Mortgage Servicing Fraud
occurs post loan origination when mortgage servicers use false statements and book-keeping entries, fabricated assignments, forged signatures and utter counterfeit intangible Notes to take a homeowner's property and equity.
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THE FOLLOWING INFORMAL ADMONITION WAS ISSUED
BY BAR COUNSEL ON
August 3, 2007
BY FIRST-CLASS AND CERTIFIED
MAIL NO. 71603901984984056899
David W. Draper, Jr., Esquire
c/o David Ross Rosenfeld, Esquire
Law Offices of David Ross Rosenfeld
118 South Royal Street
Second Floor
Alexandria, Virginia 22314-3392
In re David W. Draper, Esquire
D.C. Bar No. 434137
Bar Docket No. 2005-D299
Dear Mr. Draper:
This office has completed its investigation of the above-referenced matter. We
find that your conduct reflected a disregard of certain ethical standards under the
District of Columbia Rules of Professional Conduct (the Rules).1 We are, therefore,
issuing you this Informal Admonition pursuant to Rule XI, §§ 3, 6, and 8 of the District
of Columbia Court of Appeals= Rules Governing the Bar (D.C. Bar R.).
The Complaint
You are a name partner and managing shareholder in Draper & Goldberg,
PLLC. We docketed this matter based upon a civil complaint alleging that your law
firm engaged in, inter alia, fraudulent practices in the conduct of numerous foreclosure
proceedings in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia on behalf of several
financial institutions that are clients of your firm. In addition to the allegations in the
litigation, several Virginia Commissioners of Accounts raised concerns that your firm
used documents, including ?Substitutions of Trustee@ and ?Lost Note Affidavits@ on
which the notarized signature had been placed on a page that had obviously been
prepared without any date information, which date was filled in later by the firm upon
1 Because the disciplinary complaint alleged that the misconduct in question
occurred in connection with transactions that involved debtors in the District of
Columbia, Maryland, and Virginia, the Rules of each jurisdiction apply. There is no
material difference among those jurisdictions in the language of the Rules cited.
submission. The Commissioners are appointed to serve, in essence, as administrative
law judges for the various Virginia Circuit Courts with the duty to oversee all cases
with a fiduciary aspect, including foreclosures in Virginia.
Your Response
You concede the following: First, a substantial part of the firm=s practice is
devoted to foreclosures ?and related default matters.@ Your institutional clients are
designated beneficiaries under the deeds of trust encumbering certain real property,
and the performance of legal services in the foreclosure proceedings often requires the
firm to substitute itself as trustee for a client.
Second, often, a lost note affidavit is filed where the client has been unable to
locate the original note memorializing the debtor=s obligation. Because foreclosures
must be completed within rigid deadlines imposed by government regulators and
private sector entities, a number of the firm=s clients have requested or endorsed the
law firm=s use of pre-signed and notarized forms so that the appointment process
and /or the presentation of the appropriate lost note affidavit and, consequently, the
foreclosure may be concluded expeditiously. In such circumstances and with your
approval, the firm would secure a pre-signed and notarized form from an appropriate
representative of its lender client and, pursuant to the client=s instructions, the firm
would attach the pre-signed form to a document describing the specific details of the
firm=s appointment as substitute trustee for that transaction.
In each such circumstance, the firm would have been expressly and specifically
instructed and authorized by the client to file the deed appointing it as substitute
trustee using the pre-signed form. The facts set forth in the affidavit would have been
confirmed by the firms as accurate, executed by an authorized representative of the
institutional client, then notarized at the client=s site. The firm no longer uses presigned
documents for Virginia foreclosure proceedings.
During the period in question, the firm employed more than 100 individuals,
including 12 attorneys. You state, through counsel:
While the firm=s individual attorneys retain oversight and ultimate
responsibility for cases which are assigned to them, much of the
processing of cases is done by non-attorney paralegals and trained
processors. Time line management, work flow production, internal nonlegal
training and technology enhancements, are managed and facilitated
by non-attorneys. However, administration, oversight, prosecution and
resolution of particular legal files and matters are done by specific
attorneys assigned to the matter.
Legal Analysis
We conclude that you violated Rules 5.1 and 5.3 in that, until your firm
discontinued the practice in Virginia, you approved and facilitated the use of presigned
and notarized documents by attorneys and non-attorneys in your office, who
later inserted a date on the forms for submission. Thus, the verification asserting that
the signer had appeared before the notary on a specified date was false; nonetheless
your firm submitted the documents to various Virginia Circuit Courts as accurate.
Under Rule 5.1 (responsibilities of a partner or supervisory lawyer):
(a) A partner in a law firm shall make reasonable efforts to ensure
