crime Archive

Is celebrity jewellery worth more than normal jewellery?

First reactions are instinctive, not intellectual. So when we first learned that Kim Kardashian had been robbed at gunpoint in her Paris hotel suite, everyone – except the swivel-eyed trolls who said she deserved it – was horrified. But later, we started thinking. We couldn’t help it: the five-strong band of thieves reportedly took jewellery worth more than $10m (almost £8m), including a ring reputedly worth between $4m …

Petition: make the FBI explain why they didn't bring criminal charges against bank execs

Last month, Senator Elizabeth Warren published an open letter to FBI director James Comey observing that, in revealing details of its investigation into the Clinton email scandal, the Bureau had seemingly abandoned its longstanding policy of not sharing its deliberations, meaning that there was no longer any reason to keep secret its reasoning for not bringing criminal charges against the bankers who did trillions …

Wells Fargo started demanding fraud of its employees in 1998; Illinois cuts Wells off from state business

Wells Fargo made a habit of firing employees who didn’t make unrealistic sales targets, turning a blind eye to the fraud they had to commit in order to keep their jobs (and firing the whistleblowers who reported the fraud). The bank says that this business only dates back to 2011, or possibly 2009, despite the bank officers who started blowing the whistle in …

How many Wells Fargo employees were fired for NOT committing fraud?

When Wells Fargo fired 5,300 employees for opening 2,000,000 accounts in its customers name (stealing their cash and trashing their credit scores in the process), it wanted us all to know that it had cleaned house, because this was just 5,300 people who, without any help from senior management, all happened to coincidentally engage in the same fraud. Today, we know …

The democratization of censorship: when anyone can kill as site as effective as a government can

On the eve of the Stuxnet attacks, half a decade ago, I found myself discussing what it all meant with William Gibson (I’d just interviewed him on stage in London), and I said, “I think the most significant thing about any of these sophisticated, government-backed attacks is that they will eventually turn into a cheap and easy weapon that technically unskilled people can deploy …

Whistleblowing Wells Fargo loan officer describes years of fraudulent, criminal culture in the bank

Beth Jacobson was a Wells Fargo loan officer who blew the whistle on the bank’s predatory, racist loan-fraud in the runup to the 2008 financial crisis, which tanked the world’s economy and nearly wiped out Wells Fargo (they were rescued with a $36B taxpayer-funded bailout). Eight years later, Wells Fargo has fired 5,300 employees for participating in a scam that involved opening 2,000,000 …

Boulder rapist Austin James Wilkerson receives no prison time

Austin James Wilkerson, a 22-year-old University of Colorado student, was convicted of raping a drunk woman. But he’ll be released on probation after District Judge Patrick Butler said he “struggled, to be quite frank, with the idea” of imprisoning him. Supporters of Wilkerson, as in the California case of Turner, appealed for leniency. Wilkerson’s friends and family said the crime was a …

How racist traffic stops criminalize black people, and what to do about it

When Philando Castile was killed by a Minneapolis cop after a traffic stop, we learned that he had been stopped 46 times before and had been fined for driving without a license. Castile isn’t the only black man in America to be subjected to multiple stops, nor to multiple fines — including fines and stops for failing to pay fines, resulting …

Researchers learn about wire-fraud scam after Nigerian scammers infect themselves with their own malware

In Wire Wire: A West African Cyber Threat, researchers from Secureworks reveal their findings from monitoring a Nigerian bank-fraud ring whose members had unwittingly infected themselves with their own malware, which captured their keystrokes and files and uploaded them to a file-server from which the researchers were able to monitor their activities and methodologies. The fraudsters were using their malware to perpetrate a …