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Feldman v. ABN AMRO Mortg. Group, Inc.

United States District Court, E.D. Pennsylvania

August 19, 2014

LYNN E. FELDMAN, as Chapter 7 Trustee of the Estate of Image Masters, Inc., et al., Plaintiff,
v.
ABN AMRO MORTGAGE GROUP INC., et al., Defendants

Decided August 18, 2014.

For LYNN E. FELDMAN, as Chapter 7 Trustee of the Estate of Image Masters, Inc., Et. Al., Plaintiff (2:13-mc-00290-MSG); STEVEN M. COREN, LEAD ATTORNEY, KAUFMAN COREN & RESS PC TWO COMMERCE SQUARE, PHILADELPHIA, PA.

For ABN AMRO MORTGAGE GROUP, INC., Et. Al., Defendant (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): JOSEPH A. DWORETZKY, LEAD ATTORNEY, MATTHEW HAMERMESH, HANGLEY ARONCHICK SEGAL & PUDLIN, PHILADELPHIA, PA.

For WELLS FARGO BANK, Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): MARTIN C. BRYCE, JR., LEAD ATTORNEY, BALLARD SPAHR ANDREWS AND INGERSOLL, L.L.P., PHILADELPHIA, PA.

For FLORIDA CAPITAL BANK MORTGAGE, Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): MICHAEL CAVENDISH, LEAD ATTORNEY, GUNSTER, YOAKLY & STEWART, JACKSONVILLE, FL; STEVEN J. ADAMS, LEAD ATTORNEY, STEVENS & LEE, READING, PA.

For M& T BANK MORTGAGE CORP., NOW BY MERGER M& T BANK, Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): STEVEN J. ADAMS, LEAD ATTORNEY, STEVENS & LEE, READING, PA.

For MOREQUITY, INC., FIRST HORIZON LOAN CORPORATION, BANK OF NEW YORK, PARK GRANADA LLC, Respondents (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): JOSEPH F. YENOUSKAS, LEAD ATTORNEY, GOODWIN PROCTER LLP, WASHINGTON, DC.

For NBANK, Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): DAVID C. FRANCESKI, JR., LEAD ATTORNEY, STRADLEY, RONON, STEVENS & YOUNG, LLP, PHILADELPHIA, PA.

For FEDERAL NATIONAL MORTGAGE ASSOCIATION, Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): NICHOLAS DEENIS, LEAD ATTORNEY, STRADLEY RONON STEVENS & YOUNG LLP, PHILADELPHIA, PA.

For THE PROVIDENT BANK Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): JOHN F. KUNTZ LEAD ATTORNEY JERSEY CITY, NJ.

For NATIONAL CITY BANK Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): SAMUEL W. BRAVER LEAD ATTORNEY GORDON & REES LLP PITTSBURGH, PA.

For FEDERAL HOME LOAN MORTGAGE CORPORATION Respondent (2:13-mc-00290-MSG): KENTON W. HAMBRICK LEAD ATTORNEY FEDERAL HOME LOAN MORTGAGE CORP MCLEAN, VA; ROBERT M. GREENBAUM LEAD ATTORNEY SMITH KANE LLC MALVERN, PA.

For Lynn E Feldman, AS CHAPTER 7 TRUSTEE OF THE ESTATE OF IMAGE MASTERS, INC. ET AL, Plaintiff (2:13mc291): STEVEN M. COREN, KAUFMAN COREN & RESS PC, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

For Chase Home Finance, ET AL, Defendant (2:13mc291): DANIEL T. BRIER, LEAD ATTORNEY, MYERS, BRIER & KELLY, Scranton, PA, USA.

For Citimortgage, Inc., Respondent (2:13mc291): JOSEPH A. DWORETZKY, LEAD ATTORNEY, HANGLEY ARONCHICK SEGAL & PUDLIN, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

For Countrywide Home Loans, Inc., Respondent (2:13mc291): JOSEPH F. YENOUSKAS, LEAD ATTORNEY, GOODWIN PROCTER LLP, Washington, DC, USA.

For Suntrust Bank, Wells Fargo Mortgage, Respondent (2:13mc291): MARTIN C. BRYCE, JR., LEAD ATTORNEY, BALLARD SPAHR ANDREWS AND INGERSOLL, L.L.P., Philadelphia, PA, USA.

For Chase Home Finance, Respondent (2:13mc291): DANIEL T. BRIER, LEAD ATTORNEY, MYERS, BRIER & KELLY, Scranton, PA, USA.

For Fifth Third Bank, Saxon Mortgage, Gmac Mortgage Corp., Respondents (2:13mc291): BONNIE R. GOLUB, LEAD ATTORNEY, WEIR & PARTNERS LLP, Philadelphia, PA, USA.

For Provident Funding Associates, L.P., Sovereign Bancorp, Inc., NOW KNOWN AS SANTANDER HOLDINGS USA, INC., Wachovia Bank, N.A., NOW WELLS FARGO BANK, N.A., Respondents (2:13mc291): STEVEN J. ADAMS, LEAD ATTORNEY, STEVENS & LEE, Reading, PA, USA.

Page 444

MEMORANDUM OPINION

Mitchell S. Goldberg, United States District Judge.

I. INTRODUCTION

Lynn E. Feldman, Trustee of the estate of Image Masters, Inc. and related entities has filed two adversary proceedings in bankruptcy court against numerous banks and home lenders in connection with a fraud perpetrated through Image Masters, Inc. by its principal, Wesley Snyder. Currently before us are the Trustee's motions to withdraw the references of those proceedings to bankruptcy court pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 157(d). For the reasons discussed below, the motions will be denied.

II. FACTUAL AND PROCEDURAL BACKGROUND

Snyder's scheme, which defrauded more than 800 homeowners and investors out of approximately $65 million, has been explained in detail in previous opinions issued by this Court. See Image Masters, Inc. v. Chase Home Fin.,489 B.R. 375 (E.D. Pa. 2013). A brief summary of this scheme is as follows: Snyder initiated the fraud by inducing homeowners to enter into new home mortgages for more than the amount owed on their existing mortgages, with the proceeds from the new mortgage being used to pay off the existing mortgage. Snyder then convinced the homeowners to turn over the extra, " wrap" amount from the new mortgages to Image Masters, telling the homeowners that the wrap amounts would either be used to pay down the new mortgage or invested on their behalf. The homeowners were then persuaded to sign new mortgages in favor of Image Masters for the same amount, but at a lower interest rate than their new conventional mortgages. Pursuant to the Image Masters mortgages, the homeowners made payments to Image Masters, while Image Masters assumed responsibility for paying the ...


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