First Look: New Linda Tirelli Suit Against Bank of America

Bank of America Stealing Homes

First Look: New Linda Tirelli Suit Against Bank of America

Attorney Linda Tirelli, a rockstar in the arena of foreclosure defense, has just filed an adversarial bankruptcy suit in the Southern District of New York naming the following as defendants: Bank of America, Nationstar, U.S. Bank, and Recontrust. As many former and soon-to-be-former homeowners know, this group is a veritable rogue’s gallery of home/wealth/livelihood/sanity thieves and scam artists.  The fact that Tirelli is going after this financial mafia family is heartening, because Tirelli gets results.

So I read through her complaint, filed on November 29, 2016.  You can read it here.  What follows are my first impressions and sections of the complaint that stood out to me.

The Remedies

I am thrilled to see that Tirelli is going for the jugular with this complaint, and not shying away from what her client (and millions of people who are or have been in the same situation) truly deserves.  Namely, Tirelli is seeking to void the lien and to void the debt.  On top of that, she is also seeking punitive damages.  As we’ll see below, she has very good reason to seeking these remedies.

The Facts:  When Countrywide is involved, look out

The “debtor” (I will only put that word in quotes this one time, but please feel free to add them in your mind every time you see them from this point on) is named Helen Racanelli, who “borrowed” (same deal with the quotes) $508,000 from Countrywide prior to the 2008 crisis.  She sought a modification from Countrywide in October 2008 and per Countrywide’s instructions, sent them a check for almost $5,000 as part of the modification process.  Countrywide refused the payment and returned it to Racanelli.  That started Racanelli down the road to the eventual Chapter 13 bankruptcy she sought earlier in 2016.

The evidence marshaled against the defendants

I am interested in this case for a number of reasons, but there are two in particular: 1) it calls out fraudulent, “ta-da” endorsement of promissory notes, and 2) it involves such an endorsement bearing the names of Michele Sjolander and Laurie Meder.  I have personal experience with those very same characters and a ta-da endorsement that was used to take my house back in 2012.  I have written about this a number of times, notably in the posts “BANK OF AMERICA’S MAGIC WAND” and “NO ENDORSEMENT, NO NEGOTIATION–NO NEGOTIATION, NO SECURITIZATION.”  So I read the following passage from the complaint with great interest:

26. The Court should further know that according to the FDIC public website, Countrywide Bank NA became an inactive institution on April 27, 2009. MERS could not have acted as a nominee for Countrywide Bank, FSB, an inactive institution, on August 9, 2009.

27. Defendants also attached a copy of the original note with a dual blank endorsement bearing the rubber-stamped signature of Michelle Sjolander and Laurie Meder (“the endorsements”) to the proof of claim.

28. BOA, as servicer for U.S. Bank, caused agents and/or employees to affix the endorsements to the back of the original note as part of a “90 day delinquent note endorsement process” involving systemic surrogate signing for notes more than 90 days delinquent.

29. BOA’s agents and/or employees affixed the endorsements by rubber stamp in anticipation of filing the foreclosure, years after origination and years after the closing date of the trust in an effort to perpetrate a fraud upon the court.

30. As discussed supra, BOA, its agents, and its corporate representative prepared false evidence and testified falsely to defraud federal bankruptcy courts and state court judges into believing the endorsements were affixed within days of origination by document custodian employees authorized to use Ms. Sjolander’s or Ms. Meder’s rubber signature stamp.

In this section, it is almost as though I am reading from the complaint I filed in my own losing case against a couple of these same defendants.  Other victims of foreclosure fraud likely feel the same way.  I also found—and included in my complaint–that same info from the FDIC about Countrywide being an inactive institution and had the same experience of parties acting supposedly at the behest of Countrywide after Countrywide was supposedly inactive.  And of course as I already mentioned, I had the same blank endorsement bearing the names of Sjolander and Meder, about which I was able to depose Sjolander, which you can read here: Robo-stamped | Full Deposition of Michele Sjolander Executive Vice President of Countrywide Home Loans.

