“On Tuesday, fierce consumer advocate and needler of banks Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) called out Wall Street regulators for their habit of giving tepid punishments to misbehaving banks, and asked the agencies to justify their policy of settling with the wrongdoers out of court.
“Warren sent a letter to the Justice Department, as well as to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Federal Reserve, asking them for evidence on how a settlement that doesn’t require a bank to admit guilt would be better policy than taking the bad apple to trial. If regulators at least show that they are willing to play tough, she argued, it will help deter bad behavior and allow regulators to negotiate bigger fines in the event of a later settlement.”
“Financial reform advocates are happy with Warren’s refusal to let the issue fade. ‘Warren is doing a great public service by repeatedly raising the critical question of why no one in this country will prosecute crimes on Wall Street,’ says Dennis Kelleher who heads the financial reform advocacy group Better Markets. ‘A democracy cannot last long when there’s a double standard for justice where the rich, powerful, and well connected get away with crime, and everybody else gets the book thrown at them.'”
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