Financial Crime Still Pays
Crime still pays on Wall Street. Just ask Goldman Sachs.
Goldman’s recent $5.1 billion settlement included a “statement of facts” in which they agreed with regulators that it made “false and misleading representations” to prospective investors about loans in the mortgages they packaged and sold.
Fraud is an intentional misrepresentation of material existing fact made by one person to another with knowledge of its falsity and for the purpose of inducing the other person to act, and upon which the other person relies with resulting injury or damage. Fraud is illegal; it is a crime committed by individuals, by people, not by a company.
But, if you commit fraud while working for Goldman Sachs (or JP Morgan, or Bank of America, or Citigroup) there’s no recognition of crime, no one is personally held accountable, and no one goes to jail.
The company simply pays a fine. And, Goldman’s response? “We are pleased to put these legacy matters behind us…”
Of course they are “pleased.” A slap on the wrist, no employees held accountable, no one going to jail, and it’s back to business as usual.
Where’s the justice?
“When the sentence for a crime is not quickly carried out, people’s hearts are filled with schemes to do wrong.” –Ecclesiastes 8:11
And, for next time, where’s the deterrent?