Defending Ana Lazara Rodriguez’s Home from a Fraudulent Foreclosure
Ana Lazara Rodriguez survived 19 years in a cuban prison for women. She was a freedom fighter against the oppressive Castro regime. She was a “plantadas” (planted one) because even with the beatings, the torture, the deprivation of food and water, they could never break her love of freedom. Ana survived and eventually settled in Miami. She is now 82 years old and going blind from macular degeneration. She lives with and cares for another former political prisoner that survived 18 years in Castro’s prison who is dying of Alzheimer’s disease. She supports them both on her meager life savings and her social security. They don’t want to lose their home to a fraudulent foreclosure.
On June 2, 2021, the sheriff showed up at her door with a 24 hour eviction notice. Our firm has been fighting against her fraudulent foreclosure for years. Bank of America and Bank of New York Mellon used forged and false evidence to foreclose as part of a nationwide fraud on the court. A decade ago, Bank of America signed a $25 Billion National Mortgage Settlement promising to stop using false evidence in foreclosures. Before the ink even dried, Bank of America was committing felonies of forgery, perjury, and obstruction of justice to take people’s homes in violation of their constitutional rights. The U.S. and Florida Constitutions both say “No person shall be deprived of life, liberty, or property without due process of law.” A fraudulent foreclosure is not due process.
Also on June 2, 2021, the Honorable Miami-Dade County Circuit Court Judge Beatrice Butchko entered an order setting up Bank of New York Mellon, Bank of America, Carrington, and a partner at the powerhouse law firm Akerman, LLP for criminal contempt charges. Judge Butchko found probable cause they committed perjury during an evidentiary hearing on a motion to vacate judgment due to fraud where I raised the same fraud as they committed in Ana Lazara’s foreclosure. Rather than admit to the systemic fraud, they lied under oath about Bank of America’s involvement as the Master Servicer (the wizard behind the curtain) in systemic forgery, perjury and obstruction of justice. Now there is a criminal arraignment set for June 25, 2021 at 1:30pm. They will have to plead guilty or not guilty. This is now a criminal case agains the banks and their lawyer. Historic.
The homeowner in Judge Butchko’s case was a Haitian immigrant who fell into foreclosure when the company she worked for as a home health nurse shut down for 3 months. By the time she got back on her feet, Bank of America put her through the loan modification nightmare millions of homeowners experienced. Loan mod package after loan mod package. Months of temporary loan mod payments. Servicing transfer. Start over. No help. Foreclosure.
Our firm got involved just before the foreclosure sale. Now Judge Butchko has to decide what to do with Bank of America, Bank of New York Mellon, Carrington and their lawyers who engaged in systemic fraud on the court to deprive people of their homes using false evidence, and then committed perjury to cover it up. This should impact the millions of homeowners about to face foreclosure after the pandemic. This could protect them and give them a chance to save their homes.
On June 4, 2021, we went before the Honorable Miami-Dade County Circuit Court Judge Peter Lopez on our Emergency Motion to Stop Writ of Possession The Mayor of Miami-Dade County Daniella Levine Cava intervened to stop the sheriff. We have much love and appreciation because the sheriff was supposed to serve the writ and put Ana Lazara on the street at 3:20pm on June 3, 2021.
We had a hearing before Judge Lopez where we fought to make sure the sheriff didn’t come back. Judge Lopez agreed to stay the writ of possession and set a hearing for June 7, 2021 to set a bond. He told us to raise money to make sure the rights of the new owner who bought home from the bank’s fraudulent foreclosure is protected. We are collecting donations here. Please give what you can so we can show Judge Lopez the community cares about Ana, the constitutional rights of borrowers, and the millions of homeowners across the nation that will face the same fraudulent foreclosures once the COVID-19 moratorium is lifted. Much love, blessings, and appreciation.
You can read the latest in the Miami Herald here.
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The emergency motion explains that Bank of America was the mortgage servicer who filed the foreclosure against Ms. Rodriguez using fake evidence in 2009. Ana took a predatory subprime loan that Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., sold to millions of elderly and first time borrowers from communities of color. Bank of America later bought Countrywide and became responsible for all those loans.
It was a ticking time bomb set to default.
When it defaulted, Bank of America filed the foreclosure using fake evidence. They attached a robo-signed mortgage assignment to their first complaint, and then a forged rubberstamp endorsement to their second complaint.
What’s worst — Ana’s case is just the tip of the iceberg as there is evidence Bank of America and JP Morgan Chase engaged in this systemic foreclosure fraud in Florida, Hawaii, Ohio, and every judicial foreclosure state in the country.
The fraud involves felonies of forgery and perjury that violated the $25 Billion National Mortgage Settlement, the federal and state racketeering (RICO) statutes, several felony statutes, and the doctrine of “unclean hands.”