Jon S. Corzine, MF Global Holding Ltd. (MFGLQ)’s chief executive officer, gave “direct instructions” to transfer $200 million from a customer fund account to meet an overdraft in one of the brokerage’s JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM)accounts in London, according to an e-mail sent by a firm executive.
Edith O’Brien, a treasurer for the firm, said in an e-mail sent the afternoon of Oct. 28, three days before the company collapsed, that the transfer of the funds was “Per JC’s direct instructions,” according to a copy of a memo drafted by congressional investigators and obtained by Bloomberg News.
Where’s the indictment?
Corzine is entitled to the presumption of innocence but the victims of this apparent scheme are entitled to justice. Where is it? Six months into this we now have prima-facie evidence that Corzine ordered a transfer from customer segregated funds to meet a margin call against the firm’s proprietary trading.
If there’s an argument that this sort of transfer would be lawful I’d love to see it.
More to the point, if this sort of transfer is lawful then no person in this country can ever trade anything in a brokerage again until it is rendered unlawful and assurances are available that this conduct will result in long prison sentences and personal liability.
If you do then you are a rube, as your funds are simply there for the purpose of (legally) stealing them when, not if your brokerage finds itself underwater.
There’s a further problem:
Barry Zubrow, JPMorgan’s chief risk officer, called Corzine to seek assurances that the funds belonged to MF Global and not customers. JPMorgan drafted a letter to be signed by O’Brien to ensure that MF Global was complying with rules requiring customers’ collateral to be segregated. The letter was never returned to JPMorgan, the memo said.
So JP Morgan suspected the funds were stolen and drafted a letter demanding a written assurance they were not. They never got that assurance, which means they knew the funds were impaired.
This in turn means they effectively received stolen property and thus have destroyed any argument they might have in “good faith” reception of the funds, which in turn means that all of those funds must be immediately clawed back.
We’re six months into this folks, and the customers of MFer Global still don’t have their money. But now we have not just the belief that the company knowingly took customer funds to satisfy a margin call on their proprietary positions, we have evidence they did so.
And we further have hard evidence that JP Morgan knew the funds were taken from customer segregated accounts and were not MF Global’s to disburse.
If we do not see indictments and the clawback of those funds in the immediate future every American will have no choice but to consider the federal government to be nothing more than a bunch of felonious thugs — from the Office of the President on down.