FBI: ‘Sovereign Citizen Domestic Extremists Throughout The United States’ Are Perpetrating Mortgage Fraud And ‘Debt Elimination Schemes’ And ‘Coaching’ Others To Do So

Is your purported debt coach or foreclosure-relief expert a “sovereign citizen” with an avowed contempt for the U.S. government and banking in general? Is he (or she) actually trying to recruit you into a criminal scheme that only will add to your stress? Is your last disposable dollar going into the pockets of a domestic extremist posing as a patriotic problem-solver and putting you in the position of having to explain incomprehensible legal filings to a judge?

A new report by the FBI “indicates a continued effort by Sovereign Citizen domestic extremists throughout the United States to perpetrate and train others in the use of debt elimination schemes,” the agency said.

“Victims pay advance fees to perpetrators espousing themselves as ‘sovereign citizens’ or ‘tax deniers’ who promise to train them in methods to reduce or eliminate their debts,” the agency said.

“While they also target credit card debt, they are primarily targeting mortgages and commercial loans, unsecured debts, and automobile loans,” the FBI said. “They are involved in coaching people on how to file fraudulent liens, proof of claim, entitlement orders, and other documents to prevent foreclosure and forfeiture of property.”

The finding is included in a 29-page report on mortgage fraud released this month. Sovereign citizens, though, are hardly the only force driving the fraud, according to the report.

“Mortgage fraud enables perpetrators to earn high profits through illicit activity that poses a relative low risk for discovery,” the FBI said. “Mortgage fraud perpetrators include licensed/registered and non-licensed/registered mortgage brokers, lenders, appraisers, underwriters, accountants, real estate agents, settlement attorneys, land developers, investors, builders, bank account representatives, and trust account representatives.

“There have been numerous instances in which various organized criminal groups were involved in mortgage fraud activity,” the FBI said. “Asian, Balkan, Armenian, La Cosa Nostra, Russian, and Eurasian organized crime groups have been linked to various mortgage fraud schemes, such as short sale fraud and loan origination schemes,” the FBI said.

Read the full FBI report.

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5 Responses to “FBI: ‘Sovereign Citizen Domestic Extremists Throughout The United States’ Are Perpetrating Mortgage Fraud And ‘Debt Elimination Schemes’ And ‘Coaching’ Others To Do So”

  1. Sovereign Citizens have the inalienable right to crawfish.

    A manic shooter peppered a busy Ensley retail strip with assault rifle fire Sunday evening because a local seafood market ran out of crawfish, investigators said.

  2. WOW, Machine Gun Kelly reincarnated…! I guess that’s what happens if you get addicted to crawfish…!

  3. Quick note: I referenced the Florida crawfish story in the opening of this June 16 editorial:


    I happen to believe the Andy’s Army reference to “Freedom Fighters Across America” was no accident — a sort of code, if you will.

    Speaking generally and not specifically about the ASD case, I believe a person with criminal cunning might be inclined to position himself as a martyr to a purported “cause” in a bid to collect money from sympathizers — while at once creating a veneer of plausible deniability by avoiding the use of the self-revealing phrase “sovereign citizen” in the appeal for cash.

    Now, speaking specifically about the ASD case, I believe the Secret Service and the IRS recognized quickly in July 2008 that ASD was no ordinary autosurf. I think it is possible — if not probable — that databases seized in earlier cases that involved tax deniers and sovereign citizens could provide important leads if compared to the ASD database.

    I also think that the preoccupation of some ASD members with the database seizure betrays deep concern that the database can be used to link them to other schemes and/or identify them as “special” members of ASD and thus potential indictees.

    Some of the ASD members were promoters of the very types of “businesses” described in this story in which I cited information from the FBI:


    One ASD member (and Surf’s Up member) claimed in a separate case that a mortgage foreclosure could be reversed by posting a bond consisting of $21 in “silver coinage” at a federal courthouse in Missouri.

    Another ASD member claimed in a separate case that he was a “sovereign” being answerable only to Jesus Christ. Yet another has been identified as the state coordinator of what the Feds have described as a tax-denial scheme.

    As I previously reported, the counter-terrorism arm of a U.S. agency has specifically referenced an ASD figure — and that reference can be used to identify other ASD figures.



  4. […] August 2011 PP Blog story on an FBI report that asserts there is a “continued effort by Sovereign Citizen domestic […]

  5. […] .icx-toolbar-closure{clear: both;}EDITOR’S NOTE: In August 2011, the FBI warned of debt-elimination schemes advanced by purported “sovereign citizens.” The story below outlines a “bonded promissory notes” scheme advanced in Missouri by […]