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Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) is once again going after the Goliath Big Banks via the U.S. Government.

On Tuesday, Warren sent a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, SEC Chair Mary Jo White, and the Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke, demanding answers. Tell us why Big Banks are able to avoid prosecution for violating federal law?

Warren is requesting that each of the above government agencies turn over their internal research on the large financial institutions. How are they able to pay a fine and walk “without admission of guilt,” when everyday citizens face full-scale prosecution/jail?

"…I believe very strongly that if a regulator reveals itself to be unwilling to take large financial institutions all the way to trial — either because it is too timid or because it lacks resources — the regulator has a lot less leverage in settlement negotiations and will be forced to settle on terms that are much more favorable to the wrongdoer.

The consequence can be insufficient compensation to those who are harmed by illegal activity and inadequate deterrence of future violations. If large financial institutions can break the law and accumulate millions in profits and, if they get caught, settle by paying out of those profits, they do not have much incentive to follow the law."

There’s is something very wrong when settlements between the government and the nation’s largest banks are being made after banks foreclose on people without cause, and launder money to repressive regimes, drug cartels and terrorists.

The U.S. government dispersed $16 trillion dollars in massive bank bailouts between 2007 - 2011 when we pulled them out of their turmoil and possible demise, yet few banks have faced any criminal charges. In fact, most banks are thriving, while the average American has faced great financial stability deprivation.

Enter one of the most infamous financial schemers in the world, Bernard Madoff, who defrauded clients (mainly wealthy) of a reported $64.8 billion. In 2011, from jail, Madoff said many of his former Wall Street colleagues engaged in criminal insider trading on a regular basis. (I imagine they still do). Madoff told New York magazine earlier this year that he couldn't believe so few have faced criminal convictions.

Madoff says, “The whole new regulatory reform is a joke.”
All the more reason I'm grateful to have someone as strong and relentless as Senator Warren, on our side. She has been in the news several times the past two months fighting for Social Security, fighting against big banks and for college students and everyday American citizens.
(diary also posted in being liberal and addicting info)

Originally posted to Leslie Salzillo on Fri May 17, 2013 at 02:55 AM PDT.

Also republished by Massachusetts Kosmopolitans, In Support of Labor and Unions, and Occupy Wall Street.

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