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You know, I just read the following article, and see that the “Millennials” are being brain washed. Goldman Sachs said back around 2008 “Only the rich should own houses, everyone else should be renting”. Sorry, I am still looking for the article wherein I quoted from. I will find it, I used that in a brief.

I knew that meant trouble. Even with foreclosure hell in the middle of its heyday, it still meant something. Not long after that, people being foreclosed upon, began being offered the chance to rent the house that they just lost.

Now, these third party entities popped up almost over night, and instead of the properties at foreclosure, reverting back to the lenders, these third parties now purchase at foreclosure auctions. Then they offer to rent you your house, or take you to magistrate court and have your thrown out, instead of the banks having to do that.

Funny thing, if you research most of these third parties, back far enough, the banks own them too, so still the same thing, just different names. Nevertheless, I could not help but post the article. It is obvious that “they” want us all in little apartments in and around the cities, easier to control “us”. I just had not realized that they were in the progress of brain-washing the Millennials into not even wanting to own a house.

Read the article:

Short-Term Pain, Long-Term Wonder
Foreclosure.com Scholarship Program Winning Essay 2017, (Grand Prize)
https://article.foreclosure.com/short-term-pain-long-term-wonder-82f82b90ff52
Go to the profile of Foreclosure.com Staff
Foreclosure.com Staff
Feb 28, 2018
By Jack Duffley | University of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign

foreclosure-kid
(photo from https://article.foreclosure.com/short-term-pain-long-term-wonder-82f82b90ff52)

In the gleeful times of 2005, my parents decided, like so many others, that it was time to “upgrade.” They sold our smaller home on the other side of town, which had appreciated nicely, and bought a 3700 square foot behemoth in a town with already exorbitant property taxes. My younger brother and I were thrilled to finally have a basement, our own rooms, and even a concrete basketball court in our backyard! All eight-year-old me knew was that things were going to be a whole lot more comfortable from there, and my optimistic parents seemed to think the same.

Jack Duffley | University of Illinois At Urbana-Champaign
The year is 2017, and my parents have only just now reached the equity levels in the house that they started with over a decade ago, nearly one-hundred-fifty mortgage payments later. However, after being bombarded by extremely high taxes for that entire time, they are essentially underwater on the property, but see little choice but to hang on for dear life until equity recovers just a bit more before they abandon ship. A thin retirement plan, mostly resting on the house, has forced their hand.

My parents’ story is in no way unique; millions of Americans who purchased homes before the 2008 recession have faced similar dilemmas, often worse than theirs. Many had no choice but to foreclose during the worst of it. After all, the homeownership rate has declined almost 5 points nationwide since the recession.[1] If anything, they can be considered lucky, yet they are still stuck in the mud. Their children, on the other hand, are now at their own fork in the road: to be [a homeowner] or not to be.

And, all things considered, they are often choosing not to be. The census shows a stark dip in homeownership among those under the age of 35 of almost 10 percent, lowering significantly from its peak pre-recessionary levels of 43 percent to a dismal 34 percent. At the same time, rental vacancy rates nationwide fell from over 10 percent to less than 7 percent as more people turned to renting, millennials especially.[2] Why is this happening?

Aside from the obvious fear of the failure that their parents faced, millennials are renting more as they define their own unique lifestyle. Millennials, in ever increasing numbers, are focusing on “living now.” They are choosing to move into urban areas in particular. As a predominantly liberal group, and with large cities tending to lean left, this is partially due to political forces. The majority, however, is due to lifestyle conveniences that come with a city: multiple options for transportation and not needing to own a car, proximity to cultural events and nightlife, and, especially with the decline of the suburbs as retail simultaneously sinks, a more positive future economic outlook. They more readily take the loss in living space for these benefits than their previous generations did.

At the same time, a growing number of millennials are facing burdensome student loan debt. Rather than come out of college with pristine back-end ratios primed for a hefty mortgage, they are handcuffed by the debt that they have amassed in their early twenties. As the Pew Research Center has noted, 37 percent of people under the age of thirty have student loan debt. They contribute to the $1.3 trillion in student debt, leverage that could presumably be used for a mortgage or some other useful credit if it were not locked up already.[3] Millennials are trying to increase their earning power by going to school so that they have the opportunity to advance economically, but it is simultaneously holding many of them back via years of extra debt — debt that is notably not going to a physical asset.

What does this mean for real estate? For the single family home market, it spells disaster, at least in the short term. Grant Cardone, one of the premier real estate investors in the world, calls homeownership a “scam,” and emphasizes that renting over homeownership among young people is becoming more and more popular. He notes that there is a huge need for affordable rentals as millennials deviate away from single family homes. Cardone is always one to advocate renting as a more advantageous and flexible lifestyle choice, and, as it has been mentioned, millennials increasingly value the flexibility that comes with renting instead of buying a home. Many, like Cardone, now see homeownership as a solely negative ordeal.

While it may not be up to the level of a “scam,” there are significant drawbacks with owning a home. For one, it locks up a significant amount of capital, money that could be used for a number of different projects or investments. In sum, homeownership is very expensive, at least in the short term when people make their initial down payment and any potential renovations. This makes it very hard to own a home for people of all ages. Additionally, owning a home can financially lock someone to a particular location, one which they might not want to be in after a while. Finally, for those hoping for appreciation when they purchase their home, as with any investment, there is a chance that it does not pan out. A poorly timed crash can wipe out an owner’s equity in seconds just as it did to my parents and so many others.

While there are drawbacks, the Great Recession and its subsequent lifestyle shift suggest the lack of education about the benefits of owning real estate. Even my parents are constantly warning me of the dangers of homeownership; the shift is not totally driven by millennials themselves. They too are still shaken by their mistakes and the sledgehammer that was the crash. They ignore the value of building equity over the long term, the typical tax benefits that come with a primary residence, and the relative stability of the real estate market because they mistakenly overpaid for a house that, in hindsight, they cannot comfortably afford in a downturn. They just hope that I do not do the same, and rightfully so. However, what millennials should have learned from the recession is not that real estate is bad, but that they simply must be careful and reasonable with what they assume when purchasing it.
3310-Harrison-Rd-east-point
Unfortunately, the average consumer purchases on emotion. With the tremendous amounts of emotional trauma from the recession, millennials are increasingly refusing to buy a home as their parents might have desired at the same age. But what are they purchasing in its place? Many take on higher rents, consistent with the “living now” mentality. Many more use their money to buy a wealth of products online. Some are even speculating on cryptocurrency, something far more unknown than real estate, expecting to make a lot of money. Why do they do that? Because the average consumer purchases on emotion, not on something systematic. Real estate has already been proven to be a relatively safe and a potentially very powerful asset. Instead, the negatives have been, and continue to be, emphasized. This masks the positives of owning a home, or even a simple condo. Millennials in some cases are mistakenly ignoring all real estate and not just the kind of overleveraging or speculating that got their parents into trouble.

Does this spell the end to America? Will the country burst into flames as millennials move to urban areas? Of course not. It must be noted that the current trend does not own the future; millennials could very well begin to purchase homes in huge numbers, especially as prices drop over the next few years. While it is likely that this will not be the case, it is impossible for anyone but millennials themselves to determine that.

What is certain is that, in the short run, there will be pain. The single family housing market is going to suffer as millennials make lifestyle choices contrary to their parents. The market will be oversupplied with single family homes. However, millennials will still need a place to live, just like anyone else. Their increasing demand for urban locations and conveniences will push rent up in cities, as it already has in places like San Francisco and Seattle. This will open a new, and huge, opportunity for real estate investors and developers alike to profit in the cities as millennials develop their own American Dream. After all, a dream is only what a person makes of it, not what someone else defines it as.

References:
[1] U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Homeownership Rates for the United States and Regions: 1968–2016, (accessed Dec 10, 2010), https://www.census.gov/housing/hvs/data/charts/fig05.pdf

[2] U.S. Census Bureau, Annual Rental Vacancy Rates for the United States and Regions: 1968–2016, (accessed Dec 10, 2010), https://www.census.gov/housing/hvs/data/charts/fig03.pdf

[3] Anthony Cilluffo, “5 facts about U.S. student loans,” Pew Research Center, last modified August 24, 2017. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/08/24/5-facts-about-student-loans/

The winning essay above was submitted to Foreclosure.com’s scholarship program.

The 2017 essay topic:
IS THE “AMERICAN DREAM” OF ONE DAY OWNING A HOME ALIVE AND WELL AMONG MILLENNIALS?
Millennials having experienced the “Great Recession,” which was the traumatic housing crisis that triggered the financial crisis a decade ago. As a result, data suggests that Millennials (those born between 1981 to 1997) have been slow to adopt homeownership. Discuss the pros and cons of homeownership for Millennials, as well as which factors could increase or decrease homeownership among the generation. Will their collective hesitation and apprehension hurt them in the long run or are Millennials simply in the process of re-defining the “American Dream?”

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One of my people was represented by this guy, and he stole $45,000.00 of her settlement. She and some other victims testified in Court a couple weeks ago. He was sentenced to 30 years, with 15 to serve. He was supposed to turn himself in 02/01/2019. He did not show up.

Screen-Shot-2019-02-02-at-9-39-09-PM

02/02/2019 Sharon Swanepoel Top News
http://news.monroelocal.org/dekalb-pd-seek-help-in-locating-suspect-in-the-alleged-murder-of-his-mother/

Tucker, Ga. – Dekalb County Police Department is asking for the public’s help in locating a suspect in the alleged murder of his mother. According to DCPD, at 9:30 a.m. this morning, Feb. 2, 2019, police responded to a home on Planters Row in Stone Mountain in reference to a dead person call. The victim, Shirley Merritt, was found stabbed to death inside her residence. Police believe this is an isolated domestic-related incident.
Richard Merritt, 44. Photo courtesy of Dekalb County Police Department

The victim’s son, Richard Merritt, 44, has been identified as the suspect. He is described as a white male, 5’10”, 175 lbs, brown eyes and brown hair. There is an active murder warrant for his arrest. He is possibly in possession of the victim’s 2009 Lexus RX350, Brown Color, GA Tag CBV6004.

DeKalb Police are asking anyone with information on the whereabouts of Richard Merritt to please contact the DeKalb County Police Department at 770-724-7850 or Crime Stoppers at 404-577-TIPS(8477).
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I had been doing so much better about keeping up with my blogs, until about this last week. I had not gotten back to posting as much as I had in the past, but was doing much better.

I have to admit though, every month, beginning the week before foreclosure hell (the day they auction the homes foreclosed upon), have been particularly hellish.

I guess for a while, no one I know was being foreclosed upon. But beginning last month, my friends began being sold at auction again. It had been a whole year until just these last couple of months. Then all of the sudden, properties that the banks had lost interest in, out of the blue, and with little or no warning, were sold at auction.

We all managed to stop two of the sales, those two were cancelled, but last month, one was lost to foreclosure, and it took a lot of work to get cancelled, the two that were cancelled.

So, even though there may not be the number of foreclosures every month that there had been for a long time, looks like the banks have managed to get lined up, these companies, that will purchase damn near any house at auction. These companies that want to turn around and rent you your house they just purchased at foreclosure.

I told everyone, back in 2008-2009 when Goldman Sachs’ sorry ass said that “only the rich should own houses, everyone else should be renters”, that this is what could be expected. Yes, it took another 8 years for it to happen to this scale, but it is here, and it won’t be going away, till they get every one of our homes.

I have watched foreclosure sales every month since around 2006, and all the properties that were fought for, and the banks, just kind of fizzled away without a lot of fuss, homes that they realized would be close to impossible to get the foreclosed upon owner to leave, now that they can work it out to where these rent home companies, are the ones that has to get rid of the previous owners of the properties.

The banks see this as minor housekeeping, which they don’t mind at all.

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Georgia: Disbarred Lawyer Richard Merritt Jailed on Theft, Elder Abuse Charges
Attorney Richard Merritt was disbarred Monday for pocketing a client’s $75,000 settlement and jailed Wednesday on multiple felonies.

Georgia: Disbarred Lawyer Richard Merritt Jailed on Theft, Elder Abuse Charges
http://www.barcomplaint.com/attorney-theft/georgia-disbarred-lawyer-richard-merritt-jailed-on-theft-elder-abuse-charges/

The problems of Richard Merritt have come to a head with his arrest. This has been long coming has his behavior has been in question for several years.


Richard Vinson Merritt

Former Smyrna attorney Richard V. Merritt, who was disbarred Monday after admitting to settling a client’s suit for $75,000 and then pocketing the money, woke up in the Cobb County Jail Thursday after being arrested on separate felony elder abuse, theft, exploitation and check fraud charges.

The spokesperson for the Cobb County Sheriff’s Office said he had no further information on the charges, which were apparently filed by the Smyrna Police Department. The booking report includes a notation that Merritt is to be held for the Fayette County Sheriff’s Office, where a press liaison said they received a bench warrant for “indirect criminal attempt.”

He provided no further information, and there was no immediate response from Smyrna police.

On Friday, Cobb County District Attorney Vic Reynolds said there was little he could offer concerning Merritt’s case so far.

“We have yet to receive the complete investigative file from the Cobb Sheriff’s Department,” said Reynolds via email. “When we do, our White Collar Unit will begin the process of determining what charges we will proceed to the grand jury with. In addition, our Investigators will begin reviewing the file upon receipt to see if there are any additional victims or charges which need to be pursued.”

Merritt remained in jail on Friday afternoon.

Merritt is the subject of multiple civil suits in Cobb County, including one filed by a woman who claims he forged her name on a $150,000 settlement agreement and check without her knowledge. She claims Merritt never turned over any funds.

He also faces several legal malpractice and fraud lawsuits in Cobb County from clients claiming he agreed to handle their cases and then never filed them and never pursued any actions.

Merritt has represented himself in each of the lawsuits.

The attorney for a plaintiff in one case, Sapp & Moriarty partner Daniel Moriarty—interviewed before word of Merritt’s arrest was known—said he was surprised at the mild tone in the state Supreme Court’s disbarment opinion, which only said Merritt “settled a client’s personal injury matter for $75,000 but failed to promptly disburse those funds to his client or her medical providers and failed to render a full accounting of the funds to his client.”

“That’s a euphemism for stealing money,” said Moriarty. “I talked to an investigator who has seen his bank records and determined that he had stolen hundreds of thousands of dollars. It just blows my mind what he’s gotten away with.”

According the bar complaint reviewed by the Daily Report, Merritt was retained to handle a personal injury matter in December 2016 and settled it last February, cashing the forged check Feb.7. On Feb. 10, he filed a lawsuit “and continued to lead me on until late May 2017 when I learned what he had done,” the confidential complaint said.

“I have never seen a dime of the $75,000,” said Merritt’s former client.

Another civil suit filed in Cobb County State Court last year said Merritt forged a husband and wife’s signature on a settlement and check in a medical malpractice case and never told them.

Another complaint said Merritt accepted a med-mal case and continually told his client that he was investigating it. Merritt sent emails saying “All is well and we are moving forward on your case,” and “No worries I’m on it!”

Then he stopped accepting the woman’s calls, and the filing deadline passed.

