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Lawson v. Deutsche Bank National Trust Co.

United States District Court, D. New Jersey

September 13, 2019

GORDON FOSTER LAWSON, Appellant,
v.
DEUTSCHE BANK NATIONAL TRUST COMPANY, et al., Appellees.

          GORDON FOSTER LAWSON Pro Se Appellant

          ROBERT D. BAILEY PARKER IBRAHIM & BERG LLP. On behalf of Appellees Deutsche Bank National Trust Company, Impac Funding Corporation, Impac Secured Assets Corporation, Mortgage Pass-Through Certificate Series 2006 4&5, Select Portfolio Servicing Inc.

          HEATHER ELIZABETH SAYDAH WINSTON & STRAWN LLP On behalf of Appellee Bank of America NA and BAC Home Loan Servicing, LP

          JEANETTE F. FRANKENBERG STERN, LAVINTHAL & FRANKENBERG LLC On behalf of Appellee Stern, Lavinthal & Frankenberg LLC formerly known as Stern, Lavinthal Frankenberg & Norgaard LLC

          SEAN MICHAEL O'BRIEN FRENKEL LAMBERT WEISS WEISMAN & GORDON, LLP On behalf of Appellee Frankel Lambert Weiss Weisman & Gordon LLP

          RICHARD P. HABER MCCALLA RAYMER LEIBERT PIERCE, LLC On behalf of Appellee McCalla Raymer Leibert Pierce LLC

          OPINION

          NOEL L. HILLMAN, U.S.D.J.

         Pending before the Court is the debtor's appeal of the Bankruptcy Court's dismissal of his adversary proceeding. For the reasons expressed below, the decision of the Bankruptcy Court will be affirmed, and the debtor's appeal will be dismissed.

         BACKGROUND

         On September 26, 2006, appellant, Gordon Forster Lawson, entered into a note and mortgage with Coast Mortgage Corporation to purchase a home located at 10 Marvin Avenue, Linwood, New Jersey in the amount of $631, 400. On September 28, 2006, Lawson entered into a secondary note and mortgage with Coast Mortgage Corporation in connection with the same property in the amount of $180, 400. Both mortgages were recorded, and were eventually assigned to Appellee Deutsche Bank.

         On December 8, 2015, Deutsche Bank commenced a foreclosure action in the Superior Court of New Jersey, Atlantic County. Lawson filed an answer contesting the foreclosure, arguing that Deutsche Bank had no standing to prosecute the foreclosure because of defects in the loan documentation. Lawson also asserted claims of fraud and misrepresentation. Discovery was undertaken, Lawson inspected the original loan documents, and Deutsche Bank moved to strike Lawson's answer and for summary judgment in its favor. The state court granted Deutsche Bank's motion and permitted Deutsche Bank to proceed with the judgment of foreclosure. Lawson filed a motion for reconsideration, which the state court denied.

         On February 21, 2018, Lawson filed a Chapter 13 bankruptcy petition in this District, which stayed the entry of final judgment of foreclosure in state court.[1] Deutsche Bank filed a proof of claim in the amount of $1, 019, 701.05 on the first note and $363, 072.36 on the second note. Deutsche Bank and Select Portfolio, the servicer of the mortgages, also filed objections to Lawson's Chapter 13 plan, arguing that the plan was not feasible.

         Shortly thereafter, on June 1, 2018, Lawson filed an adversary complaint, the dismissal of which is the subject of his instant appeal. In his adversary complaint, Lawson challenged the standing of the named defendants - appellees here - to pursue their objections to confirmation and participate in his Chapter 13 case. Lawson alleged that the defendants used false documents and different names of real parties of interest to quickly pursue state court foreclosure matters and their claims in his Chapter 13 bankruptcy case thereby causing him irreparable harm. He argued, among other things, that defendants had no standing because of their violations of the Federal False Claims Act, 31 U.S.C. § 3729, 18 U.S.C. § 473 (Dealing in counterfeit obligations or securities), and the Fair Debt Collections Practices Act (“FDCPA”).

         Three weeks later, Lawson filed a case in the Eastern District of Virginia (1:18-cv-00640-LO-IDD, Lawson v. MerscorpHoldings, Inc. et al.) against the same parties alleging the same claims under the same statutes above, plus the Truth in Lending Act, 15 U.S.C. ยง 1601 et seq., seeking damages in the amount of $2, 500, 000. As the Bankruptcy Court noted, ...


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