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Who is the 'fabulous' Fabrice Tourre?

By Aaron Smith, CNNMoney.com staff writer

NEW YORK (CNNMoney.com) -- The SEC's fraud charges against Goldman Sachs focus on a Frenchman known as the "fabulous Fab."

At least, that's how Fabrice Tourre described himself, according to a 22-page complaint filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission on Friday. As a result, he's gone from obscurity to one of the day's hottest Google trends.

The Securities and Exchange Commission accused Tourre, a vice president at the investment firm Goldman Sachs (GS, Fortune 500), of defrauding investors in a securities sale tied to subprime mortgages. The SEC's court document, which was filed in U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New York, includes various comments allegedly made by Tourre in which he misled representatives from ACA Management about collateralized debt obligations, or CDOs.

But the SEC's most damning allegations refer to one of Tourre's e-mails, written in French and English, to an unnamed friend, where he confidently presented himself as the lone, "fabulous" survivor amid the apocalyptic fallout of his finance firm.

"More and more leverage in the system, The whole building is about to collapse anytime now ... Only potential survivor, the fabulous Fab[rice Tourre] ... standing in the middle of all these complex, highly leveraged, exotic trades he created without necessarily understanding all of the implications of those moustruosities[sic]!!!" wrote Tourre on Jan. 23, 2007, according to SEC documents.

At the time, Tourre was working at a trading desk for structured products in New York City, according to the SEC. The 31-year-old is currently in London as executive director of Goldman Sachs International.

He did not immediately respond to an e-mail sent via his LinkedIn account, where he identifies himself as a 2000 graduate of Ecole Centrale Paris with a bachelor's degree in mathematics, followed by a 2001 master's degree in operations research from Stanford University. According to the bio, he has worked at Goldman since 2001.

Goldman did not immediately return a call seeking comment and information concerning Tourre's lawyer. To top of page

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