Hmm. Now there’s a tough one. If it was the collapse of a piggy-bank, I suppose you’d do it yourself and blame Mr Nobody for pushing it off the shelf. You might even choose to ignore those suspicious-looking chocolate-smeared fingers. But suppose the collapse had lost thirty, forty, fifty billion or even more, and threatened not only to bankrupt a country but trigger the collapse of an entire world currency. What then?
You’re probably already thinking in the hundreds, aren’t you? Expert forensic investigators from all over the world. Detectives. Accountants. Psychics, even! Torturers. Waterboarding. Extraordinary rendition.
No. Not if you happen to be Ireland.
If you’re Ireland, you’ll put eleven policemen on the case.
That’s right. I said eleven. 11. One short of a dozen.
That’s how many cops we have investigating what is widely acknowledged to be the worst bank in the world. The worst financial scandal in Irish history and perhaps even in the entire history of Europe is being investigated by a smaller team than most countries would assign to investigate a rural post-office robbery.
Is it any wonder that Anglo staff have failed to assist the investigation and in some cases deliberately obstructed it?
All they need to do is sit back and wait while these eleven policemen disappear under a mountain of deliberately-confusing paper. Seriously now, even if this little team is composed of the brightest and the best, what hope do they have? There are some — perhaps many — Anglo employees from the bad old days still working in the newly-renamed dead bank, the Irish Bank Resolution Corporation, and it is not in their interests to help these eleven policemen. Most of them may not fear exposure as criminals, but many certainly risk being shown up as fools, cynics, incompetents and general all-round gobshites.
In my opinion, Anglo requires the American approach. Perp-walks and orange suits for everyone. Scare the shit out of them so that everyone is terrified of even a hint that they might have resisted the inquiry.
That’ll get their attention. That and four hundred extra police to kick down their office doors.