Monday, October 29, 2018


Former Julius Baer Group Ltd. banker Mathias Krull
Mathias Krull, the German-Swiss banker who embezzled millions from Venezuela's petroleum cash flow, and invested the laundered profits in US real estate, was sentenced to ten years in Federal Prison for Money Laundering Conspiracy, the maximum possible sentence. He was also ordered to forfeit $600,000, and to pay a $50,000 fine, but allowed to remain free on bond, due to this cooperation with the authorities, regarding a massive Venezuela-based money laundering syndicate.

The organization in which Krull played a central role, allegedly diverted more than $1bn in oil profits from PDVSA, which went to insiders in Venezuela's corrupt government and their families.

Krull will most likely receive a sentence reduction at a later date, after he has assisted the US Attorney's Office, through cooperative court testimony at trial, in obtaining convictions of several other defendants in his case, but it is doubtful that he will be able to shave his 10-year sentence by more than five years. Under current law, he must serve 85% of his sentence, and he faces certain deportation after that, as he is not a US citizen.

It is a positive sign that Krull received the maximum sentence, for many defendants convicted of money laundering or  money laundering conspiracy often draw shorter sentences, which do not serve as an effective deterrent.

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