For the second time this month, the Federal Trade Commission announced that one of the subjects of a sweeping enforcement action from 2014 is permanently banned from operating in the mortgage loan modification and debt relief business.
Earlier this month, the FTC announced that a series of “law firms” and the individuals who did business on their behalf were banned from operating in the mortgage business, after an investigation found that the companies falsely promised to help save the homes of financially distressed homeowners.
That banishment stemmed from a 2014 enforcement action called “Operation Mis-Modification,” which identified a number of alleged mortgage modification scammers.
This week, the FTC announced another banishment from the mortgage modification business for one of the subjects of “Operation Mis-Modification.”
In this case, the FTC said that Tuan Dinh Duong and Christian Quezada operated CD Capital Investments, CD Capital, and GDS Information Services, which did business under the fictitious names of “2Apply” and “UW Solutions.”
According to the FTC, the companies falsely claimed they could lower homeowners’ mortgage payments and interest rates or prevent foreclosure, pretended that they were affiliated with a government agency or consumers’ lenders or servicers, and illegally charged advance fees – initially $495, plus monthly fees that averaged about $399.
The FTC said that Duong and Quezada are banished from the mortgage loan modification and debt relief business under a court order obtained by the FTC.
In granting the FTC’s request for summary judgment against Duong, the court found that Duong knew about the false claims and directed the illegal scheme, which violated the FTC Act and the Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule.
Under the final orders, Duong and Quezada are banned from selling secured or unsecured debt relief products or services, and prohibited from making material misrepresentations about any financial or other products or services, the FTC said.
The FTC also said that the orders impose a judgment of more than $1.7 million, which represents the amount of money consumers lost.