By Brett Sherman, The Sherman Law Firm
A Thanksgiving reminder from Wall Street Law Blog about a fraudulent scheme for the ages-
From 2000 through 2008, the top five executives at Bear Stearns took home more than $1.4 billion [in cash]. This exceeded the annual budget for the SEC.
Final Report of Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission*
*The Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission (“FCIC”) was established as part of the Fraud Enforcement and Recovery Act (Public Law 111-21), passed by Congress and signed by the President in May 2009, to “examine the causes of the ... financial and economic crisis in the United States.” After reviewing millions of pages of documents, interviewing more than 700 witnesses, and holding 19 days of public hearings, the FCIC presented “the results of its examination and its conclusions as to the causes of the crisis” in The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report.
Those of us who have looked to the self-interest of lending institutions to protect shareholders’ equity, myself included, are in a state of shocked disbelief...
Alan Greenspan, Former Federal Reserve Chairman, in testimony about the financial crisis before the Senate Banking Committee￼￼￼￼￼
Excesses did occur. So did I know things were getting a bit out of hand? Yes. Was I as vociferous as I should have been? Maybe not... [but] it's hard to turn off the spigot when things are profitable.
Alan C. Greenberg (a/k/a Ace Greenberg, former CEO and Chairman of The Bear Stearns Companies Inc.)**
**Interview for PBS FRONTLINE, “Inside the Meltdown,” at www.PBS.org
Senior management at a major investment bank, Bear Stearns, presided over a scheme to commit securities fraud that was big enough to blow the firm to bits, yet the five members of the Bear Stearns' executive committee walked away from the rubble with nearly $1.5 billion in cash.
Don't expect the corruption to slow down anytime in the near future. After all, fraud is the most profitable business on Wall Street.