According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s 2009 Mortgage Fraud Report, released today, mortgage fraud suspicious activity reports referred to law enforcement increased 5 percent to 67,190 during fiscal year (FY) 2009. The total dollar loss attributed to mortgage fraud is unknown. It’s estimated that $14 billion in fraudulent loans originated in 2009.
“Mortgage fraud is an insidious crime that has devastating economic effects on families, communities and the nation,” said FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III. “The FBI remains committed to working with our law enforcement, regulatory, and industry partners to unravel these complicated fraud schemes driven by greed and bring their perpetrators to justice.”
- There are more than 2.8 million properties with foreclosure filings, a 120 percent increase from 2007 to 2009. The Las Vegas area reported the most significant rate of foreclosures, with more than 12 percent of housing units there receiving a foreclosure notice.
- The top 10 states ranked by the number of foreclosure filings per housing unit were California, Florida, Arizona, Michigan, Nevada, Georgia, Ohio, Texas, and New Jersey. In April 2010, one in every 386 housing units received a foreclosure filing.
- Prevalent mortgage fraud schemes in fiscal year 2009 include loan origination, foreclosure rescue, builder bailout, equity skimming, short sale, illegal property flipping, reverse mortgage fraud and loan modifications. Emerging trends include fraud involving economic stimulus plans/programs, property theft/fraudulent leasing of foreclosed properties and tax-related fraud.