U.S. Appeals Ruling That Throws Out Crisis-Era Bank of America Case

Justice Department aims to salvage high-profile mortgage-fraud case

WASHINGTON—The Justice Department asked a federal appeals court to reconsider its ruling throwing out a civil mortgage-fraud case against Bank of America Corp., in an uphill effort to rescue one of its highest-profile cases tied to the financial crisis.

The U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan said in a Thursday filing the court had “overlooked a wealth of evidence” in reaching a May decision that found the government hadn’t proven fraud by Bank of America’s Countrywide unit over a program dubbed “Hustle.”

The court said at the time the case amounted only to breaches of a contract, a stunning setback for the government’s efforts to levy tough fines on corporations and executives. The court also threw out a related penalty against a Countrywide executive, one of the few individuals fined for alleged misdeeds during the crisis.

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