The Los Angeles Times reports that California Attorney General Kamala Harris is breaking out her superhero cape/tights and assembling a task force of twenty-five lawyers and special agents in order to pin down and prosecute mortgage fraud throughout the state.
Though investigations into mortgage fraud are ongoing in all 50 states, Harris says that her plan is a triple-threat. Harris and her dream team will go after mortgage fraud at the level of shoddy lending practices, large mortgage/securities corporations, and individual scammers (like lawyers and “consultants”) who profited from the anxiety of distressed borrowers.
Harris estimates that mortgage fraud and the resulting foreclosure crisis have cost the people of California about $640 billion so far. That’s a tremendous amount of money, of course. And while some might argue that home equity loss is more of a private failure on a massive scale than it is an actual state/government issue, Harris says there is a “direct connection” between the foreclosure crisis and the state’s terrifying deficit.
Experts are optimistic that Harris’s plan can work, provided that the task force sticks to its guns and chooses its opponents with care.