MBIA tells judge of newly uncovered Countrywide fraud database
I sure hope the Securities and Exchange Commission and other members of the new joint mortgage-backed securities task force are paying attention to the docket in MBIA’s New York State Supreme Court fraud and breach-of-contract suit against Countrywide. On Wednesday, MBIA’s lawyers at Quinn Emanuel Urquhart & Sullivan sent a letter to Justice Eileen Bransten requesting that she order Countrywide to produce discovery on an internal fraud-tracking database “which MBIA had not previously known to exist.” MBIA said it needs the discovery to prepare for upcoming depositions of former Countrywide employees who tried to expose its allegedly fraudulent mortgage underwriting practices, including the well-known whistleblowers Eileen Foster and Mari Eisenman.
I’ve said it before and I’m sure I’ll say it again: Everyone pursuing mortgage-backed securities issuers owes a big debt to bond insurers, who were the first to file MBS suits and have fiercely litigated them for the last three years. In addition to records of the mortgage-fraud database, known as FACTS, MBIA wants Countrywide to turn over the employment files of “two former Countrywide loan officers whose fraudulent activities were initially covered up due to their profitability,” and records of senior executive committee meetings that “should show that Countrywide deliberately passed on riskier loans to the secondary market while retaining safer loans for itself, again in violation of its representations and warranties.”