American Greed

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American Greed
American greed title card.jpg
Narrated byStacy Keach
Country of originUnited States
Original language(s)English
No. of seasons12
No. of episodes157 & 3 Specials (list of episodes)
Executive producer(s)Sharon Barrett Charles Schaffer
Producer(s)Kurtis Productions
Production location(s)Chicago, Illinois
Original networkCNBC
Original releaseJune 21, 2007 –
External links

American Greed, also known as American Greed: Scams, Scoundrels, And Suckers and as American Greed: Scams, Schemes, And Broken Dreams, is an original primetime series airing on the business news network CNBC.[1][2] It was created by Bill Kurtis through his Chicago-based Kurtis Productions. As Kurtis was under exclusive contract to competing network A&E at the time, the program is narrated by Stacy Keach Jr..[3] It first aired on June 21, 2007, in the US and is currently celebrating its tenth anniversary.[4] Episodes are also rebroadcast on the television network Escape.

The program has been renewed for a twelfth season scheduled to air in 2018.[5]


The business-reality program focuses on the stories behind some of the high-profile corporate and white collar crimes in recent U.S. history, including the financial scandals involving WorldCom,[6] HealthSouth,[7] Tyco International,[8] and CyberNET.[9] In addition, stories feature low-profile financial crimes affecting individual investors and smaller companies, including various Ponzi schemes, real estate and other investment frauds, bank robbery, identity theft, medical fraud, embezzlement, insurance fraud, murder-for-hire, art theft, credit card fraud, money laundering, and crimes committed by elected officials.[10]

In addition, there have been 3 American Greed special presentations: American Greed Special: Bernie Madoff Behind Bars;[11] American Greed: Special Presentation: 9/11 Fraud - “A Contractor Capitalizes on Disaster";[12] and Mob Money: an American Greed Special Presentation.[13]


The show began airing its eleventh season in January, 2017.

In August 2012 CNBC aired the series American Greed: The Fugitives which focused on active cases of alleged white-collar crime. The show documented stories of suspects who were still at large and had continued to evade authorities.[14] It lasted 2 seasons, covering 13 cases of financial crimes.[15] After the Nov. 14, 2013, airing of American Greed: The Fugitives #12, viewer tips led to the successful Nov. 26, 2013, arrest of FBI Most Wanted fugitive David Kaup, who had been a fugitive since Dec. 17, 2012, when he failed to appear for sentencing in Los Angeles.[16][17]

In early 2019, CNBC aired another companion series, American Greed: Deadly Rich, which focused on high-profile murder cases involving the wealthy.


The show has been criticized for overestimating law enforcement's interest and involvement in combating fraud, as many frauds are discovered only after a number of people have already been victimized; e.g., the largest fraud, Bernie Madoff's $65 billion Ponzi scheme, ended only after he confessed. In civil fraud claims, courts require that the fraud be pleaded with specificity and the proponent provide documentation corroborating the claim.[18] In the Madoff case, an early administrative complaint was dismissed for lack of evidence, with the claim of a Ponzi scheme deemed speculative and unsubstantiated using essentially the same standard federal courts employ in evaluating civil fraud claims.[19]


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  5. ^ Petski, Denise (August 3, 2017). "CNBC Prime Unveils Fall Lineup With New Series 'The Job Interview', More 'Billion Dollar Buyer' & 'The Deed'". Deadline. Retrieved August 4, 2017.
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  18. ^ Fed. R. Civ. Pro 9 content
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1. Fed.R. Civ. Pro 9.

2. Ashcroft v. Iqbal, 556 U.S. 662 (2009).

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