Saturday, August 18, 2018

Super Duper Tribute to George Webb VII - Investigating The Investigator - The Death Of Task Force Jenny Moore

Verifying the process, just to make sure everything is documented.

Always document.

Always question.

This is dealing with child welfare, an area only I possess the subject matter mastery as the original source.

I watch everything because I celebrate Child Abuse Propaganda Month every April, since its inception into their construction of social thought.

Let the #cyberwars commence.

I am from Detroit.

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

Friday, August 17, 2018

This Is What Means To Be Keeper Of The Record - Detroit Free Press, Wayne County Deeds & The Quantum Renaissance Of Detroit Civil Rights

This is an extremely, very well constructed and written journalism.

This is the quality of reporting that is worthy of the title of keeper of the record.

This is Pulitzer Prize level writing.

This is devoid of poverty shaming.

This demonstrates a mastery of the subject matter.

Proper locations were noted, with, I must direct attention to, Google Maps interactives, visual histograms, timelines, balanced interviews and narratives with principle authorities and original sources, like neighbors, homeowners, victims, elected and authoritative officials representing Wayne County, Wayne State University and University of Michigan-Dearborn, all in District.

[I went to all those schools. (snicker) I wonder what they said about me.]

The use of public resources, the likes of corporate filings and County Register of Deeds recordings, laid out another wonderful visual for one to follow through the chain of command in ownership, whether broken or distorted as a corporate shape shifter.

I found much joy with the use of the Limited Liability Company as a cursory working model of real property schemes.

This is "submission of evidence" worthy.

Now, this is the point where I must interject by throwing my two cents into the mix.

I believe I have previously covered this, but currently, I am so moved by this cogently documented moment of Detroit history, I shall reiterate one of my favorite tales of the Corporate Shape Shifters.

(The names of the LLC's have been changed to protect my future claims.)

Once upon a time, there was a LLC in Idaho named ABC Properties which was listed on a Quit Claim Deed for 123 Elm St. in Wayne County Register of Deeds.

The ABC Properties took out a mortgage on 123 Elm St. and defaulted, where it ended up at the Wayne County Sheriff's sale.

Waiting in the auditorium for the Wayne County auction, 123 Elm St. was never called to auction.

Then, a new Quit Claim Deed magically appears in the Wayne County Register of Deeds as ABC Properties, LLC, registered as a domestic, or perhaps as seen in some instances as a foreign entity, in the State of Michigan, where another mortgage is taken out on 123 Elm St.

Some time later, the Detroit Land Bank Authority swoops in to file a Quiet Title action, wiping out all outstanding liens, mortgages and taxes, only to sell it to another LLC, in the same, exact "switch-o-change-o" out of state/in state Corporate Shape Shifter fraud scheme.

But, since there was no mention the Detroit Land Bank Authority, I am going to giddily assume that it is recognized as never existing, so I am not going there.

Thank you, Allie.  You are a burst of brilliant reality to your profession.  This report is bad ass.

Time to step your games up, keepers of the record.

I want this stuff blockchained.

Detroit real estate game creates chaos in neighborhoods


Felicia Anderson shook her head as she looked at an outdated photo of 17529 Kentfield.
The gray, ranch-style bungalow was visible from the 59-year-old’s bedroom window. She saw it every day. But it had been years since she glimpsed at it as it once was: well-kept and thoughtfully trimmed. A home.

“Eli took care of it. Inside and out,” Anderson said as she looked at the Google Street View image from 2013, back when Eli Brown, her sister’s ex, lived in the northwest Detroit house. “He kept it up.” 
This house is at 17529 Kentfield St. in Detroit.

It's easy to write off such conditions as a thing of Detroit's past. A so-called pre-renaissance problem.

The aftermath of Detroit’s economic downturn. A byproduct of middle-class flight from the city, disinvestment and the subprime mortgage crisis.

The chain of title on Kentfield, however, highlights a more recent and concrete undoing. First, cash-poor Detroiters lose their homes in the annual Wayne County tax foreclosure auction. Then, hands-off speculators swoop in and either "rent" the houses back to those who lost them, using predatory schemes that often lead to evictions and cycles of instability, or, as is more common, the speculators just sit on them.

The end result:
  • Blocks of homes rot as investors wait for a fabled payout.
  • Home values for Detroiters in the neighborhoods plummet.
  • A dysfunctional housing market is created where one home can fetch anything from $500 to $51,000 — with no consistency or logic.
There are no clear winners. Just chaos.

Kentfield exemplifies this trend: From 2012 — when Brown lost the house to tax foreclosure and then signed a rent-to-own land contract before eventually being evicted — to present day, 17529 Kentfield swapped hands eight times. In those six years, it landed in the portfolios of speculators in California and Illinois and even back in the tax auction in 2016.

With each transaction, passing year and repackaging of the property —  the home was often bundled with others — the house deteriorated. Its value declined.

Kentfield is one 23 properties the Detroit Free Press studied this past spring to better understand property speculation and its impact on Detroit neighborhoods. To come up with a sample group, the Free Press focused on one out-of-state speculator — Los Angeles LLC Elite Value Properties — and tracked the properties in its portfolio. The study revealed a complex system in which homes swapped hands in various bundles and newfangled arrangements with the ease and familiarity one normally associates with balancing a checkbook or filling up a tank of gas.

Of the group, 20 were lost to tax foreclosure in 2012 and three in 2013.

While 78 percent of the properties appeared to be occupied in 2011, according to an analysis of Google Map images, 78 percent were either abandoned, demolished or burned down this spring when the Free Press visited the properties.

Additionally, of the 23 homes, 60 percent ended up back in the auction because none of the speculators paid property taxes on the houses they purchased. (Homes are foreclosed and placed in the auction after three years of unpaid property taxes.)

While the auction — which is required by law — is billed as a tool to reactivate abandoned spaces and recoup revenue, the opposite happened to this set of homes.  

See the houses and details of transactions by clicking on the map below:
"The Wayne County Tax Foreclosure Auction is one of the greatest destabilizing forces in Detroit," said Joshua Akers, assistant professor of Geography and Urban and Regional Studies at the University of Michigan-Dearborn, who in 2016 launched the website Property Praxis to document speculation in the city.

"The auction is the perfect way to gamble. If a bet doesn't pay off in three years, all you lost is the initial purchase price," he continued. "At least that's the speculative perspective. There is a much higher cost for the neighborhoods."

According to Akers, the Free Press study and his own research underscore an often-ignored truth: Blight is an active process caused by people, policies and economic interests, rather than the passive phenomenon it’s often made out to be.

“We often think of decline as a slow process," he said. "But what’s actually happening is people and agents engaging in different practices like speculation that contribute to the decay we see."

Back by Kentfield Street, this is hard to ignore. Loved and cared-for homes — tended to as recently as 2013 — are now not only empty but liabilitiesfor neighborhoods.

