It’s becoming clear that the juiciest aspects of the Stanford Fraud have to do with his political connections. We know he was a friend of George W. Bush, that he donated a lot to Congressmen, and that he practically bought off big-time Democrats to kill an anti-money laundering bill. Now we learn that the SEC’s initial investigation into Stanford was waived off in 2006.
This was buried at the end of a NYT report:
The current S.E.C. charges stem from an inquiry opened in October 2006 after a routine exam of Stanford Group, according to Stephen J. Korotash, an associate regional director of enforcement with the agency’s Fort Worth office.
He said the S.E.C. “stood down” on its investigation at the time at the request of another federal agency, which he declined to name, but resumed the inquiry in December 2008.
Who told the SEC to stand down? Given that he was a fraudster, it’s almost impossible to think of a benign explanation for this, particularly given Sir Allen Stanford’s political tentacles.
So perhaps the SEC could’ve caught him earlier if it hadn’t been for pals of his, though there’s still not much to feel confident about at the agency.