Money Laundering

    • Robert Mercer
    • Financial Crimes
    • The Panama Papers- Offshore shell corps. exposed by whistelblower revealed international oligarch-level crime rings in April 2016.
    • The Paradise Papers
    • Diamonds are  great  vehicles  for  money  laundering  because  they  are  high  value  in  a  small  space  and  can  be  painted  black  to  devalue  them  at  customs.  Watch The Dubious Friends of Donald Trump: King  of  Diamonds about Lev Leviev. “Diamonds have a long history of being linked to conflict and violence,” said Michael Gibb of the international human rights group Global Witness. “The ease with which diamonds can be converted into tools of war, when not sourced responsibly, is astonishing.” ICIJ
      • Russians Richard DavidoviciKenneth Lee Akselrod and Mozes Victor Konig, Interpol fugitives for Russian crimes: fraud, smuggling and tax evasion. HSBC
      • Omega DiamondsSylvain Goldberg, Robert Liling, and Ehud Arye Laniado laundered arms moneyin DR Congo & Angola, 2006, Belgian 2013 settlement for a $195 million tax dispute for falsely valuation of Congolese and Angolan diamonds & shifting profits into a Dubai account HSBC
      • Emmanuel Shallop, Côte d’Ivoire convicted of blood diamond dealing from a Dubai account April 20, 2011. HSBC
      • Mozes Victor Konig and Kenneth Lee Akselrod – Interpol Most Wanted list – diamond dealers at HSBC
      • Erez Daleyot, a Belgian-Israeli diamond tycoon “reportedly under investigation by Belgian authorities for money laundering and tax evasion” NYC Partner Lazare Kaplan International claimed plaintiff defrauded of money from Daleyot in HSBC MEDIS group accounts that funded $20 million bribes Antwerp Diamond Bank officials ~2005
        • Arkadi Gaydamaka Russian-Israeli convicted in 1990s “Angolagate” sometimes partnered with Daleyot ICIJ   HSBC Warrant for arrest December 2000 but fled to Israel
      • Dan Gertler-1997 Israeli Diamond Dealer went to Congo, busted for a secret deal between Glencore (Marc Rich, 1974) and Congolese friend, President Joseph Kabila, who paid $20 million to give Gertler and Glencore diamond rights in exchange for Israeli arms and training by Israeli military officials. The rights were grossly undervalued by $1.3 billion in the 2013 Africa Progress Report. Concordia Marketing Group Inc., a British Virgin Islands firm with Beny Steinmetz’s brother Daniel. Magnitsky Act Sanctions. HSBC Swiss Leaks
      • Beny Steinmetz– DiamondsIsraels richest family with business in Angola, Liberia, and Sierra Leone, and a Guinea lawsuit. Nephew Raz invests with Kushner in Trump Bay Street Jersey City, paid Rudy Giuliani large sums before his 2007 presidential run from the Steinmetz’s Sage Capital Growth VC firm. Congolese Diamond Dealer, Israeli Dan Gertler  & Beny’s brother Daniel are beneficial owners of Concordia Marketing Group Inc., a British Virgin Islands firm. Pentler Holdings bribed following a Soros & UK probe. HSBC Swiss Leaks – Pentler Pacific Ltd
    • Arms Trafficking
      • Angolagate aka Mitterrand-Pasqua Affair -40+ Indicted. International political arms scandal between French President Mitterand’s son Jean-Christophe Mitterand (JCM) and met a relative of French arms company Thomson CSF in Scottsdale named Pierre Falcone. JCM contracted La Compagnie Générale des Eaux in May 1992. Falcone organized a prepaid oil deal with Angola, and became the supervisor to supply food, medicine, and the troops with arms from Slovakia. Angola bought $47 uSD of arms from Slovakian arms company ZTS_OZOS on November 7, 1993, followed by fighter aircraft and tanks up to $633m USD by April 1994. JCM & Falcone were arrested in December 2000.
        • Shailesh Vithlani, “an alleged middleman who arranged for the British arms company BAE to secretly pay $12 million into an unspecified Swiss bank account in return for the Tanzanian government buying an overpriced military radar systemHSBC staff advised him on investing in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania..”The Guardian reported in 2007 that Vithlani, who is listed as a beneficial owner of one account, who could not be reached for comment, told The Guardian in 2007 that he did not pay money from Switzerland to officials in Tanzania.”ICIJ 
        • Fana Hlongwane, a South African political adviser and businessman.  The U.K. Serious Fraud Office said in statements submitted to South African prosecutors in 2008 that Hlongwane received money from BAE through a disguised chain of offshore intermediaries in order to promote arms deals…In a 2014 affidavit made to an ongoing inquiry into the arms contracts, Hlongwane denied “any evidence implicating myself and/or my Companies in any corruption or wrongdoing.” Hlongwane is listed as the beneficial owner of an account, Leynier Finance SA, that contained $888,000. Two other accounts that held $12 million at one point in 2006/2007 do not specify his exact role.”ICIJ 
        • Wang Chia-Hsing, the son of the alleged middleman in an infamous Taiwan arms deal, Andrew Wang Chuan-pu...a fugitive wanted in Taiwan over his alleged role in the murder of Taiwanese Navy Capt. Yin Ching-feng [December 1993] and a series of kickback and corruption scandals implicating Taiwan, France and China…Wang Chia-Hsing, who is described as an interior decorator and shown with an upmarket London address…A representative for Wang Chia-Hsing said he has “paid all proper taxes due and has not acted in any way improperly or unlawfully.”ICIJ 
    • Military Industrial Complex