“I don’t want to live across the street from another abandoned house,” Anderson said with a sigh, pointing to the half-dozen neglected nooks and recently demolished plots that surrounded the home she rents. 

A closer look at speculation

Land speculation is not unique to Detroit.

"It would be difficult to overemphasize the importance of land greed in American history," historian R. Kent Newmyer wrote in 2007, pointing to the fact that for "the better part of two centuries" the idea of "cheap land" attracted millions of immigrants to the country — specifically those traveling west in pursuit of Manifest Destiny.  <=== Oh, no, she did not go there!!!

"It was fought over by the rich and powerful to see who could get the most and the best. It was fought for by the poor, who wanted a little piece of the action and who, unlike the large buyers and sellers, were willing to put their lives on the line to get it."

Detroit today is just a new manifestation of a long American pursuit. What makes the city remarkable, however, is the sheer number of homes available. In 2007, the height of the mortgage meltdown, 5 percent of Detroit's homes were repossessed — the highest rate in the nation. Between 2002 and 2016, 143,958 properties landed in the tax auction.

The elevated numbers, cheap prices and the ease by which homes can be purchased — with the click of a mouse via the online auction — have conspired to create a chaotic reality.

Between 2005 and 2015, speculative investors accounted for 90 percent of all purchases in the Wayne County Tax Auction, according to Akers and Eric Seymour, a postdoctoral research assistant at Brown University who co-authored a 2016 paper on the consequences of speculative bulk buying.

To conduct their study, the duo defined speculator as: A person (or LLC) with three or more parcels in an area in which the owner does not have a taxable address; a person with a large number of parcels in varying conditions and disuse; a person with a single vacant or abandoned property but with an out­-of-­state or international address; a person with a residential property that serves as a taxable address for multiple owners with three or more holdings in the city.

Akers said he has since reassessed the definition and changed the first and last requirement to a person with five or more properties. It has not made a drastic difference, as roughly 40 percent of the properties purchased between 2005 and 2015 were by bulk buyers of 50 or more properties.

While most people, according to Akers, like to focus on the visual consequences of a neighborhood's decline, the instigators — speculative investors engaging in a steady and continuous swapping of capital and titles — often go under the radar.

“What looks to us like a slow decay of vacant and abandoned property that’s static is actually moving quite quickly in financial markets around the world. Capital is changing hands all the time, titles are changing hands all the time,” Akers told Michigan Radio in a 2016 interview. “The friction from that, the outcome of that are the conditions we see in the city.”

And those outcomes, according to Akers, manifest in two forms: vacant properties left to sit fallow, and/or predatory rent-to-own land contracts in which the prospective buyer has a high likelihood of eventual eviction.

While 18 of the 23 homes that the Free Press tracked are currently empty — the first option — many, at some point, fell victim to the latter. 

The trouble with land contracts

Eighteen of the 23  were originally purchased in the foreclosure auction by Benjigates Estates, a local real estate company that has since shuttered but utilized the land-contract model.

Benjigatesbought thousands of properties in the auction and then "sold" them — often to former owners — with rent-to-own land contracts in which  the renter would be responsible for paying both monthly payments (often referred to as rent) and the property taxes.

In a 2013 profile in Crain's, Benjigates' principals explained that because of the "market," they couldn't afford to pay taxes while also offering "prices feasible to low-income buyers."

For this reason, the principals explained, the company set contract periods of a year or a year and a half and once the buyerhad paid in full, gaining possession of a home's title, he or she had two years to pay the current and back taxes owed before the house went into foreclosure.

Nearly half of the homes Benjigates purchased were occupied, Antoine Hayes, Keith Hudson and Eugene Broadway, Benjigates' principals, explained.

The Free Press attempted to reach Benjigates via the company's Facebook page but did not hear back. The organization dissolved in 2016 following a court order, according to the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs.

While the arrangement could be problematic for many buyers who already had lost their homes because of cash-flow problems, it had another complication.

Land contracts — a popular home buying tool in Detroit where mortgages have historically been hard to come by — have little protections for buyers.

"Land contracts can be so pernicious there is no filing requirement, there is just no regulation on them," explained Peter Hammer, director of the Damon J. Keith Center for Civil Rights at Wayne State University Law School. "They can just exist in this completely private space, and almost no accountability for them."

While in 2017 there were efforts to draft legislation that would regulate land contracts, it never came to be, according to Lorray Brown, co-director of the Michigan Law Poverty Program, who was working on the provision.

"The draft legislation never made it out of the work-group meetings as there were a lot of oppositions from the industry folks," Brown wrote in an email this week, noting that she's seen a number of private investors purchasing uninhabitable and dilapidated foreclosed homes and selling them to consumers under land contracts.

"These land contracts are predatory because they are set up to fail," she wrote, explaining that the contracts often require consumers to take on all of the obligations of a homeowner with none of the rights.

"The terms of the contract require the consumer to fix up the property within a reasonable time. Then there is usually a provision that says if the consumer fails to comply with any of the provisions, the contract will convert to a month-to-month tenancy and the seller will terminate the contract. The seller then takes back the property through eviction and the consumer loses all of the money invested in repairing the property," Brown wrote.

This could be seen in the history of the house on Kentfield.

In 2012, Benjigates purchased the home at the tax auction for $1,350 (that year, the company bought 442 properties at auction, 129 of which they scored for the minimum bid of $500). Benjigates offered to sell Kentfield back to Eli Brown with a rent-to-own land contract. Brown agreed. But in July 2014, before he regained the title, he was evicted over an outstanding debt of $3,100 — a 129-percent increase in what Benjigates paid for the house at auction.

A year later — before the house could go back to auction for a lack of property tax payments — Benjigatessold the house to a company in Chico, California, in a bundle of 21 houses for the price of $5,000, or $238 per house.

At this point, the house's trajectory took a turn and went down the other path Akers describes: vacancy.

According to a 2015 report by Loveland Technologies, a data and mapping service, almost 1 in 6 of the occupied homes in the 2014 tax auction was vacant by fall 2015. Of those empty homes, 180 were considered demolition candidates. In short: Homes that were once occupied by people now not only sit empty but are considered dangerous eyesores.

"You have this auction, which was designed to either buttress the property market or get property taxes to produce revenue, but at the end of the day, it has actually further undermined both the effort to get public revenue and also to re-establish a property market because you have all these speculators and other people coming in just snatching up properties not out of need but on a belief that this market will somehow come back," said Hammer.

He pointed out that sale prices are often dictated by comparable home sale prices, a neighborhood, or schools in an area — but in the case of much of Detroit, they're often determined by arbitrary factors like the taxes owed.

"It hasn’t come back for most of the city," Hammer continued. "And therefore speculators can’t generate revenue. They’re not renting it necessarily. They’re not paying their taxes. And these properties just go through this cycle."

