Senate Democrats call for criminal probe of Wells Fargo

Markets Associated Press

Fourteen senators are calling on the Justice Department to open a criminal investigation of Wells Fargo executives after revelations that bank employees opened millions of fake bank and credit card accounts.

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The senators said a bank teller who steals from a cash drawer is likely to face charges, but "an executive who oversees a massive fraud that implicates thousands of bank employees and costs customers millions of dollars can walk away with a hefty retirement package and millions in the bank."

The lawmakers said a hearing last month with Wells Fargo CEO John Stumpf "raised serious questions" that point to possible executive wrongdoing.

The letter was led by Democratic Sen. Mazie Hirono of Hawaii and signed by 13 others, including Democrats Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts and Jeff Merkley of Oregon.