In that case, Judge Maria Golick struck Merritt’s answers and ordered a damages-only trial after finding he “willfully failed to respond” to hearing notices. Golick scheduled a show-cause criminal contempt hearing, and the decision is apparently still under advisement, according to court records.

In the case Moriarty is handling, Merritt also allegedly claimed to be conducting discovery and searching for experts, even scheduling bogus depositions for his clients, only to cancel them at the last minute.

Merritt was the principal for the Smyrna-based Merritt Firm, whose offices were the subject of several dispossessory actions between 2015 and 2017, according to court records.

Last August, Merritt sued two attorneys on behalf of spine surgeon and frequent medical expert James Chappuis. At the time, Merritt said he vice president and general counsel of Chappuis’ Orthopaedic & Spine Surgery of Atlanta.

That case settled confidentially shortly after it was filed.

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Former Bank Official Admits Disbursing Over $300K in Fraudulent Loans
http://mortgagefraudblog.com/former-bank-official-admits-disbursing-over-330k-in-fraudulent-loans/
May 14, 2015 —
By: Rachel Dollar, the editor of Mortgage Fraud Blog is a California attorney and Certified Mortgage Banker who handles litigation for mortgage lenders, servicers and financial institutions.

Ardonus “Donna” Perkins, 40, Atlanta, Georgia, the former Assistant Vice President of Risk Management of the Credit Union of Georgia, has pleaded guilty to a charge of mail fraud for causing the credit union to disburse over $300,000 in fraudulent loans.

According to the charges and other information presented in court: From January 2008 through August 2010, Perkins, used the names of unknowing family members and friends to open signature loans and true lines of credit at the credit union, which are open-ended personal lines of credit.

Perkins took the funds obtained from these fraudulent loans for her own personal use. She also secretly refinanced automobile loans without the auto owner’s knowledge, consent, or authorization, and took those proceeds. Additionally, Perkins established fraudulent VISA accounts in the names of family members and friends and received cash advances on those accounts without their knowledge.

Perkins’ fraud scheme went undetected at the Credit Union of Georgia until she was fired in 2010 for policy violations. She continually increased the loan limits and available credit limits on the fraudulent loans to obtain more funds. In an effort to conceal and continue her scheme, Perkins used some of the money she fraudulently received to make payments on some of the loans, lines of credit, and credit card accounts that she had fraudulently established in the names of others.

To further conceal her scheme, Perkins directed the monthly statements of the fraudulently established accounts to her personal post office box. As a result of Perkins’ scheme, the Credit Union of Georgia lost more than $300,000.

Sentencing for Perkins is scheduled for July 30, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. before United States District Judge Mark H. Cohen.

Acting U.S. Attorney Horn announced the guilty plea.

This case is being investigated by the United States Secret Service.

Assistant United States Attorneys Loranzo M. Fleming and Jeff A. Brown are prosecuting the case.

“This now former credit union executive used her institutional knowledge of the financial system to concoct a multi-faceted fraud scheme to steal money from the credit union,” said Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn. “The Department of Justice and our law enforcement partners will vigorously investigate and prosecute those engaged in fraud that threatens the integrity of the banking system.”

“The United States Secret Service will continue to take an aggressive approach to arrest individuals who violate the trust of businesses to further their personal financial gain,” said Reginald G. Moore, Special Agent in Charge of the United States Secret Service, Atlanta Field Office.

Former Bank Official Admits Disbursing Over $300K in Fraudulent Loans

May 14, 2015 — Leave a comment

Ardonus “Donna” Perkins, 40, Atlanta, Georgia, the former Assistant Vice President of Risk Management of the Credit Union of Georgia, has pleaded guilty to a charge of mail fraud for causing the credit union to disburse over $300,000 in fraudulent loans.

According to the charges and other information presented in court: From January 2008 through August 2010, Perkins, used the names of unknowing family members and friends to open signature loans and true lines of credit at the credit union, which are open-ended personal lines of credit.

Perkins took the funds obtained from these fraudulent loans for her own personal use. She also secretly refinanced automobile loans without the auto owner’s knowledge, consent, or authorization, and took those proceeds. Additionally, Perkins established fraudulent VISA accounts in the names of family members and friends and received cash advances on those accounts without their knowledge.

Perkins’ fraud scheme went undetected at the Credit Union of Georgia until she was fired in 2010 for policy violations. She continually increased the loan limits and available credit limits on the fraudulent loans to obtain more funds. In an effort to conceal and continue her scheme, Perkins used some of the money she fraudulently received to make payments on some of the loans, lines of credit, and credit card accounts that she had fraudulently established in the names of others.

To further conceal her scheme, Perkins directed the monthly statements of the fraudulently established accounts to her personal post office box. As a result of Perkins’ scheme, the Credit Union of Georgia lost more than $300,000.

Sentencing for Perkins is scheduled for July 30, 2015, at 10:00 a.m. before United States District Judge Mark H. Cohen.

Acting U.S. Attorney Horn announced the guilty plea.

This case is being investigated by the United States Secret Service.

Assistant United States Attorneys Loranzo M. Fleming and Jeff A. Brown are prosecuting the case.

“This now former credit union executive used her institutional knowledge of the financial system to concoct a multi-faceted fraud scheme to steal money from the credit union,” said Acting U.S. Attorney John Horn. “The Department of Justice and our law enforcement partners will vigorously investigate and prosecute those engaged in fraud that threatens the integrity of the banking system.”

“The United States Secret Service will continue to take an aggressive approach to arrest individuals who violate the trust of businesses to further their personal financial gain,” said Reginald G. Moore, Special Agent in Charge of the United States Secret Service, Atlanta Field Office.

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Watch: Nuclear experts confront Japanese scientists — IAEA says Fukushima reactors “might still be active” long after meltdowns — “Changes completely” our idea of what happened — “Very surprised… extremely high” Iodine-131 levels — Means fission reactions lasted for weeks or months (VIDEO)
Published: October 27th, 2014 at 10:15 am ET
By ENENews
http://enenews.com/watch-international-experts-confront-japanese-scientist-iaea-fukushima-reactors-be-active-long-after-nuclear-fuel-melted-completely-change-picture-about-happened-very-surprised-about-extremel

Teruyuki Nakajima,University of Tokyo and Science Council of Japan (emphasis added):

International Expert #1 (at 38:10): My name is [inaudible] from the International Atomic Energy Agency’s marine laboratory in Monaco. I have a question regarding the Iodine-131. We were very surprised that the Iodine-131 was still discharged at very high levels in July [2011]. We had a lot of discussion about what would be the reason… You’d expect that, according to the shorter half life for Iodine-131, this would decrease much, much stronger — much faster… My briefings to member states of the IAEA was that we would expect within a few weeks there would be no more Iodine-131, but this was not true. This was still measured at high, extremely high levels in July and August of 2011. I wrote in my statement given out by the IAEA, that the reactors might still be active. There was a big discussion about this…
Nakajima: Yeah, I think the reactors still emitted the materials in… not sure about July… we have soil measurement in June, I think that still we observed Iodine-131 from the soil measurement. If that is terminated in April, we wouldn’t measure that at this point, but we still had that measurement. And still, the data are not totally thoroughly investigated. We have several remaining data we need to look at. Some people have those data, so we need to dig this kind of data set. Also, monitoring post, we had [problems?] as I told, we couldn’t use, but some are surviving and not rescued. Recently that kind of data is coming in, so we will see that data for Iodine-131…
International Expert #2 (at 43:45): I’m sorry, but I’d like to go back to the question of my colleague from the IAEA. If I understand correctly, the question is not whether… in July or August, there still were releases of Iodine. If that is the case, it would change completely the picture about the accident. That was the question that was never clarified, either by TEPCO or by [inaudible].
Nakajima: There’s some evidence [of the reactors] releasing radiogenic gas…
International Expert #2: The basic question is the following — several weeks after Chernobyl it was crystal clear there were no more releases of Iodine. If that’s not crystal clear at Fukushima, this means several weeks or months after the accident there were fission reactions. That’s the question. This question was presented, as my colleague said, at several meetings of the IAEA and that was never made clear?… That is an important question because it would change the composition of the releases…
International Expert #3 (at 46:45): I also want to [inaudible] the data. I agree with him about the calculation… Iodine had been measured in such amounts in July… Iodine from those same samples — that would allow you [Nakajima] to actually check whether this is satisfied by resuspension, as you claim…. Observations make clear, [Iodine-131 is too high by] orders of magnitude, even in the best cases — and that’s a lot…
Nakajima: We have all the data but I haven’t checked Iodine-131… But, still, we are making the data set… Maybe I could check with my file data… (Lights go on) Further questions? OK, well, thank you very much. Sorry.
See also: Study: Evidence of “uncontrollable nuclear reaction” at Fukushima after 3/11 — “Emerged criticality” supported by data (PHOTOS)

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I keep thinking about that.  Being told that it really isn’t as bad as I think.  Hell if it ain’t!

When I was a little girl, we walked to school.  We would get there in the morning, and there would be the morning prayer.  Right after that, we all said I Pledge Allegiance to the Flag, and they played the National Anthem.  I started to school when I was four (4).  By the time I was in fourth grade, it was like the second elementary school.  They did not say the morning prayer, or play the anthem, but by golly, the whole time I was in school, we Pledged Allegiance to the Flag.  We were proud to be Americans.

Now, you get suspended for wearing anything with a flag on it.  The Ten Commandments, Pledge of Allegiance, and anything having to do with our natural heritage is bad.  Christians are bad.  Americans are bad.  Christian Americans must be very, very bad.  And who the hell decided all that?  That is bullshit.  Plain and simple, bullshit.  Since when have other people gone to live in another country, and was allowed to claim they were offended by the customs of that country, and the country changed for the outsiders?  Someone tell me when.  That is bullshit!  Plain and simple bullshit.

Seems like it began several years ago… SuperTarget in our area, told the GoodWill people at Christmas, not to come there any more.  Of course, after that, we never went back to that store, and it closed shortly thereafter.  For some reason, outsiders that had moved to the United States, were offended by Christmas, Nativity scenes, and GoodWill ringing their little bells at Christmas.  Those dedicated, hardworking GoodWill employees, trying to make a difference to others at a very hard time of year.  They never asked anyone for anything.  Just stood, ringing the bell and smiling.  It was tradition.  Christmas trees, nativity scenes, GoodWill.

So, in order to not to offend those, who are not from here, America changed? Bullshit.  I say, if our traditions offends you, you came into this country, you know you can leave the same damned way!  Every time I turn around, someone is explaining that such and such offends them.  Screw it!  I am offended by what people do in other countries, but I don’t move there, then expect them to change their country for me.  That is bullshit.  Plain and simple bullshit.

Now, they tell us that our forefathers were terrorists.  Do what?  So what kind of History lessons are they giving kids now a days?  Speaking of kids.  Since when does the govt. have balls enough to tell parents what they are or not going to feed their kids for lunch during school?  The other thing about kids, is that they belong to the community, not their parents?  Bullshit!  Plain and simple bullshit!  And these idiots put up with that?  I sure as hell am glad that my Mama was who she was.  She would have not only told them what horse to get on, she would have had them direct that horse, on out of the country.  And my Daddy, lo and behold, I am glad that he is not here to see this shit.  Daddy was gung-ho Marine.  He is probably rolling in his grave right now.

And someone wants to tell me, that it ain’t as bad as I think it is?  Bullshit!  Plain and simple bullshit!!!

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We live in Georgia.  There is a new commercial that began playing, which today was the first time we are aware that this commercial has aired.  This is puzzling.

The commercial shows this guy leave a bag where he had been seated, waiting on Marta transit train.   It was a large bag, and the commercial states that if you see anything, be sure to tell someone.   Since Marta has never had any kind of terrorist attack, and never had any kind of commercial on tv.  I don’t think the USA Network is Atlanta based, and MARTA is not in other cities.

We had recently heard that there was going to be a false flag in Atlanta, set for the end of June.  Well, June is winding down, and this suspicious commercial is on tv specifying MARTA, and the only city where MARTA is, is Atlanta.  It has played twice within the last two hours.

If it is just a commercial to get people to pay more attention to their surroundings, it would not be centralized only on MARTA, since MARTA is an Atlanta dominated transit system.  They were hiring crisis actors for something in Atlanta.  As we all know, they have repeatedly used crisis actors for the false flags.  Boston bombing – crisis actors were prevalent.  A couple of the false flags where shootings had allegedly taken place, crisis actors were there too.

The people in the commercial were horrible actors.  The commercial gave the impression that they stereo type what a person who would leave a bomb in a crowded area, would look like.

Are they planning to do a false flag through MARTA?  A terrorist attack on Atlanta’s transit system?  Are they planning to bomb a transit system station?  Whether it is a real attack or not, the terrorists should be hunted down and arrested.  Terrorism is terrorism.  We live in strange times.

Yall be safe!

 

 

UPDATE:  THIS COMMERCIAL WAS PULLED, WE HAVE NOT SEEN IT AGAIN…

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Have you ever been to Office Depot, where everyone wants to act like an idiot?

I sent someone to Office Depot today.  All he needed was three cover sheets printed onto 50-65# card stock.  He knows nothing about these things, and is from another country.

Anyway, the idiots in there told him that it would be 3-4 hours to make three copies on 50-65# card stock, because they have to change the paper?  What kind of bullshit is that?  3-4 Hours?  Hell, all they have to do, is take the three pieces of card stock over to the copier, stick those three blank pieces of card stock on top of the paper in the copier, and but the document to be copied onto the scanner, punch 3 for 3 copies, and hit enter.

How hard is that?  I swear Alex Jones and the others are absolutely right about us being “dumbed down”, that is about the dumbest thing I have ever heard.  3-4 hours for 3 copies.  I was in printing back before computers took over, and hell, you could wash up the printing press, put the new ink in, warm it up, install the plate on the drum, and get it registering, and print 3 sheets of card stock in 15 minutes tops.  And they are going to tell me that it will take 3-4 hours to change a copier over to print on card stock, when I know for a fact, it will print on that stock, without changing a damned thing.

Ok, Good Luck To All Out There Having to Get Something Printed on Card Stock at the Office Depot Memorial Drive Stone Mountain, GA!

