Richard (RJ) Eskow: Two New Fraud Deals Show Wall Street’s Washington Insiders at Work
fter joining Covington’s biggest competitor the SEC’s new legal chief moved on to another law firm, still defending banks and bankers from the agency he now represents. He had one last high-profile case before rejoining the government: MF Global. That’s the firm that stole its investors’ money instead of investing it. He defended one of its’ executives.
One of this weekend’s settlements with Bank of America addressed the fraudulent sale of mortgages to Fannie Mae. (Fannie Mae: That’s the government agency that was “privatized,” ruined by privatized greed, and then rescued by the taxpayers who now own it.) The agreement was undoubtedly hammered out between Bank of America and Fannie Mae’s CEO, who represented the people’s interests in this case.
Fannie Mae’s CEO hasn’t been there long. His last job was as General Counsel for … Bank of America. In fact, he was BofA’s top attorney in 2008, at the height of its foreclosure misdeeds. Now he’s settling those misdeeds as part of a wave of deals that will allow the bank’s executives to escape criminal prosecution. So he had a seat at both sides of the table.
That happens a lot in these deals. Get used to it.