The Justice Department didn’t blink in its pursuit of a guilty plea from Credit Suisse AG for helping thousands of Americans evade taxes. What prosecutors accomplished with the criminal conviction -- the first of a major bank in a decade -- isn’t as clear.
As U.S. Justice Department prosecutors angle to bring the first criminal charges against global banks since the financial crisis, they’ll have to stare down warnings of uncontainable collateral damage.
A lawyer who said she was fired after reporting corruption won the right to sue as a whistle-blower after the U.K. Supreme Court ruled that legal protections apply to partners in law and accounting firms.
The Justice Department appears to have learned a lesson in the 10 years since it indicted Arthur Andersen LLP for alleged improprieties in the firm’s Enron bookkeeping. By 2005, when the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously vacated a conviction in the case, the accounting firm had collapsed, and all but a handful of the 85,000 employees worldwide lost their jobs.
U.S. authorities are seeking more than $3.5 billion from BNP Paribas SA to settle federal and state investigations into the lender’s dealings with sanctioned countries including Sudan and Iran, according to people familiar with the matter.