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MagicJack ended up making it right!
I was astonished when I got the email, and someone at MagicJack had taken it upon themselves to read the communications back and forth, and emailed me.  They offered to send out a  new one, free of charge.  Of course, I agreed.
They sent me one, and it has worked perfectly ever since.
THANKS MAGICJACK!
—–Original Message—–
From: magicJack Customer Service
Sent: Friday, May 02, 2014 4:59 PM
To: GAPARALEGAL…
Subject: RE: (LTK111530116734526X)
REFERENCE NUMBER: LTK111530116734526X  Please use this ticket number in any correspondence with us.
SUBJECT:
Dear Customer,
Thank you for contacting us.  STOP RIGHT THERE.
So that everyone gets an idea of what has happened, and the fun experience I have had with Magicjack, I am posting my last response to the magicjack employee that emailed me to tell me the good news…:
” My response first:

“If you really want to know what I think?
I think that since there was an issue with something I had bought that carried a warranty, and I had put out the $100 to buy my 5 years, back when mj was still such a new product, that most people were ignoring the mj.
And all the selling of the product that I have done for mj, because it is a good product, when the company appeared to back the product, which mj has slipped, on if you ask me.
The one that was replaced was supposed to be under warranty, or so I was told.  Warranty cost me $11.80 for shipping and handling, even though I have twice bought 5 year upgrade plans, and three magicjacks.  Every time a newer one has come onto the market, I have purchased one.
When I upgraded in the past, I lost my extra hours.  That was the reason I had not totally decommissioned the older one, because it is good till 2017.  This time, since it was a defect and I was paying the $11.80 for something under warranty, and the item normally only costs $49.95 including shipping, I was going to get to transfer my extra time.  Tech support told me to be sure to call yall, and yall would help me connect the proper one so that I would not lose my remaining three years.
Then You got me to hook up the wrong one!  Then you tell me tough snuff, that I have to pay another $11.80?  Like hell I will.
I tell you what, I keep all my transcripts.  I have everyone I have ever been a party to.  I also have the following blogs:
I have a couple more too that are part of a website.  I tell you what, pick out at least four for me to post this story on.  Or better yet, I will send yall links to them, as I post it on each one.
I cannot believe that you treat your loyal customers this way!  It is not like there is no competition out there.  Yall are the ones that told me to get the chat up when I was ready to connect, so that I would not connect to the wrong number and lose my three years.  I do as you suggest, and yall lose my three years for me, then tell me tough shit?
Wow!  Is that some good customer relations!
What MagicJack employee emailed to tell me:
Unfortunately once a magicJack has been registered, we can not un register it. If you would like i can send you a replacement free of charge but you will have to cover the shipping and handling fee of $11.80.
Sincerely,
magicJack Support
In case this email does not fully answer your question, or you would like to contact us for any reason, simply reply to this email.
========== Original Message ==========
From:     <>
Subject:
${ticket.lastmessage.content}

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Georgia

http://www.wunderground.com/news/winter-storm-pax-latest-news-20140210

Gov. Nathan Deal has declared a state of emergency for 45 counties in north Georgia that are expected to receive the biggest impacts from Pax.

With memories of thousands of vehicles gridlocked for hours on icy metro Atlanta highways fresh in their minds, emergency officials and elected leaders in north Georgia are preparing for Winter Storm Pax. Gov. Nathan Deal, who was criticized for his response to the Jan. 28 storm that paralyzed the metro area and left motorists stranded in vehicles overnight, said in a news release Sunday that he’s put emergency response agencies on alert and began significant preparations. The governor scheduled a news conference for noon Monday to discuss winter storm preparations. The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather watch from 7 p.m. Monday through 7 p.m. Tuesday and a winter storm watch from Tuesday evening through Thursday morning for the metro Atlanta area.

Even before the first snowflakes fell, people around Atlanta were planning to work from home and stay off the roads. Jay Ali, 33, a college student, said Monday morning that he planned to mostly stay indoors. He had little confidence that government officials would handle this storm any better than the last.

“New levels of incompetence,” Ali said, describing the state and regional response to the last storm that left motorists stranded in their cars for hours, sometimes overnight. “Unforeseen levels of incompetence.”

Ali said part of the problem is that Southern cities do not have as many snow plows, sanders and spreaders as Northern cities.

“I don’t think they have the infrastructure to protect themselves if a storm gets really bad,” he said.

GA Power on ice: “It’s an event we’re extremely fearful of but are taking precautions for” #Pax #ATLwx #GAwx

— Shawn Reynolds (@WCL_Shawn) February 10, 2014

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My best friend, Donnie Johnson, living in Lithonia, Georgia, has died.

Grady Hospital in Atlanta, Ga, took a healthy, 64 year old male, with a hernia issue, ignored the hernia issue, put him on a ton of other medications, claiming not to know what was wrong with him, and now, after many months, has finally killed him.

I hope everyone who had their hand in the situation is happy!

Donnie, may God hold you in the palm of His Hand….You are sorely missed!

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Wells Fargo appealed to the Eleventh Circuit Court of Appeals which certified the above questions to this Court at the Trustee’s request. We address each certified question in turn.

1. In order for a security deed to be in recordable form, it must be attested by an official witness and an unofficial witness. OCGA §§44-14-61 and 44-14-33. Specifically, OCGA §44-14-33 provides that a security deed “must be attested by or acknowledged before an officer as prescribed for the attestation or acknowledgment of deeds of bargain and sale; and, in the case of real property, a [security deed] must also be attested or acknowledged by one additional witness.” This Court has recently held that “a security deed is ‘duly filed, recorded, and indexed’ only if the clerk responsible for recording determines, from the face of the document, that it is in proper form for recording, meaning that it is attested or acknowledged by a proper officer and (in the case of real property) an additional witness.” U.S. Bank N.A. v. Gordon, 289 Ga. 12, 15 (709 SE2d 258) (2011). A deed that is not properly attested is ineligible for recording. Id. The recording of a properly attested security deed serves as constructive notice to all subsequent bona fide purchasers. OCGA §44-14-33. In this case, because the eight-paged security deed lacked the signature of an unofficial witness, it was not in recordable form as required by OCGA § 44-14-33 and did not provide constructive notice. See U.S. Bank N.A.  v. Gordon, supra, 289 Ga. at 15; Higdon v. Gates, 238 Ga. 105, 107 (231 SE2d 345) (1976). See also In Re Yearwood, 318 B.R. 227, 229 (M.D. Ga. 2004) (a patently defective security deed does not provide constructive notice).

Despite the facial defect in the security deed at issue, Wells Fargo urges that because the waiver was attested in accordance with OCGA § 44-14-33 and because the waiver was incorporated into the security deed by reference, the security deed was thereby properly attested and in recordable form. We disagree. While we are not bound by the United States bankruptcy courts’ interpretations of Georgia law, we nevertheless find In re Fleeman, 81 B.R. 160 (M.D. Ga. 1987) to be analogous to this case and persuasive to our resolution of the question before us. In Fleeman, the debtor executed a security deed and an adjustable rate rider. While the rider contained the signature of an unofficial witness, the security deed did not. As with the instant case, the deed and rider were contemporaneously submitted to the superior court for recording. After the debtor filed for bankruptcy, the unofficial witness issued and recorded with the superior court an affidavit stating that she had witnessed the debtor sign the security deed. One of the arguments advanced by the lender was that the attached and fully attested rider was sufficient to validate the security deed, in particular because the security deed incorporated the covenants and agreements of the rider. Id. at 162-163. The United States Bankruptcy Court for the Middle District of Georgia rejected this argument reasoning as follows:

By attesting a document, an individual signifies that he has witnessed the execution of the particular document. Black’s Law Dictionary  117 (5th ed. 1979) (citations omitted). 

Thus the signature of [the unofficial witness], which appears on the adjustable rate rider, attests to the proper execution of that document only. Although the adjustable rate rider is incorporated into the terms of the deed to secure debt, the deed to secure debt itself remains improperly attested and ineligible for recordation.  Id. at 163.3

We agree with the above analysis. As in Fleeman, the attestation of the waiver in this case cannot be substituted for the proper attestation of the security deed. Such a construct would be false and contrary to the purpose of attestation, namely for the witness to verify that the document in question has been executed by the signatories. Allowing a more lenient rule as Wells Fargo urges would likely lead to more  complications than it would resolve for lenders, debtors, and subsequent purchasers alike. As we admonished in Bank N.A. v. Gordon, supra, 289 Ga. at 17, it costs nothing for lenders or their agents to review their paperwork to make sure the proper signatures are in place before submitting documents to the superior court clerk for recording. Accordingly, we answer the first certified question in the negative.

2. Having answered the first certified question in the negative, we now address the second certified question. Wells Fargo argues that the fully executed, attested, and recorded waiver in and of itself was sufficient to provide “inquiry notice”  such that a bona fide purchaser would be prompted to maie inquiries as to the existence of a security deed in the property’s chain of title.

We disagree. The rule regarding inquiry notice is summarized as follows:

[A] purchaser of land in this state “is charged with notice of every fact shown by the records, and is presumed to know every other fact which an examination suggested by the records would have disclosed.” [Cits.] …Although “it is essential that the description of the land in the conveyance should be reasonably certain and sufficient to enable subsequent purchasers to identify the premises intended to be conveyed; but while the description may be inaccurate, meager or erroneous, yet if it is expressed in such a manner or connected with such attendant circumstances as that a purchaser should be deemed to be put upon inquiry, if he fails to prosecute this inquiry he is chargeable with all the notice he might have obtained had he done so.” [Cit.]  Deljoo v. SunTrust Mortgage, 284 Ga. 438, 439-440 (668 SE2d 245) (2008).

See OCGA § 23-1-17 provides that “inquiry notice” is “[n]otice sufficient to excite attention and put a party on inquiry shall be notice of everything to which it is afterward found that such  inquiry might have led.

When, however, a property description is “manifestly too meager, imperfect, or uncertain to serve as adequate means of identification,” a court may adjudge it “insufficient as a matter of law” for a subsequent purchaser to be put upon inquiry. Id. at 440. In this case, while the waiver identifies the lender and grantors (debtor and co-debtor), it only generically references a security deed and fails to identify or describe the property purportedly to be conveyed or encumbered by the referenced security deed. In the total absence of identification or description of the property subject to the security deed, the waiver itself would not place a bona fide purchaser on notice that he should make further inquiry. Accordingly, we answer the second certified question in the negative.

Certified questions answered. All the Justices concur.

 

 

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http://livinglies.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/wake-up-georgia-courts-are-opening-the-door-on-wrongful-foreclosure/

http://livinglies.wordpress.com/2013/03/15/wake-up-georgia-courts-are-opening-the-door-on-wrongful-foreclosure/

Wake Up Georgia: Courts Are Opening the Door on Wrongful Foreclosure

Posted on March 15, 2013 by Neil Garfield

PRACTICE AND PROCEDURE IN GEORGIA

If you are seeking legal representation or other services call our Florida customer service number at 954-495-9867 (East Coast, including Georgia – the Atlanta Area) and for the West coast the number remains 520-405-1688. Customer service for the livinglies store with workbooks, services and analysis remains the same at 520-405-1688. The people who answer the phone are NOT attorneys and NOT permitted to provide any legal advice, but they can guide you toward some of our products and services.

The selection of an attorney is an important decision and should only be made after you have interviewed licensed attorneys familiar with investment banking, securities, property law, consumer law, mortgages, foreclosures, and collection procedures. This site is dedicated to providing those services directly or indirectly through attorneys seeking guidance or assistance in representing consumers and homeowners. We are available to any lawyer seeking assistance anywhere in the country, U.S. possessions and territories. Neil Garfield is a licensed member of the Florida Bar and is qualified to appear as an expert witness or litigator in in several states including the district of Columbia. The information on this blog is general information and should NEVER be considered to be advice on one specific case. Consultation with a licensed attorney is required in this highly complex field.

Editor’s Note: For years Georgia has been considered by most attorneys to be a “red” state that, along with states like Tennessee showed no mercy on borrowers because of the prejudgment that the foreclosure mess was the fault of borrowers. For years they have ignored the now obvious truth that the defective mortgages and wrongful foreclosures do make a difference.

Now, reflecting inquiries from Courts below who are studying the the issue instead of issuing orders based upon a knee-jerk response, the State has taken a decided turn toward the application of law over presumption and bias. There is even reason to believe that the door is open a crack for past wrongful foreclosures, as the Courts grapple with the fact that thousands of foreclosures were forced through the system by strangers to the transaction and thousands of wrongful foreclosure suits have been dismissed because of the assumption by judges that no bank would lie directly to the court. It was a big lie and apparently the banks were right in thinking there was little risk to them.

Look at Pratt’s Journal of Bankruptcy Law February/ March Issue for an article on “Foreclosure Law in the Wake of Recent Decisions on Residential Mortgage Loans: The Situation in Georgia” by Ashby Kent Fox, Shea Sullivan and Amanda Wilson. Our own lawyers have out in front on these issues for a couple of years but encountering a lot of resistance — although lately they are reporting that the Courts are listening more closely.

The Georgia Supreme Court has now weighed in (Reese v Provident) and decided quite obviously that something is rotten in Georgia. Focusing on Georgia’s foreclosure notice statute but actually speaking to the substantive defects in the mortgages and foreclosures, the majority held, as a matter of law, that

o.c.G.a. § 44-14- 162.2(a), requires the person or entity conducting a non-judicial foreclosure of a residential mortgage loan to provide the borrower/debtor with a written notice of the foreclosure sale that discloses not only “the name, address, and telephone number of the individual or entity who shall have full authority to negotiate, amend, and modify all terms of the mortgage with the debtor” (the language that appears in the statute), but also the identity of the “secured creditor” (not required by the statutory language, but which the majority inferred based on legislative intent). the majority further found that the failure to identify the “secured creditor” in the foreclosure notice renders the notice, and any subsequent foreclosure sale, invalid as a matter of law.

Once again I caution litigators that this will not dispose of your case permanently and that such rulings be used strategically so that you are not another hallway lawyer explaining how you were right but the judge ruled against you anyway. Notice provisions can be cured, non-existent transactions cannot be cured. Leading with the numbers (the money trail” and THEN using decisions like this to corroborate your argument will get you a lot more traction than leading with defective paperwork.

As I have said repeatedly, no judge, no matter how sympathetic to borrowers is going to give much relief when the borrower has admitted the debt, note, mortgage and default. These must be denied and lawyers should study up on the subject as to why they can and should be denied, and to persevere through discovery to show that the note, mortgage, default and even the debt have all been faked by strangers to the transaction.

Forcing the opposing side to show that they are a bona fide holder FOR VALUE will flush out the truth — that originator in nearly all cases was never the lender, creditor or even broker. They were simply paid naked nominees just like MERS, leaving no real party in interest on the note or mortgage, no consideration between the parties stated on the note and mortgage or notice of default, and no meeting of minds between the real lender (who is NOT in privity with the nominee lender) who, as an investor received a prospectus and Pooling and Servicing Agreement and advanced money under the mistaken belief they were buying bonds of an entity that either did not exist or was simply ignored by the investment banker and the other participants in the false securitization scheme that was used to cover-up a PONZI scheme.

Practice tips: DENY and DISCOVER. Ask for proof of payment and proof of loss. The assignments, the note and the mortgage are not proof of the debt, they are potentially evidence of the debt and the security agreement ONLY if the foundation is there (testimony by witness with personal knowledge, with exhibits of wire transfer receipts and wire transfer instructions, cancelled checks etc.) to show that the originator shown as payee and “Secured party” or “beneficiary” was lender of money.

Make them show that they booked the loan as a receivable with a reserve for default. Discover that they actually booked the transaction as a fee for service (shown on the income statement) and never entered it on their balance sheet.

And PLEASE study up on voir dire, objections and cross examination. If you are not quick and ready objections to leading questions and other issues might well be waived unless you interrupt the questioning as fast as you can stand up. If you study up on hearsay and the business records exception to hearsay you will discover that in practically no case were the business records qualified as exceptions to the hearsay rule. But if you don’t raise it, if you don’t have statutory and case law and even a memo on the subject the judge is going to rule against you. We are talking about good lawyering here and not bias amongst judges.

