Texas Makes It Too Easy to Steal Homes and Swindle Poor Buyers

The stories are heartbreaking: Dozens of poor families in southern Dallas swindled out of their life savings by con artists who "sold" them homes they didn't even own.Some of them were so desperate to make better lives for their families that they scraped up thousands of dollars for dilapidated vacant homes - only to be ripped off by criminals who saw them as easy prey to make a quick buck.How does this keep happening? And when will our leaders take action prevent it?The Dallas Morning News' Naomi Martin reports this month that before he was arrested, ringleader Carl Govan Jr. regularly waltzed into the Dallas County clerks' office and received a rubber stamp on fraudulently transferring deeds of 46 homes, according to authorities. He bilked victims - some of them undocumented residents - out of at least $320,000.No one checked for accuracy. It's a system disturbingly ripe for abuse. Even while declaring his innocence from jail, Govan acknowledged the county system is a scammer's delight.  Continue reading...

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