By Rob Wile
If you were involved in Icelandic high finance in the runup to the recession, you might want to start watching your back.
That’s because the government has appointed a white collar crime bounty hunter who wants to haul your behind in (alive, to be sure).
LeMonde reporter Charlotte Chabas has a profile of Ólafur Þór Hauksson, a former local police lieutenant whom the Iceland government appointed to track down individuals likely to have helped sink the country’s banking sector during the credit crunch.
Hauksson’s job description, according to PressEurop’s translation of the piece:
“On one hand, we have to investigate all suspicion of fraud and offences committed before 2009, on the other hand, we bring the lawsuits against the suspects to court ourselves,” Hauksson explains.
This is a ‘totally new’ method which allows the investigators to “follow the case” and the judicial system to “know the cases like the back of their hand”. This is indispensable in order “to compete with the well-prepared defence attorneys”.
Hauksson oversees a posse of 100 researchers to help track down outlaws. He’s netted some major convictions since starting in 2009, including the former chief of staff of the country’s finance minister on insider trading charges. Many others await their day in court, Chabas writes.
And he will track you down even if you’ve fled abroad.
“Searches continue and the team pursues its investigations abroad in the foreign subsidiaries of the Icelandic banks and includes questioning foreigners,” Chabas writes. ” ‘We enjoy full international cooperation,’ stresses Olafur Hauksson.”