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¤

COMES NOW… proceeding in Propria Persona, and respectfully files Plaintiff’s Opposition to Defendant Federal National Mortgage Association’s Motion to Dismiss, and shows this Honorable Court the following pertinent facts:

Federal National Mortgage Association (“Fannie Mae”) has filed their Motion to Dismiss, pursuant to O.C.G.A.§ 9-11-12(b), and on the claims that Plaintiff is a borrower who defaulted in repayment of his mortgage loan, resulting in the foreclosing on the real property which served as collateral for the loan. Plaintiff contends that had the banking and mortgage industry not been so greedy, they would not have over inflated the values through falsified appraisals on properties; they would not have been telling Borrowers not to worry, they can work out an affordable loan that will get you into that house you always dreamed of, while knowing in the back of their minds, that when the Borrower claims that they believed and relied upon their lenders, and what they had been told; the response would then be that the relationship had been nothing more than creditor – debtor and that you should not have relied upon the lies you had been told, because you are at different ends of the spectrum, with totally different interests. My Grandmother would say that America has gone to hell in a handbag.

We have headed into an era where the foreclosing entities are allowed to forge and falsify documents, because the borrower defaulted on their payments, and they need those documents that they are forging and falsifying in order to foreclose upon that Borrower, and the original documents no longer exist. Plaintiff was of the belief, that if you signed a contract, that the Original contract had to be kept in order for it to be collected upon, simple contract law. As it is in these foreclosure/wrongful foreclosure cases, the only time the documents are referred to contracts, is when the documents are referred to as in the Borrower failed to honor the contract by timely making their payments every month. Any other time, the words contract, does not exist. Should a Borrower mention the word, or words Note or Promissory Note, it is sacrilege and the Borrower is “claiming the show me the note theory”, or “vapor money theory”, which is a cue to the Court to dismiss because Georgia does not have a law that the foreclosing entity has to show you the Note. And then, there are the entities that think that they can talk to, and treat the pro se litigants any way they please.

No one would be in this mess, if Fannie Mae, US Bank,Wells Fargo, Bank of America, Aurora, Litton, Taylor Bean and Whitaker, Cenlar, GMAC, Wachovia, Popular, Countrywide, MERS, and a whole slew of other entities had not gotten greedy, eased the underwriting, slacked off on checking tax forms and employment, and had not lied that the borrowers could afford it, this loan will allow you to buy the home you always wanted.

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STATE OF MICHIGAN ATTORNEY GENERAL
BILL SCHUETTE FILES CRIMINAL CHARGES
AGAINST FORMER MORTGAGE PROCESSOR
PRESIDENT FOR ROLE IN FRAUDULENT
ROBOSIGNING
http://www.michigan.gov/ag/0,4534,7-164-46849_47203-290350–,00.html

http://www.linkedin.com/osview/canvas?_ch_page_id=1&_ch_panel_id=1&_ch_app_id=49029150&_applicationId=103900&appParams=%7B%22document%22%3A%22cf986799-3863-43e3-91bd-69e1d8db8438%22%2C%22method%22%3A%22document.view%22%2C%22layout%22%3A%22layout_blank%22%2C%22target%22%3A%22blank_content%22%2C%22surface%22%3A%22canvas%22%7D&_ownerId=57736655&completeUrlHash=_Vxg
November 26, 2012

LANSING – Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette today announced he charged Lorraine Brown, former president of mortgage document processor DocX, with racketeering for her alleged role in authorizing the fraudulent signing of mortgage documents filed in Michigan. The felony charge comes as the result
of an ongoing Attorney General investigation into questionable mortgage documentation filed with Michigan’s Register of Deeds offices during the foreclosure crisis.
“Shortcuts like robo-signing are just one piece of the mortgage foreclosure crisis,” said Schuette. “Our investigation remains ongoing, and we will bring to justice every lawbreaker we find.”
In April 2011, Schuette launched an investigation after county officials across the state reported that they suspected Assignment of Mortgage documents filed in their offices may have been forged. A “60 Minutes” news broadcast had shown that the name “Linda Green” was signed to thousands of mortgage-related documents nationwide, but with many different variations in handwriting. County officials in Michigan reviewed their files and found similar documents, thus raising questions about the authenticity of the documents filed.
As part of his investigation, Schuette reviewed documents filed in Michigan and prepared by DocX, a document processing company located in Georgia. DocX processed mortgage assignments and lien releases for residential lenders and servicers nationwide. Schuette’s investigation revealed that former DocX president Lorraine Brown, 51, of Alpharetta, Georgia, allegedly established and orchestrated a widespread scheme of “robo-signing,” a practice in which employees were directed to fraudulently sign another authorized person’s name on mortgage documents in order to execute these documents as quickly as possible.
Internally, DocX identified this practice as “facsimile signing” or “surrogate signing.” Schuette alleges that from 2006 through 2009, these improperly executed documents were created and recorded at Brown’s direction. Schuette’s investigation revealed that more than 1,000 unauthorized and improperly executed documents were filed with county registers of deeds throughout Michigan.
Lorraine Brown has been charged with one count of Conducting Criminal Enterprises (Racketeering), a 20-year felony, in Kent County’s 61st District Court. Arrangements are being made for Brown to surrender to Michigan authorities, and arraignment will be scheduled at a later date.
In 2010, DocX suspended operations, halting its work as a mortgage document processor. Schuette noted that while the criminal charges against Brown address her role in the scheme, his office’s overall investigation into robosigning remains ongoing and is not yet complete.
A criminal charge is merely an accusation, and the defendants are
presumed innocent unless proven guilty.

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http://www.atlantaprogressivenews.com/interspire/news/2012/05/09/3am-home-eviction-in-dekalb-sparks-outrage.html

3am Home Eviction in DeKalb Sparks Outrage

Written By: APN STAFF

5-9-2012

By Scott Brown, Special to the Atlanta Progressive News

(APN) DEKALB COUNTY — In the early morning hours of Wednesday, May 02, 2012, over twenty deputies from the Dekalb County Sheriff’s Department, under orders from Sheriff Thomas Brown, drilled the locks and kicked in the doors of the Christine Frazer’s home with guns drawn in order to evict four generations of family members.

Frazer, the homeowner, had fallen behind on her mortgage payments and was foreclosed upon in October 2011.

According to Frazer, her family members, including her 85-year-old mother and 3-year-old grandson, were told by officers to “act like it was a fire drill” and grab what they could and get out.

Frazer said they were not even allowed a shower before being escorted from her home of eighteen years at three in the morning.

She described the event as “literally a nightmare.”

Her three dogs were taken to the pound and all of her belongings were put out on the street, which police had completely closed off.

At a press conference in front of her belongings hours after the eviction, Frazer lamented, “I’ve been in this home eighteen years. My daughter was raised here. My husband died here. My grandson came home here. This is my home.”

“They came in as if they were executing a warrant to find drugs. It makes no sense,” Frazer’s lawyer, Joshua Davis, said of the eviction.

Sheriff Thomas Brown told Fox 5 television news that he attributed the unusual timing and the large number of officers used in the eviction to the presence of Occupy Atlanta protesters who had been camping in the yard for the past four months in an attempt to prevent what they described as an illegal eviction based on an illegal foreclosure.

Frazer has filed a lawsuit, which is currently pending in the Federal District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, against the company that foreclosed on her home last October, Investors One Corporation.

Ownership of the mortgage has changed three times in the past six months and, according to Frazer’s lawyer, the chain of title was broken when the previous owner of the mortgage, a bank based in Indiana, failed to uphold their legal obligation to transfer the title, rendering the foreclosure by Investors One Corporation fraudulent.

“There are judges that are in place that could have done a little research, if they’d done a little title search they’d have seen that something in the milk wasn’t clean,” Frazer said.

Frazer, 63, began to fall behind on her mortgage payments after losing her husband and her job in 2009. She has been unable to find a job ever since and is currently on early retirement social security.

Sheriff Brown told Fox 5 he gave the homeowner ample time to reach a settlement with the mortgage holder before serving the eviction notice.

Frazer said she tried to restructure the mortgage, but Investors One Corporation was uncooperative and intent on foreclosure, only offering to reinstate the loan if she was able to pay 20,000 dollars in cash. Currently she has paid over 240,000 dollars on the mortgage on a house currently appraised at only 40,000 dollars.

On Monday, May 07, 2012, in response to the early morning eviction ordered by Sheriff Thomas Brown, Occupy Atlanta held a protest in front of the Dekalb County Sheriff’s office.

At one point, more protesters pulled up in a van full of Frazer’s belongings, and Occupy Atlanta unloaded mattresses, furniture, and bags of other items that deputies had left on the curb nearly one week prior and piled them in front of the doors to the Sheriff’s Office, along with signs reading “Fraudclosure” and “Wall St. criminals are not convicted. The people are evicted.”

Standing before a pile of her belongings in front of the Sheriff’s Office during a press conference, Frazer said, “This is not just about me and my family, this is about families across America.”

Frazer is certainly not alone in her struggle to keep her home. According to Corelogic, Inc., a company specializing in financial analysis, over 1.4 million homes in the US are currently in the foreclosure process, and states like Georgia have been ground zero in the housing crisis.

A recent Case-Shiller Home Price Indices report shows Metro Atlanta home prices fell 17.3 percent between February 2011 and February 2012, a fact that is fueling the continuing foreclosure crisis in the state.

Occupy Atlanta has taken up home defense as a tactic for combating what protesters view as unfair and illegal practices by banks and the financial industry as a whole.

Leila Abadir, one of the Occupy Atlanta protesters who had been camping on the lawn at the Frazer household, says the fight is not over. Occupy Atlanta will continue to assist the Frazer family in finding proper housing, she said.

They will also keep working to shed light on what she believes to be unethical and potentially criminal activity on the part of Investors One Corporation.

According to Fox 5, after most of the protesters left the sheriff’s office, police surrounded a remaining protester’s vehicle, which they impounded for possible evidence. They issued two citations to two people for littering and arrested one of them because he did not have identification on him.

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May God Help Us All

by Mark Stopa, Florida attorney

Wanna Buy a Government-Foreclosed Home? OK. Just Bring $10,000,000.00

Posted on June 29th, 2012 by Mark Stopa

I’ve often expressed my disgust at how Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac frequently pay banks 100% of their judgment amounts in foreclosure cases. It’s an appalling dynamic in foreclosure-world, one where banks often have no incentive to modify mortgages because “our” government will pay the banks in full once the foreclosure is over (and all the banks have to do is convey title to Fannie and Freddie). Incredibly, just when I thought I couldn’t be any more appalled, somehow, my disgust with “our” government reached a new level today.

I have it on good information (directly from someone personally involved) that Fannie and Freddie are selling foreclosed homes in bulk to third-party investors. Not one at a time, not several – dozens – at heavily discounted rates. In other words, many of the homes in Florida and elsewhere that have been foreclosed, with lower and middle-class homeowners thrown onto the streets and title transferred to Fannie or Freddie, are being sold to third-party investors in bulk.

If you think that sounds like an interesting investment opportunity, a chance to purchase a new home after you were foreclosed, let me stop you. Fannie and Freddie aren’t making these investments available to just anyone. To qualify, to even get inside the door to the auction room, you must have at least $10,000,000.00 in assets, and you must be able to prove the existence of those assets via bank statements and the like.

Ten million bucks, just to get in the door.

Is this what America has become? Throwing Americans onto the streets so “our” government pays the banks to foreclose and “our” government sells those houses in bulk at discounted rates to third-party investors with an eight-figure net worth?

Apparently so.

Sigh.

You know what’s arguably even worse? Nobody is even talking about this. No news stories. No media coverage. Nothing. Would you have known about this if Mark Stopa – basically a nobody in the scope of national news and politics – hadn’t blogged about it?

Why such secrecy? Where is the media coverage? Where’s the outrage? Who is running our government, exactly? This is as big an issue as Obamacare – thousands of homeowners getting foreclosed and their homes being sold in bulk to the mega-wealthy. Why is nobody even talking about it? Is America really a land where our government takes houses from the poor and middle class and sells them in bulk at discounted rates to the mega-wealthy – and it does so completely in secret? Does anyone care?

This is why I consider this the biggest post I’ve ever written. This is what is driving the whole foreclosure crisis, and nobody knows about it. Nobody’s even talking about it. Change is not possible without awareness, and right now, all Americans are totally in the dark about this dynamic. Well, all Americans except those who have $10,000,000.00.

May God help us all.
Mark Stopa

Chase is defending 10,000 lawsuits. Find out more and join the party.

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California is going through another ‘wave’ in foreclosures

By Matthew DeBord

http://www.scpr.org/blogs/economy/2012/07/12/7025/california-going-through-another-wave-foreclosures/

Foreclosures Spike As Banks Accelerate Loan Default Notices

Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

A for sale sign is posted in front of house in Glendale. California saw foreclosure starts pick up in June, suggesting that a new wave of defaults is underway.

For the first six months of 2012, foreclosures in California declined from the same period a year earlier. But RealtyTrac, an Irvine-based company that specializes in tracking foreclosures, reports that the state still has the fourth highest foreclosure rate in the nation. In fact, in June, default notices sent to homeowners increased from May. And year-over-year, California’s rate of foreclosure starts increased 18 percent, making it the top state for the month, the first time that California has held that slot since 2005.

I talked to RealtyTrac vice-president Daren Blomquist. He said that states with the worst foreclosure rates have remained consistent during the housing crisis. The top five haven’t moved around a lot: it’s Nevada, Arizona, Georgia, California, and Florida. He noted that the only surprise was that Georgia has moved into the top four and that Florida has slipped.

Foreclosure filings in California fell by about 11 percent in the second quarter of 2012. But in June foreclosure moved up a bit more than 12 percent over May.

Blomquist said we’ve seen this pattern before in California. He calls it a “foreclosure wave” and expects the pattern to continue, as banks cope with the national mortgage settlement that was signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown yesterday and avoid flooding the market with foreclosures. Blomquist’s interpretation is that banks will work through their foreclosures gradually, so we’ll see activity ebb and flow.

“Lenders are looking at their loan portfolios and figuring out how many mortgages to set aside for modification,” he said. The banks are determining which ones likely won’t qualify and sending out notices of default, the first stage of the foreclosure process, to homeowners.

Regardless of how these waves are paced, the foreclosure crisis isn’t going away any time soon. At the current rate, Blomquist expects it to take until late 2013 or early 2014 before the country’s million-and-half foreclosures are in the rearview mirror.

Follow Matthew DeBord and the DeBord Report on Twitter. And ask Matt questions at Quora.

Tagged: realtytrac, notice of default, foreclosures, california, California

DeBord Report : California is going through another ‘wave’ in foreclosures | 89.3 KPCC

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http://www.atlawblog.com/2012/06/anybody-else-want-to-be-an-appeals-court-judge/

ATLaw - The Daily Report's blog about Georgia law, business and politics'

Archive for the ‘Court of Appeals’ Category

Anybody else want to be an appeals court judge?

3:48 pm, June 26th, 2012

Gov. Nathan Deal’s Judicial Nominating Commission has officially jump-started the process of filling the vacancy on the state Court of Appeals, created by yesterday’s promotion of Judge Keith Blackwell to the state Supreme Court.

