Daily Archives: June 14, 2016

Bank of America, Countrywide Hit With Appraisal Suits By Home Buyers

Law360, Los Angeles (June 13, 2016, 10:19 PM ET) — A proposed nationwide class of home buyers have accused Bank of America Corp., Countrywide Financial Corp. and appraisal firm LandSafe Inc. of conducting phony appraisals in an attempt to secure more loans, filing a lawsuit in California federal court on Thursday stemming from previously settled whistleblower claims.

Home buyers in California and Florida allege Countrywide, now owned by Bank of America, used its wholly-owned appraisal firm LandSafe to rip off loan applicants in violation of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act. The complaint says the alleged…

Source: Law360

Former Goldman Sachs executive denies paying for ‘improper entertainment’ in LIA case

A Goldman Sachs executive at the centre of a $1.2 billion (£850 million) claim brought by Libya’s sovereign wealth fund has denied allegations he paid for “improper entertainment” for himself and the younger brother of a key decision-maker at the fund on a business trip.

Youssef Kabbaj, a former Goldman Sachs sales team executive, also said that all his expenses linked to the Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) had always been signed off by at least two senior partners at the bank and fully reimbursed by Goldman.

In a trial at London’s High Court that began on Monday, the $67 billion LIA is attempting to claw back $1.2 billion from nine trades it carried out with Goldman Sachs in 2008.

Read on.

Here’s Bernie Sanders’ Plan To Save Puerto Rico And Stick It To Vulture Funds

His new bill would put the island’s economy ahead of vulture fund profits.

Huffington Post:

More than half of Puerto Rican children already live in poverty, its unemployment rate is over 12 percent and the government has been closing schools and curbing public services to help make short-term debt payments. On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Courtruled that Puerto Rico is barred from requiring vulture funds — those that invest in distressed debt — to take haircuts on government bonds. The ruling grants the federal government exclusive jurisdiction over any debt reduction scheme for the U.S. territory. Wall Street hedge funds were thrilled.

But the July 1 deadline and the Supreme Court ruling also strengthen the hands of Washington politicians — including those more enamored with traditional thinking at the International Monetary Fund than with the demands of Puerto Rican citizens.

Thus far, there have been two positions on resolving the Puerto Rican crisis circling through the nation’s capital. Vulture funds have pursued a “screw you, pay me” strategy that has gained traction with many congressional Republicans, while decimating Puerto Rico’s economy. The Obama administration, by contrast, has backed a bipartisan bill to impose further budgetary austerity on the island, coupled with meaningful debt reduction. The bill’s austerity intent is clear. It would allow for the minimum wage to be suspended, and would lift President Barack Obama’s new overtime pay expansion island-wide. American citizens in Puerto Rico might well ask whether being stripped of labor protections provided to mainlanders is a product of the island’s colonial history. It’s hard to see what private-sector investment in such plans would encourage other than, say, payday lending.

The choice, in other words, is between madness and masochism. So, late last week, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) quietly unveiled an alternative. Sanders would cut vulture fund investors out of any benefits from a debt-reduction deal, while establishing a long-term infrastructure plan to fix the root problem of Puerto Rico’s debt: a dysfunctional local economy.

The Sanders bill faces major political headwinds. While Obama’s strategy has cleared the House, the executive branch is all but begging the Senate to vote on it in time to avert a July 1 debacle. And Sanders is not exactly an ideological ally of Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), whose support will be needed to pass any law to salvage the Puerto Rico situation. But the Sanders bill is a clever approach to a problem that could upend traditional thinking on financial crisis management around the world — one that prioritizes the well-being of Puerto Ricans over Wall Street profits.

Obama and House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) have blessed The Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act, or PROMESA, which Sanders has savaged on the presidential campaign trail. PROMESA would set up a new Washington-appointed oversight board empowered to direct spending and taxation plans for Puerto Rico, and, if all goes well, reduce the the island’s overall debt levels.

Here we go again: Bank requires few mortgage documents



They were a hallmark of the U.S. housing crash: Mortgages that required little or even no documentation.

