Mortgage Modification Scammers Settle with FTC for $750K

The operators of a deceptive mortgage modification business will pay more than $750,000 to settle Federal Trade Commission charges, the FTC said.
The settlement also permanently bans the operators from selling any mortgage relief products.
The four operators of the Debt Advocacy Center and another group of seven individuals charged consumers $1,500 in advance and claimed a 90 percent success rate for obtaining mortgage modifications, the FTC said.
They also allegedly promised a refund of $1,500 or more if they were unable to obtain a loan modification.
The FTC complaint alleged that when consumers did not get the modification, the Debt Advocacy Center told them the $1,500 was only for advice and educational materials, and refused to return payments from consumers.
At the FTC’s request, a federal court judge ordered a halt to the unlawful operations and froze the defendants’ assets, pending resolution of the case.
Under the proposed settlements:
The forensic audit defendants Credit Services Alliance, Inc., Maurice Jackson, Patrick Butler, and Bradford R. Geisen will pay a judgment of $527,000. Glenn E. Gromann, John W. Smith, and CreditLawGroup, P.A. are not subject to any monetary provisions.
The $1.8 million judgment against Debt Advocacy Center defendants Edward J. Davidson, The Debt Advocacy Center, LLC, and Smith, Gromann & Davidson, P.A. will be suspended, based on inability to pay, when Davidson turns over certain real estate and personal property to the FTC for liquidation, and pays $37,000 in installments to the FTC.  These payments are secured by his interest in a movie called The Derby Stallion.
The $717,000 judgment against Debt Advocacy Center defendant Kevin McCormick will be suspended, based on inability to pay, when McCormick transfers approximately $20,000 from an inheritance trust to the FTC.

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