I absolutely agree with this next bit:

32. Rather than dismiss those cases, pay attorney’s fees and new filing fees to refile the cases after endorsing the original notes, BOA engaged in fraud upon the court setting up a cover story that the surrogate signed endorsements of Michelle Sjolander, David Spector, Laurie Meder and Christina Schmidt were affixed within days of origination by document custodian employees acting under proper authorizations.

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

I was incredibly encouraged to see that Tirelli cited the testimony of Bank of America employee Linda DeMartini—in the case of Kemp v. Countrywide—that Countrywide/Bank of America did not endorse notes in the normal course of business and that she had “never seen an actual note that has an endorsement on the bottom.”  According to DeMartini, the only time endorsements were bothered with was when they were needed as a defense at trial.  It’s really incredible that this explosive testimony has not already taken down Bank of America’s foreclosure machine.

Incredible report on Fannie Mae and the effect of UCC-9

Tirelli continues her damning deluge of evidence by describing an incredible report that I had not heard about until reading this complaint, and I try and make it a point to keep abreast of such things:

46. In 2001, New York State adopted the Uniform Commission on Laws Recommendations to Amend Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code to include the sale of promissory notes in the law governing secured transactions and to codify the common law rule that the mortgage follows the note.

47. These 2001 amendments codified that, upon proof of purchase of the debt evidenced by the signed agreements from the closing of the securitized trust documenting a complete chain of title for each loan, the mortgages would follow the note for all the loans in the securitized transaction, without need for further evidence.

48. In 2006, in response to allegations of widespread improprieties made at a Fannie Mae shareholders meeting, the international law firm of Baker Hostetler issued a report to Fannie Mae to address the allegations (“the BH Report”). On February 4, 2012, the New York Times published this report online. See Request for Judicial Notice Tab A.

49. The 2006 BH Report to Fannie Mae concluded at page 35 “that foreclosure attorneys in Florida are routinely filing false pleadings and affidavits regarding the Plaintiff’s – MERS or servicers – interest in the proceedings and regarding lost, missing or destroyed promissory notes. The practice could be occurring elsewhere3. It is axiomatic that the practice is improper and should be stopped.”

Tirelli goes on to make a great point about the Article 9 amendment:

“61. Despite the clear changes to New York and Florida law confirmed by the BH report, the Defendants BOA and Nationstar, on their own and/or as agents of Defendant US Bank N.A., as Trustee, continue to misrepresent to this court and courts throughout this nation that Article 3 of the UCC controls and that the effect of a note endorsed in blank as alleged here provides them with sufficient evidence of standing without regard to Article 9.”

Tirelli even alleges—correctly, I might add—that the so-called “uniform” promissory notes that are used to secure mortgages throughout the country are arguably not negotiable and therefore cannot be securitized:

64. The Debtor avers that the Note is a non-negotiable instrument as the parties contracted out of the UCC definition of “Holder” in ¶1 of the promissory note which states: “… Lender or anyone who takes by transfer and who is entitled to receive payments under this Note is called the “Note Holder.” Therefore, a party in possession of the original note with a blank endorsement would still need to prove it took by lawful transfer and had entitlement to receive payments. Article 3 of the UCC says even a thief can enforce a blank endorsed note. This note does not permit such a result.

65. The Debtor further avers that the Note is a non-negotiable instrument pursuant to ¶6 of the promissory note which provides any loan charge later found to be illegal may, at lender’s option, result in a reduction in principal. Accordingly, the reader must refer to the outside source in order to determine the value of the instrument.

66. The Debtor further avers that the Note is a non-negotiable instrument pursuant to ¶11 of the promissory note which provides there are additional protections for the Note Holder in the mortgage if the borrower fails to keep its promises. Accordingly, the note is governed by and subject to the various provisions of the mortgage that affect the amounts due under that note.

