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US Mortgage Banks Fined $123Mln for Foreclosures on Military Personnel

© AP Photo / David GoldmanHomeowners wait to speak with a bank associate in an attempt to lower their monthly mortgage payments
Homeowners wait to speak with a bank associate in an attempt to lower their monthly mortgage payments - Sputnik International
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US Department of Justice stated that five of the largest mortgage providers in the United States were fined more than $123 million for illegal foreclosures of the homes of active US military members.

WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Five of the largest mortgage providers in the United States were fined more than $123 million for illegal foreclosures of the homes of active US military members, according to a US Department of Justice press release.

“The Justice Department announced today that under its settlements with five of the nation’s largest mortgage servicers, 952 service members and their co-borrowers are eligible to receive over $123 million for non-judicial foreclosures that violated the Service members Civil Relief Act (SCRA),” the press release, issued on Monday, said.

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The SCRA prohibits non-judicial foreclosures against individuals actively serving in the military, which JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, Citibank, GMAC Mortgage and Bank of America violated between 2006 and 2012, according to the Department of Justice.

“These unlawful judicial foreclosures forced hundreds of service members and their families out of their homes,” Acting Associate Attorney General Stuart F. Delery said on Monday.

The settlement was announced in conjunction with US President Barack Obama’s Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force, established in 2009 to aggressively prosecute financial crimes, according to the task force’s website.

The task force has filed nearly 10,000 financial fraud cases against 15,000 defendants, including more than 2,900 mortgage fraud defendants.

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