that the firm has in effect measures giving reasonable assurance
that all lawyers in the firm conform to the Rules of Professional
Conduct.
(b) A lawyer having direct supervisory authority over another lawyer
shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the other lawyer
conforms to the Rules of Professional Conduct.
(c) A lawyer shall be responsible for another lawyer=s violation of the
Rules of Professional conduct if:
(1) the lawyer orders or, with the knowledge of the specific
conduct, ratifies the conduct involved; or
(2) the lawyer has direct supervisory authority over the other
lawyer or is a partner in the law firm in which the other
lawyer practices, and knows or reasonably should know of
the conduct at a time when its consequences can be avoided
or mitigated but fails to take reasonable remedial action.
Under Rule 5.3 (responsibilities regarding nonlawyer assistants):
With respect to a nonlawyer employed or retained by or associated with a
lawyer:
(a) A partner in a law firm shall make reasonable efforts to ensure
that the firm has in effect measures giving reasonable assurance
that the person's conduct is compatible with the professional
obligations of the lawyer;
(b) A lawyer having direct supervisory authority over the nonlawyer
shall make reasonable efforts to ensure that the person's conduct is
compatible with the professional obligations of the lawyer; and
(c) A lawyer shall be responsible for conduct of such a person that
would be a violation of the Rules of Professional Conduct if
engaged in by a lawyer if:
(1) The lawyer requests or, with the knowledge of the specific
conduct, ratifies the conduct involved; or
(2) The lawyer has direct supervisory authority over the person,
or is a partner in the law firm in which the person is
employed, and knows of the conduct at a time when its
consequences can be avoided or mitigated but fails to take
reasonable remedial action.
We further conclude that you violated Rule 8.4(d) (conduct seriously interfering
with the administration of justice), in that you knowingly tendered notarized
documents to tribunals with dates that failed to reflect the actual date of execution.
Under Rule 8.4(d), ?[i]t is professional misconduct for a lawyer to[] [e]ngage in conduct
that seriously interferes with the administration of justice[.]@2
In order to violate the rule, an attorney's conduct must be "improper;" it
must "bear directly upon the judicial process . . . with respect to an
identifiable case or tribunal"; and "the attorney's conduct must taint the
judicial process in more than a de minimis way."
In re Hopkins, 677 A.2d 55, 60-61 (D.C.1996).
Here, the act of falsely dating the documents in question was improper because
it did not reflect the actual dates of execution. The misconduct bore directly on the
judicial process in identifiable cases in that Virginia Circuit Courts were reviewing
each set of documents through its Commissioners. Finally, the act of falsely dating the
Substitutions of Trustee and Lost Note Affidavits and submitting them to the
Commissioners tainted the judicial process in more than a de minimis way because the
District of Columbia Court of Appeals has long held that "[d]ocuments are an
attorney's stock in trade, and should be tendered and accepted at face value in the
course of professional activity." In re Schneider, 553 A.2d 206, 209 (D.C.1989).
2 This is numbered Rule 8.4(c) in Virginia.
We do not find clear and convincing evidence to support the allegations made in
the civil action and that matter was settled without factual findings or legal
conclusions by a court.
Conclusion
This letter constitutes an Informal Admonition pursuant to D.C. Bar Rule XI, §
3, 6, and 8 for your violation of Rules 5, 5.3 and 8.4(d), and is public when issued. We
have decided to issue an Informal Admonition because you have agreed to accept it,
have cooperated with our investigation, have agreed to cease using pre-signed
documents in connection with future transactions, and there was no prejudice to your
institutional clients. Further in mitigation, the Commissioner who drafted the initial
complaint has indicated that the concerns he raised have been addressed and he no
longer sees the problems of which he complained.
Please refer to the attachment to this letter of Informal Admonition for a
statement of its effect and your right to have it vacated and have a formal hearing
before a Hearing Committee. If you would like to have a formal hearing, you must
submit a written request for a hearing to the Office of Bar Counsel, with a copy to the
Board on Professional Responsibility, within 14 days of the date of this letter, unless
Bar Counsel grants an extension of time.
If a hearing is requested, this Informal Admonition will be vacated, and Bar
Counsel will institute formal charges pursuant to D.C. Bar R. XI, § 8 (b). The case will
then be assigned to a Hearing Committee and a hearing will be scheduled by the
Executive Attorney for the Board on Professional Responsibility pursuant to D.C. Bar
R. XI, § 8 (c)
Such a hearing could result in a recommendation to dismiss the charges against
you or a recommendation for a finding of culpability, in which case the sanction
recommended by the Hearing Committee is not limited to an Informal Admonition.
Sincerely,
Wallace E. Shipp, Jr.
Bar Counsel
Encl.: Attachment to Letter of
Informal Admonition
WES:TMT:act
Sent Regular and Certified Mail No.
S:\DOCKETS.OBC\05 DOCKET\2005-D299\2005-D299 infad.doc
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Nye,