67. Specifically, the mortgage defines the term “loan” at §(G) as all amounts due under the note and mortgage. The mortgage further provides at page 6, ¶2, the application of payments goes first to interest, then principal, then amounts due under ¶3 of the mortgage, then late charges, then any other charges under the mortgage, then to reduce the principal. This renders the note subject to the mortgage and affects the amount due under the note.

68. The Debtor further avers that the Note is a non-negotiable instrument pursuant to page 5, ¶5 of the promissory note which provides the lender may force place insurance which provides any amounts lender pays to protect the property all become additional debt secured by the mortgage that accrues interest at the note rate.

69. Moreover, at pages 6 and 8, the mortgage provides the lender may use any “insurance proceeds” or “miscellaneous proceeds” to reduce the amount due under the note. This also renders the note subject to the mortgage and affects the amount due under the note, all and any of which destroy the notes negotiability.

70. Even if the note were a negotiable instrument, the “mortgage follows the note” doctrine has been codified by Article 9 of the NYS Uniform Commercial Code. The exclusive statutory means to prove purchase of the debt is by N.Y. U.C.C. Law § 9-203(b) (McKinney). Only then does the mortgage follows the note under N.Y. U.C.C. Law § 9-203(g).

Bombshell Sjolander info

I always wondered what the rest of the story was with Sjolander after my case ended.  I never heard much of anything else that went on.  Apparently a lot, as can be seen here.  She’s been deposed quite a bit and here are some highlights of that testimony that Tirelli provides:

146. According to the testimony of Ms. Sjolander and Ms. Garner, only Ms. Meder and Ms. Sjolander were authorized signors legally allowed to endorse original notes.

147. Plaintiff’s corporate representative conceded in a sworn videotaped deposition that both Ms. Meder and Ms. Sjolander lacked any present intention to adopt the signatures on the original note at the time they were made.

148. Teams of unauthorized signors used rubber stamps to affix Ms. Sjolander and Ms. Meder’s signatures outside their presence and control.

149. These teams were not the same people identified in the authorization agreements produced in discovery to explain the use of rubber stamps to affix the signatures of Ms. Sjolander and Ms. Meder onto endorsements on original notes.

150. Ms. Garner and Ms. Sjolander both testified falsely under oath that these rubber stamped signatures were affixed to the original note within days of origination in March of 2009.

151. BOA engaged in a systemic practice using rubber stamps to surrogate sign endorsements onto original notes years after origination.

152. BOA engaged Sourcecorp to scan original notes after going through a “90 Day Delinquent Note Endorsement Process” where the surrogate signing occurred.

153. This systemic surrogate signing practice first began with notes already in foreclosure with a complaint that alleged a lost note count.

154. In those cases, BOA’s counsel was in possession of the unendorsed original note before filing the lost note count and attached to that complaint a copy of the original note in their possession which had no endorsement. Years later, Plaintiff surreptitiously surrogate signed undated endorsements onto original notes.

155. The sworn video-taped deposition testimony of Ms. Sjolander and Plaintiff’s Corporate Representative, Marie Garner, that these endorsements were “surrogate signed” by document custodian employees using a rubber stamps outside the signor’s presence within days of origination is false.

In short, Tirelli doesn’t miss an argument that can be made against these greed creeps and their heretofore unhindered marauding of the wealth and well-being of the American middle class.

Just sample the rest of the subject headings that Tirelli addresses:

E. The Robo-Signing Scandal and the Various Settlements that Followed

F. MERS Is Still Being Used as an Instrumentality of Fraud

F. [sic]  BOA’s Fraud Upon the Court Began in 2008 and Still Continues

The beautiful thing is that these bastards will have to respond to each of these allegations in their answer, which will no doubt be convoluted and full of tortured logic—in short, incredibly interesting to read.  Tirelli is essentially attempting to put the entire mortgage banking system on trial here, and her past successes are any indication, things do look too good for the system.

Fingers crossed!