The JNC’s notice says, beginning today through Friday, July 6, it will accept applications for the Court of Appeals opening from “any qualified applicant” who did not apply for the Supreme Court vacancy. The six remaining members of the short list for the Supreme Court opening automatically will be on the short list for the Court of Appeals, unless the applicant notifies the JNC he or she doesn’t wish to be considered, the notice says.

Deal spokeswoman Stephanie Mayfield told the Daily Report yesterday that those who applied for the Supreme Court but didn’t make the short list will not be considered for the Court of Appeals opening.

The notice contains the details on what those interested need to do to apply. It says the JNC will schedule interviews of new applicants “to the extent necessary.”

The members of the shortlist passed over in favor of Blackwell are DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Cynthia “C.J.” Becker; Elizabeth “Lisa” Branch, a litigator at Smith, Gambrell & Russell; Michael Brown, co-leader of Alston & Bird’s Government and Internal Investigations Group; Gwinnett County Superior Court Judge William “Billy” Ray Jr.; Macon Superior Court Judge Tilman “Tripp” Self III; and Henry County State Court Chief Judge Ben Studdard III.

Writing last night about the Blackwell appointment and Deal’s new opportunity, conservative lawyer and commentator Carrie Severino wrote for the National Review Online that she hears “great things” about Branch, noting Branch previously worked in the administration of George W. Bush.

Learn more about the Supreme Court finalists here.

Contributor: Alyson M. Palmer in Court of Appeals, Georgia Supreme Court, Judges, Judicial Nominating Commission | add commentShare  share

Court of Appeals – ATLaw

 

Hell, all we have to say about the matter, other than the obvious, is thank God Becker didn’t make it.  There is no bigger crook at DeKalb County Superior Court, than Judge Cynthia J. Becker.  See McDonald and Stegeman v. Georgia Power in DeKalb County Superior Court and see McDonald/Stegeman v. Superior Court, GA Power, et., al., in US District Court.

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http://www.dailyreportonline.com/PubArticleFriendlyDRO.jsp?id=1202561653020

Public shut out of Georgia courts

R. Robin McDonald

Daily Report

07-03-2012

Judges across Georgia are closing courtrooms to the general public, citing as reasons a lack of space and security concerns.

They are doing so even though the U.S. Supreme Court in January 2010 vacated a Georgia Supreme Court ruling that had upheld the closure of a DeKalb County courtroom and the removal of members of the public during jury voir dire. The U.S. justices said at the time that courtrooms should remain open to the public except in rare circumstances.

Since then, courtroom closures have been challenged in DeKalb, Fulton, Cobb and Towns counties in Georgia’s appellate courts. Two weeks ago, the Southern Center for Human Rights sued the Cordele Judicial Circuit, claiming that its superior court judges are continuing to bar public access to court hearings despite a consent agreement in 2004 that they would stop the practice.

The appellate challenges to closed courtrooms across the state have garnered mixed success, but Judicial Qualifications Commission officials are concerned.
Closing courtrooms, said JQC Chairman John Allen, “could be a violation” of state judicial canons “depending on the set of facts surrounding the closing.”

JQC director Jeffrey Davis told the Daily Report that in his work observing judges in action around the state, he is often met at the courtroom doors by local deputies who ask for his credentials and question why he is there.

“I’ve personally experienced the chill that members of the public would feel,” he said. “I’m a lawyer. It’s not that I’m under-dressed for court.”
Once a member of the public has passed through courthouse metal detectors or security at a courthouse entrance, Davis said, “No citizens should be questioned about the reason they are in a public courtroom.”

But, he continued, “It seems to be the modus operandi around the state for courts to have deputies who question those who are simply in the court without business before the court. People ought to be able to watch their government in action. And justice which is done in secret—or a feeling by those who are coming to the courthouse that somehow they don’t have a right to be there—chills the public’s ability not only to access the courts but also to have confidence in the judicial system.”

DeKalb County
Last year, DeKalb State Court Judge Barbara Mobley resigned her post to end a JQC ethics investigation that included allegations she had interfered with the public’s access to a public courtroom. Mobley posted signs that restricted access to court hearings and directed court personnel to ask court observers to identify themselves and state their business, “thereby chilling the public’s right to observe matters before the court,” according to the JQC’s report to the Georgia Supreme Court.

The Daily Report reported last year that Mobley was one of a number of DeKalb judges who had posted signs on their courtroom doors limiting courtroom access to criminal defendants, their lawyers and alleged victims. The sign on Mobley’s door said, “We do not have space for extra people.”

Allen told the Daily Report last week that after Mobley resigned, he asked the DeKalb judges “to please meet and reconsider their policy of automatically closing their courtrooms as opposed to making a case-by-case decision.”

“Openness of course is such a basic principle of the law in Georgia jurisprudence and U.S. constitutional jurisprudence,” Allen continued. “You erode the confidence in the integrity and fairness of the courts by closing the courts as a matter of course.”

“Ours was just a courtesy call,” he said, “so that the conduct of the court didn’t rise to the level of being egregious.”

Allen said he also reminded the DeKalb bench of the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in Presley v. Georgia, 130 S. Ct. 721, which slapped the Georgia Supreme Court for upholding a decision by DeKalb County Superior Court Judge Linda Hunter to close her courtroom during jury selection in a criminal case.

In its ruling vacating the Georgia decision, the U.S. Supreme Court held that the Sixth Amendment right to a public trial extends to the voir dire of prospective jurors and that, “Trial courts are obligated to take every reasonable measure to accommodate public attendance at criminal trials.”

The decision did allow for exceptions, holding that, “The right to an open trial may give way in certain cases to other rights or interests, such as the accused’s right to a fair trial or the government’s interest in inhibiting disclosure of sensitive information.”

But, it stated, “Such circumstances are rare, however, and the balance of interests must be struck with special care. The party seeking to close a hearing must advance an overriding interest that is likely to be prejudiced, the closure must be no broader than necessary to protect that interest, the trial court must consider reasonable alternatives to closing the proceeding, and it must make findings adequate to support the closure.”

Last year, DeKalb Chief State Court Chief Judge Wayne Purdom told the Daily Report that he posted signs limiting access to his courtroom on days when he heard jail pleas, when numerous prisoners were in court or on arraignment days when as many as 100 people might need seats. On those days, he said, members of the public were only admitted “by request.”

While acknowledging that courtroom access “is a public right,” Purdom told the Daily Report that “regulation of entrance to the courtroom is a case-by-case situation.”
Purdom also agreed that signs barring entry might have “a little bit of a chilling effect.” But, he continued, “I think there are limited situations where control of access is appropriate, although keeping the public out is not.”

Fulton challenges
Last month Atlanta attorney Brian Steel argued before the Georgia Court of Appeals that a judge’s decision to close a Fulton County courtroom had violated a criminal defendant’s constitutional rights.

Steel appealed the decision of then-Fulton County Superior Court Judge Marvin Arrington, who in the 2009 rape trial of Corsen Stewart apparently barred the public, including the defendant’s mother, from the courtroom during jury voir dire in a situation nearly identical to the DeKalb closure that led to the U.S. Supreme Court ruling.

Steel, who was not Stewart’s lawyer during the trial, said he took the case on appeal after Stewart’s mother came to see him, told him she had been locked out of the courtroom when attorneys were questioning potential jurors for her son’s case and burst into tears in his office.

In 2010, Steel asked the Georgia Supreme Court to overturn the 2006 Fulton County murder conviction of Travion Reed, basing one argument  on Judge Craig Schwall Sr.’s decision to close the courtroom during the testimony of two witnesses. Prosecutors countered that the courtroom’s closure was warranted because the two witnesses in question feared for their safety. A third witness in the case had been shot a short time after the murder, and a fourth witness had been threatened with a screwdriver in an attack that prosecutors claimed was likely linked to the defendant.

At the time, neither Reid nor his attorney objected. That omission proved critical to the Georgia Supreme Court which—three weeks after its decision in Presley was vacated—affirmed Schwall’s decision to bar public access to his courtroom during the testimony.

Steel did not represent Reed at his trial.

In an opinion written by Justice George Carley, the high court held 6-1 that in order to prevail, Reid “must show that he was prejudiced by counsel’s decision not to object to the brief closing of the courtroom. … Indeed, to hold otherwise would encourage defense counsel to manipulate the justice system by intentionally failing to object in order to ensure an automatic reversal on appeal.”

But Chief Justice Carol Hunstein, the lone dissenting vote, countered that, “No reason was articulated to support closing the courtroom” for the two witnesses when “closure was not sought for others who not only might have been, but actually were, placed in peril because of their testimony.”

“The trial court’s findings were clearly inadequate to support closure of the courtroom,” her dissent stated. “Moreover, the trial court failed to consider any alternatives to closure,” she said.

“Although the majority concludes that Reid has not shown prejudice,” Hunstein concluded, “Reid is not required to do so in order to obtain relief for a structural error which was a violation of the public-trial right.”

Steel said last week that “Prejudice is pretty hard to show when you’re closing a courtroom. It’s an almost unobtainable bar that the Supreme Court set.”
Steel said that in the Stewart appeal he argued before the state appellate court on June 13, “I’m challenging the Reid decision. … It’s primed to have a new discussion about it.”

Fulton County is not the only place where Steel has challenged closed courtrooms. In 2010, Steel also asked the Court of Appeals to overturn a Towns County defendant’s conviction because the judge moved jury selection to a nearby church and barred the public, including the defendant’s wife and daughter, from attending. The Court of Appeals reversed the conviction last March on other grounds without addressing the courtroom closure.

Cordele claims
Last month the Southern Center for Human Rights in Atlanta filed suit against the Cordele Judicial Circuit’s three superior court judges and the sheriffs of Ben Hill and Crisp counties in U.S. District Court in the Middle District of Georgia in Albany, claiming that county court officials are systemically barring the public from criminal court hearings that they say should be open to the public.

Stephen Bright, the center’s president and senior counsel, noted that in 2003, as part of a larger civil rights suit on behalf of the county’s indigent defendants, the Southern Center accused circuit officials of restricting public access to the courts. But Bright said the 2003 suit was dismissed in 2004 after circuit officials promised that courtrooms would remain open.

John Pridgen, chief superior court judge of the Cordele Circuit and a defendant in both suits, has called the 2003 allegations “complete fabrications” claiming, “There was never anything inappropriate about what we did then and what we do now.”

Another Cordele Circuit judge noted in a letter filed with the Southern Center’s complaint that the courtroom in the Crisp County Law Enforcement Center is particularly small, with limited seating.

Southern Center attorney Gerry Weber told the Daily Report last month that the center also has received anecdotal evidence that other courtrooms are being closed “in a lot of different places” across the state and is launching an investigation to determine the extent of the problem.

‘Keeps us free’
Courtroom public access issue came to the fore in Cobb County last year, when former Governor Roy Barnes secured the dismissal of an indictment against the CEO of the Cobb EMC because the grand jury presentments were made inside the new courthouse while its doors were locked and deputies barred access via a separate catwalk entrance.

The Georgia Court of Appeals upheld the indictment’s dismissal in March, ruling that, “The Georgia Supreme Court has held that any failure to return the indictment in open court is per se injurious to the defendant.”

Former Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Leah Ward Sears, who dissented in the state Supreme Court’s Presley decision, said in an interview with the Daily Report that the U.S. Supreme Court opinion vacating Georgia’s Presley decision “made it pretty clear … that you cannot, as a matter of policy, close courtrooms.”
In her dissent in Presley, Sears specifically addressed arguments based on lack of space.

“A room that is so small that it cannot accommodate the public,” she wrote, “is a room that is too small to accommodate a constitutional criminal trial.”
But the former chief justice, now a partner at Schiff Hardin, told the Daily Report that judges still may close a courtroom “in very narrow circumstances.” But their reasons  for doing so, “have to be well articulated,” she said. “It has to be on a case-by-case basis … It also has to be a last resort.”

Sears said she doesn’t belittle judges who struggle with issues of space and security.

“That’s what created the majority in the Presley case,” she said. “It wasn’t that the judges felt you should keep people out. They saw what a problem it was in these tiny courtrooms trying to manage things. You get very sympathetic when a trial judge is trying to … keep things secure.”

The issue, she explained, is one of competing values. But to trump the value of open courtrooms, she said, “would take some effort. … Public access is one of the cornerstones of our democracy. It’s what keeps us free.” 

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Daily Report: Public shut out of Georgia courts

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http://www.dailyreportonline.com/PubArticleFriendlyDRO.jsp?id=1202559725985

‘Robin Hood’ lawyer fights foreclosures with a passion

Katheryn Hayes Tucker

Daily Report

06-18-2012

For 34 years, Robert Thompson Jr. had been a business and labor lawyer — as was his father before him — defending corporations and financial institutions and even serving on several banks’ boards of directors.

But something happened to him two and half years ago that changed his entire practice. Now, he challenges banks and financial institutions in court, accusing them of wrongful foreclosure and outright fraud on behalf of individuals who are a step away from losing their homes.

The turning point for Thompson came at Christmas time, 2009. His mortgage servicer — with whom he had been embroiled in disputes over what he said were misapplied or lost checks, late fees for payments that had been made on time, unnecessary insurance costs and double billings for taxes — moved to foreclose on his home.

“I was a single father with three young children living with me in that house,” the silver-haired Thompson said during an interview in his Buckhead Thompson Law Group office filled with books about the financial industry and the economic crisis. “It was very upsetting.”

But, he added, “I was the wrong person to pick on about injunctions and bank law.”

On Dec. 28, 2009, he went before Fulton County Superior Court Judge John Goger, asking for an order enjoining the mortgage company from proceeding with the foreclosure. The judge’s first question was, “How much do you owe?” Thompson recalled.

“I told him I didn’t owe anything, that my payments had all been made on time, and that in fact they owed me more than $50,000 in overpayments and mystery fees,” Thompson recalled.

“Can you prove it?” the judge asked.

Thompson recalled he pointed the judge to canceled checks and FedEx receipts, and the judge granted Thompson’s injunction. Thompson filed a lawsuit against his loan servicer for mortgage fraud and abuse, wrongful foreclosure, unjust enrichment, breach of contract, conversion, misrepresentation, defamation, libel and deceit.

“People started talking about it,” Thompson said. “I thought it was just me, but then people started calling saying they had the same problem and wanting to know if I could help them.”

Now, Thompson is a man obsessed. And he said he’s had success halting foreclosures — but acknowledged securing such an injunction for a client is only the first step.

Thompson said he still has new clients coming to his office daily. Most don’t have the exact situation as his, where the payments were current but not applied to the account. The biggest percentage, he said, are struggling because of a loss of income and are seeking loan modifications to make payments more manageable, but were told by their mortgage holder they weren’t eligible either because they weren’t behind or far enough behind.

Thompson said being behind on mortgage payments isn’t a requirement of federally funded modification programs. But, on the assumption that it was, he said, his clients missed payments in hopes of qualifying for modifications, then found themselves in foreclosure with their lender refusing to accept more payments. Thompson calls that being “lured into default.”

Out of hundreds of cases he’s reviewed in the past two and a half years, he said, there wasn’t a single one where he didn’t find fraud or at least errors in the records. So far, he said, he has not yet been able to say to a homeowner, “I can’t help you because the bank did everything right.”

