WCCUSD Bonds could be involved in Tax Payer Fraud
- Lawsuit alleges price-fixing scam
The Bottom Line By Andrew S. Ross
Excerpts: (04-29) 20:16 PDT -- Here's another case of white-shoe bankers operating not exactly in the best interest of their clients. And this one involves a host of Bay Area municipalities, local law firms, a Justice Department criminal investigation and trillions of dollars of taxpayer money.
"These are bonds issued by cities, school districts, transit agencies, water boards. We're talking trillions of dollars over many years," said Fastiff. "And what's also important here," he added, comparing these cases to the SEC allegations against Goldman Sachs, "is the fraud was committed against taxpayers, not private investors."
Which explains the feds' close interest. One of the defendants named in the Oakland suit, Chambers, Dunhill Insurance Service Inc. of Beverly Hills, has been charged by the Justice Department with criminal antitrust violations.
An accompanying "bill of particulars" filed by the Justice Department lists approximately 250 transactions from 1998 to 2004 with, among others, the Association of Bay Area Governments, the Port of Oakland and the West Contra Costa Unified School District. Among the 25 institutions listed as "co-conspirators" (not charged) on the bill of particulars are JPMorgan, UBS, Wachovia and Bank of America.
Read more: http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2010/04/29/BUVD1D6V2H.DTL#ixzz0md54jG5g