Senate Banking & Financial Institutions Committee hears testimony from FBI on mortgage fraud
LANSING - The Senate Banking and Financial Institutions Committee today heard testimony regarding mortgage fraud from Special Agent Andrew G. Arena of the FBI's Detroit Division.
Mortgage fraud is one of the fastest growing white-collar crimes affecting the United States, said Arena. It can be either a misstatement, misrepresentation or omission made by an underwriter or lender to fund, purchase or insure a loan. Mortgage fraud increased by 140 percent just last year in Michigan.
"Combating this growing concern of fraud is a priority because of its overall impact on the housing market and our nation's economy," Arena said. "This white-collar crime poses a significant threat and is of great concern."
Sen. Randy Richardville, chair of the Senate Committee on Banking and Financial Institutions, said Michigan's local and state police have been working together with the FBI to combat this fast-growing crime.
"As we are all very much aware, Michigan's housing market is suffering right now," said Sen. Richardville, R-Monroe. "Many things contribute to this, including mortgage fraud. I appreciate the efforts of the FBI to help solve this problem, which can shatter the dreams of home owners."
The FBI has actively investigated mortgage fraud in cities across the nation. It focuses on fostering relationships and partnering with the mortgage industry to promote mortgage fraud awareness.
For more information, including helpful tips to avoid becoming a victim of mortgage fraud, visit the FBI's Web site at www.fbi.gov or the Mortgage Bankers Association Web site at http://www.StopMortgageFraud.com/.
Posted: Wednesday, May 09, 2007
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