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Waldron reports: "The Justice Department estimated that 4,000 troops were affected by Capital One’s violation of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act."

Capital One is one of the nation’s biggest consumer-financial companies. (photo: Mark Lennihan/AP)
Capital One is one of the nation’s biggest consumer-financial companies. (photo: Mark Lennihan/AP)


Capital One Caught Financially Abusing Military Members

By Travis Waldron, ThinkProgress

30 July 12

 

ust a week after it was ordered to pay $165 million in refunds and penalties for wrongful credit card practices, Capital One reached a settlement with the Department of Justice over charges that it financially abused active military members. Under the terms of the settlement, the bank will pay $12 million to American military members who were denied their legal right to reprieve from foreclosures, high interest rates, and auto reposession while on active duty.

The Justice Department estimated that 4,000 troops were affected by Capital One’s violation of the Servicemembers Civil Relief Act, which grants certain financial protections to military members. Capital One will pay $55,000 in fines to DOJ while also providing settlement money to troops and restoring lost and damaged credit, the Washington Post reports:

Justice officials have asked Capital One to pay $7 million in damages to military personnel - including $125,000 for foreclosure, $10,000 for repossession, $500 for failed interest rate reduction and a refund of all the interest charged above 6 percen
The bank will provide another $5 million to service members who did not receive the full benefits allotted under the act. The settlement also requires Capital One to repair the credit of those affected by its actions, which occurred from July 2006 to November 2011.

But Capital One was hardly the only bank to take advantage of members of the military before and after the housing crisis. Ten lenders were accused last year of illegally foreclosing on thousands of military members, and multiple banks, including JP Morgan Chase, Wells Fargo, and Citigroup, have settled claims with the government over their abuses of servicemembers.

 

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+42 # Stephanie Remington 2012-07-30 17:13
This is how our government shows its appreciation for its service members whose lives they endanger every day – $7 million dollars in damages for foreclosing on, repossessing property of, and – otherwise – cheating the people who are being killed and maimed in active military duty!!!

Capital One had over $16 billion in revenues last year. The "damages" they are "asked" to pay are the equivalent of a $20 fine for a person who makes $50,000 a year. The fines for driving in the carpool lane and having a dog off leash are substantially heavier.

What do they mean “asked to pay”? Are the “damages” optional? And why are there service members who “did not receive the full benefits allotted under the act”?

This isn’t even a slap on the wrist. It’s a formality. Exactly how is this supposed to deter these scum bags from doing it again when our government proves over and over that crime pays if you cheat and steal from huge numbers of people.
 
 
+8 # angelfish 2012-07-30 21:17
THIS is another of our National Shames. Hey all you "heros" in the DOJ. Are you SERIOUS? John Q. Public, as well as our Servicemen and women have to take it in the Pocketbook over and over again. This is barely "chump change" considering the profits they made fleecing people! WHERE is Justice?
 
 
+10 # fdawei 2012-07-30 23:37
The Chairmen, CEOs presidents, and those connected directly or indirectly with these frauds must go to jail. Only then, will we be reassured that justice is done rather than seeming to be done. And yes, $55,000 in fines...what does that mean, what signal does that give to the other perpetrators who are traitors to the military who gallantly served their country.
 
 
+2 # Stephanie Remington 2012-07-31 13:17
Quoting fdawei:
The Chairmen, CEOs presidents, and those connected directly or indirectly with these frauds must go to jail. Only then, will we be reassured that justice is done rather than seeming to be done.


It's got to start with criminal referrals and indictments of every CEO of the big banks (and, with respect to LIBOR, every trader involved, too). With respect to LIBOR, the regulators have sat on it so long that the statute of limitations is about to run out on a bunch of it, and if they continue to look the other way, there will be no way to prosecute them at all for $trillions in fraud.
 
