Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Report: FBI saw Mortgage Fraud, Lacked Resources

by Calculated Risk on 1/28/2009 12:43:00 PM

From Paul Shukovsky at the Seattle Post-Intelligencer: FBI saw mortgage fraud early (hat tip John)

It is clear that we had good intelligence on the mortgage-fraud schemes, the corrupt attorneys, the corrupt appraisers, the insider schemes," said a recently retired, high FBI official. Another retired top FBI official confirmed that such intelligence went back to 2002.

The problem, according to the two FBI retirees and several other current and former bureau colleagues, is that the bureau was stretched so thin that no one noticed when those lenders began packaging bad mortgages into bad securities.

"We knew that the mortgage-brokerage industry was corrupt," the first of the retired FBI officials told the Seattle P-I. "Where we would have gotten a sense of what was really going on was the point where the mortgage was sold knowing that it was a piece of dung and it would be turned into a security. But the agents with the expertise had been diverted to counterterrorism."
So apparently the FBI missed the point where the "piece of dung" became a marketable "security".