Cramer called Bharara, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, the most feared prosecutor of our time.
“He has prosecuted 71 insider trading cases and won 65 of them, with the other six pending — terrific record,” he said. “He’s done it by using wire taps and building complex cases with informants who are eager to help him in order to spend less time in jail for their sins.”
In a conversation with Cramer at CNBC’s Delivering Alpha conference, Bharara showed himself to be “deadly serious about leveling the playing field, and he’s still shocked that miscreants actually think they can get away with the crimes they commit.”
The interviewee showed himself to be personable, funny and sharp.
“What I found most profound, though, is that Mr. Bharara doesn’t understand why money managers don’t take his office into account as a risk factor, the way they’d factor in the fiscal cliff or the declining euro or the Italian bond market,” Cramer said. “After all, a call from Preet, or a grenade rolled into your office by him — his preferred analogy — can wipe out your franchise immediately, something that even a bad investment usually can’t do. The calculus is all wrong, and he’s out to change it.”
Cramer said business people would be wrong to underestimate that office.
Despite the saying that “those who can, do,” Bharara has shown himself to be a powerhouse force for law and order on Wall Street.
“Anyone who watched Mr. Bharara today knows that not only could he run a hedge fund or head up a private equity firm, but he’s smarter and more sophisticated than just about anyone who does,” Cramer said. “Why is that important? Because if you’re a fund manager who thinks he can get away with insider trading today, either because you masked it or because you think no one is listening, all I can say is that you’d better be prepared to hear the five most frightening words in the financial lexicon, ‘Preet Bharara on line two.’”
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Cramer credited the prosecutor for ferreting out fraud, corruption and insider trading, perhaps “more than just about anyone else in this era.”
“The market may have way too much in common with the Wild West right now, but at least we’ve got ourselves a real sheriff,” he said.
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