Fish Fry, Big Ones Wiggle Off the Hook
The Sovereign Society
by Bob Bauman: Escape
From America Continues
A few weeks
ago, when the U.S. Justice Department decided
not to prosecute Angelo Mozilo, the former chief executive of
Countrywide mortgage company, New York Times columnist Joe
a column very properly lamenting the fact that none of the big
fish were likely to go to prison for their roles in the financial
and home mortgage crisis.
Countrywide made billions in profit, some of it on liar loans
that he acknowledged were likely fraudulent, action that did
major damage to the national economy. He personally was paid hundreds
of millions of dollars. Though he
agreed last year to a $67.5 million fine to settle fraud charges
brought by the SEC,
it was a small fraction of what he earned. Otherwise, he walked.
With that background
it was even more painful to read Noceras Sunday
(March 27) column about one Charlie Engle, 48, (left) who was
recently convicted, sentenced, and incarcerated in a federal prison
for committing mortgage fraud as a borrower!
I invite you
to read that column if you want to rekindle your justified antipathy
towards government in general and the IRS in particular. (You might
also want to write to Mr. Engle and let him know that many Americans
are with him in his time of persecution).
Mozilo, who made millions for himself participating in billions
of mortgage frauds, Charlie Engle wasnt a seller of bad mortgages.
He was a borrower. And the mortgage fraud for which
he was prosecuted was something that millions of Americans did during
the subprime bubble. Supposedly, he lied on two liar loans,
exaggerating his net worth and assets in order to qualify.
The IRS went
all out find something, anything, on Charlie. The governments
star witness, a shady mortgage broker who himself had been convicted
of fraud, claimed Engle provided false information and overstated
his income on a stated income liar loan application.
The jury acquitted
Engle on the charge of providing false information. But they somehow
managed to find him guilty for mortgage fraud!
Now we always
have advised our Sovereign Society members never to meet or talk
directly with IRS agents about anything. Having your attorney handle
such contacts provides a screen for you and also gives you attorney-client
privilege rights should anything develop later.
We also advise
filing of any and all
required reports with the IRS when engaged in offshore financial
dealings if any kind.Therefore it is more than of passing interest
for you and I to learn the tactics the IRS used in deciding to prosecute
(persecute?) Mr. Engle. It could be you or I.
Mr. Engle was
the subject of a 2008 documentary film, Running the Sahara.
Robert W. Nordlander, a special IRS agent, saw the film and wondered:
How does a guy train for this because most people have to
work from nine to five and its very difficult to train for
this part-time. Agent Nordlinger also said that sometimes,
when he sees somebody driving a Ferrari, hell check license
plates to see if they make enough money to afford it.
tax records showed that while his actual income was substantial,
his taxable income was quite small, in part because he had a large
tax-loss carry forward, due to a past business deal. Still convinced
that Engle must be hiding income, Nordlander did undercover surveillance
and took Dumpster dives into Mr. Engles garbage.
Looking at You Babe
In March 2009,
still unsatisfied, Nordlander persuaded his IRS superiors to send
an attractive female undercover agent, Ellen Burrows, to meet Mr.
Engle and see if she could get him to say something incriminating.
In the course of several flirtatious encounters, she asked him about
that he had been speculating in real estate during the bubble to
help support his running, he said, according to Mr. Nordlanders
grand jury testimony, I had a couple of good liar loans out
there, you know, which my mortgage broker didnt mind writing
down, you know, that I was making four hundred thousand grand a
year when he knew I wasnt.
Mr. Engle added,
Everybody was doing it because it was simply the way it was
done. That doesnt make me proud of the fact that I am at least
a small part of the problem.
to Mr. Engle, Ms. Burrows was wearing a wire.
I invite you
Joe Noceras full column to review all the facts that in
totality raise the question whether any crime was ever committed
Even when he
emerges from prison, though, his ordeal will not be over. As part
of his sentence, Engle was ordered to pay $262,500 in restitution
to the owner of his mortgages. And what institution might that be?
You guessed it: Countrywide, now owned by Bank of America.
Angelo Mozilo ought to get a good chuckle out of that one.
And we all
should learn something about the tactics of the IRS, an agency that
habitually presumes Americans guilty instead of innocent
as the Constitution requires and as this sad case shows,
theyll do almost anything to manufacture that guilt.
with permission from the Sovereign
April 1, 2011
E. Bauman is a former Member of the United States House of Representatives
from Maryland, (19731981). He is also a former federal official
and state legislator; Member, Washington, DC Bar; Graduate of the
Georgetown University Law Center (1964) and the School of Foreign
Service (1959), Washington, DC. Robert currently serves as legal
counsel for the Sovereign
© 2011 Sovereign Society