Attorney General Eric Holder says that no banks are too big to be prosecuted if they engage in criminal activity, while another law enforcement official said cases against two major banks may culminate in guilty pleas soon, Politico reports. “There is no such thing as ‘too big to jail,” Holder declared in a weekly video message. “No individual or company, no matter how large or how profitable, is above the law.” Cases against Swiss bank Credit Suisse for helping Americans evade taxes via secret accounts and against French bank BNP Paribas (for dodging U.S. sanctions against Sudan and Iran) are expected to be resolved in the next few weeks.
Concluding the cases may help the Justice Department rebut criticism that there have been virtually no prosecutions of major banks or top bank officials during the Obama administration. Most criticism has been aimed at going after those responsible for the financial meltdown in 2008 and 2009. Neither of the two new cases are involved in that the financial crisis. Last year, Holder suggested at a Senate hearing that prosecutors must careful about pursuing large banks because charging them criminally could do serious damage to the financial sector. Yesterday, Holder vowed that an institution’s size won’t get it off the hook