Monday, May 25, 2015

Robo-Signing Sample Report


History

In the mortgage industry, robo-signing is the practice of an employee signing thousands of documents and affidavits without verifying the information contained therein. Some reports have revealed that one bank official signed off on almost 10,000 documents in one month. The practice calls into question the validity of thousands of mortgage assignments and foreclosures across the country.

Banks have been under investigation since 2010 for their part in the robo-signing scandal which resulted in many homeowners losing their homes without merit. After the scandal came to light, the banks said they would no longer engage in this practice. However, as recently as July 2011, it was discovered that mortgage robo-signing was still being practiced.

When the practice recently came to light, four major banks, JP Morgan Chase, Ally Financial/GMAC, Bank of America, and Wells Fargo all called a halt to foreclosure actions in 23 states. In the days following their announcements, Bank of America ceased foreclosures in all 50 states. A coalition of 40 attorneys general plan on launching a probe into mortgage-servicing practices and may hold them accountable where there were violations of state foreclosure laws. 


ROBO-SIGNER

A robo-signer is a person in a legal document processing assembly line whose only task is to sign previously-prepared documents affecting title to real property in a robotic-like fashion without reading the documents or verifying the facts contained therein by reviewing primary source evidence. The robo-signer's mission is to expedite the documents' recordation in the public land records or in court proceedings. Additionally, robo signers regularly fail to establish or simply do not have the authority to execute these documents on behalf of the legal title holder or principal on whose behalf they purport to act.


SURROGATE SIGNER

A surrogate signer is a person who signs a legal document on behalf of and in the name of another without reading it or understanding the document's contents. Surrogate signers are not authorized to execute these documents on behalf of the legal title holder or principal on whose behalf they purport to act.


ROBO-SIGNING IS FORGERY

Forgery is the creation of a false written document or alteration of a genuine one, with the intent to defraud. Forgery consists of filling in blanks on a document containing a genuine signature, or materially altering or erasing an existing instrument. An underlying intent to defraud, based on knowledge of the false nature of the instrument, must accompany the act. 


FORGERY IS A FELONY

"This is the first time any grand jury in the country has indicted a corporation or a high-level executive at a corporation for 'robo-signing,'" Missouri Attorney-General Chris Koster told The Huffington Post. "The grand jury is alleging that the documents have false signatures on them, that the notarizations are fraudulent and that it was all done with intent to deceive. If that's true, it makes the [foreclosure] documents forgeries."


The Documents Presented for Examination

The documents that were presented and which were considered in this examination are enumerated and described below. The examiner warrants that these documents were in the same state when they were examined as when they first came into his possession. In spite of the deficiencies as may be noted herein, the documents are treated as true and correct copies of their originals.

1.  Fixed Rate Note dated November 27, 2006

     This document consists of three pages. This copy bears the signature
     of the borrower. It has been endorsed in blank by the originating
     lender (Exhibit A). 

2.  Mortgage executed on November 27, 2006

     This document consists of 11 pages. This copy bears the signatures
     of the borrower, the two witnesses and the notarizing official. It was
     recorded in Orange County FL on December 12, 2006 (Exhibit B).

3.  MERS Servicer Inquiry Screenshot

     This document was obtained by the examiner from the official
     website of Mortgage Electronic Registration Systems, Inc. (MERS) on
     May 22, 2015 (Exhibit C).

4.  Assignment of Mortgage executed on May 26, 2011

     This document consists of one page. This copy bears the signatures
     of the assignor’s representatives, the two witnesses and the
     notarizing official. It was recorded in Orange County on June 1, 2011
     (Exhibit D).

5.  First Document Pertaining to Swarupa Slee

     This document is an Assignment of Deed of Trust that consists of
     one page. It was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Slee
     Swarupa 02) and pertains to Swarupa Slee who signed the
     Assignment of Mortgage that is referred to in this report as Exhibit D
     (Exhibit E).

6.  Second Document Pertaining to Swarupa Slee

     This document is an Assignment of Mortgage that consists of two
     pages. It was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Slee
     Swarupa 04) and pertains to Swarupa Slee (Exhibit F).

