Mortgage Fraud on the Rise
Over the past year, mortgage fraud has risen. After examining about 7 million home loans made by hundreds of lenders, the research firm CoreLogic found that losses from mortgage fraud rose 17% last year after declining 57% in the two years following its 2006 peak. Industry experts say the kinds of schemes that contributed to the housing crisis were relatively simple, but as a result of more restrictive lending standards, scammers have found other, more complex ways to commit mortgage fraud such as falsifying documents, recruiting bank insiders to work for them, and stealing identities to satisfy closer scrutiny of mortgage applications.
Ohio governor commutes death row inmate’s sentence
Ohio Gov. Ted Strickland decided to commute convicted killer Kevin Keith’s death sentence to life in prison without parole. Strickland stated that there are too many legitimate questions about the evidence against him to allow Keith to be executed. Keith was scheduled to be executed by lethal injection for the murder of 4 women and a 4-year-old girl in retaliation against a drug informant in 1994. Lawyers for Keith applauded the decision but also said that they will continue to fight to prove his innocence due to lack of physical evidence and the fact that Keith’s conviction rested only upon “questionable” eyewitness testimony.
FBI arrests county commissioner and two judges
FBI agents arrested sitting Cuyahoga County Commissioner Jimmy Dimora, and two sitting Cuyahoga County Judges, Judge Bridgett McCafferty and Judge Steven Terry. The arrests are part of a massive public corruption investigation which has gone on in Cleveland for over 2 years. Both judges are now on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of their cases.