FinCEN Fines Trump Taj Mahal Casino Resort $10 Million for Significant and Long Standing Anti-Money Laundering Violations March 6, 2015

Mueller Served Trump With a Subpoena a Day Prior to His Racist Rant: Report August 16, 2017 PoliticalDig

Newly Leaked Emails Just Revealed Trump Family Implicated In $350 Million Fraud Investigation Verified Politics Grant Stern   August 16, 2017  “It’s beginning to look like Special Counsel Mueller will catch President Trump and his three eldest children committing the first ever reality TV show assisted financial crime, all collaborating in a $350 million dollar bank fraud related to the Trump SoHo Condominium Hotel. The fraud-riddled Trump SoHo project ultimately failed and was foreclosed upon by lenders in 2014, but its legacy lives on in a byzantine web of lawsuits. We’ve obtained leaked copies of those emails related to a key lawsuit related to the  Trump SoHo – which are embedded below – that outline the Trump family’s complicity in a major financial crime. They show that Donald Trump and his three eldest children participated in a cover up in order to keep borrowing massive construction loans on the hotel they pitched on NBC’s Apprentice from failing during the financial downturn. The Trump Organization earned $3 million dollars from the fraud just last year alone, even as the hotel’s fortunes have sunk post-election. Three weeks ago, Bloomberg News reported that Mueller is focusing on the lower Manhattan Trump Soho Hotel deal and Vanity Fair reported recently that new emails reveal the Trump family’s participation in a criminal enterprise there.

The Russian money trail leads right through the president’s troubled project in downtown Manhattan. A series of e-mails reveals new details. Now, the newly leaked email chain also confirms a major German public television report (ZDF) on the Trump SoHo hotel. ZDF interviewed an American national financial fraud expert Professor William Black, who was told the sordid tale of the Trump SoHo frauds without being told the names of the participants.  He concluded that based on their thorough reporting that the First Family participated in a business that was committing bank fraud in a pattern and a practice of illegal conduct which violated the federal racketeering laws known as the RICO Act. RICO Act cases are subject to enforcement in both civil lawsuits with tripled damages and criminal law, with jail and restitution to the victims as the penalty.”

“In the “ZDFzoom” documentary “Dangerous Connections – Trump and his business partners“, Johannes Hano and Alexander Sarovic search for clues. They encounter links between the major US and Russian mafia syndicates and the Trump Tower.

“It’s a long list of high-profile organized crime figures residing in the Trump Tower, not just American criminals, but gangsters from Russia, Kazakhstan and the Ukraine as well, using the Trump Tower as a center for criminal activity, including gambling, prostitution and theft Drug trafficking, “explains Scott Horton, a world-renowned anti-corruption expert to ZDF. In the research, the ZDF also encounters Trump’s business relations with the company Bayrock.”

PREVEZON CASE DROPPED – Magnitsky Act Sanctions

House Democrats want to know why a major Russian money-laundering case was abruptly settled  Business Insider July 12, 2017

“Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee sent a letter to Attorney General Jeff Sessions on Wednesday asking why the Department of Justice settled a major money-laundering case involving a real-estate company owned by the son of a powerful Russian government official whose lawyer met with Donald Trump Jr. last year.

That attorney, Natalia Veselnitskayarepresents the family of Pyotr Katsyv, the former vice governor of the Moscow region, whose son, Denis, owns the real-estate company Prevezon. The DOJ had been investigating whether Prevezon laundered millions of dollars through New York City real estate when the case was unexpectedly settled two days before going to trial in May.

