You might think that being a top financial regulator is a dry job, or that it’s never dangerous.
You might then be wrong.
Vincent McCrudden, an ex-commodities trader, was sentenced to prison last week for using death threats against financial regulators including Securities and Exchange Chairman Mary Schapiro and Commodity Futures Trading Chairman Gary Gensler, Bloomberg reports. McCrudden sent threatening emails to regulators and posted a hit list on his website, but he claims he was being targeted unfairly for fighting back against regulations that have hurt his career. (h/t Dealbreaker)
"It wasn't ever a question of 'if' I was going to kill you, it was just a question of when," McCrudden wrote in an e-mail to Daniel A. Driscoll, chief operating officer of the National Futures Association, according to Bloomberg.
He also told visitors to his website to "[g]o buy a gun, and let's get to work in taking back our country from these criminals" referring to the regulators on his hit list, according to Reuters.
The financial sector has dealt with a number of obsessives lately. In one example of Wall Street craziness, one banker sent an e-mail in December of more than 1,000 words to a woman who didn't call him back. It's approximated that one out of every ten Wall Street workers is likely a clinical psychopath, according to a February study in CFA Magazine.
Yet McCrudden's reaction, of course, is an extreme example of increased Wall Street anger directed toward regulators set to crack down on the financial industry. JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has said that he doesn't think all the new financial regulations are necessary. He's not alone. Many big banks have argued that specific provisions of financial reform legislation, like the Volcker rule and increased capital requirements, will make it more difficult for them to do business.
Banks have also pumped Washington D.C. full of money in an attempt to swing Dodd-Frank in their favor. All told, commercial banks spent $61 million on political lobbying last year, with much of that related to financial reform.
McCrudden, whose threats by no means reflect mainstream Wall Street, plead guilty to the charges in July, the day before testimony was supposed to begin in his federal trial. The list McCrudden posted on his site included more than 40 regulators and the statement "These people have got to go! And I need your help, there are just too many for me alone," according to a Reuters report from when McCrudden plead guilty. McCrudden also reportedly apologized in court. McCrudden continued to write threatening messages from prison while awaiting sentencing.
Prosecutors allege that McCrudden began a five-year campaign against the regulators after the National Futures Association denied his application to trade futures on behalf of others, Reuters reports. In addition, he was also involved in an extended dispute with the CFTC, according to the Wall Street Journal.