|Leroy King and R Allen Stanford|
Leroy King, who as head banking regulator in Antigua, kept American investigators in the dark for years, as they sought information on the Stanford International Bank Ponzi scheme, was denied bail last week, after a US Magistrate Judge in Texas denied him bond, and remanded him into custody, pending trial. Friends and family members reportedly testified on his behalf at the bond hearing, but the Court did not grant him release; his lack of ties to the United States, and failure to agree to extradition since 2009, were probably contributing factors in the decision.
King, the last significant defendant in the billion dollar Stanford Ponzi scheme to evade justice, blocked extradition from Antigua for more than a decade, during proceedings that clearly demonstrated that political influence, and not the Rule of Law, governs court proceedings in that Caribbean country. His appearance, before a court in the United States was artfully delayed, due in large part to repeated judicial reassignment of the case, multiple appeals filed without any merit at law, and dilatory tactics of local government prosecutors.
The defendant faces a maximum of one hundred and seventy-five years imprisonment, on twenty-one counts, including mail, wire and securities fraud, and money laundering. The question court watchers have been asking is whether Mr. King, to reduce his sentence, will implicate present and former senior government officials, who allegedly accepted significant bribes from Allen Stanford, to allow him to operate his Ponzi scheme, which accepted depositors' money for supposedly secured Certificates of Deposit, while spending it on his opulent lifestyle.
King is allegedly suffering from cancer, and reliable Antigua sources claim that he will take his secrets about corruption to the grave. They originally thought he might pass away while still fighting extradition; whether he has had a change of heart about cooperation is not known.