By Peter J. BakerThe Wall Street JournalFebruary 9, 2018–(BUSINESS WIRE)–A group of former Goldman executives has accused Chase Financial of fraudulently selling its own mortgage cards.
Chase said Friday that it was reviewing its own practices in dealing with the fraud, and would launch a formal investigation into the matter.
“The fraud is very serious and the investigation has been underway for months,” Chase said in a statement.
“Chase will review the matter thoroughly to determine what actions were taken in response to the incident.”
The accusations stem from an October 2015 incident in which the card issuers, Wells Fargo and Ally Financial, agreed to a $3 billion settlement with the Department of Justice.
The deal was a result of the Department’s investigation into allegations that Wells Fargo was involved in a fraudulent mortgage loan scheme.
The allegations were first reported by the Wall Street Daily News and later confirmed by Chase, which was the only bank to settle.
The investigation found that Wells had improperly marketed and sold more than $4 billion in mortgage credit cards.
Citi also said in its complaint that Chase was “involved in a systematic and extensive effort to fraudulously misrepresent” Chase’s ability to offer credit cards and credit unions, the complaint said.
The complaint also said that Chase and Citi agreed to refrain from engaging in frauds that harmed consumers.
Chases spokesman Jim Lacy said that “the investigation is ongoing.”
“We continue to work with regulators and partners to fully understand the facts of the matter and the findings of the DOJ’s criminal investigation,” he said.
Citing a letter from Chase’s board of directors, Lacy added that the bank was committed to cooperating fully with the government investigation and “will continue to support the investigation into this matter.”
“Our commitment to ensuring the integrity of the credit card industry is unwavering and we remain committed to the enforcement of the laws and regulations that protect consumers,” he added.
Chains board of board voted in December to settle the criminal investigation into its mortgage-card business.
The settlement included a $2.25 billion settlement in March with the federal government and a $1.25bn payment in December with the SEC.
The board voted not to approve any changes to the settlement.
The investigation began when a former Wells Fargo employee, Mark Gorton, who had left the bank in the fall of 2015, said he saw fraudulents sell a $500 million Chase credit card to a customer and then tell the customer they had not been charged a transaction fee.
He also said he received a text message from Chase saying the card was not charged a fee for credit card purchases.
A bank spokesman declined to comment.
A former Chase spokesman did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Chances are high that the fraud involved a bank employee, the spokesman said.
“We will continue to cooperate with our regulators, including the DOJ, as they pursue this investigation,” Lacy wrote.
“Our commitment is unwaveringly and we continue to believe this is a serious matter.”
The Department of Homeland Security, which has jurisdiction over the fraud in question, declined to say Friday whether it had received any information that linked Chase to fraud.