Posts Tagged ‘loan modification scams mortgage fraud’

U.S. Foreclosure Filings Down Slightly In First Half Of 2010

Monday, July 19th, 2010

According to a new report by RealtyTrac, property foreclosures filings in the United States dropped 5% during the first half of 2010; this is due to lenders continuing to delay foreclosure proceedings so they can focus on short sales and load modification efforts.

The same report states that over the past six months, more than 1.6 million homes have received at least one filing, such as default notices, auction sale notices, and bank repossessions. So while foreclosures filings were down slightly during the first half of the year, there is still an abundant amount.

There is growing concern that a backlog of homes in line for foreclosure could build up, which may result in a double dip in the market when said homes are dumped at some future date.

The chief executive of RealtyTrac, James Saccacio, contends that at the current pace, more than 3 million properties will receive foreclosure filings by the end of this year; leaving lenders to repossess more than 1 million of them.

“The roller coaster pattern of foreclosure activity over the past 12 months demonstrates that while the foreclosure problem is being managed on the surface, a massive number of distressed properties and underwater loans continues to sit just below the surface, threatening the fragile stability of the housing market,” Saccacio said.

Saccacio continued, “The second quarter was a tale of two trends. The pace of properties entering foreclosure slowed as lenders pre-empted or delayed foreclosure proceedings on delinquent properties with more aggressive short sale and loan modification initiatives. Meanwhile the pace of properties completing the foreclosure process through bank repossession quickened as lenders cleared out a backlog of distressed inventory delayed by foreclosure prevention efforts in 2009.”

For all the numbers and figures of the RealtyTrac report, visit PropertyWire.com: Property foreclosure filings in US down slightly in the first half of 2010.

U.S. Foreclosure Filings Down Slightly In First Half Of 2010
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Convictions Upheld For East Bay Mortgage Scam Artists

Tuesday, July 6th, 2010

In 2007 Dale Scott Heineman of Union City and Kurt Johnson of Sunnyvale were convicted on one count each of conspiracy and 34 counts each of mail fraud stemming from their fraudulent business practices while operating the Dorean Group in Union City and Newark from 2003 to 2005. The pair pocketed millions of dollars by claiming they could help people eliminate mortgage debts.

In early 2008 Kurt Johnson was sentenced to 25 years in federal prison, while his partner Dale Scott Heineman got 21 years and 8 months.

Prosecutors said Johnson and Heineman victimized at least 20 lenders and as many as 3,500 homeowners across 35 states with their idea that borrowers could ditch their mortgage debts through a legal and bureaucratic process. Homeowners first transferred their interest in their properties to a trust, naming Johnson and Heineman as trustees. The pair would then send demand notices to the lenders questioning the validity of their lending practices.

When banks failed to respond or “prove” their lending practices were valid, the pair recorded bogus documents with county clerks’ offices supposedly establishing that the homes were no longer under a mortgage. The homeowners then refinanced with different banks using their supposedly unencumbered homes as collateral.

Heineman and Johnson took upfront fees as well as a cut of the homeowners’ new equity loans; they admitted making more than $3 million, and were later ordered to pay almost $513,000 in restitution.

FULL ARTICLE

On Tuesday July 6th 2010 a federal appeals court issued the decision to uphold the convictions.

In the ruling, Judge Barry Silverman of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals wrote:

“[Heineman and Johnson] were adamant in their desire to represent themselves and assert an absurd legal theory wrapped up in Uniform Commercial Code gibberish…Both defendants were examined by a psychiatrist and found to have no diagnosable mental disorder.”

…“The record clearly shows that the defendants are fools, but that is not the same as being incompetent,” Silverman wrote for himself and two other circuit judges. “(T)hey had the right to represent themselves and go down in flames if they wished, a right the district court was required to respect. There was no legal or medical basis to foist a lawyer on them against their will.”

So basically these two scam artists are idiots and deserve to be right where they are – behind bars.

convictions upheld for east bay mortgage scam artists

Adam Hochfelder Pleads Guilty To Swindling Millions

Friday, May 21st, 2010

Once considered a Manhattan real estate whiz, 39-year-old Adam Hochfelder admitted on Friday that he scammed banks and private investors – including his own uncle – out of millions and millions of dollars.

Adam Hochfelder, a former part-owner of the Helmsley Building, pleaded guilty to stealing $18 million from 15 victims. Hochfelder began duping innocent people out of their money in 2002 as a way to pay for his extravagant Manhattan lifestyle; originally Hochfelder blamed his excessive greed on a cocaine habit.

Hochfelder pled guilty to 18 separate counts, including grand larceny and scheme to defraud.

When sentenced on September 7th, Adam Hochfelder will face 4 to 12 years in prison, as well as a $9.5 million bill for restitution.

According to Hochfelder’s lawyer, Marc Agnifilo, Hochfelder has returned $15 million to his victims. Agnifilo adds that the restitution his client will pay includes interest on loans he took out fraudulently, including $5 million loans from both North Fork Bank and Bank of America.

Adam Hochfelder admitted the loans were taken out against a property located on Park Avenue, and that he failed to tell the banks the home was already heavily leveraged. He also stole millions from private investors – including $700,000 from his father’s brother – telling them their money would be invested in real estate deals.

Sadly, this sort of thing is going on all across the country – it’s nice to see swindlers get their comeuppance.

adam hochfelder guilty grand larceny

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