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Gangoo v. Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp.

United States District Court, M.D. Pennsylvania

February 21, 2017




         On February 7, 2017, plaintiff Ishmael Gangoo, “a foreign representative for the United States Social Security Administration, ” filed pro se a notice of removal regarding a 2015 Pike County Court of Common Pleas mortgage foreclosure action and a 2016 ejectment action, Case No. 154-2016, filed against him by defendant Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (“Freddie MAC”).[1] (Doc. 1). Plaintiff paid the filing fee. Plaintiff also references his bankruptcy petition he filed on October 11, 2016, in Middle District Pennsylvania Bankruptcy Court, Case No. 5:16-bk-42314, which is a Chapter 13 case pending before Chief Bankruptcy Judge Robert Opel. In his notice of removal, plaintiff advises defendant that it must stay all proceedings in the Pike County Court case, including his February 13, 2017 eviction ordered in the case, as well as the February 10, 2017 Amended Order issued by the bankruptcy court lifting the automatic stay and allowing for his eviction. Plaintiff essentially alleges that the mortgage foreclosure action instituted against him in county court was “fraudulent” for a myriad of reasons and that the bankruptcy court's order was based upon “a falsified oath.”[2]

         Plaintiff indicates that his notice of removal is filed pursuant to 28 U.S.C. §1441(a), Article III, Section 2 of the U.S. Constitution as well as the Papal Bulls of Pope Nicholas V entitled “Inter Caetera, Dum Diversas, Rananus Pontifex.” Following his notice of removal, as indicated, the bankruptcy court issued an Amended Order on February 10, 2017 lifting the automatic stay and clearing the way for plaintiff's February 13, 2017 eviction. Thus, plaintiff filed an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order (“TRO”) on February 10, 2017, (Doc. 2), along with a brief in support, (Doc. 4), seeking this federal court to prevent the Pike County Sheriff, on behalf of Freddie MAC, from evicting him.

         After reviewing plaintiff's filings, including his exhibits submitted with his notice of removal, (Doc. 1-3), the court issued an Order on February 10, 2017 denying plaintiff's emergency TRO motion. (Doc. 6). The court stated in its Order that an appropriate memorandum would be issued at a later date more fully explaining its rationale. This memorandum addresses the reasons why plaintiff's TRO motion was denied as well as why his case will be dismissed.

         I. BACKGROUND

         On February 10, 2017, plaintiff filed his emergency TRO motion with this federal court in which he requested an injunction preventing the Pike County Sheriff from evicting him from his real property located at 104 Merlin Road, Greeley, Blooming Grove Township, Pike County, Pennsylvania and challenging a 2015 foreclosure sale of his property. (Doc. 2). In particular, (Doc. 1-3, pp. 1-8), plaintiff claims that he did not sign either the Wells Fargo Bank Home Loan Mortgage, which was dated December 24, 2011 and recorded in the Pike County Recorder of Deeds on January 5, 2012, (Doc. 1-3, Ex. C), or the December 30, 2011 Note, (Doc. 1-3, Exs. D & E), in the amount of $82, 852.42, ostensibly to refinance his Pike County property.[3]

         Plaintiff contends that based on these loan documents with his forged signatures, Freddie MAC obtained a mortgage foreclosure judgment against him in Pike County Court in 2015 and, on February 10, 2017, the order lifting the automatic stay in the bankruptcy court. Plaintiff also states that Freddie MAC obtained a judgment of ejectment against him on October 5, 2016, based on fraudulent loan documents, after it filed a motion for summary judgment in the Pike County Court. (Doc. 1-3, Ex. B). The Pike County Court ordered that Gangoo be ejected from the above stated property within five days. Plaintiff also states that the Pike County Court's judgment of ejectment was entered by the Pike County Prothonotary in violation of the automatic bankruptcy stay, 11 U.S.C. §362, on October 14, 2016. However, the Pike County Court's ejectment Order was issued prior to the filing of Gangoo's Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition on October 11, 2016.

         On October 27, 2016, Freddie MAC filed a motion for relief from the automatic stay in the bankruptcy court. A notice was issued indicating that Gangoo had until November 13, 2016 to file an objection/response to the motion. The notice also indicated that a hearing before the court was scheduled for December 15, 2016. (Doc. 1-3, Ex. G). The motion stated that Freddie MAC became the owner of the subject “premises as a result of the foreclosure and judicial sale by the Sheriff of Pike County, on November 18, 2015, as evidenced by the Sheriff's Deed recorded [on] December 21, 2015 in the Office of the Recorder of Pike County.” The motion also stated that Freddie MAC was seeking to institute eviction proceedings for the purpose of obtaining possession of the subject premises and noted that Gangoo had filed two bankruptcy cases, the first was a Chapter 7 case filed on March 18, 2014, No. 5:14-01193, in which he received a discharge on September 17, 2014, and the second was his instant Chapter 13 case filed on October 11, 2016. Freddie MAC filed the motion to obtain relief from the stay to allow it to enforce its ejectment rights and evict Gangoo from the property and, it indicated that the property was not part of the bankruptcy estate since Gangoo only had a possessory interest in the property as opposed to a legal interest.

