The National Association of Attorneys General hosted U.S. Attorney General Michael B. Mukasey as he delivered his first public address on Thursday during the Association's annual winter meeting in Park City, Utah.
"As Attorneys General, we share not only a title, but many of the same goals and challenges," said U.S. Attorney General Mukasey. "We have much to learn from each other, and much to gain by working together. I firmly believe that though we bring different perspectives to our jobs, we are, and have to be, partners in our shared pursuit of justice."
During the meeting, thirty-three Attorneys General, their staff, federal officials and members of law enforcement discussed a number of critical legal issues, including technology, health care and the current mortgage foreclosure crisis.
Georgia Attorney General Thurbert Baker, the Immediate Past President of the National Association of Attorneys General, was on hand to discuss issues of critical importance to Georgians with the United States Attorney General. "We are honored that Attorney General Mukasey first announced his law enforcement priorities to our association, and I was pleased that we were able to discuss ways to improve cooperation between state and federal law enforcement," Attorney General Baker said.
During the discussion of the mortgage foreclosure crisis, Attorney General Baker engaged his colleagues on the issue of mortgage fraud and how that white collar crime was exacerbating an already strained situation for homeowners. Baker stated that, "the last estimate of law enforcement was that one in four homes in foreclosure had some element of mortgage fraud in either the purchasing or lending process." Many of Baker's colleagues have examined Georgia's Residential Mortgage Fraud statute, which was the first of its kind in the nation when Attorney General Baker authored the legislation in 2005, and a number have proposed identical legislation in their own states to combat the scourge of mortgage fraud. "Our association's focus on mortgage fraud will be especially welcome given the growing concerns in the housing market. It is heartening to see a number of my colleagues join Georgia's lead on this vital issue."