12 Responses to “First Look: New Linda Tirelli Suit Against Bank of America”
  1. rb houseng says:

    How can I join a class action or find a knowledgeable atty? My first home was illegally foreclosed 3 years ago. I did a rescission on this home and they foreclosed anyway. Fraud/void trustee’s deed recorded. They pulled a fast one on UD> First it was dismissed. Then sheriff posted a notice on door to be out in 7 days. I just filed bankruptcy today. I have a disability and need help. I am in Central California. I need an atty who will communicate in person or in writing, not on phone, due to disability. The current UD/fraudulent foreclosure had BoA and Recontrust. Just as I rescinded, they sold servicing to Seterus. And a new trustee was brought in, The Wolff Firm. That legal firm is on preferred list for fnma. They cannot be the trustee as they are not an independent third party. They represent fnma on UD also.

  2. K.C. Tuckness Mercer says:

    I am currently in my lawsuit against Bank of America. April 1, 2009- I’ve been fighting them for 9 years. I was never delinquent. I was Pre approved for a lower payment and told my next payment was due in 60 days. 73 days later, my home was on the Foreclosure sale list. I’ve overcome 14 sale dates. Bank of America sent contractors into my home while I was away. Spyware and listening devices were discovered and Hazmat tested positive for cypermethium a highly toxic chemical if ingested. I was diagnosed with a severe case of Heavy Metals Toxic Poisoning.

  3. WileyC says:

    Where’s the endorsement of the Depositor in chain of title? There is this ‘bankruptcy-remote’ transaction required by the PSA to achieve sale to the Trust and further securitization. It never occurred. Also, worth mentioning, in most cases the Depositor is/was not a member of MERS. So, there should also have been a transfer of the mortgage out of MERS and back into MERS on way to Trust. Otherwise, none of it ever happened. Crooks, all of ’em.

  4. Dianne in UpstateNY says:

    Do not ever stop fighting….appeal, file motions, bankruptcy, whatever it takes! Don’t ever give up the fight!

  5. R B Houseng says:

    I am a double victim. First home fraudulently sold at foreclosure auction with bid rigging, Countrywide, Home 123, New Century as well as Bank of America on title. Fraudulent eviction. I kept asking judge for appointment with court disability advocate as I have neurological disorder.

    Now in another home with Countrywide to Bank of America and Recontrust. I mailed a rescission and they did not respond timely. I filed a Notice of Intent to Preserve an Interest to put world on notice of rescission. They foreclosed anyway and are not attempting to evict.

    I need help fast. How can I join a class action on this and at least stop the eviction for now?

  6. Karma Dorje says:

    If you will not publish my piece…..KNOW THAT YOU MAY BE THE FRAUD,,,,,,Hello David,

    I did take your advice, and have been working with Tom Ice’s firm over the past few months.
    All of the motions to dismiss although completely justified, were just BLOWN OFF by the judge.
    Among all the chain of title defenses, this is a simple case of the 5 year Florida statute of limitations. The first foreclosure action was in 1/2010, dismissed in 2012. The current foreclosure action was brought in 3/2016. The bank IS CLEARLY ABOVE THE LAW, just to be able to bring this case to a courtroom.

    I asked for a quote for one of Tom’s attorney to appear at the final hearing in this case but the $5,000 retainer, may be a problem because the servicers and plaintiffs attorneys have been complicit in a repeated pattern of malice and unclean hands by:
    • Killing my credit since 2010 – as a 6 figure DOD and banking IT consultant, there is no work for someone with a 550 score. PS – I was number one in the interviews for the VYSTAR position below. Their HR killed my candidacy.
    • NationStar told 2 of my renters that the home was in foreclosure, when in fact it was not. They continue to harass the current renter and his two young daughters by filing a default against him & repeated malicious trespass on posted property.
    • Finally I have a smoking gun, where the attorneys representing the plaintiffs, hired a debt collection firm, masquerading as a mediation group has been dunning my relatives and contacting me by email. (see below) This is in flagrant disregard to my rights of no direct contact (contact attorney only) established in my 2012 QWR filed by my attorney.
    • So I have contacted the CFPB to ask for help with the bank and NationStar. In their reply, It is clear that the servicer got my QWR, but ignores it to this day, and have instructed their attorneys in the foreclosure case to hire outside agencies to contact me directly.
    • So I sent the evidence to the CFPB and the Florida Bar about the smoking gun actions of the attorneys, again with no results

    At the last hearing, I told the judge and attorney for the bank, that there was NO POSSIBILITY of mediation, as the damages in this fraudclosure have cost me 3 times the original worth of the property. $800,000. And yet I just found where I am being ORDERED BY THE COURT TO ATTEND MEDITATION. WHAT!

