Goldman Sachs CEO hires top lawyer

24 August 2011

Lloyd Blankfein, chief executive officer (CEO) at Goldman Sachs, has hired a top defence lawyer as investigations into the financial crisis and the bank’s actions continue.

According to news reports, the CEO and other top officials at the institution have hired their own legal representatives following the publication of a critical report by the Senate Permanent Subcommittee.

The document, which was referred to the government’s Justice department, alleges that the bank deliberately confused clients over the sale of subprime mortgage securities in the months before the global credit crash and that Mr Blankfein himself misled Congress - claims both denied by the bank.

A spokesman for Goldman said: “As is common in such situations, Mr Blankfein and other individuals who were expected to be interviewed in connection with the Justice Department's inquiry into certain matters raised in the [Senate] report hired counsel at the outset.”

Mr Blankfein has hired criminal defense attorney Rein Weingarten who has previously represented former Enron accounting officer Richard Causey and Bernard Ebbers, ex-CEO at WorldCom.

Goldman Sachs agreed to pay the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) $550 million to settle claims that it deliberately misled investors over the sale of mortgage-backed securities.

By Jim Ottewill

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