“Last summer, Donald Trump Jr. met with a Kremlin-connected attorney in an attempt to obtain information ‘that would incriminate Hillary,'” the Democrats wrote, citing the emails he published. “Earlier this year, on May 12, 2017, the Department of Justice made an abrupt decision to settle a money laundering case being handled by that same attorney in the Southern District of New York.

“We write with some concern that the two events may be connected — and that the Department may have settled the case at a loss for the United States in order to obscure the underlying facts.”

The Prevezon case garnered high-profile attention, given its ties to a $230 million Russian tax-fraud scheme and the Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, whose suspicious death aroused international media attention and spurred the passage of the Magnitsky Act in 2012. Denis Katsyv and Veselnitskaya have become the face of Moscow’s lobbying efforts against the Magnitsky Act in recent years.

Democrats now want to know whether Veselnitskaya was “involved at any point in the settlement negotiations,” and they have asked Sessions to provide the committee “with the prosecution files and any other explanatory materials related to the settlement.”Business Insider

Trump’s Latest Russia Conspiracy Busted—Why the Feds Settled the Prevezon Case

The big Russia case involving the lawyer who met Donald Trump Jr. at Trump Tower that prosecutors settled just after Preet Bharara was fired? That wasn’t a Washington call.  July 17, 2017 The Daily Beast

“Despite the various conspiracy theories being floated now by both President Donald Trump and his Democratic foes, the politically charged, Russian-linked Prevezon financial case was settled by federal prosecutors in New York, on their own, because they felt there was a decent chance they might lose in court or win a pyrrhic victory.

The case involved $14 million to buy four luxury apartments and two high-end commercial spaces in lower Manhattan with some of that money allegedly laundered from an audacious $230 million Russian tax scam. Acting U.S. attorney for the Southern District, Joon Kim, did not consult with Attorney General Jeff Sessions before deciding to settle the case because it was “no slam dunk,” according to a federal law enforcement official and two other people with knowledge of the case and its settlement.

“This settlement did not require DOJ approval,” the official said.

 Two months later, it’s the subject of intense scrutiny after the news that Donald Trump Jr. agreed to a meeting at Trump Tower last June with a Russian lawyer, Natalia Veselnitskaya, who promised to provide damaging information about Hillary Clinton—and whose clients include millionaire Denis Katsyv, the politically wired owner of Prevezon.

Also at that meeting, The Daily Beast reported Friday, was Veselnitskaya’s interpreter during the Prevezon case, Anatoli Samochornov, who was viewed with suspicion by American officials in part because he also worked for her nonprofit group dedicated to overturning the so-called Magnitsky Act—named for the Russian lawyer who was jailed, tortured to death, and then convicted after his murder of tax fraud for uncovering the $230 million tax scheme—that bars a list of Russian oligarchs from the United States and its banking system.

The Prevezon case was initiated by the SDNY, sometimes nicknamed the sovereign district, while it was led by U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara, who alleged that $600,000 of $14 million spent on the Pine Street real estate had come from that big con, after being laundered through multiple shell companies. In effect, Bharara grabbed the $600,000 toe of the $230 million Russian tiger to drag it into the American justice system.

The decision by Bharara’s successor, Kim, to accept a settlement of $5.9 million was spun as a win by both sides when it was announced in May. That was just two days before the case was due to go to trial and one month after Kim took over the SDNY following President Trump’s surprise decision to fire Bharara, along with 43 other U.S. attorneys held over from the Obama administration.” The Daily Beast

DEUTSCHE BANK

Congress asks Deutsche Bank for Trump records  May 24, 2017

“Trump and his family have accounts there, and the bank’s “2011 Russian mirror scandal, which the bank has already agreed to pay $628 million in fines after regulators determined the bank helped to covertly move $10 billion out of Russia through a process known as “mirror trading”” prompted Rep. Maxine Waters (D-CA), Rep. Daniel Kildee (D-MI), Rep. Gwen Moore (D-WI), Rep. Al Green (D-LA) and Rep. Ed Perlmutter (D-CO) to request “whether loans Deutsche Bank made to President Trump were guaranteed by the Russian Government, or were in any way connected to Russia,” the letter to the bank said. “Only with full disclosure can the American public determine the extent of the President’s financial ties to Russia and any impact such ties may have on his policy decisions,” the committee said in the letter.”  Yahoo News

