In HSBC Bank USA, N.A. v. Yeasmin, 2010 NY Slip Op 50927(U), Justice Schack dismisses a motion for an order of reference brought by Steven J. Baum, P.C., on behalf of HSBC on the grounds that it is was untimely by 204 days. By more importantly, Justice Schack writes, “[E]ven if the instant motion were timely, the explanations offered by plaintiff’s counsel…are so incredible, outrageous, ludicrous and disingenuous that they should have been authored by the late Rod Serling, creator of the famous science-fiction television series, The Twilight Zone. Plaintiff’s counsel, Steven J. Baum, P.C., appears to be operating in a parallel mortgage universe, unrelated to the real universe.”
Drawing upon his Twilight Zone theme, Justice Schack humorously proceeds to excoriate the attorneys of Steven J. Baum, P.C., and notes, among other things, the ongoing conflict of interest that apparently exists due to Baum’s simultaneous representation of foreclosing banks and their assignor, MERS. In addition, Justice Schack wonders why plaintiff HSBC would purchase a mortgage such as the one here at issue after it had already gone into default. He writes, “The Court can only wonder if this journey through the mortgage twilight zone and the dissemination of this decision will result in Mr. Westmoreland’s affidavit used as evidence in a future stockholder derivative action against plaintiff HSBC. It can’t be comforting to investors to know that an officer of a financial behemoth such as plaintiff HSBC admits that ‘[a]n investigation of each and every loan included in a particular mortgage pool, however, is not conducted, nor is it feasible’ and that ‘the fact that a particular mortgage pool may include loans that are already in default is an ordinary risk of participating in the secondary market.’” In an extraordinarily frank admission, Mr. Westmoreland provided sworn testimony that HSBC regularly assumes the risk of buying mortgages in bulk without examining whether the mortgages in question are in default or in good standing.
This concludes today’s tale of greed in Baum’s parallel mortgage universe on the Twilight Zone.