Leighton Lionel Ward, manager and operator of The Advocacy for Consumer Rights (TAFCR) was arrested May 4, 2017, on allegations of fraud. Ironically, Ward solicits distressed home owners offering to file lawsuits against their mortgage company for contract fraud. Charging thousands of dollars up-front, Ward and TAFCR agreed to get mortgage holders out of their contracts and obtain refunds for the clients based on the language of the mortgage contracts.
TAFCR claims to specialize in the mathematical laws of grammar in contracts. They advertise that they use this expertise to review contracts and determine if the consumer is a victim of fraud. They claim many lenders make several violations of the law in their contracts, mislead the consumer, and issue predatory loans. Ward, on behalf of TAFCR, files lawsuits with the “Federal Postal Court” using syntax grammar. The “Syntax Grammar” is a language created or taught by David Wynn Miller that incorporates mathematical formulas, unusual syntax, and claims only nouns have legal meaning. Miller reopened the Federal Postal Court in 2012, a court created by Benjamin Franklin in 1775 that closed a year later when the Revolutionary War began. Miller appointed himself the Judge of the Federal Postal Court and Ward as a clerk of the court. Interestingly, the Federal Postal Court does not have a courthouse or other fixed location and is not recognized as a valid legal authority with some federal courts.
The “court” issues million dollar judgments against the lenders, of which TAFCR receives a percentage. Consumers believe the bogus judgments are legitimate. While they await their payout they often stop making their mortgage payments believing their contracts are now void. Sadly, some homeowners are foreclosed on, get deeper into debt, and face financial despair due to the fraudulent actions of Ward, TAFCR, and the phony court.
One consumer filed a complaint with Business Consumer Alliance because he never received the $12.1 million judgment TAFCR claimed he won. He paid Ward and company $3,300 upfront three years prior for assistance with his mortgage. During that period, little to nothing was done. You can imagine the excitement and relief the consumer felt when he was informed by Ward and TAFCR that he would be receiving $12.1 million from the bank and his property would be paid off. But instead of receiving the payout, he received foreclosure notices from his bank. The consumer was further disappointed when he took the matter to the Department of Justice (DOJ) to have the judgment enforced and had the claim denied. The DOJ stated they have not processed anything from the TAFCR and do not work with them. Instead of addressing the allegations of the complaint the consumer filed, Ward filed a lawsuit against the consumer, in syntax grammar, and BCA for processing the complaint. The consumer now faced losing his home.
Ward was arrested in Northern California and is expected to be extradited to Arizona to face charges. He allegedly has a felony warrant out of Tennessee for similar fraud allegations. The arrest of Ward may have put a halt to the works of F-rated TAFCR, but there are several other entities out there, waiting to defraud distressed homeowners.
The Federal Mortgage Assistance Relief Services Rule (MARS) makes it illegal to collect up-front fees for mortgage relief services. Anyone facing foreclosure or having difficulty paying their mortgage should avoid anyone that:
guarantees to stop the foreclosure process—no matter what your circumstances are
instructs you not to contact your lender, lawyer, or credit or housing counselor
collects a fee before providing any services and accepts payment only by cashier’s check or wire transfer
encourages you to lease your home so you can buy it back over time
recommends that you make your mortgage payments directly to it, rather than your lender
urges you to transfer your property deed or title to it
offers to buy your house for cash at a fixed price that is inappropriate for the housing market
pressures you to sign papers you haven’t had a chance to read thoroughly or that you don’t understand
Business Consumer Alliance offers a wealth of information and tips for consumers on a variety of topics. Visit our resource guides for information on mortgage relief scams, debt, and more.
Avoiding Mortgage Relief Scams
Foreclosure Frauds and Fixes
Mortgage Servicing - What You Need To Know