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View Diary: Murdoch's Newscorp Might Be in LOTS of Trouble (102 comments)

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  •  You can't put a bank in prison, (2+ / 0-)
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    ericlewis0, Creosote

    can you?  And an individual can only be charged and convicted of a crime, if he did it to enrich himself.  Corporations, including banks, are organized for the express purpose of "spreading risk" so that liability doesn't stick to individuals.
    Is there a solution?  Well, the organizational charters issued by states could mandate that failure to comply with the laws or a violation of criminal will result on the corporation being dissolved and the assets distributed to the injured parties, including the state.
    But, you couldn't do that retroactively in any case.

    by hannah on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 09:54:22 AM PDT

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    •  The bank personnel that knowingly participated... (2+ / 0-)
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      ericlewis0, inHI

      ...and if you read the article--they willfully and knowingly participated in laundering drug money over a long period of timeshould be criminally prosecuted, IMHO.  In fact, they may still be participating in these events, since their only punishments were relatively low fines and being required to promise not to do it again.  

      People go to jail every day for far less widespread and pervasive crimes, including relatively minor offenses.  The events described were not a one time affair, they were an ongoing activity participated in by many bank employees, including high level employees:

      "...Martin Woods, director of Wachovia’s anti-money-laundering unit in London from 2006 to 2009. Woods says he quit the bank in disgust after executives ignored his documentation that drug dealers were funneling money through Wachovia’s branch network.

      “If you don’t see the correlation between the money laundering by banks and the 22,000 people killed in Mexico, you’re missing the point,” Woods says.

      Perhaps we have different standards, and obviously the US Attorney's office has a different standard, but I fail to see any justice in letting the individuals who knowingly "ignored documentation that drug dealers were funneling money through Wachovia's branch network" escape criminal prosecution.   I fail to see how focusing on less powerful individuals while ignoring the criminal laws violated by individuals like those who had to have known about and actively enabled activities like:

      Wachovia is just one of the U.S. and European banks that have been used for drug money laundering. For the past two decades, Latin American drug traffickers have gone to U.S. banks to cleanse their dirty cash, says Paul Campo, head of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s financial crimes unit.

      One thing should be clear:  Banks don't launder drug money for decades--people working at those banks, who certainly knew about it, if the DEA knew about it--laundered drug money.  For that, IMHO, they should be criminally prosecuted.  

      •  I think it is because the people who work at a (1+ / 0-)
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        corporation are considered "just cogs in the machine" and are therefore not responsible (legally) for their actions because they were acting as part of a corporation.

        •  You mean "The I was just following orders"... (1+ / 0-)
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          ...defense--the one that doesn't work all that well for people in the military, somehow?  IMHO, just because something is currently legal or because legalities are put aside in the interest of preserving the TBTF's, doesn't make it ethical, moral or right--but I do realize that my opinion doesn't really matter much in the big scheme of things.  

          •  Your opinion matters, but only if you (0+ / 0-)

            assert it.  Humans wanting to dominate other humans to their detriment are always going to be around and no system to contain them will work without effort.


            by hannah on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 01:19:59 PM PDT

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      •  True. But, again, they have to be personally (1+ / 0-)
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        culpable.  If it was just part of the job, that's going to be hard to prove.  We had to pass special legislation to get mobsters who had agents do the dirty deeds under RICO.  But first, the enterprise had to be categorized as basically corrupt.  Banks are not basically corrupt, according to the law.  We've got all kinds of unjust behavior going on under cover of law.  All of the violations of rights that are prohibited in the Constitution can be declared inoperable, if warranted -- i.e. there's a good reason to ignore them.
        The law is routinely used to subjugate.  Conservatives love the rule of law because it disguises who's actually doing the subjugation.

        Would you rather the law be set up according to the dictates of a spiritual supreme being (deity) or in the name of a figment of the imagination (the nation)?  Presumably, the latter is responsive to the will of the people as expressed by ?????????

        by hannah on Sat Apr 09, 2011 at 01:17:16 PM PDT

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