In a recent federal lawsuit filed by the City of Baltimore, there are new allegations that the financial institution Wells Fargo, “systematically singled out blacks in Baltimore and suburban Maryland for high-interest subprime mortgages.”
According to a recent article in the New York Times, the net effect of such high interest and predatory mortgages has led “hundreds of homeowners into foreclosure and cost the city tens of millions of dollars in taxes and city services.”
The federal lawsuit alleges in pertinent part that “Wells Fargo created a unit in the mid-Atlantic region to push expensive refinancing loans on black customers, particularly those living in Baltimore, southeast Washington and Prince George’s County, Md.” Such predatory lending practices became so prevalent that loans to African-American communities were often referred to by Wells Fargo loan officers as “ghetto loans.”
The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) has recently filed similar lawsuits alleging “systematic, institutionalized racism” in Wells Fargo’s lending to certain borrowers.
As Austin Tighe, co-lead counsel for the NAACP, expressed, such predatory lending practices “are legally actionable and more importantly, morally reprehensible.”
If you or someone you know was a recipient of a Wells-Fargo mortgage involving the above circumstances, please immediately contact our law-firm for a free consultation.