German police raid Deutsche Bank headquarters
Nov 29, 2018
The investigation, which was inspired by revelations contained within the 'Panama Papers' leak of client records from offshore law firm Mossack Fonseca, is so detailed that it will require searches to continue for a second day….
Already a melting ice cube struggling with an overbearing derivatives exposure and myriad legal risks, Deutsche Bank has seemingly bounced from one criminal scandal to the next since the crisis, incurring billions of dollars in fines along the way. So it's hardly surprising that the bank's shareholders let out a collective groan Thursday morning when headlines hit that German police had raided the bank's Frankfurt headquarters.
An anonymous whistleblower leaked the Panama Papers back in 2015, which showed a lot of unlawful activity being conducted by many big banks, including Deutsche Bank, the largest in Europe. They have been paying millions and billions in fines ever since then.
The whistleblower believes that his life would be in danger if the banks discovered his true identity. People have been killed for a lot less, and when billions of dollars are on the line, it is truly a dangerous situation.
“John Doe,” the whistleblower who leaked the documents to German journalist Bastian Obermayer from the newspaper Süddeutsche Zeitung (SZ), remains anonymous, even to the journalists who worked on the investigation. "My life is in danger", he told them. In a May 6 statement, John Doe cited income inequality as the reason for his action, and said he leaked the documents "simply because I understood enough about their contents to realize the scale of the injustices they described".
We all need to watch Deutsche Bank, because if it is allowed to fail, it will affect every bank in the world. It would be worse than the Lehman Brothers failure in 2008. Though it is "too big to fail," it may also be too far gone to bail out.