7.  First Document Pertaining to Jane Martorana

     This document is an Assignment of Mortgage that consists of one
     page. It was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Martorana
     Jane 01) and pertains to Jane Martorana who signed as witness on
     the Assignment of Mortgage that is referred to in this report as
     Exhibit D (Exhibit G).

8.  Second Document Pertaining to Jane Martorana

     This document is an Assignment of Mortgage that consists of one
     page. It was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Martorana
     Jane 03) and pertains to Jane Martorana (Exhibit H).

9.  First Document Pertaining to Cynthia Santos

     This document is an Assignment of Mortgage that consists of one
     page. It was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Santos
     Cynthia 02) and pertains to Cynthia Santos who signed as witness on
     the Assignment of Mortgage that is referred to in this report as
     Exhibit D (Exhibit I).

10. Second Document Pertaining to Cynthia Santos

     This document is an Assignment of Mortgage that consists of one
     page. It was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Santos
     Cynthia 04) and pertains to Cynthia Santos (Exhibit J).

11. First Document Pertaining to Michele Sjolander

     This document is a Fixed Rate Note that consists of three pages. It
     was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Sjolander Michele 01)
     and pertains to Michele Sjolander who signed the endorsement on
     the note that is referred to in this report as Exhibit A (Exhibit K).

12. Second Document Pertaining to Michele Sjolander

     This document is a Fixed Rate Note that consists of four pages. It
     was obtained from the Examiner’s Compilation (Sjolander Michele
     02) and pertains to Michele Sjolander (Exhibit L).


Findings

BLANK ENDORSEMENT

Michele Sjolander

The blank endorsement that was executed by Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., doing business as America’s Wholesale Lender on an unknown date was signed by Michele Sjolander, Executive Vice-President (Exhibit A).

1. Michele Sjolander, Suspected Robo-Signer

    An article from Liberty Road Media dated June 20, 2014 states that
    Michele Sjolander testified to the following:

    1.1. she never performs the endorsements (even though her name is
           used on them);

    1.2. she does not know the names of the people who performed the
           endorsements;

    1.3. she is generally not present when the endorsements are
           supposedly done; and

    1.4. she cannot say with any certainty when the endorsements were
           placed on the notes. 

2. Michele Sjolander, Signature Verification

    The signature of Michele Sjolander on the subject endorsement is
    almost exactly the same but appears relatively small compared with
    her signatures on other endorsements. The size of her signature on
    the subject endorsement suggests that this may have been introduced
    unto the document with the use of an imaging or similar software
    (note the size of the signature relative to the size of the font used on
    the document).



ASSIGNMENT OF MORTGAGE

The Assignment of Mortgage that was executed by MERS on May 26, 2011 was signed by Yomari Quintanilla, Assistant Secretary and Swarupa Slee, Assistant Secretary, witnessed by Jane Martorana and Cynthia Santos, and was notarized by Jovida Alvarez Diaz, a notary public of Los Angeles County, California (Exhibit D).

Yomari Quintanilla

1. Yomari Quintanilla, Suspected Robo-Signer

    1.1. Yomari Quintanilla is listed as a robo-signer by
           4closureFraud.org.

    1.2. In a document pertaining to a case in the US District Court in the
           state of Minnesota, the plaintiff states that Yomari Quintanilla
           signed an assignment of mortgage even if he did not have the
           authority to sign as Vice-President of MERS. 

    1.3. Yomari Quintanilla is cited twice (pages 240 and 265) for her
           alleged involvement in robo-signing in the Report on the
           Comprehensive Forensic Examination of the Real Property
           Records of Osceola County FL. 

Swarupa Slee

1. Swarupa Slee, Suspected Robo-Signer

    1.1. Swarupa Slee is alleged as a robo-signer in a case in the US
           District Court in the District of Maryland. 

    1.2. Swarupa Slee is listed as a robo-signer by Mortgage Investigative
           and Research Services.

    1.3. Swarupa Slee is listed as a robo-signer by 4closureFraud.org

2. Swarupa Slee, Signature Verification

    The signature of Swarupa Slee on this assignment differs with her
    signatures on other documents that she signed on different dates.


