Saturday, March 07, 2009

U.S. foreclosure scams on the rise


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Barry Artiste Op.Ed

As many people are stuck between a Rock and a Hard Place in this economic meltdown, it's "Par for the Course"  Scam Artists are alive and well in any economy, and are quite adept at parting the desperate from their money, even if that money is only fictitously only on paper!

U.S. foreclosure scams on the rise

Amid the continuing American housing meltdown, officials are seeing an 'extraordinary' surge in foreclosure 'rescue' rip-offs.

By Carolyn SalazarMarch 07, 2009

When Aleem Morris lost his job as a forklift operator several years ago, his life began to fall apart.

He fell behind on loan payments. His car was repossessed. And then, after his debt ballooned to $118,000, the Newark, N.J., house that had been in his family for 24 years went into foreclosure.

Just as things seemed most desperate, a flier arrived in the mail offering help. "Are you behind in your mortgage payments, and facing foreclosure of your property?" it asked.

It gave Morris hope, promising to shore up his credit and save his home. But months later, his two-story, vinyl-sided home had been stripped of about $127,000 in equity, he was still in debt, and the house was back in foreclosure.

"I had been conned," he said.

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