As “A Surreptitious Search For Money Hidden In Divorce & Other Cases” explains, law enforcement databases may house confidential information about a person’s assets. Private investigators & the general public cannot lawfully access these law enforcement databases/computers. This is the 5th post in my series about what private investigators can and cannot do
At Carmelite Chambers International Fraud & Assert Recovery Conference, I met Advocate & English Barrister Stephen Baker of Baker & Partners from St. Helier, Jersey. During the Conference, Mr. Baker presented his slideshow with case studies about recovering suspected corruption proceeds or other assets.
One topic Mr. Baker’s slideshow covers is the investigation of the late Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha. As Baker & Partners’ webpage explains: “Baker & Partners were central to the successful Jersey investigation into the alleged laundering of the proceeds of the corrupt Nigerian Dictator General Abacha’s crimes through Jersey. This investigation has already resulted in over USD $160,000,000 being returned to Nigeria.”
Mr. Pascal Gossin is the head of Switzerland’s Mutual Legal Assistance Unit, (“the Unit”), which is part of the Federal Office of Justice. Mr. Gossin was a fellow speaker at the Carmelite Chambers International Fraud & Asset Recovery Conference, which I attended last month.
If the Unit suspects a dictator or other Politically…
Leonard Glenn Francis is a Malaysian national who is the CEO and owner of Glenn Defense Marine Asia, a general contractor to the United States Navy. He is suspected of using Glenn Defense Marine Asia to defraud the Navy out of an estimated $20 million. At a November 22, 2013 court filing, prosecutors argued that Mr. Francis “ has built a business empire based on defrauding the United States.”
Mr. Francis is accused of fraudulently billing the Navy while supplying its ships with marine husbanding services (i.e. fuel, tugboats, food etc.). Mr. Francis supposedly also bribed senior Naval officials with cash, lavish travel and the service of prostitutes. These Naval officials are thought to have provided Mr. Francis with secret information about criminal investigations into him; and / or they allegedly disclosed confidential defense procurement information.
The Washington Post reported that the possible involvement of two admirals in the alleged public corruption scheme, “makes the crisis the worst to tar the Navy since the 1991 Tailhook scandal, when a convention of naval aviators sexually assaulted scores of women.” A September 12, 2013 complaint filed in one of three criminal cases pending against Mr. Francis, included purported e-mails. They were allegedly sent from April 27 to May 21, 2012, between Mr. Francis and a codefendant, Mr. John Bertrand Beliveau, Jr. Mr. Beliveau has been employed as a Special Agent by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service since about 2002 and his purported e-mails are set forth below.
- “On the trail of Michael Mastro: how to flee the law when you are 87” is about Michael & Linda Mastro. These two might have secretly transferred bankruptcy estate assets by shipping a Range
U.S. prosecutors issued a press release yesterday announcing the extradition of former Guatemalan President Alfonso Portillo. Mr. Portillo’s extradition to the United States was based on his alleged money laundering.
Yesterday, Mr. Portillo was also arraigned in federal court in Manhattan. Although Mr. Portillo was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshal, the…
This Asset Search News Roundup discusses the Secrecy for Sale Project and the indictment of a NY attorney along with a Swiss banker:
I) The US-based International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, (“ICIJ”), analyzed more than 2.5 million documents in its Secrecy for Sale Project. The Project began after the ICIJ received a computer hard…
The ACAMS / MoneyLaundering.com article “FATF’s Focus on Asset Forfeiture Could Challenge Some Nations”, especially raises the issue of recovering corruption proceeds. Near the end of this article, I am mentioned as saying that as part of their effort to crack down on corruption, Financial Action Task Force examiners may expect jurisdictions to track bribes paid by local companies to foreign governments:
FATF’s Focus on Asset Forfeitures Could Challenge Some Nations¹
October 31, 2012, By Brian Monroe
An intergovernmental group’s revised expectations of how countries should seize looted assets may prove difficult to meet, and could lower the mutual evaluation scores nations receive for their anti-money laundering controls.
Earlier this month, the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF) outlined in guidance how jurisdictions should best assist one another with asset forfeitures, calling for the implementation of formal and informal mutual legal assistance arrangements and the creation of specialized units to expedite responses to intergovernmental inquiries.
How willingly nations cooperate with one another will be an important factor in how FATF evaluates their anti-money laundering (AML) and counterterrorism financing regimes going forward, according to an individual familiar with high-level discussions within the intergovernmental group.
“Asset confiscation and recovery is a very important objective and an indicator of the success of the overall regime,” said the person, who asked not to be named. The issue is linked to FATF’s increased focus on fighting corruption, the individual said.
In February, individuals involved in FATF talks told ACAMS MoneyLaundering.com that the group was revising how it scored regimes to emphasize efficacy, and would consider forfeiture sizes, conviction rates and other factors. The shift follows FATF’s decision to streamline its AML and counterterrorism financing standards earlier this year.
As part of that effort, the group plans to grade countries on both technical compliance and how effectively they implement financial crime controls, including asset forfeitures, sources said this month. The two separate grades will be combined in an overall score included as part of each mutual evaluation.
But meeting FATF’s asset forfeiture standard, as outlined in its Oct. 19 best practices, will be challenging for nations of all stripes, according to Tom Lasich, a former head of training at the Switzerland-based International Centre for Asset Recovery and a former Internal Revenue Service criminal investigator.
Recovering corruption proceeds and related issues:
- At a news release, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development notes that in twelve years, French authorities had just five convictions in cases arising out of the bribery of foreign officials. The news release claims that French authorities have a “lacklustre response” to cases involving actual or
The name of a whistleblower is reportedly leaked and concealing assets in Luxembourg:
- A press release and “Ex-IRS examiner charged with naming whistleblower ” refer to the criminal complaint against Dennis Lerner of Edgewater, N.J. Mr. Lerner is accused of violating 26 U.S.C. § 7213 (Unauthorized disclosure of information), 18 U.S.C. §§ 207 (Restrictions