Courts in Iceland have convicted three more bankers including the chief executives of the country’s three largest banks.
Sigurjón Þ. Árnason, former CEO of failed Landsbankinn, Elín Sigfúsdóttir, former director of corporate lending and Steinþór Gunnarsson, former director of proprietary trading were sentenced to serve time in prison by the Supreme Court of Iceland on October 8th.
Common Space reports:
Sigurjón Árnason, ex-chief executive of Landsbanki and former director of corporate lending Elín Sigfússdóttir, were given given prison sentences of three and a half years and 18 months respectively for their involvement in fraudulent lending practices and market manipulation.
A third banker, Steinþór Gunnarsson ex-director of proprietary trading, was sentenced to nine months in prison, according to Icelandic journalist Sigrun Davidsdottir.
The former chief executives of Glitnir, Kaupthing and Landsbanki, Icelandic banks that ran up assets 10 times the size of the nation’s economy, have all received criminal convictions following the crash.
Twenty-one criminal investigations into banking illegality were launched by a special prosecutor team following mass protests that led to the ousting of Iceland’s right-wing government.
Olafur Hauksson, who acted as special prosecutor for the investigations, previously told Reuters that Iceland’s response to the crisis provided necessary accountability within the financial services sector.
“Why should we have a part of our society that is not being policed or without responsibility? It is dangerous that someone is too big to investigate – it gives a sense there is a safe haven,” Hauksson said.
Iceland’s response to the crisis stands in sharp contrast to the response of other nations, including the USA and the UK.