US Attorney Statement on Countrywide, Bank of America and Rebecca Mairone Verdict

Preet Bharara
Southern District of New York

“Almost a year to the day after we brought suit, a unanimous jury has found Countrywide, Bank
of America, and senior executive Rebecca Mairone liable for making disastrously bad loans and
systematically removing every quality check in favor of its own balance. As demonstrated at
trial, they adopted a program that they called “the Hustle,” which treated quality control and
underwriting as a joke.
In a rush to feed at the trough of easy mortgage money on the eve of the financial crisis, Bank of
America purchased Countrywide, thinking it had gobbled up a cash cow. That profit, however,
was built on fraud, as the jury unanimously found.
In this case, Bank of America chose to defend Countrywide’s conduct with all its might and
money, claiming there was no case here. The jury disagreed. This Office will never hesitate to
go to trial to expose fraudulent corporate conduct and to hold companies accountable,
particularly when it has caused such harm to the public.
I want to thank the members of the jury for their service in this important trial. And I commend
the Assistant U.S. Attorneys in the Office’s Civil Division for their dedication, skill, and tireless
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