Bank representatives say it’s absurd to suggest banks want to foreclose if there are other options. They admit some paperwork mistakes happen but suggest it’s not right to make those a basis for loan forgiveness.

Meanwhile, Thompson is ordering up forensic audits — at a minimum of $1,000 each — to ferret out problems so that he can go to court to block foreclosures. A forensic auditing company analyzes the loan activity and tracks the transfers of deed and title as the loan has been sold by one financial company to another — and sometimes to several others.

Sometimes, Thompson said, he finds the foreclosing lender has already sold the note and collected the balance, and thus doesn’t have the legal right to foreclose. Often Thompson finds what he calls a “break in the chain of title” because the deed and the note have not been kept together in the transactions, which he said is illegal.

He can’t charge the homeowners the hourly rates he used to bill his corporate clients. Some can hardly pay anything. Occasionally, he said, he just offers free advice on how to fight a foreclosure pro se. Most of the time he negotiates a flat fee varying in amounts according to the work that needs to be done and the client’s ability to pay. “I have to make it affordable or they can’t do it,” he said. “But I can’t do it for free.”

He is especially busy the week before the first Tuesday of every month, when crowds gather on the courthouse steps for the auctioning of foreclosed homes. This month alone, he went to court for 25 injunctions to stop foreclosures.

Asked how many he won, he said, “All of them. But the injunction is only the first step.”

The next step varies, but often includes lawsuits against the lenders or servicers who initiated the foreclosure.

Lender representatives said Thompson’s charges about banks’ motivations don’t make sense.

“Do you really think the lender wants that house back?” asked Mo Thrash, a lobbyist for the Mortgage Bankers Association of Georgia and McCalla Raymer, a law firm with offices in Georgia that represents lenders. “It is absolutely ridiculous to think the lender would want the home back.”

Thrash said the conventional wisdom — that the best outcome for the lender is for the homeowner to make all their payments until the loan is paid in full — is still true, maybe more so now because of falling real estate prices and difficulty in selling homes. “I admit mistakes do happen, but I’d be willing to bet that the majority of these cases are a two-way street,” he said. “It takes two to tango.”

The majority of mortgage banks — 99 percent — are ethical and honest, Thrash added. To suggest otherwise, he said, is “absolutely crazy.”

If the personal foreclosure experiences of Thompson and some of his clients are as they described them, “It was a mistake,” said J.D. Crowe, senior vice president of Southeast Mortgage of Georgia Inc. and a member of the Mortgage Bankers Association of Georgia Board of Governors.

“If that’s the case, that’s why he won an injunction and will probably win his lawsuit. With the number of foreclosures in the last few years, there’s a lot of paper going back and forth,” Crowe said.

But like Thrash, Crowe said it’s “ridiculous” to suggest that a lender would want to foreclose if there were an alternative. “Lenders want to work with borrowers. They don’t want to foreclose,” he said.

Crowe also suggested that when homeowners win their foreclosure fights, they usually win on a technicality — a mistake in the paperwork or the separation of the deed and note in the selling of the loan by one financial institution to another. In such cases, if homeowners win damages or loan forgiveness, allowing them to walk away from their mortgage payments, said Crowe, “I think it is unconscionable.”

Disbelief, said Thompson, is the biggest challenge he faces in fighting foreclosure fraud. “People who have never suffered through it cannot believe it. It challenges the fundamentals of everything you want to believe about the banks being honest and the government protecting you.”

He cited the case of client LaVonda DeWitt, a patent lawyer whose income was reduced because her firm’s revenue dropped. In an interview, she said she contacted her mortgage company to discuss a loan modification so she could lower her payments.

“They said I wasn’t eligible because I still had a job,” she said.

Then she was laid off. She called her lender again about the modification and was told she wasn’t eligible because didn’t have a job. She said she was also told she wasn’t eligible unless she was three months behind. She stopped making payments in December 2010. She also filed a complaint with the U.S. Treasury Department over being denied a loan modification. The lender responded with a document she had never seen saying she had been offered a modification and rejected it, but later admitted that claim was a mistake, according to DeWitt. She still wasn’t offered a modification. She received a foreclosure notice in March of this year.

She met with Thompson, who went to court with her to block the sale on the first Tuesday in April. She won the injunction but still wasn’t able to negotiate a loan modification. So, on Thompson’s advice, she filed a lawsuit in federal court.

DeWitt said Thompson reminds her of the fictional Atticus Finch, taking on jobs that other lawyers don’t want.

Another client of Thompson’s, Patricia Sibley, won an injunction a year ago, then filed a lawsuit against the lender for wrongful foreclosure. The suit is pending in the Northern District of Georgia. Sibley and her husband are still in their home — “because of Bob Thompson,” she said.

As with DeWitt, Sibley’s suit is based on what Thompson calls “luring into default.” When the recession hit and slashed revenue for her advertising company, Sibley said she had to close her business. She and her husband had paid down by half their $950,000 15-year mortgage on their north Atlanta home near the Chattahoochee River, and their payments were current, she said in an interview.

She contacted the lender to ask about changing the terms to lower the payments. Since they still had some income, they felt they could afford the loan if they could spread it back to 30 years. They were told they weren’t eligible for a modification because they weren’t behind. They skipped one payment and called again, but were told they were not far enough behind to be eligible, according to Sibley and the lawsuit. After the third missed payment, they received a foreclosure notice. They tried to talk to the lender’s customer service department many times and offered to pay the loan current and cover fees in return for restructuring, she said, but heard no response.

The house was advertised for foreclosure. The weekend before the first Tuesday in June 2011, cars were driving by the house and stopping to take pictures, Sibley said. It was an experience she said she wouldn’t wish on anyone.

A friend called and said she had a friend who knew someone who might be able to help — Thompson. The friend said, “I have somebody who’s like Robin Hood. He takes from the banks and gives to the poor.”

“Not that we’re the poor,” Sibley added. But, she said, “I never would have dreamed I’d be in this position.”

Sibley’s case is unresolved, but Thompson was able to get an injunction to prevent foreclosure while it’s pending.

McCurdy & Candler, which has offices in Decatur and Atlanta, handled Sibley’s foreclosure for PNC Mortgage, as well as DeWitt’s foreclosure for Chase. Managing partner Sidney Gelernter said the firm couldn’t comment on any pending case or even discuss foreclosures generally. Sibley’s suit is being defended by Ballard Spahr. One of the lawyers working on the case in Atlanta, Christopher Willis, said the firm couldn’t comment on any matter involving any of its clients.

Sibley’s lawsuit is against National City Mortgage Company, National City Bank, PNC Mortgage, Bank of America and unidentified investors. Sibley said she tried repeatedly to find out the identity of the investors who now own the loan — in order to work out payment terms — but PNC, the servicer, wouldn’t tell her.

A spokeswoman for PNC said the company couldn’t comment on any lawsuit. “We do work with customers,” said Amy Vargo, noting modification programs described on the PNC website.

In his own personal case, Thompson sued BAC Home Loans Servicing, which is a subsidiary of Bank of America, and Bank of New York Mellon, formerly known as Bank of New York, successor in interest to JP Morgan Chase Bank. Bank of America acquired Countrywide Mortgage Company, which was Thompson’s loan servicer. Thompson’s lawsuit names four companies that owned his note successively. Thompson’s case — which he has withdrawn for now — was defended by Monica Gilroy of Alpharetta’s Dickenson Gilroy, who said she couldn’t discuss it.

The foreclosing firm in Thompson’s case was Shuping, Morse & Ross, based in Riverdale. Neither the managing partner, Sheltan Andrew Shuping Jr., nor the lawyer who handled the foreclosure, Kevin Duda, could be reached for comment.

Thompson’s lawsuit — moved from Fulton Superior Court to federal district court in Atlanta — seeks damages for overpayments and unauthorized fees, harassment and injury to his credit and reputation, naming a figure of $5 million.

Thompson said he has stopped making mortgage payments, and BAC has stopped trying to foreclose. He moved to withdraw his complaint, while keeping the door open to refiling it later, and the judge agreed. He said he believes the courts are evolving in their understanding of foreclosure fraud, and he plans to reinitiate the suit at a time that will be advantageous. For now, he said, “It’s an armed truce.”

Thompson’s case in federal court is Thompson v. BAC Home Loans, No. 1:10-CV-3205-TCB.

Sibley’s case in federal court is Sibley v. National City Mortgage Co., No. 1:12-cv-00305-SCJ-JFK.

Daily Report: Robin Hood lawyer fights foreclosures with a passion

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GEORGIA ON MY MIND..>..

Tuesday, June 12, 2012Last Update: 7:06 AM PT

Squirrely Ethics in Georgia, Former Exec Says

By IULIA FILIP

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ATLANTA (CN) – A former executive claims in court that the Georgia Ethics Commission fired her for trying to investigate a gubernatorial candidate’s violations of campaign finance laws.
     Stacey Kalberman claims the chairman of the state ethics commission board, who was the candidate’s appointee, retaliated against her to deter the investigation and promote his political career.
     Kalberman sued the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission fka Georgia State Ethics Commission, Executive Secretary Holly LaBerge and Chairman Patrick Millsaps, in Fulton County Superior Court.
     The state ethics commission oversees campaign funding and spending of elected officials and lobbyists.
     Kalberman was executive secretary of the commission from April 2010 until June 2011, when she says she was “forced out of her job”.
     As executive secretary, Kalberman managed the commission’s administrative, legal and investigatory functions, including investigations of complaints under the Georgia Campaign Finance Act, according to her complaint.
     “Between March and May of 2010, Kalberman became aware of three third-party complaints made against a gubernatorial candidate (the ‘candidate’) concerning his campaign’s compliance with the Georgia Campaign Finance Act,” the complaint states.
     “The candidate had reappointed Millsaps to his position on the commission.
     “The commission’s investigation revealed troubling irregularities with the candidate’s campaign financial disclosures.”
     After the candidate’s counsel ignored her request for documents, Kalberman says, she prepared draft subpoenas for the commission’s review.
     Kalberman says she discussed the subpoenas with Millsaps at least four times and told him that “the candidate’s campaign had possibly violated campaign contribution limits on many occasions.” But she says Millsaps asked her to keep the matter in “strict confidence” and refused to sign the subpoenas.
     Kalberman claims that in June 2011, less than 3 weeks after she provided the subpoenas to the commissioners, Millsaps asked her to meet him to discuss the commission’s budget.
     But instead of discussing the budget, Millsaps told her the commission was cutting her salary by 35 percent and eliminating the position of deputy secretary, filled by Kalberman’s chief investigator, according to the complaint.
     “At the June meeting, it was obvious to Kalberman that Millsaps’ sudden ‘budget cut’ was retaliation against her for pursuing the ethics investigation into the candidate,” the complaint states. “Kalberman, exhausted from previous weeks of dealing with her mother’s diagnosis of stage IV metastatic breast cancer, became emotional and stated she could not work for the drastic reduction in salary Millsaps proposed.
     “At no time did Kalberman resign her employment with the commission.”
     Kalberman says that though she denied she had resigned, Millsaps sent her an email saying that the commission had accepted her “resignation.”
     She says Millsaps refused to return her phone calls or further discuss the proposed budget cuts with her.
     “Millsaps then began maliciously spreading false rumors to the press and to the public that Kalberman had resigned from her position during the June meeting,” the complaint states.
     “On June 15, 2011, Kalberman sent a detailed email to Millsaps outlining several alternative plans for restructuring the budget to avoid Millsaps’ proposed cuts.
     “Kalberman also indicated in her email that she felt that Millsaps’ alleged ‘budgetary concerns’ were pretextual to hide his real reason for removing Kalberman from her position: to deter the investigation into the candidate. Kalberman made it clear to Millsaps that she planned to proceed with her job duties, which included the investigation.
     “Millsaps ignored Kalberman’s overtures to discuss the commission’s budget, leaked Kalberman’s email to the press, and told the press that Kalberman had resigned from her position and that she behaved badly by becoming ‘upset’ at the June meeting. In addition, Millsaps misled the press when he reported he could not really remember if he ever received the candidate’s subpoenas.”
     Kalberman says the commission enacted Millsaps’ proposed cuts and forced her to resign, claiming her authority had been compromised.
     The complaint adds: “Kalberman’s resignation as executive secretary amounted to a constructive termination because the commission, and specifically Millsaps, forced her out of her job and made it clear she would be rendered powerless, amounting to nothing more than a figurehead.”
     Kalberman says Millsaps’ statements to the press hurt her reputation and prevented her from getting similar ethics-related jobs.
     She seeks compensatory and punitive damages for retaliation under the Georgia Whistleblower Act and intentional infliction of emotional distress.
     She is represented by Kimberly Worth with Joyce Thrasher Kaiser & Liss.

Courthouse News Service

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AG Biden Says $25B Settlement Not the End, Securitization Next

mortgagenewsdaily.com | May 16, 2012

Delaware Attorney General Beau Biden said recently that the states’ attorneys general need to make it clear that the recent $25 billion settlement with five major banks is the beginning not the end of their enforcement actions.   Biden, speaking on MSNBC’s Morning Joe said the savings and loan crisis cost the economy $168 billion and 1,000 people went to jail.  “This crisis, which was man made,” he said, “cost the economy trillions and I can’t really find anyone who has been held accountable.”

Show co-host Willie Geist asked Biden who he was focusing on, who did he think should be in jail?  Biden said one area he, New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman and others are looking at is the securitization aspect, “whether or not there were false securities, mortgage-backed securities, sold to investors.  That affects borrowers as well.”

He noted that Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster recently indicted DOCX and its CEO Lorraine Brown.  This is relevant, Biden said, because this woman has become famous, on 60 Minutes and so forth, because she signed thousands upon thousands of foreclosure affidavits.  “Chris Costner indicted her for forgery.  That’s the kinds of thing we need to begin to do.”  He said that investigations need to go beyond robo-signing and that people must be held accountable.  “People are angry,” he said.  “Republicans, Democrats, Tea Partiers and 99 Percenters are all angry that no one has been held accountable for something they know is obviously fraught.  And that’s my job as AG.”

Certified Forensic Loan Auditors, LLC | AG Biden Says $25B Settlement Not the End, Securitization Next

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Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Loan Officer Pleads Guilty for Role in Mortgage Fraud Scheme That Resulted in More Than $6.5 Million in Losses

WASHINGTON – A loan officer for a Florida mortgage company pleaded guilty late yesterday in the Southern District of Florida to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud for his role in a mortgage fraud scheme, Assistant Attorney General Lanny A. Breuer of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, U.S. Attorney Wifredo A. Ferrer of the Southern District of Florida and Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Inspector General David A. Montoya announced today. 
Alejandro Curbelo, 32, aka Alex Curbelo, of Miami, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Joan Lenard.  Curbelo was indicted and arrested on Jan. 24, 2012.

According to court documents, from approximately February 2006 through July 2008, Curbelo was employed as a loan officer for Great Country Mortgage Bankers.  In this role, he assisted in the sales and financing of condominium units at two complexes in Florida – Dadeland Place and Pelican Cove on the Bay.  The borrowers Curbelo assisted at these two complexes were unqualified to obtain mortgage loans due to insufficient income, high levels of debts and outstanding collections. 

