Mortgage fraud and foreclosure scam issues have been top news for quite some time, but recent statistics reveal how deep the problem really goes. The FBI has taken part in the investigation and prosecution of mortgage fraud cases, highlighting the serious nature of such problems.
Strict lending requirements, sinking home values and a surge in delinquencies has left the market devastated. As more homeowners seek help for mortgage debts, many have found themselves under falsified loan modification contracts, nonexistent debt relief plans and other troublesome agreements.
The FBI is reporting their role in the investigation of nearly 2,600 mortgage fraud cases, up from 1,200 in 2007. The height of the investigations was seen in 2010, when cases topped 3,100 open investigations. Of the current 2,600 under review, 71% involve losses of more than $1 million. Thousands more suspicious activity reports have flooded the offices of the FBI, nearing 100,000 by the end of 2011. The good news is that FBI investigations have lead to over 1,000 convictions, bringing nearly $1,4 billion in restitution, $116 million in fines and $15 million in seizures.