Pedro Nava (D)

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Legal Newsline)-A state lawmaker and Democratic candidate for California attorney general says he is trying to determine the role accountants had in the home lending crisis.

California Assemblyman Pedro Nava of Santa Barbara, chairman of the Assembly Banking and Finance Committee, is holding a fact-finding hearing today in Sacramento to examine the role of the accountancy in the lending crisis.

"With the fallout felt in California from the economic crisis and meltdowns of the mortgage lending and financial markets, it is imperative that we find out how this happened and whether accountants had a role," Nava said.

In a statement, Nava, who announced last week he will run for attorney general in 2010, said the collapse of New Century Mortgage in 2007 has "brought focus into the role and responsibility" of accounting firms that performed independent audits of public companies involved in the lending crisis.

The Security Exchange Commission last week filed a civil complaint against Countrywide Financial Corp., based in Calabasas, Calif.

"The public, shareholders and other financial institutions all relied on these independent audits which have now been called into question," Nava said.

From Legal Newsline: Reach staff reporter Chris Rizo at

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