Jane Martorana

1. Jane Martorana, Suspected Robo-Signer

    1.1. Jane Martorana is listed as a robo-signer by 4closureFraud.org.

    1.2. Jane Martorana is cited six times for various irregularities
           pertaining to robo-signing in the Report on the Comprehensive
           Forensic Examination of the Real Property Records of Osceola
           County FL. 

    1.3. ProTitleUSA reports that Jane Martorana assumed various
           positions with various entities and signed her signature in
           different ways.  

2. Jane Martorana, Signature Verification

    The signature of Jane Martorana on this assignment varies with her
    signatures on other documents that she signed on different dates.



Cynthia Santos

1. Cynthia Santos, Suspected Robo-Signer

    1.1. Cynthia Santos is cited eight times for various irregularities
           related to robo-signing in the Report on the Comprehensive
           Forensic Examination of the Real Property Records of Osceola
           County FL.

    1.2. Cynthia Santos is listed as a robo-signer by Foreclosure Hamlet

    1.3. An article on JD Supra Business Advisor states that there is
           conclusive evidence of robo-signing for Cynthia Santos. 

2. Cynthia Santos, Signature Verification

    The signature of Cynthia Santos on this assignment varies with her
    signatures on other documents that she signed on different dates.



Verbiage of the Assignment

This assignment states that it includes “the notes and obligations therein (in the Mortgage) described.” This means that this assignment includes and purports that it includes not only the Mortgage being assigned but also the Fixed Rate Note secured by it as well (Exhibit D).

As has been stated, this assignment was executed by MERS as “holder of the Mortgage.” The language used in the assignment is intended to include, or to purport to include the promissory note in the assignment regardless of whether or not this note has actually been endorsed, and if it has actually been endorsed, regardless of whether or not the assignee is the same party as the endorsee.

The Notarial Oath

The notarial oath on this assignment states that Jovida Alvarez Diaz, the notary public has certified under penalty of perjury under the laws of the State of California that Yomari Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee personally appeared before her and proved to her on the basis of satisfactory evidence that they are the persons whose names are subscribed to in the instrument and acknowledged to her that they, Yomari Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee, executed the assignment in their authorized capacities, and that by their signatures, MERS executed the assignment as holder of the Mortgage.

1. This oath attests that the persons who signed the document as Yomari
    Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee were the real Yomari Quintanilla and
    Swarupa Slee, respectively, who were Assistant Secretaries of MERS.

2. This oath attests that the persons who signed the document as Yomari
    Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee had the authority, as Assistant
    Secretaries, to sign on behalf of MERS. 

3. This oath attests that the act that is embodied in this document
    signed by Yomari Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee within their authorities
    as Assistant Secretaries of MERS, is admitted by MERS as its own.

4. This oath attests that MERS was the holder of the Mortgage being
    assigned at the time of the assignment and was rightfully and legally
    acting as such in executing this assignment. 

5. This oath covers all the language of the assignment including the
    statement that the assignment includes the note secured by the
    Mortgage being assigned.


Examiner's Comments

PRIMA FACIE EVIDENCE

There is prima facie evidence that the signatures of the endorser’s representative on the subject endorsement and those of the MERS representatives and the witnesses on the subject assignment have been forged or robo-signed or signed by surrogate signers.  Robo-signing on this endorsement and assignment definitely requires further investigation, although it may not be necessary to prove that felonies have been committed in order to render the endorsement and the assignment null and void from the beginning. 


VERBIAGE OF THE ASSIGNMENT

This assignment includes and purports to include the note that is secured by the Mortgage being assigned. The language used indicates the intention of the parties to bind themselves in such accord and to make it known to the public at large (an assignment, being a recordable, and therefore, a public instrument) that the note is covered in the assignment. 

A note is a negotiable instrument which can only be transferred by endorsement. The form of an endorsement is prescribed by law. This is known to the parties, or can be presumed to be known by the parties, being financial institutions or entities that were established by financial institutions.

It has been noted that the Fixed Rate Note has been actually endorsed in blank.