         On December 15, 2016, the bankruptcy court initially granted Freddie MAC relief from the automatic stay.[4] Plaintiff then states that the Pike County Court issued a writ of possession which was based upon a “void Judgment of Ejectment and the fraudulent order for relief from automatic stay.” Plaintiff alleges that the orders of the Pike County Court as well as the orders of the bankruptcy court were based upon fabricated loan documents, including the mortgage and the note.

         Plaintiff indicates that Freddie MAC's attorneys, the law firm of Phelan Hallinan Diamond & Jones, LLP, were the bidders on his property and obtained a “knock down” of his property, “abrogating the auction and public bidding, thereby enabling the attorneys to take [his] property for nuisance value” despite the fact that the property had a fair market value of $132, 000. Plaintiff states that the Freddie MAC's law firm had a winning bid of $1, 297.57 for the property.

         On November 18, 2015, the stated law firm sent a letter to the Pike County Sheriff requesting that the Sheriff assign the bid on the subject property, “which was knocked-down to the law firm [ ] as ‘attorney-on-the-writ', to [Freddie MAC]” and to issue the Sheriff Deed which was enclosed. Plainitff states that the Pike County Sheriff then issued a Sheriff Deed on December 17, 2015 to “assign the bid” on the property to Freddie MAC's attorneys as “attorney-on-the-writ” on behalf of Freddie MAC. (Doc. 1-3, Ex. J). As such, plaintiff claims that Freddie MAC's attorneys “usurped the public auction, violating [his] due process rights, and obtained a secret private bid for their law firm, prepared their own deed, with the bid amount they chose, and told the Sheriff to sign off, which the Sheriff did.” Consequently, plaintiff states that due to the fraud of Freddie MAC 's attorneys, they have taken possession of his property, in which he had over $40, 000 in equity, for about $1, 300.00. Thus, plaintiff appears to claim that his constitutional rights under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments were violated by the taking of his property without due process.[5]

         After the initial order granting Freddie MAC relief from the stay was issued, plaintiff filed objections to it and the bankruptcy court held a status conference on February 9, 2017. (Doc. 1-3, Ex. H). Plaintiff states that on February 9, 2017 the bankruptcy court issued an Order directing attorneys for Freddie MAC to correct the names on the December 15, 2016 Order granting Freddie MAC relief from the automatic stay and nullifying the Order lifting the stay until an Amended Order was issued. Plaintiff states despite the bankruptcy court's Order nullifying the relief from the automatic stay it previously granted Freddie MAC and despite his removal of the Pike County foreclosure case to this federal court, Pike County Sheriff Deputies advised him that he would be evicted from the subject property on February 13, 2017. Thus, plaintiff filed his emergency TRO motion with this court on February 10, 2017. (Doc. 2). As noted above, the bankruptcy court actually issued an Amended Order on February 10, 2017, granting Freddie MAC's motion for relief from the automatic stay.

         On February 10, 2017, this court denied plaintiff's emergency TRO motion. (Doc. 6).

         In his TRO motion and related documents, plaintiff challenges the decisions and orders of the Pike County Court and contends that they were largely based on the “serial fraudulent actions and claims” made by Freddie MAC and its attorneys. He argues that his alleged obligation to Freddie MAC in the mortgage foreclosure action was based on forged loan documents and that there was no legal authority to support Freddie MAC's summary judgment motion in the 2015 foreclosure action which the court granted and permitted Freddie MAC to foreclose on the “defective” mortgage which was not valid to secure his property. He also contends that the Pike County Court's judgment in the 2016 ejectment action was unlawful since it violated the automatic stay and since it was issued in favor and against entities who are not parties to the action.

         Plaintiff also challenges the assignment of the alleged mortgage on his property from Wells Fargo Bank to Freddie MAC which he states was in December 2009, two years before the mortgage at issue was recorded.

         II. STANDARDS

         Under 28 U.S.C. §1441(a), "any civil action brought in a State court of which the district courts of the United States have original jurisdiction, may be removed by the defendant . . . to the district court of the United States." Thus, a defendant may remove from state court to federal court ...

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