Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas
L.A. County Board of Supervisors, 2nd District
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 24, 2009 Contact: James Bolden
RIDLEY-THOMAS PRAISES BOARD’S APPROVAL OF FEE INCREASE TO CONTINUE REAL ESTATE FRAUD INVESTIGATION AND PROSECUTION PROGRAM
LOS ANGELES COUNTY -- Supervisor Mark Ridley-Thomas today praised the Board of Supervisors’ unanimous decision to adopt a resolution that authorizes an increase in the fees to record real estate documents in order to fund the continuation of the District Attorney’s Real Estate Fraud Investigation and Prosecution Program.
“I applaud this effort to provide funds for the investigation and prosecution of those who victimize others by committing these predatory acts,” Supervisor Ridley-Thomas stated in his remarks to the Board. “These types of crimes are particularly heinous because it displaces families from their homes and in essence, ruins their lives. It is difficult to recover from such a catastrophic event, financially, emotionally, and physically.”
Supervisor Ridley-Thomas also acknowledged the efforts of District Attorney Steve Cooley and his staff, the Sheriff’s Department, and other law enforcement agencies in the County for their collaborative efforts to prevent real estate fraud in the County of Los Angeles.
The approved resolution authorizes an increase to the fee for recording any real estate document or notice with the Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, from $2 to $3, with the funds to be placed in a Real Estate Fraud Prosecution Trust Fund. Approximately 60% of the funds will to be distributed to the District Attorney and 40% to local law enforcement agencies, as determined by the Real Estate Fraud Prosecution Committee.
All funds will be used for the exclusive purpose of deterring, investigating, and prosecuting real estate fraud crimes in all five districts. In 2009, funds will be distributed to the District Attorney’s Office, Sherriff’s Department, and the Los Angeles, Inglewood, Long Beach, Redondo Beach and Glendale Police Departments.
The Board’s decision was particularly pleasing in light of Supervisor Ridley-Thomas’ long-time commitment to combating this epidemic in his district and the County. Earlier this year, the Board approved his request to authorize the County’s Chief Executive Office to examine the feasibility of creating a Countywide Real Estate Fraud/Predatory Lending Task Force. That report is soon forthcoming.
“I will continue to work on behalf of the people of Los Angeles County, not only to investigate and prosecute the perpetrators of the crimes against them, but to provide them with the tools and information to remove themselves from these situations,” Supervisor Ridley-Thomas concluded.
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