After years of evading the tentacles of the US government, yesterday the crosshairs of American justice (the civil, not criminal variety) which may be blindfolded but certainly has an offshore bank account, finally locked onto the orange man who made over half a billion between 1999 to 2008, according to compensation-research firm Equilar, not to mention saddling Bank of America with the worst Easter egg M&A transaction in history. Well, it turns out the US government may not be able to sue the Moz after all. The reason? He is sick.
In 2011, the United States attorney’s office in Los Angeles decided not to file criminal charges against Mr. Mozilo. But in recent months, the office’s civil division has turned the spotlight back on Mr. Mozilo, whose company originated mortgages that went to people with little income to repay them, causing devastating losses for investors who bought the loans.
But a complication has emerged: Mr. Mozilo’s lawyers have cautioned the prosecutors in Los Angeles that their client has a serious illness. The prosecutors have sought Mr. Mozilo’s health records, the people said, though for now the case remains on track.
In a statement, Mr. Mozilo’s lawyer, David Siegel, said that he would “not comment on reported rumors concerning any investigation.” He added, however, that “there is no sound or fair basis, in law or fact, to pursue any claim against Angelo Mozilo. This story has gone on more than long enough; Mr. Mozilo stands virtually alone among banking and mortgage executives to actually have been pursued by this government and already paid a record penalty” to the S.E.C.
So, if he coughs, or mysteriously turns from orange to green or any other random color, you must acquit (pending receipt of a few hundred millions in the abovementioned offshore bank account of course).