The Daily Star, Oneonta, NY - otsego county news, delaware county news, oneonta news, oneonta sports


April 13, 2013

Stop with the 'admit no evil' hush money

With the Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling in 2010 ushering in a new era of money in politics, it’s becoming more common to see elected officials turn a blind eye to malfeasance by well-connected crooks. But some recent court cases, where a few fastidious judges have attempted to knock unrepentant Wall Street snakes down a few pegs, offer hope that maybe our judiciary is still interested in truth and justice.

In many Wall Street settlements, the truth is buried in deals by white-collar criminals who avoid charges and admit no wrongdoing in exchange for a settlement with the federal Securities and Exchange Commission. It’s basically a “Get Out Of Learning A Lesson Free” card. The difference is that in Monopoly, the card only works once, then you have to throw it away; on Wall Street, Citigroup, for example, has reached fraud settlements with the SEC five times since April 2000, according to The New York Times.

That’s why it was refreshing two weeks ago to see U.S. District Judge Victor Marrero frown on the $602 million settlement proposed by the SEC and SAC Capital Advisors LP. The firm is accused of making $276 million off illegal stock tips from ex-employee Mathew Martoma. Martoma was charged with securities fraud last November by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who dubbed it the largest insider-trading case in history.

Judge Marrero, whose approval is needed to seal the deal, was miffed by SAC’s refusal to admit wrongdoing, given that Martoma might still be convicted of criminal charges.

“How would it look if, in the settlement before (Martoma’s case), the parties were allowed to say ‘We did nothing wrong’?” Marrero asked, adding that “there is something counterintuitive and incongruous about settling for $600 million if it truly did nothing wrong.”

Text Only
Big Chuck D'Imperio
Cary Brunswick

Chuck Pinkey
Guest Column

Lisa Miller

Mark Simonson
Rick Brockway

Sam Pollak
William Masters
  • Schreibman tops Chris Gibson on women's issues

    As the time to vote draws near, we need to remember how money can run politics more than we can. Raising funds is a prominent (if not the dominant) task of getting elected. Raising issues is also crucial, but those efforts are subject to distortion and fear-mongering.

    September 18, 2012

  • Republicans feelentitled to allthey can garner

    An entitlement is a legal benefit available from the government to individuals who are within a defined category of recipients, such as needing insurance for unemployment or health services.

    September 4, 2012

  • Romney focuses on self; Obama emphasizes unity

    Mitt Romney criticizes President Obama for saying a person's success is rooted in his community, and is not all his alone. Romney belittles this with his belief in individual initiative. He is better at the put-down than the push-up.

    August 21, 2012

  • Romney shows little regard for common man

    The Republicans in Congress have voted over and over, 33 times, redundantly and uselessly, to rescind what they call Obamacare.

    August 7, 2012

  • Scouts' gay ban creates problem where none exists

    The Boy Scouts of America's "emphatic reaffirmation" of its vow to exclude any and all homosexuals from its hallowed ranks is ill-considered and pathetic, especially in view of its having reviewed the matter for two years.

    July 24, 2012

Additional Content
Join the Debate
Additional Resources
CNHI News Service

Do you plan to attend the Baseball Hall of Fame Induction?

Not sure
     View Results