One buyer, 23 houses, little profit

William Joseph Whitaker has never been to 17529 Kentfield, but for one month in 2016, the Los Angeles resident owned it.

Benjigates  may highlight the rental path for a speculator, but Whitaker — the man behind Elite Value Properties — showcases the other trajectory: houses that just sit there.

In the fall of 2015, Whitaker traveled to Indianapolis for a two-day “field training” on property rentals with real estate guru Aaron Adams.

"We feel like US rental properties is the BEST investment you can use to create cash flow for your retirement," Adam’s company, Alpine Management, opined on its website at the time.

Whitaker didn’t need much convincing. He created his LLC at the seminar and purchased two homes from Adams that week. Upon returning to his own apartment in Los Angeles, a friend encouraged the then-50-year-old to scope out Detroit. It was, he remembers the friend saying, "hot."

He linked up with Dennis Elliott, one of the top owners of real estate in Detroit, who is behind Diversified Investment and Asset Management, two Chico, California-based LLCs.

Elliott had purchased several homes from Benjigates in December 2015, and in January 2016, Whitaker threw down just under $15,000 to buy the 22 houses from Elliott’s two LLCs and one from an LLC based in Jackson, Wyoming, according to the Wayne County Register of Deeds.

“I bought the properties for pennies on the dollar. I thought it was a good deal," he said.

In reality, they were mostly, he said, dumps.

"One had a tree growing inside. I bought them sight unseen,” Whitaker said by phone in January.
A month after his purchase, and realizing he was in over his head, Whitaker sold 20 of the 23 properties.

Kentfield was sold to a man and woman in Illinois, who bought 14 of the properties from Whitaker. The rest went to people in California, Tennessee and England.

The three remaining houses were in better shape, so Whitaker held on to them.

The home at 18906 Moross was eventually sold in June 2018 to a woman in Sugarland, Texas, for $14,500. The home at 12569 Glenfield was listed in January for $4,500 — with a memorable Zillow ad that noted a "friendly squatter" may be living inside. It ultimately fetched $2,500 in May — sold to a man in Maricopa, Arizona. The home at 21506 Orchard sold in December 2017 for $14,250. It was the only one of Whitaker's homes that was sold to an actual Detroiter.

“I’d never recommend anyone buying in Detroit, at least not residential investors," Whitaker said in January, noting that while he was able to sell some of the homes for decent prices, he had at one point hired a management company to try and rent out the houses (this was not successful) and had put money into some upkeep like "removing a squatter." Ultimately, there was no profit, he said.

"The only people doing well are the industrial investors who are buying large swaths of land,” Whitaker said, laughing at what felt like an absurd experiment on his part.

While Whitaker was happy to unload the properties, a look at the trajectory of many highlights the riskiness of the process. 

Months after Harold Fortner Jr. and Kathleen Kiska of Buffalo Grove, Illinois, purchased the properties from Whitaker, many were seized by Wayne County. Nobody over the years had been paying the property taxes. In fact, 60 percent of the homes in Whitaker's inventory ended up back at the auction.

The Free Press tried texting and calling multiple phone numbers associated with Fortner and Kiska but did not hear back.

When Kentfield was sold again in the 2016 auction, it was purchased for $701 — a nearly 95-percent decrease from its 2012 sale price.

Trying to track the actual value of the house is an impossible task as no coherent market exists — just hopes and dreams of what is and isn't possible.

"What we often see coming out of tax foreclosure and mortgage foreclosure is that bulk buyers are often preying on one another," said Akers. "I think it’s musical chairs. The last person without a chair is the one who got duped. There is a lot of shuffling. Speculator shuffling, then moving people into properties, out of properties."

Damaging neighborhoods

This house is at 9217 Bishop St. in Detroit.
Of course, it's not just speculators who lose. The residents of the neighborhoods — those who lack the most agency, financial capital and say in what occurs around them — have borne the biggest burden: blight and exploitation.

While Kentfield is a good example of how the auction and speculation conspire to breed blight and dysfunction, it is only one of many damaged streets.

Driving around Detroit — east side, west side — the conditions are the same.

Take 9217 Bishop St. 
Bishop Street is only 11 miles east of Campus Martius in downtown Detroit. But it might as well be in another city.

On an airless Wednesday afternoon John Dillon, 80, sat in front of his house talking with Andre Moore, a former neighbor and now friend.

Moore had moved to the neighborhood — on Yorkshire Street, a block over — in 1987. His was, he said, the third black family to move to the block.

“I left in 1997, and when I left, every house had people in it,” Moore said from Dillon’s stoop. Kitty-corner, and just in view, is 9217 Bishop, one of the 23 homes that, at one point, ended up in the hands of Whitaker.

In 2008, the house was lost to mortgage foreclosure over a $98,174 debt and ended up in the hands of Aurora Loan Services.

Aurora Loan Services sold the house to SD Associates by quit claim deed, for an undisclosed sum, and that same year, SD Associates sold the house to a buyer for $3,499.

That buyer lost the home to tax foreclosure in 2012, though Aurora Loan Services was the name on the foreclosure notices. And Benjigates purchased the house at the 2012 Wayne County Tax Auction for $500.

In June 2015, the Detroit Land Bank went before Judge Robert Colombo asking that he declare the house a nuisance. But this did not deter Benjigates, in December 2015, from selling the house to Elliott's Asset Management in a bundle of 21 homes for $5,000 ($238 per house).

In January 2016, Asset Management sold the house to Elite Value Properties in a bundle of eight houses for $4,000 ($500 per house). In February 2016, Elite sold the house to Fortner and Kiska for an undisclosed sum in a quit claim deed. In February 2018, Judge Colombo ordered the property be taken over by the Detroit Land Bank. Last month, the Detroit Land Bank sold the property to an individual buyer for $1,900.

These granular details and transactions are almost irrelevant to Dillon — who goes by "Pops" — and Moore. While there is hope that someone like the new buyer can actually reactivate the space, what they see, right now, is abandonment.

Abandonment that feels like quicksand. It is nearly impossible to stop the trend once it’s started. 
“I can’t leave because I can’t afford to,” said Dillon, who purchased his house 25 years ago when the neighborhood was still bustling.

He pays $700 a month on his mortgage, which he is “just about” done with. Then he will own the house in full. A house that when he bought it — in a then-diverse and densely populated neighborhood — had value.

“I was born and raised in Detroit and I cry when I see this,” said Dillon. “A whole block of lots and every other  one  is mowed. Take it away from the people who are just holding on and sitting on it. The people who are playing. They should have to pay to tear it down.”

Moore, who now lives in Southfield, nodded as “Pops” spoke.

This house is at 13224 Hubbell Ave. in Detroit.
“I feel sad, sad knowing how it was. How it used to work,” the 46-year-old said. “It was beautiful.”

