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Authorities said the "Flash Crash" trader should be allowed to bolt from jail

Why it matters: This story probably means little to people who don't follow financial news, but it is definitely a head-scratcher for people who track misdeeds in the markets. When Navinder Sarao was arrested back in 2015, authorities went to great lengths to lay the blame for the Flash Crash of 2010 at his feet. Sarao is set to be sentenced later this month and those same authorities have now done an about-face and recommended he serve no additional jail time.

Sarao the scapegoat: Although he pleaded guilty to two crimes, many industry insiders feel Sarao, who has been diagnosed with autism, was a fall guy because he was doing what many traders do. In fact, I was at a financial industry conference right after Sarao was initially charged and one of the speakers on the main stage asked everyone in the audience to raise their hand if they thought Sarao was to blame for the Flash Crash. That room was full of representatives from some of the most sophisticated trading firms on the planet. Not a single hand was raised.

So yeah, maybe Sarao shouldn't be serving any more time in jail. Maybe he shouldn't have ever served any.  The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (1/15)

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