Wednesday, July 2, 2008

White Collar Crime Narrative

Samuel Israel III, fugitive from justice and hedge fund swindler, surrendered to law enforcement today. Israel was sentenced to 20 years in prison for defrauding clients of $309,000,000 between 1998 and 2005. He then faked his death in order to escape imprisonment. Israel went as far as co-creating a bogus accounting firm to certify false financial statements.

There is little or no mention of the immediate victims, who were other rich investors. The ultimate victims, however, are the people.

Israel's lawyer's sentencing letter to the judge is a window into the white collar criminal mind. The letter (URL below) even states that Israel is "the victim" rather than the predator (p.28). Note that, in a way, this white collar criminal is even less honorable than the typical street thug, preferring to blame his crimies rather than accepting the punishment. The letter makes no mention of Israel's great grandfather, Leon Israel, who was also a white-collar criminal (NY Times, April 29,1920).

Note also the unpublished paper, titled "the Subjective Experience of Punishment" beginning on page 70. In it, Professor Adam Kolber, claims that "sensitive" (e.g. rich people) should be given breaks in sentencing over "insensitive" people (e.g. the lesser classes).

Kolber has also written on the ethics of "therapeutic forgetting," which would be used on soldiers to forget the atrocities of war.

The sentencing paper, forthcoming in the Columbia Law Review, was sponsored by the Orwellian Princeton Center for Human Values. Of note, the Center for Human Values, funded by the Mellons and Rockefellers, has also promoted pre-emptive war.

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