Across town, the people may be different, but blocks, houses and stories sound eerily similar.

If Cynthia Brown and her brother KB craned their heads, they could see 14923 Hubbell,  another property picked up by Benjigates in the 2012 auction for $500. 

Like Kentfield and Bishop, the Hubbell house was passed along in the same bundle of 21 properties from Benjigates to Elliott in Chico and then on to Whitaker in Los Angeles, and then, eventually, to Fortner and Kiska in Illinois. 
Like Kentfield, nobody paid property taxes on the house. In the fall of 2016, it was sold in the auction for $500 to Brian Pepper. In November, Pepper sold the house to Florida-based Lima & Charlie Business Investments for $51,000.

The high sale price — an almost mythical figure — is what attracts so many to the speculator game. But despite the elevated sale price, the house is still an eyesore. It still stands vacant.

"What a market does is it provides some sort of private ordering. It gives value. You are matching, in theory, supply and demand. People who want something and someone willing to sell something," said Hammer, the WSU law professor, synthesizing the situation.

"When you have this absence of a market, it’s an environment for just random and bizarre things to take place with a theme of exploitation and pipe dreams of making money off housing."

Brown and KB didn’t know about the California companies that had owned the house or the Florida investment company that had just bought it.

What they did know was that RD Ware, KB’s best friend, had owned the home. When Ware died, his stepson started to take care of the house. Then it was lost to tax foreclosure.

The home is clearly abandoned today. Plywood serves as a door or a barrier, depending on who you are. The once delicate flowers that grew out front are gone.

But the grass outside is cut.

This, according to Brown, is because the neighbors next door refuse to let it get out of control.
“The couple next door pay to have the grass cut, to make it look lived in,” Brown said. “To keep the neighborhood going.”

Protecting the most vulnerable

Getting a handle on the chaos caused by speculation is difficult.

In January 2015, Gov. Rick Snyder signed into law a bill that prohibits individuals with a foreclosed property or delinquent taxes from bidding in the auction. Land contracts, which put the taxes on the tenant, however, give bulk buyers, speculators, an out.

More notably, many are buying under LLCs and so the issue of being associated with a foreclosed property is harder to come to light. One needs to just register a new LLC and continue to bid, under the radar.

The result of the auction and speculation have drastically altered the makeup of Detroit.
Black homeownership peaked in Detroit in 2000 with 144,571 units, according to Akers and Seymour. By 2015 that share fell by 46 percent to 95,506 units.

“As oversimplifying as it is, there are two Detroits," Akers said of downtown rising and neighborhoods deteriorating. "I don’t really know how you debate that.”

The Wayne County Treasurer's Office points to the declining number of occupied houses in the auction as evidence of a new direction that the office has taken since Eric Sabree was appointed in April 2016.

The county went from 28,000 foreclosures in 2015 to less than 7,000 this year.

"The Wayne County Treasurer is always focused on doing what he can to improve stability in neighborhoods and reducing foreclosures, down to zero if possible," Mario Morrow, spokesperson for Sabree said, noting that Sabree is bound, by law, to hold an auction every year.

In terms of the allowance of speculators partaking in the auction, Morrow says Sabree's  hands are tied. While all auction participants must sign an affidavit, which includes a promise that nobody listed as a grantee on the deed has delinquent property taxes, beyond this, Morrow says, it's hard to monitor.

"The Wayne County Treasurer's Office doesn’t have the resources, financial or human, to police thousands of properties that are sold in the auction. Input from the community is appreciated in that regard. So, yes, the Treasurer and the office care but cannot, on their own, resolve all concerns.

Legally, speculators are allowed to purchase as long as they’ve followed the rules," Morrow said.
As of July, there were 3,959 structures and lots on the county's foreclosure list — a list that if nothing changes over this month, will be indicative of what is up for grabs in the 2018 Wayne County Tax Auction, which starts next month.

The county did not provide occupancy stats in its list, but Loveland Technologies did an analysis and found 1,866 unoccupied structures, 1,405 occupied structures, 419  vacant lots and 269 unknowns. 
Back on Detroit's northwest side, Anderson was happy: 17529 Kentfield had sold for a second time since it landed in the 2016 Wayne County Tax Auction.

The house was still boarded up but there were four cars in the empty lot next to it, and — most notably — signs of life. A motorcycle, two lawnmowers, two BBQs and piles of trash were scattered across the front lawn.

An older couple, Anderson said, had bought it. They were, she said, clearing it out. 
There was hope that after the four years since Eli Brown had been kicked out, a new, stable and permanent neighbor would return.

"They're taking the debris out," Anderson said with a smile. "I'm just glad someone got it."

Contact Allie Gross: Follow Allie on Twitter @Allie_Elisabeth.

Voting is beautiful, be beautiful ~ vote.©

Cocktails & Popcorn: Detroit Grand Jury Probe On Gabe Leland & His Lust For Cocktails & Popcorn - Michael Bullotta Is Back In Action

Image result for doj popcorn
"I C Public corruption. Woop, Woop!"
Well, at least we know one thing about the U.S. Attorney's Office in Detroit, they like Cocktails & Popcorn!

Now, you know darn well that the U.S. Attorney, particularly Michael Bullotta, is not going to just subpoena a bar bill over cocktails and popcorn.

I speculate it has something to do with election irregularities, you know, like absentee ballots, voting machines, data manipulation, campaign finance, forgery, fraud, you know the schpeil. 

Or it could have something to do with that pesky "attorney-client privilege" going back to those darn Detroit text message case precedent.

Michael Bullotta prosecuted the Kwame Kilpatrick case, perhaps, he was lecturing on text messages in countering global transnational organized crime to law enforcement to the FBI.

Quite obviously, certain individuals in the FBI were absent for that lecture.

Forgive me for my digression.
Image result for girl thinking hmm
"Hmmmmm....does William Isaac Robinson suck?
He is a 'Legal Genius' (trademark pending), you know."
Anyway, I wonder if the federal grand jury probe has to do anything with Gabe Leland's staffer, William Isaac Robinson, of whom recently, surprisingly, won the election for Michigan State Senate, probably on his previous professions of being the one individual, to gloriously go down in history, as the one who took John Conyers, Jr. out of office.

Or, just perhaps, it the grand jury probe may branch off into election fraud, but, of course, I would have no reason to imply election fraud, or voter fraud, or any other forms of violating voting rights by and through the use of absentee voting ballots using forged precinct delegate candidate forms, or even forged absentee ballots, you know, at those Detroit Land Bank Authority properties that seem to be slowly reverted back to the authority of the City of Detroit.
Or, perhaps, it has something to do with campaign finance, stolen database, espionage, TARP, and your classic Detroit public corruption investigation that never went away....Hmmmm.... maybe it has to do with the fact that Perkins Coie sucks...but hey, what do I know?

