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tv   Carmen Segarra Noncompliant  CSPAN  August 11, 2018 7:26am-7:43am EDT

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>> what's this weekend on c-span2's booktv. >> c-span, where history unfolds daily. in 1979, and today we continue unfiltered coverage of congress, the white house, the supreme court and public policy events in washington dc. c-span is brought to you by your cable or satellite provider.
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>> host: we introduce you to carmen segarra, the book is called "noncompliant: a lone whistleblower exposes the giants of wall street". before we get into the book, give us a brief synopsis of your career. >> guest: i'm a lawyer by training. i started working at law firms and after a while i went into banking. one of the few fields i was coming up as a young lawyer allowing women to progress so i started working in banks, and at that point, it becomes time to do a shift, getting older
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and up there and more senior in the opportunity came off to work at the federal reserve bank of new york. >> host: what work did you do? >> guest: i was a bank examiner which is a fancy way, going to any other bank than the fed supervises to see if they were complying with regulations. >> host: is a compliance officer how complex are the banking laws bank of america or goldman sachs has? >> guest: i specifically focus on the international and consumer areas. you add to the 50 states and federal law as well. to understand what is going on.
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>> host: is a compliance officer with federal reserve you are a government employee? >> guest: yes. >> host: your focus was goldman sachs? >> guest: that is correct. >> host: where are you located, what work did you do at goldman sachs? >> guest: the federal reserve assigned employees like myself towards on-site. in the goldman sachs building. >> host: what was a typical day? >> guest: you get up early in the morning. and the cable wires and newswires, in the news and afterwards go to the office and spend an enormous amount of time reading and going over there policies.
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and doing examinations and testing to see. >> host: were you privy to executives at goldman sachs? >> guest: at different levels, mostly senior levels. >> host: what was the process? >> guest: scheduled ahead of time, there were topics. it depended on topics at that time, what the conversation would be about. in my particular case a lot of conversations revolved around not doing right and there were a lot of them. >> host: you would see something that was not being complied with, what would you do? >> guest: what the federal reserve expected you to do, typically what you are supposed to do is note those gaps in the
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examination reports, to write down what is not working and they need to fix it and this is how long they should take fixing it. an enormous amount of data gathering to produce those reports. >> host: your book is called "noncompliant: a lone whistleblower exposes the giants of wall street". what was goldman sachs doing that was noncompliant, illegal or however you it is easier for me to say what they were not complying with than to say what they were not complying with because the gap is so big, very difficult to find things they were doing right. it is an embarrassment on everything they were doing. >> one of the things i talk about earlier in the book is
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when i am sitting down with bank of new york employees. out there and laundering program to say simply the rules that employees are supposed to follow to catch anybody who is trying to use the bank to launder money, to make it clean. what was shocking to me when i was taking this information from the new york fed employee was how this particular employee was telling me at the same time they are doing all these things that are wrong not just doing them wrong in the us but in all sorts of processes around the world but at the same time trying to convince me that there was nothing wrong with that because other banks
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supposedly did it wrong as well and i shouldn't worry about it because it is not a big deal and when you spend your career helping banks to comply with laws, most of the people i worked with were on the same wavelength, trying to figure out how to make this work within the framework of the law. it is jarring to listen to someone who is supposed to be working for the taxpayer whose salary is paid by the taxpayer telling you they are intellectually aware there is something wrong but they are trying to sweep it under the rug. >> host: carmen segarra, are you suggesting there was a coziness between the new york fed and goldman sachs and other banks? >> guest: coziness is a general term. legal minds -- exactly which legal term to describe it.
