January 03, 2014 Articles

FIRREA Threatens to Add to Government's Financial Crisis Arsenal

The act's new, potentially broad reach is in the early stages of evolution

By James K. Goldfarb and James Dombach

The federal government has been heavily criticized for not pursuing legal claims against financial institutions and their senior executives in connection with the financial crisis. Attempting to blunt that criticism, in November 2009, the administration established the Financial Fraud Enforcement Task Force to “hold accountable those who helped bring about the last financial crisis as well as those who would attempt to take advantage of the efforts at economic recovery.” The task force, headed by Attorney General Eric Holder, is a coalition of more than 20 federal agencies, 94 U.S. Attorney’s Offices, and state and local partners. Within the task force is the Residential Mortgage Backed Securities (RMBS) Working Group, formed in January 2012 to investigate misconduct related to the origination and securitization of mortgage loans.

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