Recently dismissed U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, is suddenly being celebrated as an aggressive warrior in the fight against Wall Street corruption. Really? You could’ve fooled me. Perhaps I was in a coma when a string of big bank executives were arrested and sent to prison.
No, what actually happened is one of the most powerful attorneys in the nation came up with a mealy-mouthed, cowardly rationale for why he let these financial thieves off the hook.
Bharara was nowhere to be found when it came to charging the top executives whose actions led to the collapse of Lehman Brothers, Merrill Lynch and AIG, and who made all manner of misleading statements to cover up how sick their firms were. Goldman Sachs executives sold institutional investors a mortgage-backed security that sales staffers described as “one shitty deal.” Where was Bharara when it mattered most?