    So it looks like I will sit in the final hearing PRO SE again, and don’t really expect anything short of a miscarriage of justice.

    When they do come to take possession, I hope they call the morgue for me. No one else seems to care.

    Please send this to DINSFLA, I am still unable to contact him

    Blane Land

    Mr. Land:
    Morgan from the Plaintiff’s firm, Clarfield, Okon, Salomon & Pincus asked us to contact you to schedule mediation.
    There will be no upfront out of pocket expense to you for the mediation.
    I can schedule your Mediation to take place Hedquist Reporters, 345 East Forsyth Street, Jacksonville, FL 32202 on Wednesday, August 31, 2016 at 11:00 a.m.
    Please reply and let me know if this is a good date and time for you.
    If you prefer to attend the mediation by telephone, please call me (321) 269-6900 and I can coordinate that date and time with you as it will be different from the above date. Also, if you give me a call, I can explain more about the mediation process.
    Thank you –
    Yvette Martin, Paralegal
    Select Mediation, LLC
    1300 Armstrong Drive, Suite 104
    Titusville, FL 32780
    Phone: (321) 269-6900
    Fax: (321) 247-4795

    From: Blane Land []
    Sent: Friday, May 27, 2016 11:18 AM
    To: ‘david dayen’
    Subject: RE: Those who can’t teach rip off students

    Hi David ,
    Thanks for writing back, nice to hear from somebody who understands this. Everything in the email is quite real and I will be traveling to Jacksonville to be in a courtroom again Tuesday.

    With a 190IQ and an eidetic memory I spend more than 2 years teaching myself Florida foreclosure law and, and although I have successfully defended this property so far, but I am not optimistic at this point….but I will not back down, because I absolutely have nothing else to loose. Just yesterday, I was told another 6 figure job that I interviewed for declined to send an offer letter because ViStar’s HR department ran my credit file. This has been going on since 2010.

    The hearing on Tuesday is for on the first motions to dismiss this 2nd foreclosure. See the attached. You will see the only help I have had lately is the $100/m LegalYou account.

    Thought you might like to see an old website I put up during the first forclosure, it tells a bit of the history. – !


    From: david dayen []
    Sent: Friday, May 27, 2016 9:47 AM
    Subject: Re: Those who can’t teach rip off students

    Blane I really hope this is rhetorical. I urge you to seek and acquire the help and support all of us need in stressful times. I want to keep getting emails from you. There are people out there who care.


    On Thu, May 26, 2016 at 5:27 PM, wrote:
    Would you like to see the sequel to your first book see this, a headline in the Jacksonville newspapers in the next few weeks.

    DeutcheBank Foreclosure Fraud kills homeowner defending his property

    For the second time in 6 years I am being forced to defend my property pro se.
    It doesn’t seem to matter that the 2010 foreclosure was FIRST a MERS, robosigned, Lehman, ALS, AFSB fraud that was thrown out of court in 2012.
    And I guess the 5 year statue of limitations law in Florida, means DetucheBank is above the law to have to brass to refile the foreclosure now, claiming this time, ownership of a 2007 securitization.

    Their fraudulent actions, killed my marriage of 15 years, stripped my 50 year’s net worth and has frozen my ability to work as a 6 figure IT exec, since 2010
    Around 2012 while conducting my own forensic audit, I found that DetucheBank is and ALWAYS WAS the bad actor here.

