A former Credit Suisse banker accused of contributing to the 2008 financial crisis in an effort to boost his bonus has been arrested in Britain and faces extradition to the US. Kareem Serageldin, who was arrested outside the US Embassy in London, allegedly inflated the values of mortgage-backed securities as the US housing market collapsed in an attempt to hide losses and secure a hefty year-end bonus, the Wall Street Journal reports.
Serageldin, who was fired as global head of the bank's Structured Credit Trading business in 2008, is the highest-ranking Wall Street banker to be charged in connection with the financial crisis. If extradited to the US, he will face charges including conspiracy, falsification of books and records, and wire fraud. The conspiracy charge carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison and the other two charges could get him up to 20 years. Prosecutors say the banker was caught on tape objecting to a colleague's suggestion that certain bonds needed to be marked down by up to $20 million. "That's a lot of money, dude," he said.