Went in search of something on LPS. Do you know what happened with the case above. Or have you heard about a ruling done in April 09 on a case named Niles and Angela Taylor out of Philadelphia? The HEAT IS ON if you ask me...

I guess we'll see if the Mo US Trustee does anything now...So far a US State Atty and 3 judges have done nothing but try to make me out to be a deadbeat debtor. Cases like the one above and the ones mentioned give us something to hope for thru their nightmare bs stories.


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Knows About FIS/LPS
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I guess we'll see if the Mo US Trustee does anything now...So far a US State Atty and 3 judges have done nothing but try to make me out to be a deadbeat debtor.


Is Fidelity / FIS / LPS involved in document fabrication and false swearing in your case?  If so, who at LPS executed the false affidavit and/or fabricated mortgage assignment?

Forgery and perjury by LPS can be proven much more readily than you may realize.  I hadn't seen any prior indication that you were seeking help in this area.
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The In Re: Taylor opinion should be in the Legal Lounge, if not, send me an email and I will send you a copy.  Also, there is another case, In Re: Haque, from Florida where the law firm was sanctioned for filing false affidavits.  Again, this should be in the Legal Lounge, but if not, just send me an email and I will be happy to send you copies.
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There's been various entities they've hired in my case. Initially it started in June 2006 with the filing of the first wrongful foreclosure action. I say wrongful because they knew before they ever filed for foreclosure against me that they didn't know who actually owned my debt.

In Oct 06 we filed a chp 13. The bk atty we hired knew the whole story. But let us fall into default in the courts eyes before trying to bring everything to light. However, where they were really stupid is they filed a proof of claim to be paid. Knowing we had already proven prior to our bk they didn't know who owned our debt.

They proved a blank assignment to the court. While they knew what they knew prior to filing the judge still let them off. He also let Citi off. I say this because on their proof of claim to be paid they put down 10 of their possible companies that could own the debt. Which means they weren't made to show the original. Nor would the judge make them. Neither did the next judge.

Thereafter, in the countersuit is where I've received the two recusals. They still REFUSE to verify anything I've told them. So it'll be interesting to see what kind of response I get out of this trustee since the bk trustee did nothing as well...


When the proof of claim was filed in the bk court it was filed by a Gene R. Clark.--The telephone # on the document actually goes to Land America. The original group who we proved had no clue who owned our debt with previously....what a three ring circus. But until I get help or go looney I guess I'll keep on fighting...

There were a couple of other groups they gave it to and tried to give it to. After they proved the blank assignment and the actions they tried to take no atty would touch it for them. My atty never believed me. So he gets to go on the sh*t list with the rest of the people who are trying to cover up all the fraud going on here in Stl.

Thanks for the attempt in helping me folks!


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