Over the summer of 2011, a team of more than 30 VOICE citizen investigators conducted research into how the “robo-signing scandal” – a national news story profiled on 60 Minutes, in the Washington Post, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, and more – affected Prince William County, Manassas, & Manassas Park. In the jurisdiction with the most foreclosures in the state of Virginia (more than 16,000) and the 26th highest percentage of underwater properties in the United States (47.4%), these investigators uncovered clear patterns. Many of the documents filed with the Prince William Clerk of Court appeared to have been produced without proper oversight, to have been hurriedly signed and completed, and to be potentially fraudulent. VOICE found obviously mis-matched signatures from bank officials and notary publics; they also found that at least 45% of the documents they analyzed were produced at sites under federal, state, or national media investigation for robo-signing.
VOICE published a report documenting their findings and is calling on key state and federal elected officials as well as the press to do the research and due diligence necessary to hold financial institutions accountable for the full extent of their robo-signing, potential fraud, and predatory lending in Prince William County, Virginia, and across the country.
Newscast from Channel 8 News reporter Kathy Park.