Now we know, Eric Holder was a business partner with the very executives he was supposed to prosecute.
The Untouchables (2013)” Documentary about how the Holder Justice Department refused to prosecute Wall Street Fraud despite overwhelming evidence
More than four years since the financial crisis, not one senior Wall Street executive has faced criminal prosecution for fraud. Are Wall Street executives “too big to jail”?
In, premiering Jan. 22, 2013, at 10 P.M. on PBS (check local listings), FRONTLINE producer and correspondent Martin Smith investigates why the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has failed to act on credible evidence that Wall Street knowingly packaged and sold toxic mortgage loans to investors, loans that brought the U.S. and world economies to the brink of collapse.
Through interviews with top prosecutors, government officials and industry whistleblowers, FRONTLINE reports allegations that Wall Street bankers ignored pervasive fraud when buying pools of mortgage loans. Tom Leonard, a supervisor who examined the quality of loans for major investment banks like Bear Stearns, said bankers instructed him to disregard clear evidence of fraud. “Fraud was the F-word, or the F-bomb. You didn’t use that word,” says Leonard. “By your terms and my terms, yes, it was fraud. By the [industry’s] terms, it was something else.”
Former Sen. Ted Kaufman (D-Del.), who was appointed to fill Joe Biden’s long-held Senate seat when he was sworn in as vice president in January 2009, was determined to see bankers in handcuffs. “I was really upset about what went on on Wall Street that brought about the financial crisis,” Kaufman recalls. “That doesn’t happen if there isn’t something bad going on.”
Yet Kaufman left office in late 2010 frustrated by the lack of criminal prosecutions. Jeff Connaughton, Kaufman’s chief of staff, remains convinced that the DOJ failed to make prosecuting Wall Street a top priority. “You’re telling me that not one banker, not one executive on Wall Street, not one player in this entire financial crisis committed provable fraud?” asks Connaughton. “I mean, I just don’t believe that.”
Smith asks Lanny Breuer, assistant attorney general for the DOJ’s Criminal Division, about his failure to criminally indict Wall Street executives. “I think there was a level of greed, a level of excessive risk taking in this situation that I find abominable and very upsetting,” says Breuer. “But that is not what makes a criminal case.”
Critics, including two high-level sources within Breuer’s own division and former New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, disagree. “They have not done what needed to be done,” Spitzer says. “The greater risk is that corrupt behavior that is damaging to our economy, that leads to something as enormously painful as the cataclysm of ’08, goes unaddressed.”
New York Attorney General Eric Schneiderman finally filed a major lawsuit against JPMorgan Chase and Bear Stearns in 2012. It closely mirrors claims first made by private plaintiffs almost two years earlier. Despite strong evidence of fraud, the government again decided not to pursue criminal charges. Meanwhile, banking scandals continue to surface almost weekly.
is written and produced by Martin Smith. Co-producers are Linda Hirsch and Ben Gold. The deputy executive producer of FRONTLINE is Raney Aronson-Rath. The executive producer of FRONTLINE is David Fanning.
FRONTLINE is produced by WGBH Boston and is broadcast nationwide on PBS. Funding for FRONTLINE is provided through the support of PBS viewers and by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Major funding for FRONTLINE is provided by The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. Additional funding is provided by the Park Foundation and the FRONTLINE Journalism Fund. FRONTLINE is closed-captioned for deaf and hard-of-hearing viewers by the Media Access Group at WGBH. FRONTLINE is a registered trademark of WGBH Educational Foundation.
Looks like we’re giving PBS the ‘ol Reddit hug.
The loving embrace of the internet… nope, can’t type that with a straight face.
I imagined Redditors as Dongers
༼ つ ◕_◕ ༽つ
Yay were Dongers!
\ (•◡•) /
Internet history incoming: Frontline was the first show i was able to stream over the internet reliably. I’m not sure when they started but i was watching in 2003. You had to pick wmp, quicktime or realplayer.
realplayer… the dark, medieval epoch of the internet.
Red VS Blue Season 1, when they were still streaming from their website, was the first show I remember streaming. This was before they were focusing on making money.
What chicks man?!? Besides, how are they gonna pick up chicks in a car that looks like that?
I used to stream full screen music videos that were pretty HQ in the late 90s to demo cable modems I was installing for customers, forget the site, I’m sure it’s long gone now. I think it used a custom web application that also no longer exists.
I used to collect music videos from all over the place. Soulseek still exist? Some stuff felt “rare”e.g. Blur performing on some Japanese show. YouTube came out and within a few years everything i complied was on it. Still have those folders as memories of times past.
Of course. Holder went right back to working for these people when he left his position. His former/now current employer even kept his office vacant when he went to work as AG.
I really wish someone would at least step up and investigate Holder’s conflict of interest. If he’s not held accountable, there’s nothing to stop anyone else from continuing the revolving door policy.
If they did they’d have nothing to retire to.
Actually, a law holding such conflicts illegal – can’t go back to a firm you regulated for 10 years, for instance – would do more than prosecuting Holder.
We should do both, of course.
I noticed that you never said Obama .
The Justice Department also refused to prosecute the HSBC bank when they were caught red handed laundering money for drug cartels. But hey, keep supporting the war on drugs you numb nuts. http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/outrageous-hsbc-settlement-proves-the-drug-war-is-a-joke-20121213
The reason very little prosecutions went through after the 2008 financial crisis:
To be clear, the decision of whether to indict a corporation, defer prosecution, or decline altogether is not one that I, or anyone in the Criminal Division, take lightly. We are frequently on the receiving end of presentations from defense counsel, CEOs, and economists who argue that the collateral consequences of an indictment would be devastating for their client.
Basically, they don’t want to take out any large corporations/individuals because they are job creators and prosecutions could cause “collateral damage.” If you are big enough, you are above the law.
…Judge Dredd would be disappointed.
That old chestnut – “if we go to jail, a lot of our employees will lose their jobs”. Well, same could be said for drug dealers or the Mafia, and that doesn’t disuade the FBI from prosecuting them. The response ought to be “and that’s why you’ll go to jail for a long long time, because of all the people your criminal activity hurt” – not “oh, really, gee I hadn’t considered that”.
Lol. Job creators. Collateral damage. How do they even define these words? I’d like to hear some solid explanations and evidence of how they are job creators and how “collateral damage” will occur if their CEOs and the other upper echelon of the company are prosecuted. Pretty classic doublespeak with no purpose other than to incite fear at collapsing the economy and safeguard the companies from taking responsibility for criminal actions.
‘Job creators’. What a bullshit lie.
I hate it when politicians use that example.