As with Madoff’s Ponzi scheme and all the many other financial scams in human history, it takes criminal directors as well as willing followers(clients), aiders and abetters in order for crimes to be perpetrated.
Frontline goes inside the hunt that uncovered vast insider trading (again) on Wall Street.Here is a direct video link.
It is important to understand that while Cohen’s SAC is one of the largest players caught cheating this round, SAC’s tactics and practices are widely common. See: US Attorney General Preet Bharara: Insider Trading Is “Rampant” On Wall Street.
For those who do manage savings for clients in a legal and honest manner, one of the things that is so hard to stomach in all of this, is not just that the culprits are unjustly enriched often making themselves billionaires from illegal activities, but also they typically receive wide public adoration, esteem, media coverage and privilege based on their alleged investment “brilliance”. They are then offered a host of plum positions on boards and advisory roles for foundations, companies and governments. And when they are finally revealed as frauds, many simply write some cheques for fines while keeping the bulk of their illegal proceeds even while their clients lose everything. In finance today, crime frequently does pay.