The real estate investor insists it sought to avoid litigation by asking the lender to disclose how much would be required to redeem or pay off the mortgage, but the bank cited privacy regulations in withholding debt details. Wells Fargo pressed on with the foreclosure.

The fight, which began in 2013, showed no signs of cooling June 1 when Florida’s Third District Court of Appeal wiped out earlier rulings and remanded the case for a new evidentiary hearing.

“You have thousands of foreclosure cases going on every day in the courthouse and using up a lot of resources. A lot of the time, it’s people who don’t want to pay or can’t pay,” said Credo’s attorney, Ron Rodriguez of Roniel Rodriguez IV P.A. in Miami. “In this case you have the opposite—someone trying to pay off the mortgage but the bank not giving them the opportunity.”

The dispute began when Credo purchased the house in a judicial sale of Sawh’s assets, seized in a civil case to repay a client claiming misappropriation of about $2 million from a trust account. A jury later acquitted Sawh of grand theft in a related criminal case in 2011. Public records show Sawh had signed a $3 million promissory note with a predecessor lender in 2006. By the time Wells Fargo stepped into the deal and filed to foreclose on the note in 2013, the property was subject to multiple liens, including a debt to the IRS.

Read more: http://www.dailybusinessreview.com/id=1202759387427/Third-DCA-Reverses-Dismissal-in-Wells-Fargo-Foreclosure-Case#ixzz4B7Y1PfKT

‘Generous’ Wells Fargo maternity leave jilts new mom

Jake and Amy Niederhauser were thrilled when Wells Fargo, in early April, announced its new maternity leave policy, offering new mothers up to four months off — with full pay.

Amy, who works in Wells Fargo’s home mortgage division, was confident that she would deliver her baby well after the new benefits kicked in June 1. After all, she wasn’t due until June 21.

But a complication during pregnancy prompted the arrival of the Niederhausers’ daughter earlier than expected. On May 28, 6-pound, 12-ounce Alexandria Leigh entered the world small, yet healthy.

But her birth came four days before the start of Wells Fargo’s extended maternity leave, and the anxiety over the missed deadline ate away at the couple as they worried about how to care for Alexandria with far less paid time off — potentially costing them as much as $10,000 in lost income..

“My instant reaction was just complete depression,” Amy Niederhauser said. “It was just a terrible way to start off bringing my first child into the world.”

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Court Says Bank of America Must Disclose Communications

New York’s highest court ruled Thursday that Bank of America must disclose to an insurer communications it had with Countrywide Financial six months before the bank bought the mortgage lending company in 2008. The insurer, Ambac Assurance Corp., claims in a lawsuit that Countrywide illegally misrepresented its mortgage-backed securities.

The Court of Appeals ruled attorney-client privilege doesn’t shield hundreds of communications between the two institutions and their lawyers from Ambac as it collects evidence for its fraud lawsuit. The court reinstated the order of a judge in Manhattan, where the fraud case is pending.

Ambac guaranteed payments on securities issued by Countrywide subsidiaries between 2004 and 2006.

“Ambac argues that the very communications Bank of America withheld from disclosure would have revealed that the merging entities structured their transaction to conceal Countrywide’s fraudulent dealings and leave potential victims without recourse,” Judge Eugene Pigott Jr. wrote. “Defendants … respond that there is no evidence of actual abuse in this case.”

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USA TODAY exclusive: Hundreds allege Donald Trump doesn’t pay his bills

Take On Wall Street. A Bold Agenda to Control the Large Banks!

A new group, Take On Wall Street, has emerged which vows it won’t rest until it breaks up the big banks and stops the stranglehold Wall Street has on Congress and the American taxpayer! Take On Wall Street may have enough backing behind it do so. Twenty national organizations joined Senator Elizabeth Warren (D- Mass) and other legislators to launch the initiative. Senator Warren, a long time Wall Street critic says,
“This will not be an easy fight… but we didn’t take on this fight because it’s easy, we took on this fight because it’s right. Wall Street has money – they have money and access to a lot of senators and congressmen. We are in this fight because someone has to be willing to fight back – and that’s us.”
Take On Wall Street is urging Americans to sign its petition to Congress. Its agenda is setting the stage for much needed financial reform and taking its platform into the conventions of both parties. Journalist Katrina vanden Huevel, of the Washington Post says,
“It (Take On Wall Street) vows to take the platform into the conventions of both parties. Its members plan both direct action and political action, forcing candidates to reveal whose side they are on.”

Businessman Opts Out of Trump University Class Action: ‘It Worked For Me’

Louisiana businessman Nicholas Perioux, a former Trump University student, doesn’t want anything to do with a class action lawsuit filed against the presumptive Republican nominee. He filed an exclusion request form, which was entered into the court docket Thursday. Perioux was considered part of the Trump University “class.” He would have been eligible for any potential settlement or jury award if the fraud lawsuit was successful.

Perioux, from Lake Charles, is a real estate developer and attributes his success to what he learned while taking seminars at Trump University. That’s why he told us he doesn’t want to be involved in any lawsuit.

“I am doing well in real estate,” he told LawNewz.com. “They did everything they could do. The information was legitimate.” Perioux told a local television station that he took a three-day Trump University seminar at a cost of about $1,500.

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