Daily Archives: October 5, 2016

DNC fraud lawsuit update: Plaintiffs’ opposition to DNC and Wasserman-Schultz’ motion to dismiss

wasserman schultz sued

UPDATE

Plaintiffs have filed their Opposition Response to the DNC and Wasserman Schultz’ Motion to Dismiss.

Document #48 here:

 

 

October 4, 2016 48 48 Plaintiffs’ Response in Opposition to the Defendants’ Second Motion to Dismiss

Slipped into a Defense Bill, Congress Voted To Give Wells Fargo, Other Banks Free Rent On Military Bases

WASHINGTON ― Congress debates a lot of serious issues when it considers the defense budget. This summer alone, arguments broke out in the Senate over whether lawmakers should explicitly bar the indefinite detention of American citizens, provide additional protections for Afghan interpreters and require women to register for the draft.

It was a lot of activity for a body that doesn’t get much done anymore. While they were at it, lawmakers also voted to authorize free rent for banks on American military bases.

An amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act authored by Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) would exempt any commercial bank operating a branch at a U.S. military installation from the nuisance of having to pay for the real estate. Inhofe describes the legislation as an issue of fairness. Credit unions already get free rent on military bases ― why not banks?

“This provision levels the playing field to give banks the same rent-free advantage as credit unions for being on a military base,” Inhofe spokeswoman Donelle Harder told The Huffington Post. “Ultimately, the Department of Defense in conjunction with the Services create the rules and regulations for what institutions can exist on military bases.”

Read on.

Wells Fargo whistleblower says she flagged fraud years ago

CBS News:

Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf has claimed he first heard about the creation of fake accounts in 2013, but only on “CBS This Morning,” one whistleblower says she alerted the company years earlier.

“I started noticing what I thought were honest mistakes. But then these honest mistakes, you know, became a very clear pattern,” Yesenia Guitron said.

uitron said she saw strange things happening to customer accounts after she began working at the Wells Fargo branch in St. Helena, California, in 2008, reports CBS News correspondent John Blackstone.

“People ending up with 10-to-15 debit cards that they didn’t request,” Guitron said.

“For one customer?” Blackstone asked.

“For one customer,” Guitron responded.

When her complaints to the branch manager were ignored, she went to human resources and to the bank’s ethics department.

“Constantly emailed them back, you know, this is happening. What did you find? What are we going to do?” Guitron recalled.

Eventually, as her complaints continued, she says the manager of the branch in St. Helena came to her desk, told her she was fired, and escorted her out the door.

She responded in 2010 with a lawsuit claiming she was dismissed because she raised concerns about bank employees “opening accounts without the consent or authorization of the prospective clients.”

“I felt similar to the case with Erin Brockovich, you know, here’s this little me against a big powerful Wells Fargo bank. Nobody’s going to believe what I’m saying,” Guitron said.

A judge dismissed her claims, accepting Wells Fargo’s version that she “failed to meet her sales goals, and that she was thus not performing her job satisfactorily.” The bank sent CBS News a statement reading: “We do not tolerate retaliation against team members who report their concerns,” while noting they “agree with the judge’s finding that her claims of retaliation had no merit.”

Exclusive: Wells Fargo account scandal extends to small business – U.S. senator

The scandal over improper sales practices at Wells Fargo & Co extended to thousands of small-business owners, according to a U.S. lawmaker, raising questions about the scope the bank’s issues with unauthorized accounts.

In a Sept. 29 letter viewed by Reuters on Tuesday, Sen. David Vitter, a Louisiana Republican, demanded that Wells Fargo Chief Executive John Stumpf provide a “full accounting” of customers affected. Vitter is a member of the U.S. Senate’s banking committee and also heads its small business committee.

Discussions between congressional staffers and Wells Fargo “have indicated that the fraudulent activity of your employees was not limited to Wells Fargo’s consumer banking operations,” Vitter wrote. “Thousands of small business owners were impacted by this fraud.”

A person familiar with Vitter’s probe say Wells has identified about 10,000 small business accounts that were subject to improper practices. Vitter spokeswoman Cheyenne Klotz declined to comment on specifics about those practices.

Read on.

PHH takes another hit as BofA Merrill Lynch pulls mortgage servicing portfolio

It only took a little more than six months for Bank of America Merrill Lynch to decide to pull the rest of its mortgage servicing business from PHH Mortgage Corporation, marking another devastating blow for the company.

PHH Mortgage, a wholly-owned subsidiary of PHH Corp., announced in an 8-K filingwith the Securities and Exchange Commission that it received written notice from Bank of America that it is terminating its agreement with PHH, meaning the company will no longer provide private label origination services on behalf of Merrill Lynch, effective March 31, 2017.

Read on.

DOJ nails two more lenders for FHA violations

Primary Residential Mortgage Inc. and SecurityNational Mortgage Companyannounced separate agreements with the United States Department of Justice on behalf of the Department of Housing and Urban Development to pay $5 million and $4.25 million, respectively, to resolve allegations that they violated the False Claims Act.

According to the DOJ, both lenders allegedly violated the False Claims Act by “knowingly originating and underwriting mortgage loans insured by HUD’s Federal Housing Administration that did not meet applicable requirements.”

Read on.