That would make much more sense, right?

Or, it could just be a simple case of Cocktails & Popcorn, but I doubt it, but, hey, what do I know?

Detroit Councilman Gabe Leland subject of federal grand jury probe

A federal grand jury has been impaneled to investigate claims that Detroit City Councilman Gabe Leland allegedly extorted thousands of dollars in free alcohol, food and other items in exchange for political promises from a shuttered downtown bar, according to a subpoena obtained by the Free Press.

The subpoena was issued Aug. 8 by Assistant U.S. Attorney R. Michael Bullotta and sought all d ocumentation related to Leland possibly obtaining:
  • Free entry into parties or events
  • Free alcoholic or non-alcoholic drinks
  • Free food, including entrees, appetizers and desserts
  • Any other items of value provided free of charge or at a discounted price
The probe is the latest twist in a lengthy legal battle that began in November 2016 when the co-owners of the former Centre Park Bar, 1407 Randolph, first filed a lawsuit against Mayor Mike Duggan and other city officials. Leland has not been charged with any crime.

The original suit, which is still winding through the court system, claimed police harassment and alleged Dennis Archer Jr., former Mayor Dennis Archer's son, received favorable treatment while buying the building the bar occupied.

A separate lawsuit was filed in July by attorney Andrew Paterson on behalf of Centre Park co-owner Kenneth Scott Bridgewater, alleging Leland stopped by the bar in fall 2016 to speak with him about the ongoing issues the bar was having. The lawsuit also names Detroit Police Officer Robert Harris and Detroit Fire Department Captain Calvin Harris.

Leland did not respond to a request for comment but his attorney Steve Fishman said in a statement to the Free Press:

"The allegations made by the former owners of Centre Park Bar that Gabe Leland received preferential treatment are too ridiculous to deserve further comment.  Contact me again if even one document exists that supports that claim."

Paterson said in a statement Thursday regarding the federal probe that his clients were forced to close earlier this year “due to the unethical and possibly illegal actions of certain elected and appointed officials of the City of Detroit and the Detroit Downtown Development Authority.”

“My clients are thankful for the opportunity the U.S. Attorney's office and the FBI have given them to help expose the unlawful and corrupt conduct of certain city officials and their associates,” Paterson said in a statement to the Free Press, adding that they plan to assist the "ongoing criminal investigation."

The U.S. Attorney's Office and FBI declined to comment.

In late July, the councilman called the July federal lawsuit filed against him a "witch hunt."
When asked by a Free Press reporter at the time whether the allegations were false and whether he'd accepted any free alcohol or food, Leland did not directly answer the question.

"These are allegations," Leland said. "I sat in the restaurant and I had a drink and I had some food. That isn’t illegal. … Anybody in this city who thinks they can get some influence out of me for a tequila and a taco is greatly mistaken."

The bar initially signed a lease in August 2013 with the Detroit Downtown Development Authority, which was not set to expire until Aug. 19 of this year.

But in September 2015, the DDA requested development proposals from developers to acquire properties owned by the DDA to redevelop the old Paradise Valley area.

Centre Park also prepared a development proposal for the property but Archer's investment group, Gotham Capital Partners, was eventually selected as the winning bidder.

After Centre Park ownership started to publicly question the process, Bridgewater alleges the bar was retaliated against and was visited and ticketed several times by police officers.

Bridgewater claims during their initial conversation and "without being asked," Leland offered to assist him in addressing the issues Centre Park Bar was experiencing.

But according to the suit, Leland later in the conversation demanded "free entry into parties," as well as free alcoholic drinks and food whenever he visited the bar.

Bridgewater claims he asked Leland whether his demands were ethical and lawful, and Leland said it was “normal practice” for local restaurants and bars in the City of Detroit to "provide members of the Detroit City Council and other elected and city officials with free alcoholic drinks and free food upon request."

"Plaintiff Bridgewater did not want to honor Defendant Leland’s demands, but felt compelled to do so," Peterson wrote in the July suit. "... Bridgewater feared that if he did not honor Defendant Leland’s demands that Defendant Leland would make sure that Centre Park Bar would continue to be ticketed and closed."

Bridgewater alleges in the suit he feared retaliation because Leland said if he didn't honor his demands, it would be a "sure thing" that the bar would be harassed and evicted from the property.
The bar eventually closed in April 2018, Bridgewater says, in part because of the alleged harassment.
City of Detroit Corporation Counsel Lawrence Garcia said in a previous statement to the Free Press that "any allegation that DPD Officer Harris or of DFD Capt. Harris were acting inappropriately by 'harassing the Center Park Bar into closing' are false."

The lawsuit is the latest legal woe to hit Leland and comes less than four months after a Detroit businessman claimed in a separate federal lawsuit that Leland demanded $15,000 for his re-election campaign weeks before the August primary in exchange for a political favor.

In January, Leland was named a potential target in a wide-ranging FBI corruption probe involving local towing magnate Gasper Fiore. Leland, who was re-elected to a second term on council in November, has not been charged with any crime.

Fiore, who pleaded guilty last December to bribing a Macomb County official, faces up to five years in prison. His case is part of a broader corruption scandal that has ensnared at least 20 individuals, many of whom have pleaded guilty.

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Thursday, August 16, 2018

DOJ: Royal Bank of Scotland Agrees to Pay $4.9 Billion for Financial Crisis-Era Misconduct

Looks like Detroit is going to have a Happy New Year.

It also looks like criminal charges are still in play.

Settlement Is Largest Penalty Imposed On A Single Entity By The Justice Department For Financial Crisis-Era Misconduct

The Justice Department announced today a $4.9 billion settlement with The Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc (RBS) resolving federal civil claims that RBS misled investors in the underwriting and issuing of residential mortgage-backed securities (RMBS) between 2005 and 2008. The penalty is the largest imposed by the Justice Department for financial crisis-era misconduct at a single entity under the Financial Institutions Reform, Recovery, and Enforcement Act of 1989, which authorizes the federal government to seek civil penalties against financial institutions that violate various predicate criminal offenses, including wire and mail fraud.

“Many Americans suffered lasting economic harm as a result of the 2008 financial crisis,” said Acting Associate Attorney General Jesse Panuccio.  “This settlement holds RBS accountable for serious misconduct that contributed to that financial crisis, and it sends an important message that the Department of Justice will pursue financial institutions that illicitly harm the American economy and our consumers.”

"This resolution – the largest of its kind – holds RBS accountable for defrauding the people and institutions that form the backbone of our investing community,” said Andrew E. Lelling, U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts. “Despite assurances by RBS to its investors, RBS’s deals were backed by mortgage loans with a high risk of default. Our settlement today makes clear that institutions like RBS cannot evade responsibility for the damage caused by their illicit conduct, and it serves as a reminder that the Justice Department, and this Office, will hold those who engage in fraudulent conduct accountable.”