A statement that the assignment covers the note secured by the security instrument being assigned is not correct and not true irrespective of whether or not the note has actually been endorsed. An assignment that contains a falsity is null and void from the beginning. Such an act may also constitute fraud.

On the part of MERS, by the verbiage of the assignment, MERS will have already acquired or usurped the authority to endorse the note even if MERS is only designated in the Mortgage as nominee for the lender and mortgagee (in the state of New York, “the mortgagee of record for purposes of recording this mortgage.”)


THE NOTARIAL OATH

By her notarial oath in the assignment, the notary public has certified under penalty of perjury under the laws of the state of California that the person who signed as Yomari Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee are the real Yomari Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee, respectively, who had authority to act on behalf of MERS, that MERS, the assignor, was the actual holder of the mortgage being assigned, and that it was the intention of the assignor and The Bank of New York Mellon as trustee, the assignee, to bind themselves to the verbiage, and to make it known to the public, that the assignment covered not only the mortgage being assigned, but the note secured by it as well.

Jovida Alvarez Diaz, the notary public notarized this document in spite of her knowledge or without verifying that:

1. Yomari Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee may have authority to act on
    behalf of MERS but the persons who signed the assignment as Yomari
    Quintanilla and Swarupa Slee may not be the real Yomari Quintanilla
    and Swarupa Slee, respectively.

2. Any authority that was granted to MERS as nominee for America’s
    Wholesale Lender, if there was any, pertains only to the security
    instrument and not the note. Thus, MERS had no authority to include
    the note in the assignment.

3. A note is a negotiable instrument which can only be transferred by
    endorsement. Thus, a statement that the assignment covers the note
    secured by the security instrument being assigned is not correct and
    not true irrespective of whether or not the note has actually been
    endorsed.


Related

7 comments:

  1. I have a mortgage that started with New Century Mortgage supposedly with an endorsement signed by Steven Nagy a known robosigner. Just recently I requested my note and Wellsfargo(Americas servicing co) sent me a note with an allonge where the note had two black circles where it had hole punches the allonge did not. You can tell it was not part of the original note. Now ten years after the SASCO NC-1 was formed and after the closing date of the securization process wellsfargo filed a corporate assignment of deed of trust and the VP loan documentations signer is Kelley Christine Butikofer. I have a mortgage back securities mortgage that has been put together with fraudulent endorsements and fake VP's robosigners

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    Replies
    1. Hello, I have a blank endorsement with a Steve Nagy signature. Would love to compare signatures. Please email at cnalarson@gmail.com

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  2. Robo-signing is just one of the venues available for the borrower. Having read the latest developments in TX and CA I insisted to a new client, a borrower from CA, that she must be able to prove injury in order to be able to question the assignment. I suggested that we prove injury by citing the trust's tax exempt privilege as a REMIC. The point is that the trust earned tax-free income by using the loan as a guarantee in securitization but did not follow the law that made it tax exempt. Wasn't the borrower, an honest taxpayer, injured in this situation? I don't think many lawyers have argued in this way before. This might be a milestone argument. And by the way, this loan was also securitized into a Lehman trust, just like yours. Read my report. See the section titled "Profit on the Securitization." http://chainoftitleexams.blogspot.com/2015/12/case-no-1-ca-deed-of-trust-mers-as.html

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  3. I got Tina Leraybaud on my Substitution of Trustee. How can I get signatures from other members of this blog. I can upload mine if It helps anybody. I am in the middle of a lawsuit with New Penn Financial / Shellpoint Mortgage. Please help. Also how do I claim Robosigned document, I feel I have to guide my attorney.

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    Replies
    1. Hi Rosie, I can do the robo-signing verification for you and render a report on my findings. The report will look like the sample on this page. The supporting documents I can gather will be attached as exhibits.

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  4. Hello Alan,
    Have tons of evidences and slander all over my title. The items under Alyssa Williams are interesting as I found she is not a real person however your robo signing proof of documents would be helpful - I'm not sure how to contact you from this blog. Thanks.

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    Replies
    1. Hi! You can send an email to apetralba@yahoo.com. Thank you for your interest in my work.

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