The New York Criminal Law Blog

Jon Corzine to Plead Fifth Re Missing $1.2 Billion?

Surprisingly, the answer is no. Congress is looking into the Jon Corzine MF Global collapse, but the former New Jersey governor says he will not invoke his Fifth Amendment right to remain silent.

Still, despite not pleading the fifth, it’s unlikely that lawmakers will get any answers from Corzine.

Congress has opened up hearings looking into MF Global’s collapse and the missing $1.2 billion of investor funds, reports the New York Post. The securities firm filed for bankruptcy in October and there are a swarm of questions as to why the firm collapsed and what happened to investors’ money in the firm.

Corzine, the former New Jersey governor and Goldman Sachs CEO, became the head of MF Global after leaving public office and saw the relatively small securities firm as his shot at redemption. However, it's believed that his questionable decisions to invest in European sovereign bonds in countries like Italy and Spain contributed to the firm's collapse.

Still, Congress will want to know what happened to the missing $1.2 billion, whether the money was lost in bad investments or had it simply disappeared?

Unfortunately, Corzine is set to explain that he just doesn't know what happened to the money. In a prepared testimony, Corzine said, "I simply do not know where the money is," reports the Post. As CEO of the firm, Corzine will try to defend his ignorance by saying that he had little to do with the mechanics of the trades themselves.

Despite his lack of answers, it could be considered admirable that Corzine is answering questions relating to MF Global at all. Generally, the Fifth Amendment of the Constitution allows individuals to refuse to answer questions that may connect them to criminal activity.

However, individuals can waive this right, and that is what the former New Jersey governor has done. We'll see what kind of answers he does have for Congress regarding the Jon Corzine MF Global collapse.

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