“The actions of RBS resulted in significant losses to investors, including Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, which purchased the Residential Mortgage-Backed Securities backed by defective loans,” said Associate Inspector General Jennifer Byrne of the Federal Housing Finance Agency-Office of Inspector General’s (FHFA-OIG). “We are proud to have partnered with the U.S Attorney’s Office for the District of Massachusetts on this matter.”

The settlement includes a statement of facts that details – using contemporaneous calls and emails of RBS executives – how RBS routinely made misrepresentations to investors about significant risks it failed to disclose about its RMBS. For example:
  • RBS failed to disclose systemic problems with originators’ loan underwriting. RBS’s reviews of loans backing its RMBS (known as “due diligence”) confirmed that loan originators had failed to follow their own underwriting procedures, and that their procedures were ineffective at preventing risky loans from being made. As a result, RBS routinely found that borrowers for the loans in its RMBS did not have the ability to repay and that appraisals for the properties guaranteeing the loans had materially inflated the property values. RBS never disclosed that these material risks both existed and increased the likelihood that loans in its RMBS would default. 
  • RBS changed due diligence findings without justification. RBS’s due diligence practices did not remove fraudulent and high-risk loans from its RMBS. For example, when RBS’s due diligence vendors graded loans materially defective, RBS frequently directed the vendors to “waive” the defects without justification. One due diligence vendor, which tracked waivers by most major participants in the RMBS industry, concluded that RBS waived material defects 30% more frequently than the industry average. RBS’s waiver of material defects routinely resulted in the securitization of loans with excessive risk. When it engaged in such waivers, RBS never included enhanced “scratch-and-dent” disclosures that would have alerted investors that loans with excessive risks were included in the RMBS.
  • RBS provided investors with inaccurate loan data. RBS’s due diligence frequently found that loan data – which RBS passed on to investors, who used the data to analyze the risks associated with its RMBS – were riddled with errors. Many inaccuracies made the loans look less risky than they actually were. RBS, however, did not require originators to correct the data errors. In one deal, where RBS identified over 600 data errors associated with 563 loans (including debt-to-income ratios understated by as much as 2700%), RBS failed to disclose these errors even to the originator; instead, RBS reassured the originator that RBS had not required originators to correct data errors in the past and did not anticipate doing so for that deal.
  • RBS failed to disclose due diligence and kick-out caps. To develop and maintain business relations with originators, RBS agreed to limit the number of loans it could review (due diligence caps) and/or limit the number of materially defective loans it could remove from a RMBS (kick-out caps). RBS’s scheme reached its height in two deals issued in October 2007. In both of these RMBS, RBS identified hundreds of underlying loans that carried a particularly high risk of default and would cause losses to the RMBS investors. RBS kept these materially risky loans in the RMBS, without disclosing their inclusion to investors, because RBS had agreed to a kick-out cap limiting the number of defective loans that RBS could exclude from the securities in exchange for receiving a lower price for the loan pool. As a result, over the entirety of its scheme, RBS securitized tens of thousands of loans that it determined or suspected were fraudulent or had material problems without disclosing the nature of the loans to investors. 

Through its scheme, RBS earned hundreds of millions of dollars, while simultaneously ensuring that it received repayment of billions of dollars it had lent to originators to fund the faulty loans underlying the RMBS. RBS used RMBS to push the risk of the loans, and tens of billions of dollars in subsequent losses, onto unsuspecting investors across the world, including non-profits, retirement funds, and federally-insured financial institutions. As losses mounted, and after many mortgage lenders who originated those loans had gone out of business, RBS executives showed little regard for this misconduct and made light of it.

These are allegations only, which RBS disputes and does not admit, and there has been no trial or adjudication or judicial finding of any issue of fact or law.

The settlement was the result of a multi-year investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the District of Massachusetts.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Justin D. O’Connell, Brian M. LaMacchia, Elianna J. Nuzum, Steven T. Sharobem, and Sara M. Bloom of Lelling’s Office investigated RBS’s conduct in connection with RMBS, with the support of the Federal Housing Finance Agency’s Office of the Inspector General.
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Cocktails & Popcorn: What Do Keith Ellison, Donald Trump & John Conyers Have In Common?

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Celestial Goddess of the Woodshed vs. The "Legal Geniuses"
(trademark pending) Final Boss Fight - Detroit
Q: What Do Keith Ellison, Donald Trump & John Conyers Have In Common?

I do hope everyone knows why Keith Ellison is being smeared, just 2 days before election, right?

Oh, you do not believe it is a smear?

Very well.

I need someone to explain to me how there is a video of him snatching his ex-girlfriend from the bed, cursing her out to get out his house.

My first questions are:

  • "Who was recording the video?" 
  • "How come the person recording the video did not intervene?"
  • "How come it took years for this to come into question?"
  • "Why did this come out days before an election?"
  • "How come there was no police report?"
  • "Why is the media reporting on a third party statement, without any formal Ethics or DOJ, or the U.S. Treasury referral for investigation?"
  • "Why is the media omitting anything dealing with the DNC lawsuit and Wikileaks?"
  • "Why does Perkins Coie Sucks?"
Oh, you ask, how do I know Perkins Coie Sucks?

Well, transposable models happens to be their forte' and they are "Legal Geniuses" (trademark pending) and I can prove it, in multiple dimensions and jurisdictions.

I think they are practicing their psyop skills for the Epic Final Boss Fight.


Democratic Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison wants ex-girlfriend Karen Monahan to know that the two “don’t have to destroy each other” over her claim that Ellison physically abused her.

Monahan, a liberal activist for Sierra Club, accused Ellison of physically and emotionally abusing her and claims to have a video of him dragging her off a bed, although she has yet to produce it.

Ellison is the deputy chair of the Democratic National Committee (DNC) and on Tuesday won the party’s nomination for Minnesota attorney general. He has repeatedly denied Monahan’s

(RELATED: DNC Finally Breaks Silence On Ellison Allegations. Here’s What It Said)

A reporter for local Minnesota station WCCO asked Ellison on Wednesday what he would say to Monahan if he could.

“I would say: we loved each other, we don’t have to destroy each other,” Ellison said.

“Is that what you think she is trying to do?” asked the interviewer.

“I don’t know, I don’t want to speculate on motive,” Ellison answered.

Monahan’s son Austin first aired the allegations against Ellison on Saturday and claimed to have witnessed the alleged video of Ellison’s abuse.

“I was using my moms computer trying to download something and I clicked on a file, I found over 100 text and twitters messages and video almost 2 min long that showed Keith Ellison dragging my mama off the bed by her feet, screaming and calling her a ‘fucking bitch’ and telling her to get the fuck out of his house,” Austin wrote in a viral Facebook post.

