Having a felony conviction for a white collar offense is an extremely serious matter. In addition to the legal consequences such as jail sentences, fines and restitution to the victims, there are also the personal consequences. In a place like New York, where so many careers are associated with the financial industry, a conviction for a white collar offense can be devastating for a person's career.
Recently, a former New York attorney general and governor commented on the difficulty of charging the CEOs of Wall Street firms with insider trading and other white collar crimes. Many hedge fund players on Wall Street were tried and convicted of the felony of insider trading, and the turmoil within these companies substantially damaged the economy. Many of these companies entered into expensive monetary settlements, while few of the CEOs were punished. There is a strong sentiment that the prosecutions did not address the main structural issues within the financial community that led to the banking crash of 2008.