Oh, wow! Crime does pay! A big slap in the face to Countrywide whistleblower, Michael Winston. Unbelievable!!!
One of most notorious people at the center of the housing crisis is reportedly off the hook for any supposed malfeasance, as Bloomberg is reporting that the Department of Justice is abandoning its attempt to sue Angelo Mozilo, the founder ofCountrywide, for his company’s lending practices in the run-up to the housing crisis.
Countrywide originated more mortgages in this country from 2004 to 2007 than any other lender. During that time, Countrywide closed so many subprime mortgages it remained a top-5 producer for that home loan product. The same goes for other loans, such as Alt-A.
The DOJ first began seeking a civil suit against Mozilo two years ago, after the statute of limitations expired for any criminal charges that could have been filed against Countrywide’s founder.
Mozilo long held that Countrywide “didn’t do anything wrong” when it came to the lender’s underwriting and origination practices.
In 2014, Mozilo told Bloomberg that he felt his company was not to blame for the subprime mortgage crisis.
“You’ll have to ask those people, ‘What do you have against Mozilo, what did he do?’” Mozilo said in 2014.
“Countrywide didn’t change. I didn’t change. The world changed,” he continued. “No, no, no, we didn’t do anything wrong,” he said, adding that a real estate collapse was the root of the crisis. “Countrywide or Mozilo didn’t cause any of that.”
And now, it appears that the DOJ is unable or unwilling to proceed with its case against Mozilo.
U.S. prosecutors have abandoned their case against Angelo Mozilo, a pioneer of the risky subprime mortgages that fueled the financial crisis, after a two-year quest to bring a civil suit against him.
The Justice Department has decided not to sue Mozilo, the co-founder of Countrywide Financial Corp., according to people familiar with the matter. That effectively ends nearly a decade of U.S. scrutiny of a man who became a face of risky lending practices and later an emblem of the government’s mixed success in holding individuals accountable.