FBI Issues 2007 Mortgage Fraud Report
|Washington, D.C. May 13, 2008|
According to the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s 2007 Mortgage Fraud Report, released today, mortgage fraud Suspicious Activity Reports referred to law enforcement increased 31 percent to 46,717 during Fiscal Year (FY) 2007. The total dollar loss attributed to mortgage fraud is unknown. However, seven percent of reports filed during FY 2007 indicated a specific dollar loss, which totaled more than $813 million.
“The $813 million loss denoted in this report is just the tip of the iceberg, reflecting only a small percentage of financial damage suffered by victims of mortgage fraud,” said Assistant Director Kenneth W. Kaiser, FBI Criminal Investigative Division. “The FBI remains committed to working with our law enforcement, regulatory, and industry partners to unravel these complicated fraud schemes and bring their perpetrators to justice.”
Other key findings presented in the report include:
- The subprime share of outstanding loans has more than doubled since 2003, putting a greater share of loans at higher risk of failure.
- More than 2.2 million foreclosure filings were reported on approximately 1.29 million properties nationally during FY 2007, up 75 percent from FY 2006.
- Analysis of available information indicated that mortgage fraud was most concentrated in the north-central region of the United States.
- The top 10 mortgage fraud states for 2007 were Florida, Georgia, Michigan, California, Illinois, Ohio, Texas, New York, Colorado, and Minnesota. Other states significantly affected by mortgage fraud included Arizona, Maryland, Utah, Nevada, Missouri, Indiana, Tennessee, Virginia, New Jersey, and Connecticut.
- The downward trend in the housing market provides an ideal climate for mortgage fraud perpetrators to employ a myriad of schemes. Emerging and re-emerging schemes in 2007 included builder-bailouts, seller assistance, short sales, foreclosure rescue, and identity theft exploiting home equity lines of credit.
The entire report is available on the FBI’s website. While there, sign up for e-mail alerts to ensure you receive the latest information about the FBI.