During the boom, they were called “stated income” loans, but advertised as “low-doc” or “no-doc” loans. When the damage was done, they were deemed “liar loans.” Both lenders and borrowers alike would write basically anything on the mortgage application to get the deal done. Now, nearly a decade after the financial crisis began, a new version of the stated income loan is making a comeback.

“Lite Doc.” That is what Quontic Bank, an FDIC-insured community lender in New York City is calling its product. It requires only verification of employment and two months worth of bank statements. For self-employed borrowers, it requires documentation of one year of profit and losses. The Lite Doc loans are five-year adjustable-rate mortgages with interest rates in the low- to mid-5 percent range, according to the bank. Thirty-year fixed-rate loans, which when fully documented can offer rates in the high-3 percent range, are not part of the offering.

Most loan applications today require two years of 1040 income tax statements, two years of employment W2s and at least four pay stubs, in addition to bank statements and credit checks.

The Quontic loan does not have to comply with strict new “ability-to-repay,” or ATR, rules established in the wake of the financial crisis under Dodd-Frank legislation, due to a little loophole: Quontic is designated as a community development financial institution, or CDFI, under a small U.S. Treasury program which funds economic revitalization in low-income communities.

The fund, established in 1994, “serves mission-driven financial institutions that take a market-based approach to supporting economically disadvantaged communities,” according to the Treasury website. Quontic, based in Queens, New York, meets the requirements because it makes loans to borrowers in a low-income community. CDFI lenders are exempt from having to comply with so-called ability-to-repay rules.

WikiLeaks to publish more Hillary Clinton emails – Julian Assange

Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, has said his organisation is preparing to publish more emails Hillary Clinton sent and received while US secretary of state.

Clinton, the presumptive Democratic presidential nominee, is under FBI investigation to determine whether she broke federal law by using her private email in sending classified information. A new WikiLeaks release of Clinton emails is likely to fan a controversy that has bedevilled her campaign and provide further ammunition for Donald Trump, her Republican presidential rival, who has used the issue to attack her.

Assange’s comments came in an interview on ITV’s Peston on Sunday. “We have upcoming leaks in relation to Hillary Clinton … We have emails pending publication, that is correct,” Assange said.He did not specify when or how many emails would be published.

WikiLeaks launched a searchable archive in March of 30,322 emails and email attachments sent to and from Clinton’s private email server while she was secretary of state. The 50,547 pages of documents are from 30 June 2010 to 12 August 2014, and 7,570 of the documents were sent by Clinton, who served as secretary of state from 2009 to 2013.

Assange, a trenchant Clinton critic, said she was receiving constant personal updates on his situation. The WikiLeaks founder has been confined to the Ecuadorian embassy in London since July 2012, when he sought asylum to avoid extradition. Assange is wanted in Sweden over allegations of rape dating from 2010, which he denies, but he has not been charged.

Read on.



The former operator of a foreclosure rescue company has been sentenced to 18 years in state prison.

A Sacramento County jury in April convicted Richard Henri Fecteau, 52, of 23 felony real estate fraud charges involving grand theft, recording false documents and illegally acting as a foreclosure consultant. He was sentenced Friday by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Majorie Koller. In addition to the prison term, Fecteau was ordered to pay more than $35,000 in restitution to multiple victims he defrauded, according to a Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office news release.

Between 2011 and 2014, Fecteau ran a foreclosure rescue company called Team Fecteau. He directed homeowners to deed properties to a trust. The names of people who had recently filed bankruptcy were then named co-trustees of the trust, along with Fecteau, which placed an automatic stay against foreclosure of the property.


I thought the National Mortgage Settlement whitewashed crimes of  grand theft, recording false documents and defrauding foreclosure victims who’s mortgages were put into trusts.

My bad…


MONROE TWP. — Police say a Camden man broke into foreclosed properties and rented them out to unwitting victims.

Authorities believe he has pulled the scam in many towns around South Jersey, according to Monroe Township Police.

Levar Michael Taylor (aka Raymond Erving), 38, allegedly entered two foreclosed properties in Monroe, one in the 1700 block of Black Oak Road and the other in the 1600 block of White Oak Lane.

Utilities were illegally turned back on and winterization stickers placed on the closed-up homes were scraped off, police said. Taylor then posed as an agent to lease the properties.

Rest here…