I've followed this case pretty closely since it first emerged last summer and as usual not all is as it seems. Apologies if i am telling people
something they already know and if this is a bit long but there is a lot of detail for those that are interested.
Endowment mortgages come in two parts. An interest only loan for a fixed term (25 years in this case) and a separate endowment policy. The endowment
policy is an investment vehicle into which you pay a monthly premium and which matures at the end of the loan period. The plan is that the investment
will generate enough of a return to cover the original capital sum and hopefully a bit extra as a bonus.The two parts of the mortgage are usually with
two different companies and involve two separate monthly payments; the loan interest and the endowment premium. These type of mortgages were very
popular in the UK in the late '80s.
As far as I can tell, Mr Crawford definitely intended to take out an endowment mortgage when he borrowed the money to buy his house in 1988. In 2000,
he says that discovered that without his knowledge the bank had changed their mortgage from an endowment to a repayment type in which he was paying
the interest and some of the capital sum each month. It's not clear when this change happened but the inference is that it only lasted a short period
before they complained. The bank apologised and Mr Crawford assumed that the mortgage had been changed back to an endowment type. However, in 2006 he
says that he discovered that in fact he was only paying interest on the loan and nothing towards the endowment policy.
At some point after this Mr Crawford says the bank told him that the endowment policy had been "lost". In the repeated telling of his story the dates
when things happened tend to move around. However, he says that they were trying to sort the situation with little or no response from the bank
although details of just what he did are sketchy.
In any case, the situation came to a head in 2011 when he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, fell behind with the interest payments on the loan and
in 2012 the bank started proceedings to take possession of the house. The court hearing was delayed while Mr Crawford complained to the Financial
Ombudsman but ultimately his complaint was rejected as it was over the 6 year timescale. This usually means that it is more than 6 years since the
complainant knew (or should have known) there was problem.
The possession hearing resumed and fortunately, because his family were able to clear the outstanding interest payments a "Suspended Possession Order"
was granted which would only come into effect if they did not make payments as agreed. However Tom, aware that the loan period was due to end in 2013,
was concerned that the bank would expect repayment of the capital sum (c. £43,000) and that there was no endowment policy in place to supply the
Tom contacted the "Get Out of Debt Free" website in the UK, a well known repository of "freeman on the land / sovereign citizen" type advice which
broadly seeks to convince people that all mortgages are fraudulent, they don't need to pay for water, gas or electricity, hold a drivers licence,
insurance or registration etc. In fact Tom received some very sensible advice which was to speak to a legal professional because on the face of it, it
seemed that the bank was a least partly to blame for the situation but that he should not to expect the bank to cover the whole amount outstanding.
However, others gave Tom advice more typical on that website and convinced him that he should sue the bank on the grounds that the mortgage was
Unfortunately Tom ignored the sensible advice and drank the Koolaid that it's all a fraud and a conspiracy by banks, solicitors, courts and police.
He pre-emptively sued the bank on this basis - and lost or rather the judge threw the claim out without a formal hearing on the basis that it had "no
The bank obtained an "Order for Possession" which the court attempted to enforce with court bailiffs in July 2014. This was blocked by hundreds of
"lawful rebellion / freeman / Sov.Cit" protestors. The same occurred at the attempted eviction in February.
Since contacting GOODF in 2013 Tom has become a leading advocate of the "freeman" movement in the UK. Travelling around to obstruct other evictions,
speaking at meetings and even contacting MI5 to report the "fraud".
I have tried to discover whether Tom has any proof that the endowment policy ever existed, who it was with or how much he paid as a monthly premium.
Any of this information would appear to be good evidence that the bank screwed up. However, so far he hasn't been inclined to answer those questions.
He fully accepts that he has not paid the capital sum. He just feels that he has paid enough. He may have had a valid action against the bank but he
has decided to throw this away in order to pursue the nonsensical theories of GOODF.
edit on 13-3-2015 by NormalWisdom because: spelling correction