Fortune Magazine Weighs in on Matthew Cox
With just two weeks to go before Rebecca Hauck is sentenced [for her role in a long string of real estate and mortgage fraud-related crimes], Fortune Magazine weighs in with a 5,000-word article on her accomplice, Matthew Cox. From yesterday online edition of Fortune Magazine:
The real estate market has never offered such opportunity for graft. Since the housing market started to soar in 2001, mortgage fraud has become the fastest-growing white-collar crime, according to the FBI. Last year crooks skimmed at least $1 billion from the $3 trillion U.S. mortgage market.
Now that the market is slowing, fraud is only rising. As business dries up, there’s increasing pressure on lenders, brokers, title companies and appraisers to be profitable. That means loan and title documents aren’t scrutinized as carefully as they might be, and courts – many of them so low-tech they resemble Mayberry – can’t keep up with the volume of paper. …
And with a con man like Matthew Cox still at large, any homeowner in the land is vulnerable. “Master con men like Cox are charming, manipulative, cunning. They have an amiable facade, which makes them very adept at getting others to like them,” says Louis B. Schlesinger, a professor of forensic psychology at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York.
For the better part of the past decade Cox has stalked his prey through MLS (multiple listing service) real estate ads. He has studied county courts, looking for ones he could easily dupe with falsified documents.
Marcia Vickers, Fortune’s senior writer, and Reporter Associate Doris Burke, provide an in depth look into Hauck’s life with Cox, and speculate that Cox may be hiding out in Cuba. For more information on the Hauck and Cox story, read The Bonnie and Clyde of mortgage fraud, courtesy of CNNMoney.com.