Time for some more surprises.
I have written about registers of deeds and their role in the foreclosure crisis extensively, in particular the work of Jeff Thigpen, the North Carolina-based register who checked thousands of documents in his recording office and found all kinds of irregularities. Thigpen and a few other registers have attempted for months to create a critical mass among registers to look into their own records to prove the massive fraud being perpetrated by the banks. The evidence is literally sitting in their offices. Here’s an excerpt from that piece:
Out of the 6,100 documents Thigpen examined, 4,500 showed signature irregularities. The name of one DocX employee, Linda Green, who was acting as a vice president for several major banks, was forged 15 different ways on the Guilford County documents, rendering them invalid. Thigpen’s investigation was one of the first systematic assessments of mortgage document fraud in the entire country, certainly more robust than anything conducted by state and federal regulators [...]
Whereas state and federal regulators have failed to probe violations on the part of the banks, unheralded registers of deeds are uniquely situated to do so, because of their access to the physical documents. If every office in the country reported on its documents the way Jeff Thigpen did, the results could be monumental.
“We’re doing everything in our power to scream and yell about what is going on,” Thigpen says. “The banks had control of the paperwork and took us for granted. We have to respond to that.”
I’ve written about Thigpen, but not a lot of other people outside of Guilford County, North Carolina have. I wasn’t sure how much penetration he was getting into the larger community. Well, my eyes have been opened. Jeff Thigpen is headed to Washington today.
Greensboro, NC-Guilford County Register of Deeds Jeff Thigpen announced today that he will travel to Washington, D.C. to join President Barack Obama and members of his administration at a White House reception honoring Young Elected Officials on this Friday, June 17th.
“I’m truly honored to be invited by the President and it will be one of the highlights of my career as a public servant”, said Register of Deeds Thigpen. “On the other hand, I’m carrying the weight I what I see in the economy and it’s challenging. People are hurting as the housing industry has been wounded by a culture of quick money that led to the crash in our economy. We’ve got to return to fundamentals that help working people get back on their feet coupled with an unshakeable commitment to transparency and fair dealing in our financial services industry.”
Prior to the reception, Thigpen will be attending a special policy briefing with senior White House and Administration officials on topics including housing, immigration reform, innovation, energy, and job creation.
Wow. Thigpen is no shrinking violet. The man is dedicated to pursuing justice for those who have been wronged by the financial services industry. The Administration took notice.
I’m hopeful to get a post-action report from Thigpen on this in the coming days.