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Inside Washington (08/01/2012)
  • WASHINGTON (8/2/12)--David Cohen, the Treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, Tuesday asked the financial industry to comment on a regulatory plan that would require institutions to identify beneficial ownership of their account holders. Regulators are sensitive to financial institutions' regulatory burden and committed to improving the quality of the U.S. anti-money launder efforts, Cohen said during a Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) hearing (American Banker Aug. 1). However, public engagement is "a must" if regulators are to assist financial institutions in managing risk, Cohen said. In its advanced notice of proposed rulemaking issued in February, FinCEN said beneficial ownership of accounts can pose heightened risks because it can allow individuals to shield the identity of the true owner of assets derived from criminal activity …
  • WASHINGTON (8/2/12)--The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau has filed its first civil enforcement action in federal court. The complaint charges lawyer Chance Gordon and his law offices of failing to assist consumers in making loan modifications after accepting upfront fees.  (The Wall Street Journal Aug. 1). Also named in the complaint are Chance's business partner, Abraham Pessar, and two of Pessar's companies, Division One Investment and Loan Inc. and Processing Division LLC. Gordon and Pessar allegedly duped consumers into believing they were affiliated with U.S. government programs designed to provide troubled mortgage borrowers with relief, according to the complaint. Gordon and Pessar used money obtained from homeowners to fund an opulent lifestyle, the bureau said in court documents …


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