The name of a whistleblower is reportedly leaked and concealing assets in Luxembourg:

  1. Transparency International’s April 17th post “Who owns what? Trying to clean dirty money in the EU”,  highlights the importance of identifying the beneficial ownership of assets.  Among other things, it mentions Teodorin Nguema Obiang, who is a suspected kleptocrat.  A Wall Street Journal blog post meanwhile, describes the French arrest warrant

The Financial Action Task Force updates its standards and two politically exposed persons are criminally charged in the Turks and Caicos Islands¹:

  1. The Financial Action Task Force has revised its 40 Recommendations for fighting money laundering and terrorist financing.  A February 16th press release states these revisions include “[m]ore effective international cooperation including

An October 25th press release describes a forfeiture effort pursued by the U.S. Government against Teodorin Nguema Obiang, Equatorial Guinea’s Minister of Forestry and Agriculture and the first son of Equatorial Guinea’s head of state.  For me, this press release raises another issue:  Could Equatorial Guinea nationals commence a lawsuit in the U.S. against Nguema and Equatorial Guinea?

Such a lawsuit might claim that Nguema collected vast sums of monies during an alleged public corruption scheme originating in Equatorial Guinea.  It could also allege that Nguema had possibly used the supposed corruption proceeds to help fund his lavish lifestyle which included the purchase of this palatial Malibu, California mansion at 3620 Sweetwater Mesa Road:

Among the many questions this prospective lawsuit raises, are: Would the claimants who are Equatorial Guinea nationals, possess a cognizable claim in a lawsuit filed in the U.S.?;  and Could Equatorial Guineas’ immunity from lawsuits, (as contemplated by the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act), be avoided because of the “commercial activity” or “takings” exceptions at 28 U.S.C. §§ 1605(a) (2) or (a) (3)?


Continue Reading Suing Teodorin Nguema Obiang For His Malibu Mansion, Gulfstream Jet, Etc.

It is well known that corrupt politically exposed persons can conceal their illicit assets in money laundering circuits.  My recent comments regarding politically exposed persons are included at MoneyLaundering.com’s August 9th article:

International Groups Say Corrupt PEPs Can Often Loot With Impunity*

August 9, 2011
By Colby Adams and Brian Monroe

Three intergovernmental groups are questioning the effectiveness of anti-money laundering controls meant to curb abuses of corrupt political figures who steal from their countries.

The World Bank and United Nations said in a joint June 21 report that at least 74 of 124 jurisdictions examined have not complied with anti-money laundering (AML) recommendations to quash kleptocracy by political figures. The record indicates that financial institutions and the agencies that regulate them may be “deficient” in enforcing the controls, the report said.

In a separate report published July 29, the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF) warned banks and other companies that government officials, also known as politically exposed persons (PEPs), can exploit the “natural advantages” of their positions to launder ill-gotten funds through institutions, and then stymie investigations into the crimes.

The three organizations recommended requiring financial institutions to review their PEP accounts annually, sharing suspicious activity reports on the accounts of foreign politically-tied figures with their home country and eliminating the distinction between foreign and domestic PEPs.

“More specific guidance may be needed because there are specific challenges related to the persistent problem of PEPs that we don’t see with drug trafficking and organized crime,” said Vincent Schmoll, principal administrator with the FATF secretariat, in an interview. FATF plans to publish guidance in the next six months on how to identify such funds, he said.

Looting by the former Nigerian dictator Sani Abacha, who siphoned assets out of his country into banks in Switzerland, the United States and the United Kingdom, illustrates how difficult it can be to stop powerful figures from abusing their positions, said Schmoll.

“Even if all the receiving countries of Abacha’s funds had all their PEP laws up to par, and were able to identify the beneficial owners, his control of the country meant that there was no way for Swiss, U.K. and U.S. banks to return the money to his victims,” said Schmoll.

In cases when corrupt foreign officials exercise direct power over a bank, “the hardest part of money laundering, introducing the funds into the financial system, is already done,” said Fred Abrams, a New York-based attorney specializing in asset recovery. Pavlo Lazarenko of Ukraine and Zine El Abidene Ben Ali of Tunisia both used such means to launder funds they stole from state coffers, he said.


Continue Reading MoneyLaundering.com Article About Looting With Impunity

The Premier And The Hip-Hop Magazine” published by Forbes on March 3, 2010, observed that special prosecutor Helen Garlick had so far not filed public corruption or other charges against former Turks & Caicos Islands premier Michael Misick.  The March 3rd article also pointed out that the former premier and his ex-wife U.S. actress LisaRaye McCoy, were alleged to have invested monies in the US-based Hip Hop Weekly magazine.

$300,000 dollars for example, might have been transferred in 2007 to Hip Hop Weekly through companies known as My Way Productions 2 and the Windsor Investment Group.  The former premier and Ms. McCoy seemed deeply involved in My Way Productions 2, as more fully set forth at “The Former Premier’s Nexus To Hip Hop Weekly Magazine” and “The Actress, An Ex-Premier & Hip Hop Weekly Magazine“.  Windsor Investment Group meanwhile, was apparently partially owned by the former premier and his brother, Chal Misick.

The former premier, Ms. McCoy, Chal Misick and the Windsor Group are now thought to possibly be subject to a June 23, 2011 restraining order which allegedly froze the former premier’s assets worldwide.  The Turks & Caicos Sun has reported that the alleged June 23rd order “was made” by special prosecutor Garlick and that it lists the former premier, Ms. McCoy, Chal Misick, the Windsor Group and others.


Continue Reading Former Premier Misick Reportedly Subject To Worldwide Asset Freeze

The Ministerio Publico and the General Prosecutor of Guatemala assert that ex-president of Guatemala’s Congress Reuben Dario Morales Veliz, could have received graft payments in a public corruption scheme.  Payments believed to be connected to the alleged corruption scheme may have been laundered through Guatemalan and U.S. bank accounts.

To collect evidence regarding one of

Today’s “Asset Search News Roundup” focuses on two publications by the anti-money laundering bellwether, the Financial Action Task Force.  This roundup too mentions a warning from the FinCEN financial intelligence unit about the potential movement of assets out of Egypt.

  • The Financial Action Task Force published various reports at its website last month.  Two

Money mules and the former Tunisian president’s assets are covered by this “Asset Search News Roundup”:

  1. The Washington Post and FDIC previously outlined how some money launderers pretended to be employers to basically induce their so-called “employees” to wire transfer illicit funds as straw men.  These straw men commonly called money mules, were also just