By David Dayen

Within the depths of the good Recession, a melanoma nurse, a vehicle dealership employee, and an coverage fraud professional helped discover the most important buyer crime in American history—a scandal that implicated dozens of significant executives on Wall road. They referred to as it foreclosures fraud: hundreds of thousands of households have been kicked out in their houses according to fake proof by means of loan businesses that had no criminal correct to foreclose.

Lisa Epstein, Michael Redman, and Lynn Szymoniak didn't paintings in govt or legislation enforcement. they'd no historical past of anticorporate activism. as a substitute they have been all foreclosures sufferers, and whereas suffering from their disgrace and isolation they devoted a progressive act: heavily examining their personal loan records, researching the deceit in the back of them, and development a move to show it.

Fiscal Times columnist David Dayen recounts how those traditional Floridians challenged the main robust associations in the USA armed basically with the truth—and for a quick second they introduced the corrupt monetary to its knees.

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Extra resources for Chain of Title: How Three Ordinary Americans Uncovered Wall Street's Great Foreclosure Fraud

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It wasn’t like someone detonated a bomb in Miami and Orlando to wipe out businesses. No plague triggered all the state’s crops to rot in the fields. indd 25 2/13/16 9:04 AM 26 CHAIN OF TITLE Florida was experiencing a depression, in Lisa’s eyes—didn’t happen spontaneously. Who put this in motion? Who prospered from the pain? A week after receiving her foreclosure notice, Lisa stumbled across a blog called Living Lies. ” He had striking features, big eyebrows, and a perfectly cropped, jet-black beard.

But this new company, Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, seemed to play no role in the securitization chain. The assignment called it the nominee for DHI Mortgage. But the note said DHI sold the originated loan to JPMorgan Chase. How was Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems the nominee for the mortgage but not the note? How did they fit into the picture? The answer can be found in hundreds of obscure county offices all over America. ” Whatever the title, public servants have managed these offices since before the American Revolution.

4 percent of all mortgages. Brokers were under significant strain to pump out subprime loans with high interest rates or else lose their warehouse lines of credit. So lending standards flew out the window. Practically no applicants were rejected. That these loans were harmful concerned nobody. The Clinton administration wanted to increase homeownership rates, which had fallen amid the S&L collapse. It wasn’t likely to crack down on irresponsible lending practices if they served that goal. Anyway, the Federal Reserve held responsibility over consumer protection for mortgages, and Alan Greenspan viewed regulations the way an exterminator viewed termites.

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