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The Justice Department has taken strong criticism for failing to prosecute the Wall Street criminals who engineered the global economic recession. As most people know by now, Wall Street speculators helped create a housing bubble using sub-prime loans, made billions from the loans, then left a huge financial mess for average American taxpayers to clean up. But instead of being prosecuted, the Justice Department has, by and large, given bankers a “get out of jail free” card.
At a time when critics have accused the Obama administration of not being tougher on Wall Street, a top Department of Justice official publicly defended the increasing use of deferred-prosecution agreements for white-collar criminals. These agreements allow corporations and their executives who have committed fraud to avoid criminal charges in exchange for admitting wrongdoing and paying fines.