“Sitting all this time, watching what our mom went through and not being able to say or do anything was hard as hell. None of you know the hell our family has gone through. I don’t think half of you would even care,” Austin added.

“We watched her so called political friends stand by say or do nothing. People had an idea what happened and never reached out to my mom. The same people who are posting about social justice are ready to smear my mom, protect a person who abused her and broke the law.”

Like her son, Monahan has also said that she expects to be smeared for speaking out against Ellison.
“I was well prepared for the smears, etc. It is exactly what I wanted to bring to light,” she tweeted Monday.

“This issue is so much bigger than my story, but with each story that surfaces, we make a dent each time and it brings us closer to justice.”

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Pennsylvania Uncloaks Child Welfare Fraud In The U.S. & Around The World - Welcome To Detroit

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For there are eunuchs who were born that way; others were made that way by men;
 and still others live like eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. 
The one who can accept this should accept it.” 
Then the little children were brought to Jesus for Him to place His hands on them 
and pray for them; and the disciples rebuked those who brought them. 
But Jesus said, “Let the little children come to Me, and do not hinder them! 
For the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”…
Q; Where is the best place to hide if you are into doing nasty things to tiny humans?

A: In plain sight.

In this particular development of an international take down of child welfare fraud in the name of the christian tax exempt god, you have only one, small area, that is being unveiled, and that is the ecclesiastic structure of the Catholic Church, Holy See.

For those of you who are unaware, there are major criminal trials going on dealing with individuals over the fraudulent financial activities, collapsing the Vatican Bank, child trafficking and child pornography.

There are Catholic issues dealing with the trafficking of tiny humans in Argentina.

There are Catholic issues dealing with the trafficking of tiny humans in India.

There are Catholic issues dealing with the trafficking of tiny humans in the U.S. child welfare system of foster care and adoption, including refugees, the international term for foster care and adoption.)

But have no fear, we shall soon get to the religious factions of trafficking tiny humans operations in Islam and Judaism, shortly, because it is important to understand that each religion has a unique, historical approach when it comes to chattel law.

I know, personally, as the original source, that the Holy See, and the Archdiocese of Detroit know, in detail, of what goes on in the name of god when it comes to children in their care.

How do I know?

They sent me a letter, in response to a federal legal action, that said, in general:

"Whoops, our bad.  We so sorry."
signed by the attorneys for the Archdiocese of Detroit and the Holy See.

Always remember, you can not stop those who never get caught.

Stay tuned, we shall soon be entering the nasty, deep, dark world of the christians, when it comes to child welfare fraud, and something tells me that our point of departure is going to be Detroit, because it all started in Detroit.

It is all about the Public Private Partnerships, or rather the no-bid contracts.

Detroit has been trafficking tiny humans since the Underground Railroad, seriously, think about it.

So far, only 6 dioceses in Pennsylvania have been completed by the grand jury.

We still have 48 contiguous states, with Alaska, Hawaii, all U.S. Territories and any other area of the world where the U.S. has a military presences, to uncloak.

"…[i]n the writings of Nicholas, the Roman pontiff, it is narrated that the same Constantine said: 'Truly if my own eyes had seen a priest of God or any of those who wrap themselves in the robes of the monastery sinning, my cloak would have been stretched out and would have covered him up, so that no other would see him."

John of Salisbury, c1129, Policraticus

Priests with ties to Detroit among 300 accused in Pa. sex report

Three priests with ties to Metro Detroit are among 300 Roman Catholic priests in Pennsylvania accused of molesting more than 1,000 children since the 1940s, according to a state grand jury report released Tuesday that accused senior church officials of covering up complaints.
The accused include:

♦Ronald Yarrosh, who worked as an assistant promotion director for the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions in Detroit in 1974 and 1975. He returned to Detroit from 1977 to 1981.

Yarrosh worked in Pennsylvania parishes from 1982 until April 2004, when the Pennsylvania State Police searched his rooms found a "tremendous amount" of child pornography, the grand jury's report said.

The Pennsylvania State Police filed 110 counts of sexual abuse of children against Yarrosh after discovering hundreds of child pornography photos, books, magazines, videos and DVD's in his possession.

♦Robert E. Spangenberg, who worked an associate pastor at Old St. Mary's in Detroit's Greektown, sometime between 1974 and 1977, starting a new job in a parish in Pennsylvania in 1977. He worked in parishes in five other states through 1997.

The diocese was first notified of a problem with Spangenberg's ministry in 1988. A woman wrote to the diocese and to the Vatican in order to obtain help for her son, the report says.

Documents provided by the Diocese of Pittsburgh show Spangenberg was involved with at least two children. The report does not say where those alleged incidents occurred.
Spangenberg died in 2006.

♦Anthony J. Cipolla, who was a priest from 1972 to 2002 in multiple parishes in Pennsylvania.
Cipolla was first accused of sexually abusing children, specifically, two brothers who were ages 9 and 12 in 1978 while Cipolla was assigned to St. Francis Xavier in Pittsburgh. The abuses occurred in Cipolla' s bedroom in the rectory and also in a hotel room in Dearborn, the report said.

Cipolla was moved by his superiors from parish to parish throughout the diocese several times during his tenure, for a total of eight moves in a 16-year period, the report says.

Cipolla died in 2016.

An official with the Archdiocese of Detroit confirmed Wednesday that Yarrosh and Spangenburg worked in Detroit. No record of Cipolla serving in ministry in the archdiocese was found, said Holly Fournier, a spokeswoman for the Archdiocese of Detroit.

Fournier said the Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions confirmed that from 1977-81, Yarrosh was based in Detroit while traveling the country to make mission appeals during masses.

"We have no records of allegations brought to the AOD. In addition, we weren’t notified by his order or the Allentown diocese regarding the later allegations," Fournier said of Yarrosh.

Fournier said Spangenburg was a religious order priest, with the Congregation of the Holy Spirit Province of the United States, also known as Spiritans.

"He briefly served as associate pastor at Old St. Mary’s in Greektown from July 1975 until December of that same year when he moved to a parish in Pittsburgh," Fournier said.

"We have no records of allegations brought to the AOD. In addition, we weren’t notified by his order or the Pittsburgh diocese regarding the later allegations," she said.

Fournier said regarding Cipolla, she found an article that indicates he may have taught at St. Anselm School in Dearborn Heights for one year, in the late 1960s or early '70s.

"This would have been before his ordination into the priesthood in 1972. However, we were unable to find any record of his employment, so we can’t confirm this," she said.

The archdiocese has no records of allegations against Cipolla, she said.

"The accusations against him, including about an incident in Dearborn, were brought to Pittsburgh police and the Pittsburgh diocese. To our knowledge, the abuse was not reported to Dearborn police, and the Pittsburgh diocese did not advise us on this case," Fournier said.