 
+17 # Art947 2012-07-31 02:44
Every one of these servicemen and women, and their families should be made whole by Capital One and any other bank that did not fully comply with the law. In addition, they should be made to pay treble damages for the damage that they caused. These corporate "persons" took full advantage of the fact that members of our armed services protected their investments, and in some cases, sacrificed with their lives to allow these greedy bastards (bankers) to live a life of luxury. It is more than past time for them to truly pay for the service that they received!
 
 
+5 # Texas Aggie 2012-07-31 10:54
I have to shake my head in amazement at the people who drive around with yellow ribbons on their SUV's claiming to support the troops, and yet these are mostly the same people who get all in a tizzy about government regulations strangling business. I would bet that some of them are even bent out of shape because the banks had to give up the equivalent of the cost of a hamburger for contravening what little regulation is left.
 
 
+2 # jwb110 2012-07-31 11:22
Maybe when the GOP/TP has to answer to the problem of their buddies screwing the Military they will have to confront the screwing of the American public. If Service Member get a Cicvil Relief Act why not the same relief who end up paying for the military in the first place. I think it is called Equal Protection under the law?
 
 
+2 # Stephanie Remington 2012-07-31 13:11
Quoting jwb110:
Maybe when the GOP/TP has to answer to the problem of their buddies screwing the Military they will have to confront the screwing of the American public.


jwb: The Justice Department isn't run by GOP/TP members. It's Eric Holder -- Barack Obama's Attorney General.

The outrage of shielding the banks from accountability is completely bipartisan.
 
 
0 # unitedwestand 2012-07-31 18:41
There is some bipartisan culpability but most of the stealing and wheeling and dealings have been done by banksters who are, at this very election funding and slathering Republicants with UNKWON amounts of money. Why is that you ask? Because they know that their best accomplices are the Republicans.

What has Eric Holder got to do with what the banksters have done? Do you think he would get very far putting on trial many of them with the House's present members of stupid NeoCons and TPers? The last administration set all of this up whether you want to admit or not. All the suffering, all the economic problems, all the two war expenses not on the budget, all very methodically set up by the last most un-patriotic administration ever.

I do agree that we need to hold them ALL accountable and put some of these SOBs in JAIL.
 
 
0 # Stephanie Remington 2012-07-31 21:11
Quoting unitedwestand:
…banksters who are, at this very election funding and slathering Republicants with UNKWON amounts of money. Why is that you ask?


The reason the bankers are heaping money on the Republicans right now is, essentially, extortion. Obama has been nothing but good to them, but being insatiably greedy slime bags, they want more.

By funding Romney, they are trying to force Obama (the one currently in a position to help or harm them the most) to do even more for them – in order to regain their support.

It's working, but I doubt they'll support him again. I don't think they care who wins. All they want is to extract every ounce of blood they can from whomever is in a position to benefit them. In Obama’s case, it’s by holding the we’re-supportin g-your-opponent -unless-you-do- more hatchet over his head.
 
 
+4 # Vermont Grandma 2012-07-31 15:03
Capital One and the employees who filed foreclosure actions against servicemen and women perpetrated a fraud against the courts in which these actions were filed. The Soldiers and Sailors Relief has been around in one version or another since 1940. Falsely certifying that the defendant in a civil proceeding is not covered by the Soldiers and Sailors Relief act is FRAUD. In addition to the CEO and involved employees facing criminal penalties, or at least jail time for civil contempt of court. each affected serviceman and woman should be made whole, not handed $125,00 for a home foreclosed on. Capital One should be paying big $$ for the emotional harm to the families involved and covering all legal fees. Houses not yet sold should be returned to the servicemen and women affected at no cost to them. And the government should be seeking revocation of Capital One's corporate charter. This "settlement" is a joke. Capital One and all the other banks, inc. Bank of America, who have been perpetrating these scams and frauds need to be held accountable.
 
 
+1 # unitedwestand 2012-07-31 18:31
What is the incentive for these robbers banskesters not to do it again? $12M for all the pain and suffering they inflicted is a slap in the face to all those people that got screwed by them.

The problem is that those that caused the damage are not going to jail. SEND THE CEOs TO JAIL!
 

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