In his January 7, 2009 letter, Satyam Computer Services Ltd. founder and ex-chairman B. Ramalinga Raju wrote that Satyam had overstated its profits.  As a 2009 Reuters article observed, Mr. Raju’s January 7th letter indicated that approximately $1 billion or 94% of Satyam’s cash on its books was a fictitious asset.  This article also mentioned that Mr. Raju had written in his letter: "It was like riding a tiger, not knowing how to get off without being eaten.

Soon after Mr. Raju penned these words characterizing what is thought to be India’s largest accounting and securities fraud, he faced criminal charges.  As reported by India’s Economic Times, Mr. Raju’s criminal trial included testimony that he or his family members maintained 111 accounts at one HDFC Bank branch in India.  Besides uncovering such domestic accounts, investigating authorities in India tried to learn about any foreign bank accounts Mr. Raju beneficially owned

Indian authorities therefore issued a legal assistance request / letter rogatory to try to elicit financial evidence about funds Mr. Raju may have "diverted" and had possibly parked in U.S. banks.  Based on the facts alleged in this particular letter rogatory, Satyam funds could have conceivably been laundered through a number of U.S. bank accounts:

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Copyright 2010 Fred L. Abrams