The council of the London borough of Tower Hamlets has called in the police and reportedly given the owner of the property 28 days to remove it.
The mural, titled Freedom for Humanity, depicts a group of businessmen and bankers counting money around a Monopoly-style board balanced on the backs of men with dark complexions. It was reportedly spray-painted on private property.
The Los Angeles-based artist, Kalen Ockerman, acknowledged that some of the bankers were Jewish but said the mural was not anti-Semitic.
“My mural is about class and privilege,” he wrote on his Facebook page, and posted a video showing its creation on YouTube. “The banker group is made up of Jewish and white Anglos. For some reason they are saying I am anti-Semitic. This I am most definitely not… What I am against is class.”
Ockerman, born in 1971 in Santa Cruz, California, and based in Los Angeles, works under the name “Mear One.” His website, which currently features the mural prominently, says he has been “described as ‘The Michelangelo of Graffiti’ and ‘The Salvador Dali of Hip-Hop’ and is considered by many to be Los Angeles’ most prolific graffiti artist.”