Curbelo admitted that he conspired with others to create and submit false and fraudulent Federal Housing Administration (FHA) mortgage loan applications and accompanying documents to a lender on behalf of the unqualified borrowers.  Curbelo and others offered the borrowers cash back after closing as an incentive for them to purchase the units.  These payments were not disclosed properly during the loan application process.  According to court documents, the closing costs were paid on behalf of the borrowers by interstate wire.  After the loans closed, the unqualified borrowers failed to meet their monthly mortgage obligations and defaulted on their loans. 

According to court documents, when the loans went into foreclosure, HUD, which insured the loans, was required to take title to the units and pay the outstanding loan balances to the lenders.  As of the date of the plea agreement, the actual loss related to Curbelo’s conduct that was paid by HUD was more than $6.5 million.

Curbelo is scheduled to be sentenced on June 25, 2012.  He faces a maximum prison sentence of 20 years. 

This case was investigated by the HUD Office of Inspector General, as participants in the Miami Mortgage Fraud Strike Force.  Trial Attorney Mary Ann McCarthy of the Fraud Section in the Justice Department’s Criminal Division is prosecuting the case with assistance from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Florida.
This prosecution is part of efforts under way by the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force.  President Obama established the interagency Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force to wage an aggressive, coordinated and proactive effort to investigate and prosecute financial crimes.  The task force includes representatives from a broad range of federal agencies, regulatory authorities, inspectors general, and state and local law enforcement who, working together, bring to bear a powerful array of criminal and civil enforcement resources.  The task force is working to improve efforts across the federal executive branch, and with state and local partners, to investigate and prosecute significant financial crimes, ensure just and effective punishment for those who perpetrate financial crimes, combat discrimination in the lending and financial markets and recover proceeds for victims of financial crimes.

For more information on the task force, visit www.StopFraud.gov.

USDOJ: Loan Officer Pleads Guilty for Role in Mortgage Fraud Scheme That Resulted in More Than $6.5 Million in Losses

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http://www.naturalnews.com/034537_NDAA_Bill_of_Rights_Obama.html

rights

R.I.P. Bill of Rights 1789 – 2011

Sunday, January 01, 2012
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger
Editor of NaturalNews.com
(See all articles…)

(NaturalNews) One of the most extraordinary documents in human history — the Bill of Rights — has come to an end under President Barack Obama. Derived from sacred principles of natural law, the Bill of Rights has come to a sudden and catastrophic end with the President’s signing of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), a law that grants the U.S. military the “legal” right to conduct secret kidnappings of U.S. citizens, followed by indefinite detention, interrogation, torture and even murder. This is all conducted completely outside the protection of law, with no jury, no trial, no legal representation and not even any requirement that the government produce evidence against the accused. It is a system of outright government tyranny against the American people, and it effectively nullifies the Bill of Rights.

In what will be remembered as the most traitorous executive signing ever committed against the American people, President Obama signed the bill on New Year’s Eve, a time when most Americans were engaged in the consumption of alcohol. It seems appropriate, of course, since no intelligent American could accept the tyranny of this bill if they were sober.

This is the law that will cement Obama’s legacy in the history books as the traitor who nullified the Bill of Rights and paved America’s pathway down a road of tyranny that will make Nazi Germany’s war crimes look like child’s play. If Bush had signed a law like this, liberals would have been screaming “impeachment!”

Why the Bill of Rights matters

While the U.S. Constitution already limits the power of federal government, the Bill of Rights is the document that enumerates even more limits of federal government power. In its inception, many argued that a Bill of Rights was completely unnecessary because, they explained, the federal government only has the powers specifically enumerated to it under the U.S. Constitution. There was no need to have a “First Amendment” to protect Free Speech, for example, because there was no power granted to government to diminish Free Speech.
This seems silly today, of course, given the natural tendency of all governments to concentrate power in the hands of the few while destroying the rights and freedoms of their own people. But in the 1780’s, whether government could ever become a threat to future freedoms was hotly debated. By 1789, enough revolutionary leaders had agreed on the fundamental principles of a Bill of Rights to sign it into law. Its purpose was to provide additional clarifications on the limitation of government power so that there could be absolutely no question that government could NEVER, under any circumstances, violate these key principles of freedom: Freedom of speech, the right to bear arms, freedom from illegal searches, the right to remain silent, the right to due process under law, and so on.

Of course, today’s runaway federal government utterly ignores the limitations placed on it by the founding fathers. It aggressively and criminally seeks to expand its power at all costs, completely ignoring the Bill of Rights and openly violating the limitations of power placed upon it by the United States Constitution. The TSA’s illegal searching of air travelers, for example, is a blatant violation of Fourth Amendment rights. The government’s hijacking of websites it claims are linking to “copyright infringement” hubs is a blatant violation of First Amendment rights. The government’s demand that all Americans be forced to buy private health insurance is a blatant violation of Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution — the “commerce clause.”
Now, with the passage of the NDAA, the federal government has torpedoed the entire Bill of Rights, dismissing it completely and effectively promising to violate those rights at will. As of January 1, 2012, we have all been designated enemies of the state. America is the new battleground, and your “right” to due process is null and void.

Remember, this was all done by the very President who promised to close Guantanamo Bay and end secret military prisons. Not only did Obama break that campaign promise (as he has done with nearly ALL his campaign promises), he did exactly the opposite and has now subjected all Americans to the possibility of government-sponsored kidnapping, detainment and torture, all under the very system of secret military prisons he claimed he would close!

“President Obama’s action today is a blight on his legacy because he will forever be known as the president who signed indefinite detention without charge or trial into law,” said Anthony D. Romero, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union.

Obama’s signing statement means nothing

Even while committing an act of pure treason in signing the bill, the unindicted criminal President Obama issued a signing statement that reads, in part, “Moving forward, my administration will interpret and implement the provisions described below in a manner that best preserves the flexibility on which our safety depends and upholds the values on which this country was founded…”

Anyone who reads between the lines here realizes the “the flexibility on which our safety depends” means they can interpret the law in any way they want if there is a sufficient amount of fear being created through false flag terror attacks. Astute readers will also notice that Obama’s signing statement has no legal binding whatsoever and only refers to Obama’s momentary intentions on how he “wishes” to interpret the law. It does not place any limits whatsoever on how a future President might use the law as written.

“The statute is particularly dangerous because it has no temporal or geographic limitations, and can be used by this and future presidents to militarily detain people captured far from any battlefield,” says the ACLU (http://www.aclu.org/blog/national-security/president-obama-signs-inde…).

What this means is that the next President could use this law to engage in the most horrific holocaust-scale mass round-up of people the world has ever seen. The NDAA legalizes the crimes of Nazi Germany in America, setting the stage for the mass murder of citizens by a rogue government.

United States of America becomes a rogue nation, operating in violation of international law

Furthermore, the NDAA law as written and signed, is a violation of international law as it does not even adhere to the fundamental agreements of how nations treat prisoners of war:  “…the breadth of the NDAA’s detention authority violates international law because it is not limited to people captured in the context of an actual armed conflict as required by the laws of war” says the ACLU (http://www.aclu.org/blog/national-security/president-obama-signs-inde…).

In 1789, today’s NDAA law would have been called “treasonous,” and those who voted for it would have been shot dead as traitors. This is not a call for violence, but rather an attempt to provide historical context of just how destructive this law really is. Men and women fought and died for the U.S. Constitution and the Bill of Rights. People sacrificed their lives, their safety and risked everything to achieve the freedoms that made America such a great nation. For one President to so callously throw away 222 years of liberty, betraying those great Americans who painstakingly created an extraordinary document limiting the power of government, is equivalent to driving a stake through the heart of the Republic.

In signing this, Obama has proven himself to be the most criminal of all U.S. Presidents, far worse than George W. Bush and a total traitor to the nation and its People. Remember, Obama swore upon a Bible that he would “protect and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic,” and yet he himself has become the enemy of the Constitution by signing a law that overtly and callously nullifies the Bill of Rights.

This is nothing less than an act of war declared on the American people by the executive and legislative branches of government. It remains to be seen whether the judicial branch will go along with it (US Supreme Court).

Origins of the Bill of Rights

The Bill of Rights, signed in 1789 by many of the founding fathers of our nation, was based on the Virginia Declaration of Rights, drafted in 1776 and authored largely by George Mason, one of the least-recognized revolutionaries who gave rise to a nation of freedom and liberty.

Mason was a strong advocate of not just states’ rights, but of individual rights, and without his influence in 1789, we might not even have a Bill of Rights today (and our nation would have slipped into total government tyranny all the sooner). In fact, he openly opposed ratification of the U.S. Constitution unless it contained a series of amendments now known as the Bill of Rights

(http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/George_Mason)
SECTION ONE of this Virginia declaration of rights states:  “That all men are by nature equally free and independent and have certain inherent rights, of which, when they enter into a state of society, they cannot, by any compact, deprive or divest their posterity; namely, the enjoyment of life and liberty, with the means of acquiring and possessing property, and pursuing and obtaining happiness and safety.”

(http://www.constitution.org/bcp/virg_dor.htm)
Section Three of the declaration speaks to the duty of the Citizens to abolish abusive government:

“That government is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit, protection, and security of the people, nation, or community; of all the various modes and forms of government, that is best which is capable of producing the greatest degree of happiness and safety and is most effectually secured against the danger of maladministration; and that, when any government shall be found inadequate or contrary to these purposes, a majority of the community hath an indubitable, inalienable, and indefeasible right to reform, alter, or abolish it, in such manner as shall be judged most conducive to the public weal.”

By any honest measure, today’s U.S. government, of course, has overstepped the bounds of its original intent. As Mason wrote over 200 years ago, the People of America now have not merely a right but a duty to “reform, alter or abolish it,” to bring government back into alignment with its original purpose — to protect the rights of the People.

Obama violates his Presidential Oath, sworn before God

Article II, Section I of the United States Constitution spells out the oath of office that every President must take during their swearing in:  “I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”


In signing the NDAA law into office, Obama has blatantly and unambiguously violated this sacred oath, meaning that his betrayal is not merely against the American people, but also against the Divine Creator.

Given that the Bill of Rights is an extension of Natural Law which establishes a direct heritage of sovereign power from the Creator to the People, a blatant attack upon the Bill of Rights is, by any account, an attack against the Creator and a violation of universal spiritual principles. Those who attempt to undermine the Bill of Rights are attempting to invalidate the relationship between God and Man, and in doing so, they are identifying themselves as enemies of God and agents of Evil.

Today, as 2012 begins, we are now a nation led by evil, and threatened with total destruction by those who would seek to rule as tyrants. This is America’s final hour. We either defend the Republic starting right now, or we lose it forever.

R.I.P. Bill of Rights 1789 – 2011

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http://www.lawlessamerica.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=817:city-of-roswell-georgia-bullies-andrew-wordes-to-death-over-his-backyard-chickens&catid=117:news-reports&Itemid=219Sick smile

City of Roswell, Georgia bullies Andrew Wordes to death over his backyard chickens

City of Roswell, Georgia bullies Andrew Wordes to death over his backyard chickens

Tuesday, 10 April 2012 11:54
William M. Windsor
  • wordes-andrew

Andrew Wordes, an innocent man who had legally been raising a few dozen chickens and other small birds in the backyard of his suburban Atlanta home, is now dead, following a crusade of terror perpetrated against him by the City of Roswell Georgia.

Andrew Wordes, who died during a recent raid on his property in which county marshals tried to illegally evict him, was the obvious victim of a rogue state gone mad — and his blood is now on the hands of the Roswell City Administrator, the Roswell City Council, and the Roswell Police Department, all of which robbed from Wordes his property, his livelihood, and ultimately his life.

See the NaturalNews infographic timeline of events that documents the escalation that ultimately led to Mr. Andrew Wordes’ death: http://www.naturalnews.com

Andrew Wordes had long raised his small poultry friends in the backyard of his one-acre property at 335 Alpine Drive in Roswell, Georgia, sharing eggs, chicks, and friendly words of wisdom and encouragement with his neighbors and with local schoolchildren all along the way. Andrew Wordes was very active in his local community, having organized a North Georgia Pet Chicken “Meetup” group, and founded a chicken breeding club. His friends and neighbors described him as a generous, kind, and loving man who was always willing to lend a hand, and who would have given you the shirt off his back if you needed it.

But Andrew Wordes met his unjust fate on March 26, 2012, after roughly four years of enduring illicit and seemingly-endless abuse, bullying, threats, and unsubstantiated legal action taken against him by Roswell city officials with an apparent axe to grind. And after losing his birds, his freedom, his entire life savings, his property, and his livelihood as a result of the City of Roswell’s sadistic war against him, Andrew Wordes ended up losing his life as a result of an explosion that occurred during the final eviction raid carried out by Fulton County marshals.

City of Roswell targets Wordes for standing up for his rights, identifies his property on planning map as future ‘green space’

The saga allegedly began in 2008 when a disgruntled neighbor of Andrew Wordes reportedly complained to the city about Wordes raising chickens, button quail, and other small creatures in his backyard. The City of Roswell responded by issuing Andrew Wordes a citation for his chickens, even though the city’s Code of Ordinances specifically provisioned at the time that property owners on less than two acres of land could legally raise chickens and swine.

With the help of Roswell’s Mayor Jere Wood, a lawyer friend of Andrew Wordes who also raises chickens himself, Wordes was able to get the citation issued against him dismissed in court. But the firestorm of childish retaliation and rage that quickly ensued as a result of Andrew Wordes standing up for himself and his rights, rather than capitulating to the city’s tyrannical and mindless demands that he get rid of his chickens, will likely go down as one of the most tragically absurd abuses of power in the history of local government.

After it became clear that Andrew Wordes was not about to let the City of Roswell trample all over him and his rights, several city officials allegedly kicked their vendetta against him into high gear, not only to forcibly have Wordes’ chickens removed, but also to seize his property right out from under him. After failing twice to get Andrew Wordes nabbed for their made-up code violations, the City of Roswell actually rewrote the law to prohibit residents from raising more than six chickens in an effort to seal the deal.

But even this failed, as a judge later ruled that Andrew Wordes, who had been in his home for more than a decade raising chickens, would be “grandfathered in” under the old provisions which allowed for residents to raise backyard chickens. So the City of Roswell switched gears again and began to play even dirtier by getting Andrew Wordes arrested for petty violations, and proceeding to reclassify his property on their long-term planning map as future green space.

You can view the City of Roswell’s2030 Comprehensive Plan, which demarcates Wordes’ property as future “Conservation Area or Greenspace” here:
http://www.roswellgov.com/index.aspx?NID=893

So it appears as though the City of Roswell used the supposed neighbor complaint as an excuse to pursue Andrew Wordes’ property for the purpose of eventually turning it into parks and green space. This would explain why the city failed to properly maintain storm water infrastructure near Wordes’ property, which resulted in his property becoming severely flooded at least a dozen times, and eventually uninhabitable.

City of Roswell refuses to submit Andrew Wordes’ request for FEMA assistance following severe flooding, issues citation when he attempts to protect his home

Not only did the City of Roswell fail to abide by legal guidelines that required it to maintain storm water infrastructure around Wordes’ property, but the city added insult to injury by refusing to file paperwork to the U.S.Federal Emergency Management Agency(FEMA) following a flood that caused severe damage to Andrew Wordes’ home, which is also located on a floodplain. As a result, he had no means by which to fix the damage.