On Monday, Detroit Archbishop Allen H. Vigneron issued a letter calling for an accounting for the failures that have occurred.

"This summer’s news reports affirm why we — as bishops, priests, Church representatives and lay people — must be ever vigilant to protect children from abuse and must re-double our efforts of outreach and healing to those most harmed by sexual abuse," Vigneron said in his letter.

The roughly 900-page report accused senior church officials, including a clergyman who is now the archbishop of Washington, D.C., of systematically covering up complaints.

The “real number” of abused children and abusive priests might be higher since some secret church records were lost and some victims never came forward, the grand jury said.

U.S. bishops adopted widespread reforms in 2002 when clergy abuse became a national crisis for the church, including stricter requirements for reporting accusations to law enforcement and a streamlined process for removing clerics who abuse children. But the grand jury said more changes are needed.

"Despite some institutional reform, individual leaders of the church have largely escaped public accountability,” the grand jury wrote in the report. “Priests were raping little boys and girls, and the men of God who were responsible for them not only did nothing; they hid it all.”

Top church officials have mostly been protected and many, including some named in the report, have been promoted, the grand jury said, concluding that “it is too early to close the book on the Catholic Church sex scandal.”

In nearly every case, Pennsylvania prosecutors found that the statute of limitations has run out, meaning that criminal charges cannot be filed.

More than 100 of the priests are dead. Many others are retired or have been dismissed from the priesthood or put on leave. Authorities charged just two as a result of the grand jury investigation, including a priest who has since pleaded guilty, though some of those named had been charged years ago.

The investigation of six of Pennsylvania’s eight dioceses — Allentown, Erie, Greensburg, Harrisburg, Pittsburgh and Scranton — is the most extensive investigation of Catholic clergy abuse by any state, according to victim advocates. The dioceses represent about 1.7 million Catholics.

Details on the allegations against Yarrosh say on April 29, 2004, he was removed from priestly ministry and entered a hospital for evaluation and treatment.

On May 12, 2004, the Pennsylvania State Police filed 110 counts of sexual abuse of children against him. Yarrosh pleaded guilty to charges of theft and possession of child pornography and was sentenced to three to 23 months.

After his release in 2005, Yarrosh registered with the Pennsylvania State Police as a sexual offender. Yarrosh was still a priest, the report says.

In November 2006, it was discovered that Yarrosh had taken trips to New York City with a 7-year-old child, the report says. Yarrosh also was found to be in possession of pornography, in violation of his court supervision.

Yarrosh was sentenced to 4 to 10 years in state prison for violating the terms of his supervision. In June 2007, the diocese dismissed Yarrosh from the priesthood.

Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions remains in operation in Detroit. No one from the organization was immediately available for comment.

The grand jury report on Spangenberg did not provide a date for his employment in Detroit. Records indicate it was likely between 1974 and 1977.

According to the report, the state grand jury said most information on Spangenberg came through newspaper articles and Spangenberg's own obituary.

The Diocese of Pittsburgh was first notified that there was a problem with Spangenberg's ministry in 1988. A woman wrote to the diocese and to the Vatican, naming Spangenberg as her son's abuser.

She stated another priest from Spangenberg's order was helping them with counseling. She wrote that she was upset that her letter was simply "noted" and that she has not heard from anyone regarding the matter since.

Officials did not take the accusation by the victim's family seriously enough to remove him, the report says, but they did reassign Spangenberg to a retirement home in Florida.

The grand jury report says in 2009, an adult male reported that when he was 15 to 16 years of age, he and Spangenberg engaged in sexual encounters.

The boy reported that he was involved in street prostitution with young boys known as "Hustlers." He was befriended by Spangenberg and said Spangenberg promoted the activity by engaging the boy in sexual activities after he ran away from home.

Spangenberg also paid the boy a finder's fee for him to locate younger hustlers to have sex with, the report says. The boy reported that Spangenberg enjoyed sniffing glue while Spangenberg performed oral sex on him.

The report said Spangenberg would pay for his sexual services with money from the collection box, typically one-dollar bills, and also would pay the boy in drugs and alcohol.

In Cipolla's case, criminal charges were filed again him after the victims' mother called the Pittsburgh Police Department.

The report says the charges were not pursued to a conclusion because, according to the mother, she was harassed and threatened by church officials to drop the charges and to "let the church handle it."

Members of the Pittsburgh Police Department who investigated the abuse of the brothers testified before the grand jury. They interviewed the first victim, who said on July 25, 1978, he had gone to St. Francis Xavier church/rectory for communion instructions.

The victim reported that he was taken to Cipolla's bedroom after he had answered some questions on his catechism instructions.

In the bedroom, the victim was told, "I (Cipolla) did this to you before. I'll do this again."

According to the victim, Cipolla shut all of the curtains and told the victim to take off his clothes.

Cipolla took all of his clothes off and Cipolla placed a thermometer in the boy's mouth and a stethoscope to his chest and told him he was going to examine him again.

The boy reported that Cipolla proceeded to molest and sexually assault him.

Cipolla told him that this was their secret and it would be a sin if he told anyone. He was made to sign a paper saying he would not tell anyone, the report said.

Detectives were told by parents that when the victim came home, he seemed scared. When they questioned him about it, he told them what had happened.

The second victim was interviewed by the detectives and reported that he was a victim of the same type of conduct as his brother. He believed that these incidents occurred "during the early vacation period of the summer of 1977."

He explained that after school let out for the summer and before a trip to Dearborn, he was told to get a physical examination.

Cipolla informed his mother that if her son came to the rectory, he would check her son's heart and blood pressure and they would not have to spend any money.

When the second victim arrived at the rectory, he was told to take off all of his clothing. Cipolla took his blood pressure, checked his heart with a stethoscope, then sexually assaulted him.

The first victim explained to the grand jury how the abuse affected his life, the report said.

"He noted his suffering (losing his father to suicide and losing his brother who was struck and killed by a car) and stated that he would have been able to handle it better 'without [the sexual abuse] happening to me, you know. I feel like I would've had a way more sound mind,' " the report said.

He said, "Basically, when a child is fooled with in any way, shape, or form, it is a lasting injury. It is a lifelong injury...I still have, you know, my issues with authority at points; and I still have my anger issues, but making great strides," he said.

"And if there is anything that you as a grand jury can do to ensure that you -- if you can save just one child, I have done my job. You have done yours. Please, please protect the children. Please."

All Hail The Whistleblowers: Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro Announces Grand Jury Report Of Sexual Abuse Of Children By Catholic Dioceses & Vatican

Learn more: BEVERLY TRAN: All Hail The Whistleblowers: Pennsylvania Attorney General Josh Shapiro Announces Grand Jury Report Of Sexual Abuse Of Children By Catholic Dioceses & Vatican
Stop Medicaid Fraud in Child Welfare 

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