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[Readings]

Contempt of Court

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From a deposition given over two days last year by Aaron Wider, CEO of HTFC, a mortgage investor, to Robert Bodzin, a lawyer for GMAC Bank. In February, U.S. District Judge Eduardo Robreno declared the deposition a “spectacular failure,” ordered Wider to give a new deposition, and fined Wider and his lawyer, Joseph Ziccardi, more than $29,000 for “hostile, uncivil, and vulgar conduct.” GMAC Bank has filed a lawsuit against HTFC alleging that the company sold loans that were not properly underwritten.

Robert Bodzin: My question is: Where are you currently employed?

Aaron Wider: I’m not. I work for free.

Bodzin: Okay. You’re not employed by HTFC Corporation?

Wider: No, I own HTFC Corporation. Be specific.

Bodzin: Okay. And what do the initials HTFC mean?

Wider: Hit That Fuckin’ Clown. That’s what it means. It’s an acronym.

Bodzin: Were you involved in flipping the property at 207 North Rutherford?

Wider: You tell me. And you provide that evidence to the court.

Bodzin: It doesn’t work that way, sir.

Wider: Yes, it does. That’s my answer. Listen, we can go around in circles and you’ll end up with the same answer: You tell me. You’re that good. You’re hired by GMAC.

Bodzin: Sir, were you involved in flipping that property?

Wider: I can’t recall. I’m involved in flipping you.

Bodzin: Sir, can you identify any specific loans that you wanted to sell into the marketplace that you were unable to sell?

Wider: I can identify hundreds.

Bodzin: Identify those loans for me.

Wider: I don’t carry them in my head, Bob.

Bodzin: Where is the information that would describe these loans?

Wider: Can you spell your name backward, Bob? That’s what you’re asking. Everything is done electronically. Everything is in the files. Can you spell your name backward, Bob? Tell me.

Bodzin: We’re going to adjourn this deposition, because you’re offending everyone.

Wider: Don’t speak for anybody here except yourself, fuckface.

Bodzin: I’m speaking for myself and I’m speaking for the court reporter.

Wider: If she had a problem with me, she would say something. She knows it’s not directed toward her. It’s directed toward you because you’re a piece of shit. I enjoy when you sit there and say I’m perpetrating a fraud, because I’m just better at the law than you are. You can’t get in the fucking door, and it’s pissing you off. Keep trying.

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June 2008