| NEW YORK, July 8
NEW YORK, July 8 A federal judge has denied
Wells Fargo's latest bid to end a lawsuit brought by the
Los Angeles city government accusing the bank of discriminatory
lending that led to a wave of foreclosures among minority
In a ruling made public on Monday, U.S. District Judge Otis
Wright denied the San Francisco-based bank's motion to have an
appeals court decide whether Los Angeles has legal standing to
recover damages under the U.S. Fair Housing Act.
Wells is one of four banks sued by Los Angeles for allegedly
giving minorities mortgage loans they could not afford, causing
defaults, lower property values and neighborhood blight.
The city is seeking damages for lost tax revenue and
increased city expenses in affected neighborhoods.
The mortgage crisis in Los Angeles resulted in more than
200,000 foreclosures and lowered home values by an estimated $78
billion from 2008 to 2012, according to a report cited by the
city in its lawsuit, filed in December.
Spokesmen and lawyers for Wells and Los Angeles did not
immediately respond to a request for comment. Wells has
previously contested the claims, saying it is prepared to defend
its record as a responsible lender.
The city has also sued Citigroup, Bank of America
and JPMorgan Chase to recover damages for
alleged mortgage discrimination.
Wright in May had turned down Wells Fargo's first motion to
have the case dismissed. On Monday, he rebuffed the bank's
request for an immediate appeal of that decision, saying there
were no substantial grounds for a difference of opinion about
the law involved in the case.
Wells had argued that the city lacked standing to recover
damages under the Fair Housing Act, which was passed to provide
for fair housing. The city's attempt to recover damages for
injuries that happened to other persons was outside the act's
purpose, Wells had argued.
The case is: City of Los Angeles v Wells Fargo & Co, U.S.
District Court, Central District of California, No 13-cv-9007
(Reporting by Dena Aubin; Editing by Kevin Drawbaugh and Nick