Tuesday, December 17, 2013

The Honorable Jed S. Rakoff

The man is my hero.

First, and to my mind most important, a couple of years ago he refused to accept a plea bargain between the SEC and Citigroup about something or other (and for clarity sake, it might not have been the SEC or Citigroup but, rather, organizations just like them) because of the then-standard no-admission-of-guilt clause.

Why, Rakoff asked, were they allowed to claim no wrong-doing (and by doing so gain myriad legal benefits) after pleading guilty to fraud?  Now enforcement agencies are doling out the no admission options with considerably less frequency.

So there's that, for sure.

And now, in the New York Review of Books, he's published a lengthy screed asking why nobody of substance has been indicted for crimes committed in the run-up to the financial crisis of 2008.  I was sorely tempted to print the whole thing, because attention must be paid, but it was just too long.

Read it here.

All this on the heels of the Fabulous Fab, Fabrice Tourre, getting slammed by the SEC.  The agency is seeking what looks like a million-plus bucks in fines and restitution for what amounted to a mid-level schmuck who sent a few too many audacious emails to his girlfriend.  Adding insult to injury, the SEC is asking that Goldman be prohibited from contributing to the fines.

Me?  I'm fine with making the individual pay the fines.  But the lunacy that Fab Tourre was the best they could come up with strikes me as lunacy, which is what I said at the beginning of the sentence.

Why don't you just go back and rewrite the sentence?
John from the Bar tells me I'm not allowed.  Once it's down, it's down.

I think this says it all ...


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