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United States, Fraud, Steve James discussed on Slate's The Gist



When the financial crisis hit the phrase too big to fail was in the news allott and it was the idea that we have these behemoth financial institutions that have done wrong but really what can we do to punish them the answer is nothing that's in too big to fail the other side of that coin is small enough to jail and that's the subtitle of a film about abacus which is a small chinatown bank that was in fact prosecuted the story of that prosecution is told by documentary filmmaker steve james you can see it right now for free how 'bout that thanks thanks pbs and government funding steve james is here how are you great what what should listeners know about the case against advocates who they were and what they were charged with as you said near introduction abacus as a small chinatown community bank the 2600 and 51st largest bank in the united states which is which doesn't make them tiny but they are a long way from bank of america half a dozen branch offices and they have millions of dollars of loans out there but yeah yeah yeah i'm really bank back in two thousand twelve the da's office decided to prosecute abacus indict them for mortgage fraud and connected it to the two thousand eight crisis and what had happened is is that abacus had discovered some low level fraud in their institution they had fired the guy they had initiated their own investigation to try to root out any other fraud they found some they rooted that out they reported to regulators in them on the prosecution when the da's office got involved they thought oh great they're gonna help us make agar office yet bank thought that that they're going help us make sure everything's on the up and up and then they found out they were going to be the target an indictment and the da's office claim that they had orchestrated the fraud at the highest levels and so they wanted to take them to trial and the fact that they're the only bank charged in the wake of this crisis is very significant effect that their small the mirror ops at the fact that they have won the lowest default rates.

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