DEUTSCHE BANK IS TURNING OVER INFORMATION ON TRUMP  Vanity Fair

Regulators are scrutinizing hundreds of millions in loans and a subpoena from Robert Mueller is expected.  July 20, 2017

“In addition to Donald, Ivanka Trump is also said to be a Deutsche Bank client, as is Jared Kushner and his mother, who, per the Times, have “an unsecured line of credit from Deutsche Bank, valued at up to $25 million.” In addition, the Kushner family business, Kushner Companies, got a $285 million loan from the bank last year (2016). And because the Kushners and Trumps have never shied away from conflicts of interest, in 2013, Kushner reportedly “ordered up a glowing profile of [Vrablic] in the real estate magazine he owned,” with a disclosure about their connection at the very end of the piece. The New York Times reports that banking regulators are currently “reviewing hundreds of millions of dollars in loans made to Mr. Trump’s businesses through Deutsche Bank’s private wealth management unit . . . to [see] if the loans might expose the bank to heightened risk.”Meanwhile, the Guardian reports that executives at Deutsche are “expecting that the bank will soon be receiving subpoenas or other requests for information from Robert Mueller,” and that the special counsel’s investigative team and the bank have “already established informal contact in connection to the federal investigation.”

There’s certainly plenty to look into. Over the last 20 years, Trump has received more than $4 billion in loan commitments and potential bond offerings from the German lender, despite suing the company in 2008 when he fell behind on payments on the $640 million loan he was given to build Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago. Incredibly, in order to avoid paying the $40 million he had personally guaranteed, Trump and his lawyer argued that “Deutsche Bank is one of the banks primarily responsible for the economic dysfunction we are currently facing”—i.e. the global financial crisis—and therefore it should pay him $3 billion in damages under the extraordinary event clause in his contract. Naturally, the bank countersued, calling the real-estate developer’s claim “classic Trump.” In the end, after threatening to take his name off the building if he wasn’t granted more time to pay, the bank gave Trump extra time; when he did pay the money he owed to the firm’s real-estate lending division, it was with another loan he got from Deutsche’s wealth-management unitTrump subsequently moved his business from the real estate group to the private wealth management group, where, according to the Times, “executives were more willing to deal with him.” One of those executives was Rosemary Vrablic, who has helped finance three Trump properties over the last six years, lending $300 million in the process. That amount is “somewhat unusual by Wall Street standards,” former and current Deutsche Bank executives and wealth managers at other firms on Wall Street told the Times” Vanity Fair

Bank of Cyprus

March 2013, the Bank of Cyprus crisis. The Cypriot government secured a loan from the Russian government, and worked for the political favor of the Communist Party. MIT   Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross structured the deal. Cyprus Bank’s Bailout Hands Ownership to Russian Plutocrats NYTimes: Dmitry Rybolovlev had 10% stake at one point, given shares in exchange for losses

Viktor Vekselberg‘s Renova group became the largest foreign stakeholder, sanctioned for meddling in the 2016 US Presidential Election and other “malign activities” U.S. sanctions on Vekselberg have $1.5-$2 billion assets frozen: sources Reuters Brenna Hughes Neghaiwi APRIL 21, 2018

 Moscow makeover: Bank of Cyprus elects 6 Russians to board September 11, 2013  RT “Six Russians were elected to the 16-member board of directors of the Bank of Cyprus. The substantial minority demonstrates the large stake Russia had, and will continue to have, in the Cypriot banking system. Vladimir Strzhalkovskiy, a former KGB official and Putin ally, was elected by other board members as vice chairman. Strzhalkovskiy is also the former CEO of Russia’s Norilsk Nikel, the world’s largest nickel and palladium producer. Other approved nominees are Dmitry Chichikashvili, president of Insigma Group, a Moscow-based construction company, Igor LazhevskDeutche Bank’s deputy chairman for Eastern Europe, Anzhelika Anshakova, a board of director of BinbankEriskhan Kurazov, General Director at CJSC, a Moscow-based finance group, and Anton Smetanin.

Vladimir Sidorov, the former deputy head of investment at Vneshekonombank [VEB], was short-listed, but not elected. Sidorov also runs MCRS Ltd, a lift service in Cyprus.  All Russian board members were nominated by law firms with close ties to Russian and Chinese investors.” RT

New Board Proposed for Bank of Cyprus  October 06, 2014 includes Maksim Goldman, a Director of Strategic Projects at Renova, owned by sanctioned Viktor Vekselberg