Friday, April 22, 2022

Credit Suisse Taking Another Rap on the Knuckles (4/22/22)

David Cay Johnston. Wikipedia here, a prolific author of books and articles on the crimes of the rich, has this article on Credit Suisse, Repeat felon Swiss bank may finally lose privileged American status (RawStory 4/21/22), here.  The article reports that the Department of Labor is acting to take away a favored U.S. status, Qualified Professional Asset Manager, as a result of its numerous crimes.  Johnston reports Credit Suisse’s “rap sheet” as:

Rap Sheet

Credit Suisse has a long and thoroughly documented history of refusing to turn over money due to heirs of Holocaust victims, helping super-rich Americans cheat on their taxes and making loans using unusual terms that turned into disasters for the borrowers. One of its most recent felonies was punished with a $175.5 million fine. That’s chump change for a bank with assets of about $1.6 trillion. The fine was barely 1/10,000th of those assets.

Credit Suisse has a long rap sheet with 49 violations, according to the Good Jobs First Violation Tracker. Its updated report by Phil Mattera is an instructive read. It is far from the only bank with a history of felonies and other serious offenses as this matrix prepared by Jim Henry shows.

Eight years ago Credit Suisse made a deal to avoid serious punishment for some of its criminal conduct. It paid a fine of $2.6 billion, money that was tax-deductible in Switzerland where it is based. No individual was indicted. Credit Suisse got to keep its American banking license.

Credit Suisse’s chief lawyer in negotiating this soft-on-crime deal? Christopher Wray, then a litigation partner at King and Spalding, where he earned $9.2 million in his last year. In addition, Wray apparently was paid directly by outside clients, the largest of which was Credit Suisse.

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