The Perfect Storm?
Chapter 5: United Kingdom - Policy, legislative, regulatory and enforcement responses
Financial crime has attracted considerable attention over the years because of a perception that regulators and law enforcement authorities have taken a relatively lax approach to enforcement and prosecution when compared with other forms of criminality. While this view may be simplistic, in that it ignores the real difficulties in bringing prosecutions in respect of complex financial transactions, it is certainly the case that some individuals found to have engaged in wrongdoing have escaped relatively lightly. A frequently mentioned example is that of Philippe Jabre, an investment manager at a UK hedge fund who was subject to a financial penalty of £750,000 under the FSA's civil market abuse regime. Mr Jabre subsequently relocated to Geneva where he was promptly able to resume fund management activities. The outcome did not present a significant or credible deterrent to others, notwithstanding the relatively high level of the fine imposed on Mr Jabre. The aim of this penultimate chapter is to critically consider the response towards the relationship between the financial crisis and white collar crime in the UK. The chapter begins by seeking to identify the UK's policy towards white collar crime since the start of the financial crisis in 2007. This has been achieved by undertaking a detailed and analytical review of the overabundance of policy commissioned reviews published by the former Labour and current Coalition governments. This section of the chapter highlights and critiques the meaningful policy disparities between the governments and is illustrated in two particular instances.
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