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Monday, August 22, 2011

Is Blankfein Under Investigation?

Is Goldman Sachs CEO Lloyd Blankfein under criminal investigation?

Reuters first reported that Blankfein has hired noted white-collar defense lawyer Reid Weingarten. (Read this Bloomberg News report.)   But why?

This is a development that strongly indicates that Blankfein is individually involved in either a regulatory matter targeting him individually, or a criminal investigation, and that in either case, his interests diverge enough from those of Goldman Sachs to necessitate (either by legal ethics rules governing conflicts of interest, or practicality) Blankfein getting separate counsel to represent his personal interests.  A regular civil suit would be handled by Goldman's own lawyers. 

Months ago this blog speculated that Blankfein might be the subject of a criminal investigation; see "Is Lloyd Blankfein a Crook?" from March 2011.  And back in 2010, right after Blankfein testified before a Senate subcommittee, I expressed major reservations about the wisdom of saying anything to Congress

Is Blankfein a "witness," or a "target" of an investigation?  Does this stem from that questionable Senate testimony?  Time will tell.

Eric Dixon is a New York investigative lawyer with extensive securities law and election law experience.

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