Fortunately for all you evil doers out there, the various bail out provisions in the works (or already implemented) stand to benefit you too. Times are hard on fraudsters these days. Your Ponzi scheme is in danger of running out of cash, withdrawals are up, and due diligence has seen a huge growth spurt in the wake of Madoff and Stanford. What is a white collar criminal to do in this recessionary environment?
Steal TARP funds, of course.
"History teaches us that an outlay of so much money in such a short period of time will inevitably draw those seeking to profit criminally," Mr. Barofsky said in testimony for the afternoon hearing obtained by Dow Jones Newswires.
Federal regulators have already seen evidence of alleged TARP-related crime. In late January, the Securities and Exchange Commission charged a Nashville-based firm with defrauding investors of at least $6.5 million by claiming their money was invested in the TARP and other securities that didn't exist.
"If, by percentage terms, some of the estimates of fraud in those programs apply to TARP programs, we are looking at the potential exposure of tens if not hundreds of billions of dollars in taxpayer money lost to fraud," Mr. Barofsky said, noting that the total amount of money potentially at risk in TARP-related programs is approximately $2.875 trillion.
Hey, stimulus is stimulus.
TARP Fraud Could Cost Taxpayers Billions, Watchdog Warns [The Wall Street Journal]