Digging deeper into this you will find the proactively-titled article, Niche Lawyers Spawn Housing Frackas an article in the Wall Street Journal that appropriately gives credit to the passionate and committed lawyers like Tom Ice, Tom Cox, Jim Kowalski for standing up for consumers and fighting for the Rule of Law.
Mr. Ice mentioned the deposition testimony to a fellow lawyer, Matthew Weidner. “Tom and I were talking, and it was, ‘Jesus, they’re like robots!'” Mr. Weidner says.
Mr. Weidner is also a blogger, and on Jan. 8 he wrote a blog post with an appellation for the routine signers. “We know from depositions taken of these ‘robo signers,'” he wrote, “that they don’t even read the documents placed in front of them and the notaries and witnesses that are supposed watch them as they sign are not present.”
A GMAC spokeswoman, asked how Mr. Stephan could have submitted such affidavits years after a company memo had admonished employees to check the facts, said: “Obviously the policy wasn’t being followed, and we discovered this procedural error. We became aware of the breakdown recently.” Mr. Stephan couldn’t be reached for comment. The woman in the Boca Raton case remains in her home.
Mr. Ice, recounting the suit and the legal steps he took, said it shows “the need for the complex litigation that is required to win these foreclosure cases.”
Mr. Stephan re-emerged in June, in a case that helped spark the current foreclosure turmoil. A pro bono lawyer in Maine, Thomas Cox, took another deposition from Mr. Stephan, who again acknowledged routinely signing documents without reviewing the loans.
GMAC tried to sanction the lawyer on grounds he had embarrassed its employees, a maneuver that could have kept him from using the Stephan deposition as evidence. The motion was denied by Maine’s Ninth District state court, which also ruled, late last month, that GMAC had submitted the Stephan affidavits “in bad faith.” The court ordered GMAC to pay Mr. Cox $27,000, a sum it said he might have earned for his legal work if he hadn’t been working pro bono.
Add to that list the other pioneers like April Charney, Lynn Drysdale from Jacksonville Legal Aid, Max Gardner and Nick Wooten and frankly all of the good lawyers who put service to the community and commitment to the Rule of Law above their own personal interests for standing up, like a band of fearless Davids staring down Goliaths housed in the marbled towers and protected by politicians, regulators and teams of lawyers that bill at $600 per hour.
There have been so many attacks and persecutions leveled against the attorneys who have been out there leading the charge to defend homeowners. It is so ironic to note that Tom Cox, one of the key attorneys in the fight to expose the conduct of the banks was threatened with sanctions and attacks by the big banks. Fortunately the cool hand of justice and the loud cry of the First Amendment and Freedom won out in his case, but that lone victory for truth and the First Amendment is rather rare. Here in Florida, in the epicenter of this crisis, the attorneys who have been fighting continue to suffer punishing blows.
We all (and by “we all”, I mean every man woman and child in this country) recently suffered a crushing defeat where the First Amendment has been obliterated here in Florida. Absent some intervention by the Florida Supreme Court, we will all have to live with the fact that the flickering light of First Amendment Freedom has been snuffed out.
But I digress. The real thing I wanted to talk about was to explain how the attorneys working on the ground and serving their communities helped to shine the disinfecting light of truth on the dark corners of the world of corrupt banks and the servants of darkness who champion their cause. Because of this good work, and because people like 4ClosureFraud and ForeclosureHamlet worked to make sure citizens were aware we were able to fight back against the demons of darkness. It has not been in vain, but the fight is only just beginning. Our fight for justice is making its way up to the highest levels of real leadership in Congress, just read the following statement:
(WASHINGTON) ““ Today, House Judiciary Committee Ranking Member John Conyers, Jr. (D-Mich.) issued the following statement:
” The Federal Housing Finance Agency, which is overseeing the mortgage giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, is poised to sue more than a dozen big banks for allegedly misrepresenting the quality of mortgage securities sold to Fannie and Freddie at the height of the housing bubble. This lawsuit, if successful, should help ameliorate the $30 billion in losses these entities incurred, in part as a result of these deals, which have been borne mostly by American taxpayers.
” This is a good first step and one that must be followed by others. For example, it’s now nearly one year since the so-called robo-signing mortgage foreclosure scandal first erupted and no one has yet been held accountable. Communities across our nation have been decimated and thousands of American families may have been unnecessarily pushed into foreclosure based on false and misleading documents because of the flagrant disregard for the law shown by lenders and mortgage servicers. Earlier this year, the Government Accountability Office confirmed that mortgage servicers notarized tens of thousands of affidavits that wrongly facilitated foreclosures, including instances where servicers wrongfully foreclosed on the homes of active-duty members of our Armed Forces.
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