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Iowa AG Says His Office Will 'Put People in Jail' Over Robo-Signing in His Home State

December 15, 2010

Our Perris foreclosure defense attorneys are very interested in the ongoing multistate investigation of major lenders triggered by the robo-signing scandal. As you may recall, robo-signing is the name the media gave to the practice of allowing foreclosure documents to be signed en masse, without the signer actually reading them. There have also been complaints about forged signatures or non-executives masquerading as executives. Attorneys general from all 50 states agreed to investigate whether crimes were committed and how homeowners should be protected or compensated. Iowa attorney general Tom Miller is leading that group, and at a community meeting in Des Moines, he told the audience that he and federal prosecutors in Iowa intend to "put people in jail" for mortgage fraud.

Miller's remarks came at a meeting with homeowners and community activist groups from 15 states. Those groups, including Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement, urged Miller's group to require, not merely encourage loan modifications; require reductions in loan principal; compensate people who have already been incorrectly foreclosed and prosecute whenever someone broke the law. The meeting included testimony from homeowners including Californian Gina Gates of San Jose, who said she was foreclosed owing far more on her mortgage than the lender would have received if it had granted a modification. Miller's office cautioned that the multistate investigation is a civil investigation focused on reducing foreclosures. However, at the meeting, Miller said he and the U.S. Attorney for Southern Iowa plan to prosecute Iowans for any mortgage-related fraud they find.

As Redondo Beach foreclosure defense lawyers, we hope this implies that Miller is open to prosecution on a national level as well. The remark was not widely reported, but it's the first indication that individuals, including executives, may be criminally prosecuted in connection with robo-signing. Thus far, no executives have been imprisoned in any part of the mortgage crisis -- even Angelo Mozilo of Countrywide. However, robo-signing is undeniably a form of fraud, because the signatures are legal testimony that the signer read and confirmed the information on the documents. Robo-signers openly admit to not having done this. Lenders argue that this is only technically fraud because most people in foreclosure deserve to be there. Evidence is mounting that this isn't true, and if fraud is behind many incorrect foreclosures, the people who ordered and carried out that fraud can and should be criminally prosecuted.

Howard Law PC represents people who are ready to take the fight against foreclosure to the courts. Our Escondido foreclosure defense attorneys help clients who have tried for months to negotiate a loan modification or bring new evidence to the lender's attention, only to be met with indifference, disorganization and red tape. In judicial foreclosure states, borrowers have one last chance to fight their foreclosures through the court, where they can make their case to a human judge. Here in California, we use non-judicial foreclosures -- so homeowners must sue to get a neutral third party to listen to their side of the story. We help homeowners make that case, and can even halt foreclosure auctions that are only days away. We believe all of our clients deserve to have their loan modification cases fairly considered, even if lenders disagree.

If you're in foreclosure or expect to be there soon, you should call Howard Law to see how we can help. To learn more or set up a free consultation, call us today at 1-800-872-5925 or send us a message online.