No One Is Ever Going To Jail Over That Whole London Whale Thing

You probably knew that already.
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That's about the size of it.

In the unlikely event that you think about Jamie Dimon’s $6.2 billion bad day a few of years ago anymore, that headline isn’t terribly likely to surprise you. Since, you know, it’s been three years now and the only thing that’s happened is that a couple of people who worked with the whale are now confined to their home countries so that Preet Bharara can’t get his hands on them. But now, it’s official, since the Financial Conduct Authority has decided it’s spent enough time banging its head against the wall and won’t be pursuing any more whale-related matters. Which is great news for Bruno Iksil and also for anyone else who still works at a bank and also hopes not to be prosecuted for doing their jobs, but which makes law enforcement look pretty impotent indeed.

While Mr. Iksil has emerged scot-free, his immediate boss, Javier Martin-Artajo, a Spanish national, and Mr. Iksil’s lower-ranking assistant, Julien Grout, who is French, face criminal charges and civil claims. But Mr. Martin-Artajo is in Spain, where a court has refused to extradite him, and Mr. Grout is in France, which typically does not extradite its own citizens. Although the investigation in the United States officially remains open, it appears no one, in all likelihood, will be held legally accountable.

“It’s laughable, really, that so many banks have been prosecuted and it’s always the fault of a rogue trader, or an isolated trading desk,” said Brandon L. Garrett, a law professor at the University of Virginia and author of the book “Too Big to Jail.” ”But when risky behavior is repeatedly tolerated or concealed, you have to wonder if higher-ranking people should have been targeted.”

Convictions Prove Elusive in ‘London Whale’ Trading Case [NYT]

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