Jonathan Turley’s blog February 25 2013
Last December, I wrote a post titled You Call This Justice? DOJ Criticized for Its Settlement with “Too Big to Jail” Bank HSBC. It appears that the US Justice Department isn’t too keen on bringing criminal charges against ANY wealthy bankers—not just those who work for HSBC, a huge international bank that has knowingly laundered money for drug cartels and murderers. The unethical shenanigans of the banksters of Wall Street that led to the near collapse of the US economy and to a recession don’t seem to merit jail time for the perpetrators—just a slap on the wrist and a fine. No individual fines are paid though. The mega banks pay the fines and the banksters continue to go about their business…and continue to earn hefty salaries and bonuses.
At “Wall Street Reform: Oversight of Financial Stability and Consumer and Investor Protections,” the first Banking Committee hearing attended by Senator Elizabeth Warren (D, MA), Warren asked bank regulators how tough they really are on the biggest financial institutions on Wall Street and about the last few times they actually took any banks all the way to a trial.
Not long after Taibbi’s appearance on Bill Moyers’s program, his article on HSBC , Gangster Bankers: Too Big to Jail, was published in Rolling Stone.
Quoting from Taibbi’s article:
For at least half a decade, the storied British colonial banking power helped to wash hundreds of millions of dollars for drug mobs, including Mexico’s Sinaloa drug cartel, suspected in tens of thousands of murders just in the past 10 years – people so totally evil, jokes former New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, that “they make the guys on Wall Street look good.” The bank also moved money for organizations linked to Al Qaeda and Hezbollah, and for Russian gangsters; helped countries like Iran, the Sudan and North Korea evade sanctions; and, in between helping murderers and terrorists and rogue states, aided countless common tax cheats in hiding their cash.
“They violated every goddamn law in the book,” says Jack Blum, an attorney and former Senate investigator who headed a major bribery investigation against Lockheed in the 1970s that led to the passage of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act. “They took every imaginable form of illegal and illicit business.”