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America's Foreclosure Epidemic

Former County Official Says Mortgages Are Illegal

Jarrod A. Clabaugh, Source of Title - reprinted with permission

In January 2008, LaSalle Bank Midwest filed foreclosure against Bonnie Scott, the former two-term recorder for Richland County, Ohio. Scott, representing herself, claimed that a representative of Bank of America fabricated evidence and issued presentments recklessly; that because the debt requires "payment in money of the United States" it is contrary to public policy; and, that due to the "declared bankruptcy of United States, Inc... the debt is discharged."

These types of arguments are usually based on a theory that the banks who lent the money are funded by the Federal Reserve, which has been supported by the debt of the people since the United States went off the gold standard. This theory contends that the bank's loan is backed by Federal Reserve notes, which are backed by the debt of the people. Therefore, the borrower is essentially borrowing their own funds. Scott claimed that "research clearly concludes that the bank did not 'loan' any lawful money to her (but) merely made a bookkeeping entry based on the alleged borrower's ... promise to pay, converted to a draft instrument... and that no account of the bank's was debited."

Additionally, Scott filed documents indicating that anything filed under her name, "Bonnie M. Scott, or any derivative thereof," was a copyright belonging to her and appointing her power of attorney to act for her copyright, and, a Certified Deposit Order demanding the U.S. Treasury to deposit $171,152.98 from a prepaid exemption account as an authorized set-off against her mortgage.

In support of her arguments, Scott cites to the Bible, the Uniform Commercial Code, House Joint Resolutions, the Tax Code, U.S Code sections regulating "Coins and Currency," and a few court opinions. One Supreme Court case, from 1839, and was cited for the proposition that "a private individual has as much privilege as banks..." including the creation of alleged money. Bank of Augusta v. Earle, 38 U.S. 519 (1839).

"Of course, that is an absurd interpretation of the case," said Robert A. Franco, the president and founder of Source of Title. "This case addressed the right of state banks to contract across state lines."

Another case, First National Bank of Montgomery vs. Daly, was cited for its holding that "the Federal Reserve Act was unconstitutional and void." This case was never officially reported, but accounts of it exist on the Internet, mostly on sites that promote similar theories for debt-elimination.

The defendant, Jerome Daly, an attorney, was subsequently convicted of failure to file tax returns and the Supreme Court called his arguments, challenging the constitutionality of the Federal Reserve system, "clearly frivolous." He was rumored to have been disbarred.

In a Motion to Strike, LaSalle Bank called the Scott filings "voluminous text not relevant to this action and essentially incomprehensible."

James DeWeese, a judge for Richland County's Common Pleas Court, ignored Scott's claims that the mortgages were not valid and ordered that her property be sold at a sheriff's sale.

"These things turn up from time to time everywhere," DeWeese told The Mansfield News Journal in response to Scott's claims "(In some cases) I don't even purport to understand what they are saying. When they don't come in the form of a legal argument, I don't worry about it."

"If you don't make your payments on the house, it gets sold," he added. Scott's home was sold back to the bank for $126,000 to partially satisfy the $154,026 judgment to LaSalle Bank.

During her time as county recorder, Scott encountered similar problems as the one she filed with the county this past May. Individuals denied that the county could sell their properties at foreclosure because the loans they used to buy the homes were not backed by gold. But, according to one examiner who visited Scott's office when she was recorder, Scott ignored others' claims that their loans were unconstitutional.

"It's funny that she dismissed people for doing this when she was in office," the examiner said. "But, then, she turns around and makes the exact same types of statements once she is no longer serving the county. It makes you wonder what she thought she'd achieve."

Scott's last foray into county politics was an unsuccessful bid for the Richland County Treasurer's job.

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