And when Andrew Wordes attempted to protect his property from future flood damage by grading his land with a Bobcat, which he borrowed from his friend Mayor Wood, the City of Roswell actually had the audacity to issue Wordes a citation for grading his land without a permit, and for having too many cars on his property at the time.

City of Roswell Code Enforcement Supervisor violates law by contacting Andrew Wordes’ mortgage holder, coercing her into selling mortgage note

From this point on, City of Roswell officials began harassing Andrew Wordes, and the local police department began to surveil his house on a regular basis, watching closely for anything that might be considered a violation. In the process, he was pulled over and even thrown in jail on numerous occasions.

In violation of the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act and several other laws, Roswell Code Enforcement Supervisor Vicki Barclay (http://www.roswellgov.com/index.aspx?NID=94) allegedly called Wordes’ mortgage holder, an 80-year-old woman, and coerced her into selling Wordes’ mortgage note for 40 cents on the dollar to another mortgage holder by threatening to issue liens, citations, and grievances on the property if she failed to comply. Barclay is the same city official who had illegally tried to issue Wordes a citation for his chickens from the very beginning.

Having failed at all other attempts to seize his property, the City of Roswell then filed a zoning violation against Wordes claiming that his property was a “nuisance.” The city also filed a 55-page civil lawsuit against Andrew Wordes, which conveniently denied him the right to a city-funded public defender who was supposed to represent him in legal dealings involving the city.

Even with former Georgia Governor Roy Barnes on his side, Andrew Wordes was rapidly losing the ability to fend off these ravenous wolves in the City of Roswell government that were hellbent on forcing him off his property for their own devious purposes. And Roswell City Administrator Kay G. Love (http://www.roswellgov.com/Directory.aspx?EID=3), Roswell City councilmember Becky Wynn (http://www.roswellgov.com/directory.aspx?EID=6), Roswell City councilmember Rich Dippolito (http://richforroswell.com/about-rich.php), and Roswell Code Enforcement Supervisor Vicki Barclay (http://www.roswellgov.com/index.aspx?NID=94) all played a key role in making this happen, according to accounts.

Andrew Wordes’ home vandalized, chickens poisoned while he attends political rally

The madness did not stop at Andrew Wordes’ property, however, as even his animals eventually got caught in the fray of the City of Roswell’s campaign of terror. According to reports, Andrew Wordes’ home was vandalized in 2011 while he was attending a local political rally, and when he returned, he found that his animals had also been poisoned. Roughly one-third of his animals, which included turkeys, chicks, and adult chickens, ended up dying as a result of this poisoning.

Andrew Wordes filed a police report in response to these crimes, but the Roswell police department never pursued the case, and it was never determined who committed them. Consequently, Wordes lost a significant portion of his income and livelihood as a result of the mysterious deaths, which made his already-burgeoning financial problems even worse.

City of Roswell jails Wordes for 99 days, proceeds to evict him from property using phony foreclosure notice

After attacking him from practically all angles and nabbing him for every single petty violation they could think of, the City of Roswell finally ended up jailing Wordes for a whopping 99 days. And immediately after Wordes was jailed, the City of Roswell issued a public press release letting the public know that Wordes’ house was now “vacant,” a purely vindictive move that had terrifying consequences.

Within just a few hours of the announcement, Wordes’ house was vandalized and looted. Even though the City of Roswell promised to keep an eye on the property after issuing the press release, criminals were somehow able to steal Wordes’ firearms and weapons, ammunition, and other valuables, which put the entire community at risk.

During this time, Wordes was refused the ability to proceed with the bankruptcy filings that would have halted the illegal foreclosure on his property which, conveniently for the City of Roswell, was moving forward during his time in jail. As pointed out by Maggie West Bean writing forExaminer.com, the foreclosure paperwork was not even legal to begin with, as it lacked necessary information proving its validity (http://www.examiner.com).

After finally being released, Wordes was left with an uninhabitable house and property, no more animals, no more money, and a pending eviction notice illegally issued by the ruthless criminals at the City of Roswell. Throughout the process, Wordes was denied all his rights to defend himself, denied his right to defend his property against illegal foreclosure, and denied his right to pursue any sort of justice in the matter.

During a February interview with Rusty Humphries, a radio talk show host on WGST 640 in Atlanta, a desperate Wordes explained his dire situation at that point, and issued one of his final pleas for help. You can listen to that interview at either of the following two links:
http://airbornecombatengineer.typepad.com
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=D0Md7aIudZE

You can also read a post written by Andrew Wordes himself back in 2009 here:
http://www.backyardchickens.com

After being denied the ability to fight back against illegal foreclosure, county marshals swoop in on Andrew Wordes’ property to evict him, culminating in his death

At the end of his rope and facing insurmountable and unrelenting oppression, Wordes’ final hours were spent in his unlivable home, where Fulton County marshals staged an elaborate demonstration of police state force by illegally raiding Wordes’ property.

According to reports, the standoff concluded when Wordes finally told television reporter Mike Petchenik, who he had called to the scene by phone, to have the marshals leave the property. Moments later, an explosion was heard, and Wordes’ house became engulfed in flames.

When it was safe to go inside, responders found a body inside the home, which was later identified as being that of Wordes. And though the incident appears to have been a desperate suicide, which is how some reports categorized it right off the bat, others are worded as to leave room for the potential possibility of foul play.

City of Roswell must be held responsible for its crimes

While it has not yet been determined whether Wordes’ death was a suicide or a murder, it is clear that the City of Roswell has a whole lot of explaining to do concerning its role in the escalation of this situation over the past four years.

As usual, mainstream media reports about the saga fail to mention how the City of Roswell committed numerous criminal acts in its illegal pursuit of Wordes, or how the city is now officially lying, on record, by claiming that it played no part in working behind the scenes to transfer Wordes’ mortgage and foreclose on his property.

Nevertheless, the truth must come out about this case, and those involved in perpetrating it brought to justice. And this, of course, will start with a full investigation into the dealings of Roswell City Administrator Kay G. Love (http://www.roswellgov.com/Directory.aspx?EID=3), Roswell City councilmember Becky Wynn (http://www.roswellgov.com/directory.aspx?EID=6), Roswell City councilmember Rich Dippolito (http://richforroswell.com/about-rich.php), and Roswell Code Enforcement Supervisor Vicki Barclay (http://www.roswellgov.com/index.aspx?NID=94), as well as Roswell city attorneys and the Roswell Police Department, in the case.

It is unfortunate that NaturalNews only just now learned about the Wordes saga after the man’s death, as it may have been possible to help him earlier on by raising awareness about the injustices being perpetrated against him. But at the very least, we can all fight for justice now by banding together to make sure the facts come to light, and the criminals involved punished for their crimes.

The case also serves as a reminder to others who might be enduring similar harassment to speak up now about what they are going through. The reason why news sites like NaturalNews, InfoWars and others exist is to draw attention to issues like this, and to bring what goes on in the darkness to light — so if you or somebody you know is facing similar harassment by city officials, tell us about it!

Also, be sure to read the following memoriam written by Glenn Horowitz at American Daily Herald about the Wordes case. Horowitz was personally involved in trying to help Wordes in years past, and has put together an excellent summary of the events that took place over the last four years: http://www.americandailyherald.com

See the NaturalNews infographic timeline of events that documents the escalation that ultimately led to Mr. Wordes’ death:

http://www.naturalnews.com

Sources for this article include:

http://www.americandailyherald.com

http://www.examiner.com

http://airbornecombatengineer.typepad.com

http://www.backyardchickens.com

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=D0Md7aIudZE

http://theperspicaciousconservative


William M. Windsor

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L. Randall Wray

Professor of Economics and Research Director of the Center for Full Employment and Price Stability, University of Missouri–Kansas City

 

The $7 Trillion Question That Haunts Banks

Posted: 03/16/2012 4:09 pm

I’ve been writing about the MERS monster since 2010. Here is one of my early pieces.

I suppose it is now safe to reveal that a staffer of Representative Marcy Kaptur put me on the trail of this fraud — in dollar terms it has to be the single biggest fraud in human history. In sheer utter disregard for law, it is certainly the most audacious fraud in Western history. To tell the truth, I had never heard of MERS until she called. If you recall the Michael Moore movie, Rep. Kaptur stood on the steps and told homeowners facing foreclosure to stay in their homes. She was right: the banksters have no legal claim on the homes they are foreclosing. Foreclosure is theft. Any bank that used MERS has no legal claim on property — there are 65 million such mortgages to which no bank has a legal claim to foreclose.

And, to be sure, even those mortgages that were not run through MERS are suspect if they are handled by any of the five biggest servicers. These servicers keep such shoddy records that they cannot be trusted to accurately credit payments. They’ve been adding on fees and penalties that were unwarranted since they cannot keep track of records.

Folks, there are $7 trillion of securitized mortgages. It was (mostly) the securitization process that demanded fraud. Securitization could never have been profitable — it was a flawed way to go about financing homeownership. It was simply too expensive to compete with Jimmy Stewart thrifts. It required fraud to show profits. (As Bill Black always says: fraud is a sure thing. It is always the most profitable way to run a business — until you get caught.)

In addition to the MERS monster, we also know the securities did not meet the “reps and warranties” claimed. The banks that did the securizations will continue to get sued to take back bad mortgages. They are trying to shovel as many of these back to Fannie and Freddie as they can so that Uncle Sam will take the losses — as discussed in my previous blog they are now doing it through sale of servicing rights.

And of course Uncle Ben has helpfully put a lot of them on the Fed’s balance sheet. This is all part of the cover-up to avoid the obvious: all these big banks are massively insolvent as soon as the courts wake up to the fact that the whole damned real estate finance onion is layer upon layer of fraud.

But let us stick to the MERS fraud.

There should be an immediate and complete halt to all foreclosures in the US, and all foreclosures that have been completed over the past decade should be nullified. Yes that will get messy. But continuing with foreclosures will make the mess immeasurably worse. This foreclosure crisis is not going to stop.

No one should buy any bank-owned real estate because it is probable that eventually the US will return to the rule of law. The property will be returned to the rightful owners — those who were illegally kicked out of their houses.

Now that might be a pipe dream, but if the US is not going to be a nation ruled by law then it will not survive.

The biggest banks — including the GSEs — created MERS and proceeded to destroy our nation’s real estate property law. That is not an overstatement. Robo-signing is just one small and inevitable consequence of the fraud. The truth is that foreclosure cannot go through without fraud because the banks do not have the documents to show clear title.

Banks don’t have them because they do not exist.

There are no records because that was MERS’s business model: destroy all records of ownership while speeding the securitization process.

And since the mortgages themselves were often frauds (designing “affordability products” that homeowners could not afford), many would end in delinquency. So MERS was designed to speed the foreclosure process — it would be so much easier to foreclose if you didn’t bother with documents, records, and property law. Just kick the owners out, take the home, sell it, and reboot the whole scam again.

Another whistleblower has come forward, this one from CBO. Lan Pham was fired because she refused to get with the program: the government is supposed to help the banksters cover up their frauds, NOT expose them! She refused. So she was fired. Now she tells her story.

I won’t repeat her entire story — you can read it at Zerohedge. Here are a few quotes from Lan Pham, the CBO whistle-blower:

I was repeatedly pressured by the CBO Assistant Director, Deborah Lucas… to not write nor discuss issues in the banking sector and mortgage markets that might suggest weakness in these sectors and their consequences on the economy and households…

…Issues at the heart of the foreclosure problems pertain to securitization….and the Mortgage Electronic Registration System (MERS), which purports to have legal standing on electronic records of ownership on about 65 million…mortgages… MERS…facilitated Wall Street’s ability to expedite the pooling of subprime mortgages into MBSs by bypassing standard ownership transfer procedures as the housing bubble escalated…

The implications have profound financial and economic consequences that would be of compelling interest to Congress and the public, but the CBO sought to silence a discussion of such risks, that in reality have been materializing. These risks put into question the ability of investors or bondholders to make claims on the collateral (the homes) that underlies trillions of dollars in MBSs, the bulk of which are now guaranteed by …Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. This affects $10 trillion in residential mortgage debt outstanding, of which $7 trillion in mortgage-backed securities (MBSs)…

The CBO dismissing such issues prevents an analysis of the risks, so that the public may be forced again to shoulder the consequences for which they have not been a given a voice or a choice.

Essentially, the chain of title on securitized mortgages appears broken, whether or not there is a foreclosure. This would pertain to most homebuyers in the past 10 years as most mortgages were securitized by Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac providing the guarantees, and the largest banks (“The $7 Trillion MBS Problem – Foreclosure Problems and Buybacks”). Recall that these same entities founded MERS, which expedited securitization and purported to have foreclosure authority from its electronic records of ownership on about 65 million mortgages. “Robo-signing” emerged as fraudulent or defective documents were used or created to establish the legal authority to foreclose as MERS faced legal challenges; as of July 22, 2011, foreclosures could no longer be initiated in MERS’ name. At last year’s pace, some figures suggest it could take lenders in New York 62 years to clear their foreclosure inventory, 49 years in New Jersey and a decade in Florida, Massachusetts, and Illinois.

It is unclear how the recent State attorney generals’ agreement to a proposed yet unpublished terms of the $25 billion robo-signing settlement would repair the chain of title issues that continue to mutate. In January 2011, the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court reversed the foreclosure actions of two banks for lacking proof of clear title, followed by a decision in October 2011 that a buyer who purchased a house that was improperly foreclosed upon does not make the buyer the new owner of the house; the sale does not transfer the property.

A striking little mention fact of the Massachusetts foreclosure case was that the lenders could not show that the two mortgages were part of the securitization pool. Let’s consider a thought exercise. Others have the raised the question: if the entity that has been taking the homeowners’ mortgage payments is not the real owner, what happens when the true owner(s) of the mortgage shows up? Are homeowners on the hook again for those ‘missed’ mortgage payments? It was not uncommon for mortgages to be sold multiple times, and it is my understanding that loans were intentionally not given unique identifiers as it moved from origination or purchase through to securitization.

This is what I’ve been arguing since 2010. This will not go away — no matter how much the Administration, the Congress, and the banks try to cover it up.

Cross-posted from EconoMonitor

L. Randall Wray: The $7 Trillion Question That Haunts Banks

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http://law.justia.com/cases/federal/appellate-courts/ca11/10-14618/10-14618-2012-03-15.html

Justia.com Opinion Summary: Plaintiff appealed the district court’s dismissal of his civil action under the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (FDCPA), 15 U.S.C. 1692. The district court concluded that plaintiff’s claim was covered by the FDCPA but that he did not allege acts that violated the FDCPA. Accepting plaintiff’s allegations as true and construing them in the light most favorable to plaintiff, the statement on the May 2009 notice that BAC was plaintiff’s “creditor” was a false representation and was made by a “debt collector” as defined by section 1692a. Therefore, the complaint stated a claim upon which relief could be granted under the FDCPA and the judgment of the district court was vacated and remanded.

Bourff v. Lublin, LLC :: Eleventh Circuit :: US Courts of Appeals Cases :: US Federal Case Law :: US Case Law :: US Law :: Justia

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