James Nicholson was indicted on four felony charges, including securities fraud and investment adviser fraud, involving losses of at least $150 million. On Friday October 29, Nicholson was sentenced in Manhattan federal court by U.S. District Judge Richard J. Sullivan to 40 years in prison and three years of supervised release.
In the case of Nicholson and other scamsters, the warnings were there - years before the meltdown. The inflated financials. The bogus addresses. The suspicious transactions and attendant financial shenanigans. Sure - blame the victims for not doing their due diligence. I have no quibble with such a view. However, given the prevalence of such red flags in most of these cases, when do we also blame Wall Street's regulators for having eyes that see not and ears that hear not? Wall Street's cops have to get out from behind their desks, walk the beat, and protect the neighborhood. We need a credible first-line of defense when it comes to financial fraud - it can't always come down to a last-ditch criminal prosecution.
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