Eric Schneiderman: Banks Have 'Confidence' That Law Enforcement Is Not Taking Violations 'Seriously'

Hours after announcing that he's considering a lawsuit against some of America's biggest banks, New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman affirmed his view that change is on the horizon.

Appearing on Monday's edition of "All In with Chris Hayes," Schneiderman said the Department Of Justice may enter the fray soon.

"I think you should expect to see something soon from DOJ," he said. "I think that the banks probably didn't expect us to file a lawsuit to force them to comply with the terms of the settlement agreement."

The data behind that claim emerged Monday, when Schneiderman's office revealed its findings on hundreds of foreclosure violations by Wells Fargo and Bank of America. He explained to Hayes why problems continue to persist, placing the onus on law enforcement to up its efforts.

"The problem is, the banks have overwhelming confidence that law enforcement is not taking this seriously," Schneiderman said. "They have overwhelming confidence that whatever the rules are, (they) won't be followed up on."

HuffPost's Shahien Nasiripour relays background on those national foreclosure settlement rules:

The agreement, reached by the Department of Justice, Department of Housing and Urban Development and 49 state attorneys general, called for the five largest mortgage companies to significantly revamp their procedures for dealing with distressed borrowers. It called on them to provide billions of dollars in aid to those borrowers and change the way they pursue home repossessions, in exchange for prosecutors dropping legal claims that the companies systematically violated borrowers’ rights when using faulty, so-called “robosigned” documents in foreclosure proceedings.

Schneiderman's prediction comes weeks after word broke regarding his behind-the-scenes criticism of DOJ officials and lawmakers on mortgage deals. Among those willing to publicly discuss Schneiderman's frustration was Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), who said he aired the same grievances that the public has voiced.

“There's been a real lack of going after the top folks, in general,” Levin told HuffPost.

Last month, Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) hammered at another thread behind big-bank troubles. He told HuffPost that President Barack Obama and the U.S. Treasury Department were "wrong" on their claim that Dodd-Frank financial reform would spell the end of too-big-to-fail institutions.

Schneiderman vowed Monday that "it's time for accountability," adding that the too-big-to-fail paradox rests in banks' relationship with the public.

"The banks don't give you a buy if you forget or lose their documents," Schneiderman told Hayes. "They don't deserve anything else."



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