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From the category of WTF:

The U.S. Justice Department did not ensure that mortgage fraud was prioritized at the level it said it would publicly. That's according to a new report released by the department's Office of the Inspector General, an independent auditor.
Specifically, the OIG found that the FBI ranked mortgage fraud as the lowest criminal threat in its lowest crime category. The FBI received $196 million in federal funds to investigate mortgage fraud activities from 2009 through 2011. That was when fraud involving so-called "robo-signing," foreclosure processing came to light. Mortgage servicing employees were signing thousands of documents without reading them.
The OIG claims it tried to review the scope of the Justice Department's prosecution efforts involving mortgage fraud, but could not because not enough data was provided.
One glaring example of inaccurate reporting was cited by the OIG. Specifically, it says, the Justice Department inflated the number of criminal defendants by five-fold during an October 2012 highly publicized press conference. The event was held to tout the success of the Distressed Homeowners Initiative, a mortgage fraud program involving the Justice Department and the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force. It took a year for the Justice Department to correct the mistake.

I have never understood what DOJ did on this.  I suppose you can argue that if you had to rank the crimes DOJ prosecutes, mortgage fraud isn't as important as murder or rape.

But as a former prosecutor I don't get it.  In any Prosecutor's office there are cases that are required because to not pursue them calls into question the basic fairness of the justice system.  In this instance, any idea of fairness SCREAMED OUT FOR THESE CASES TO BE PURSUED.  Why is pursuing a drug dealer more important than going after people who played games with people's houses?



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Comment Preferences

  •  Unfuckingbelievable. (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    fladem, kharma, Phoebe Loosinhouse

    If Democratic voters have a just cause for staying home this fall, it is shit like this. The very source of the crisis we are in, the housing crash and all the attendant fraud that went with it, and the Justice Department says that's not nearly as important as what, pray tell?

  •  Important As This Is for [One-time] Homeowners (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    I'm more disappointed by the failure to pursue mortgage and the many related financial frauds over the decade BEFORE 2009.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 05:45:47 AM PDT

  •  DOJ was too busy (6+ / 0-)

    driving Swartz to suicide, cracking down on Occupiers, antagonizing Barrett Brown, raiding medical marijuana dispenseries, etcetc. You know... the important stuff.

    If you stand for nothing you will fall for anything.

    by LieparDestin on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 05:48:12 AM PDT

  •  You can't expect them to prosecute their masters (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    If debugging is the process of removing bugs, then programming must be the process of putting them in.

    by kharma on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:15:10 AM PDT

  •  My question is: (0+ / 0-)

    Which heads roll, and who gets the boot to the head?

    ObamaCare! Sign-up by phone: 1-800-318-2596

    by mwm341 on Fri Mar 14, 2014 at 06:22:06 AM PDT

  •  The DOJ prosecuted mortgage (0+ / 0-)

    fraud, they just got their numbers wrong for a press conference. When the FBI is deciding which are priorities - mortgage fraud versus embezzlement, kidnapping, terrorism, etc., of course mortgage fraud is not going to rank high. It's amazing to me how upset some people are over a few wrong numbers and the belief that not enough people went to jail (I assume that included in that list is all the borrowers who intentionally inflated their incomes or the value of their homes when doing a cash-out refinance). In any event, Barack Obama had nothing to do with wrong numbers being supplied to Eric Holder for one of his many press conferences, and this does not rise to the level of high crimes, irrespective of peoples' opinions of Obama.

  •  Sheesh, there like a gazillion potential (0+ / 0-)

    whistleblower types out there - it just makes good sense to crack down hard on that first, you know, just to keep all the worms from coming out of the bottle.

    Or maybe it's a can.

    In any event, from a self-serving, CYA perspective, the DoJ's priorities were spot on.

  •  I posted in the other diary (0+ / 0-)

    about this and I'll post it again.

    The study was done of mortgage fraud by borrowers/insiders that were ripping of banks by falsifying loan documentation, flipping houses between related parties to increase prices., etc.   While large in aggregate value, these are 'little' fish stealing from the banks.   This is not the huge fraud of the banksters at the big investment houses themselves on the mortgage securities market.

    Read page one of the report that describes the crimes being pursued and you can see for yourself.

    No one has gone after the bigger fraud.   This is merely proof they don't do a good job on run of the mill fraud by everyday criminals.  While it is strong evidence that our system is skewed to punish minor drug possession over much larger financial crimes, and all that implies,  it is not evidence that the DOJ lied about going after banksters.  They never really went against the banksters.

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