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that word is generous but a lot of things are going on that should not be going on. there is a lot of misinterpretation, illegal behavior, rulebreaking that goes on that is going unpunished. the 19 you made a big decision. what was that? >> guest: i made two big decisions. the first decision was the result of a trigger event. i was asked to delete information from a report i had prepared which is illegal because that would be like record tampering and i refused to do so. i sought legal advice from outside the fed. people i trusted, who were more experienced than i was and they advised me to record what was going on. we know this is a problem but it is a fake knowledge gap
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between what is known by the public and what is going on. it is hard to prove these things are going on so they suggested we will be able to get more information on what is going on so i went ahead and decided when i was working at the federal reserve bank of new york, actually they asked me again to do something illegal along the lines of the first time, to change the report to protect goldman sachs and allow them continue their activities. i was fired. at that point i decided it was important for the public to know this is going on and i suspected the best way to do it in a legal way in the framework of the law which is to show people something can be done, was to use the forum of legal proceedings, to use a
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protected, privileged environment. >> host: those recordings, could you have released them legally to the public? >> guest: yes, i am a whistleblower and this is a matter of public interest, but using legal proceedings helps because i have a right to defend myself against being fired for refusing to break the law. at that point when you are defend yourself you're using your right as a whistleblower and you're right to defend yourself from misbehavior by your employer to shine a light on what is going on. absolutely there were multiple avenues i could have used and i used all of them by turning over recordings, putting them in the hands of the courts. >> host: once you declare yourself or become a
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whistleblower you would have legal protections? >> guest: yes. the lawsuit is a whistleblower lawsuit and at that point you are protected. >> host: did you wear a wire into the office? >> guest: i didn't wear a wire mostly because that was not something i could have access to. it was a tiny device like a usb recorder tied to my keychain which was tied to my blackberry. the federal reserve bank of new york had given me. >> host: were you scared? >> guest: not at all. as a lawyer, new york is one of the states that allows people to record with consent of just one person so it is perfectly legal to make a recording as long as there was one person in the room consenting, i was consenting, the recorder counts as a person. it was perfectly legal. banks record conversations all
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the time. it is absolutely normal. what is not normal is i release them to the public. >> host: walk us through the day you were fired. >> the first inkling came from the secretary and she and i had built up a cordial relationship as you are allowed to have within the constraints and confines of an office especially the bank of new york which looks down on having interactions with the staff. i'm not that kind of person. i talk to everyone. i talked to the secretary and she looked at me as i was heading to meet with my supervisor. i often had meetings outside of
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goldman at the new york fed headquarters and i was scheduled to go into a meeting with my supervisor, regular routine meeting, she looked at me said always the good ones. something that phrase tipped me off. i knew something was going to happen. i walked all the way, went to the bathroom, turned on the record, walked out and went into the conference room and there was my supervisor who did not speak a word to me at all and there was the gentleman who fired me, the head of the team of the new york city employees working inside goldman sachs. a i asked you sensually where -- what you are basing this on? he was very surprised by that question but refused to answer it and cut the whole meeting
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short and said we wish you good luck and got up and left and after that, very typical for when employees are fired at a bank, they walk you out of the building. i was escorted all the way downstairs and out of the bank of new york. >> host: "noncompliant: a lone whistleblower exposes the giants of wall street" is the name of the book, carmen segarra is the author. it comes out in october and you can see what the conclusion is when it is published. this is booktv on c-span2. >> tonight at 8:00 eastern on 1968, america in turmoil we look at women's rights. we will discuss women protesting the 1968 miss america pageant and how women's rights became part of the national conversation
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transforming households and workplaces across the country in society itself. watch 1968:america in turmoil tonight at 8:00 eastern on american history tv on c-span29 programs available on spot the but ify or watch on our 1968 page. next week booktv is on prime time, starting at 8:30 eastern. keith gaddy talks about his book the rise and fall of voting rights act.
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>> watch booktv next week in prime time on >> caller:. >> the mayor of bristol, england, marvin rees, wrote that a meeting of the us conference of mayors held in boston, he talked about international migration and the role of cities addressing the needs of immigrants. this is 20 minutes. [applause] >> he was a champion of racial equali


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