In early 2011, Wall Street regulators were close to throwing in the towel on their biggest case.
The Securities and Exchange Commission’s eight-member Lehman Brothers team, having hit one dead end after another over the previous two years, concluded that suing the bank’s executives would be legally unjustified. The group, noting that prosecutors and FBI agents had walked away from a parallel criminal case, agreed to close its most prominent investigation of the financial crisis, according to officials who attended the meeting, which has not been reported previously.
But Mary L. Schapiro, the SEC chairwoman, disagreed. She pushed George S. Canellos, who supervised the Lehman investigation, to explain how executives who presided over the biggest bankruptcy in US history could escape without a single civil charge. Full story for BostonGlobe.com subscribers.