The Securities and Exchange Commission is going after former vice-president of Goldman Sachs Fabrice Tourre for misleading investors – a fairy tale scenario, the judge says. U.S. District Judge Katherine B. Forrest said it’s as if he handed Little Red Riding Hood an invitation to her grandmother’s house, failing to to mention the invitation was written by the big bad wolf. Only these aren’t “hooded children but rather large financial institutions, operating in a dog-eat-dog world.” So wolves preying on wolves, in other words.
This went down in 2007 and is said to have contributed to the financial crises the following year. Though Goldman Sachs has settled this issue with $550 million in payments, it still faces a private litigation and federal securities class action lawsuit. The big bad wolf seems to be the role of hedge fund Paulson & Co., who helped choose what assets would valuate the investment. They chose to make the bet regarding mortgage-based securities.
The aftermath thereof was that the investors lost more than $1 billion while Paulson gained more than $1 billion, as the SEC alleges.
The SEC will be calling on Goldman Sachs employees for witnesses, but the defense scoffs at their attempt, saying the SEC has reviewed over 12 million pages of documents, and thousands of tapes and transcripts, and hasn’t found anything incriminating for their troubles.
“Fabrice Tourre has done nothing wrong,” read a statement from his lawyers, Pamela Chepiga and Sean Coffey. “He is confident that when all the evidence is considered, the jury will soundly reject the SEC’s charges.”
Specifically, his team has to revolt the idea that Tourre made misstatements and omissions to investors in a portfolio of 90 sub-prime and mid-prime residential mortgage backed securities, as Yahoo! news reported. The SEC is going after him for violating securities law. The trial is set to begin on Monday.