    The first hearing on my first 4 motions to dismiss will be heard one week from today, but I think I need to construct several other motions as contingencies
    1. A motion claiming abuse of process, unclean hands in that current foreclosure action naming a 2007 securitization document constitutes an admission that the company knew of and ordered Aurora Loan Services to file a fraudulent foreclosure in Jan of 2010.
    2. A direct motion to dismiss based on the FL DCA’s ruling’s having upheld the 5 year statute of limitations
    3. Motion to expand time for the Florida Supreme Court to rule on the statute of limitations
    4. Filing a QWR like the one I attached

    The only outcome I will accept, is full restitution,

    ASK YOURSELF THIS QUESTION, WHAT WOULD YOU DO IN THE FACE OF ARMED ATTACK ON YOUR PROPERTY BY A GERMAN BANK THAT WAS REQUIRED TO ONLY PUT UP A $100 bond to TAKE MY LIFE’S work and PROPERTY AFTER 6 YEARS OF FORECLOSURE FRAUD, my answer is that I have nothing to lose anymore. Guess we all already knows how this turns out.

    Blane Land

  7. Iam a victim of bank of America foreclosure negligence. I am homeless now if at all possible please advise how can I be apart of this class acty

  8. Sherry Lambert says:

    The same thing happened to me and I can’t find any help no where, sherry_129@msn.Com help









      • beluved says:

        I believe the Southern District of Ohio is just as bad as Maine, if not worse. I and my husband have been battling mortgage fraud since 2004. It all began when my then new husband tried to buy an apt. bldg . with 3 units each having three bedrooms for $39,000. No lender would approve us for the $39,000 loan, and my husband was convinced he could be sold our primary home, plus three more rental properties, and pay our mortgage, even though, all of them cost around $100,000. Needless to say, this allowed no room for error, and we soon found ourselves filing for Chpt.13 bkrptcy. It is too long to explain all the details, but we learned a lot by going to the law library. Right now, we are in a major fight with Bank of America, like you. Even though this supposed loan was created in 2002, we intend to reopen it, and prove their fraud against us. Our government is not the government most people envision, and has converted back to one a time when the tyrant ruler Kings looked down on the middle and lower class people as peasants. Most people don’t realize that at one time our government protected the homeowner from predatory acts of the banks. It was during the end of the Clinton administration, and escalated big time during the Bush Administration, that there was an orchestrated anti-consumer attack to erase how our government at one time would prosecute the banks for predatory loans. The greed of both parties in Congress and Wall Street, made it very expensive to get an attorney to fight mortgage fraud, and they had a heads up many of the people who bought homes, would go into default, and they would all grow rich, above their widest dreams. Today it is reported the median income of Congress is 11 million, while the median income for the American household is around $50,000 (Detroit’s median income is $25,000). One thing we do know, is it often takes a lot of study, and looking over your mortgage documents to uncover the fraud, which can be classified as “white collar crime”. This kind of crime is subtle, and hard to detect, and sometimes take years to discover. It is sad, that a person has to become their own private detector, because often attorneys do not care, and won’t look for the fraud with due diligence, because they fear reprecussions from their brethren or judges, who are making money through their investments. There used to be laws like the Equal Access to Justice act, the Glass Stegal Act (that President Clinton revoked), that Congress no longer enforced to protect the consumer, which also was the cause for millions of people to lose their homes. Elliot Spencer of New York, had an article that exposed how the states were ordered by President Bush to stop the enforcement od the federal consumer protection laws in state courts. To this day, I don’t think that order has ever been revoked. I wish American people would stop depending on the news for their information and do their own research. At times i believe we are more communist than Cuba, because at least they admit to it. The real facts about what happened to the American people’s rights has been censored to keep Americans in the dark about their rights. I hope other people wake up and and sound the alarm to our government, that we must once again return to a government for the people. The discussion does not end there…

      • Shirley says:

        Richard you are wrong! We can win it’s about the fight, the facts and showing these assholes they will not get away with the fraud they have committed…………….

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