From laundering drug money to gouging you on overdrafts, here are five scams where Wall Street ran afoul of the law.
Unchecked greed and financial insanity on Wall Street crashed our economy. Much of that insanity was legal — bankers lobbied hard for weak regulations, and got what they paid for. But much of that craziness was outright illegal, and in recent months, a number of shocking scams have come to light that could result in huge fines for banks or even put bankers behind bars. Though Wall Street has yet to see serious prosecutions for the current calamity, prosecutions are not at all uncommon after financial crises — more than 1,000 bankers went to prison after the savings and loan debacle alone.
From laundering drug money to scamming you on overdrafts, here are five recent Wall Street scandals that have “illegal” written all over them. The SEC is attempting to settle civil fraud charges it has filed in many of these cases, but in finance, the only difference between civil fraud and criminal fraud is the burden of proof. If the Justice Department wanted to go after many of these crooked dealers, it could.