Kenneth Rijock

Kenneth Rijock

Saturday, January 30, 2021

LISTEN TO THE JANUARY 28 KENNETH RIJOCK INTERVIEW ON THE CRIMINAL LINKS BETWEEN MALTA AND DOMINICA



 Readers who wish to listen to the interview, conducted by Matt Peltier on Q95 Dominica on Thursday, regarding our recent article, The Fate of Dominica's Financial Criminals is now Inextricably Intertwined with those of Malta,  a 9 minute 47 second program, kindly email me at: miamicompliance@gmail.com and it will be sent to you with my compliments.

The file is in mp3 format; the size of the file is 9.1Mb. Our thanks to Matt and Q95 for making it available to all.



WE TAKE A CLOSE LOOK AT A MALTESE POLITICIAN

                                                    Helen Dalli a/k/a Helena Dalli

It is  a primary function of this blog to call out alleged corruption whenever we see it, and our sources have pointed out Malta's former Labour Minister Helen ( Helena) Dalli as the Poster Child for alleged corruption, given recent events involving her son, Jean-Marc Dalli. A former Malta beauty queen, who later was associated with both Dom Mintoff and Joseph Muscat, Dalli's Maltese political career which has had a number of ups and downs, is punctuated with troubling corruption issues. Let's discuss some of them.

The young Dalli was found guilty in 2013, of trafficking in Ecstasy at a party venue in Paola. He was then 18 years old, and now, eight years later, he is now belatedly sentenced to a mere three months of imprisonment, fined €650, and ordered to pay one-half of the court costs of the case. A number of local commentators have complained in media that his extremely short sentence was imposed as the direct result of his mother's  influence upon Malta's well-known corrupt judiciary.

Jean-Marc Dalli was not prosecuted for money laundering, which is the usual case for drug traffickers in Malta. Also, the extraordinary delay in sentencing, without any explanation from the court, is another red flag of corruption. Dalli had an opportunity to create an extensive legitimate, law-abiding work and social history, to justify a slap on the wrist at sentencing, due to rehabilitation, which is a favored tactic of defense attorneys.

We would point out that the son enjoys an above average level of wealth, which is not consistent with his educational level and vocational achievements. His Facebook page photographs confirm extensive international travel. How was it paid for ? His wealth was not investigated prior to sentencing.

                                                         Jean-Marc Dalli @ Wimbledon
 

Allegations of corruption pervade the Dalli family story. Patrick Dalli sold his painting to the Government of Malta at a price deemed to be three times that of its actual worth, if you take the Times of Malta assessment as true and accurate.

 The MEPA Board decision not to sanction what it found was illegal construction on a farmhouse owned by the then-Minister, in a matter where she had previously approved a related policy , in a clear alleged conflict of interest is but another instance of what could be determined to be improper use of her political power to achieve private advantage. An article in the Malta Independent exposed the scheme.

Daphne Caruana Galizia reported in October, 2016 that Dalli not only appointed her son Luke's girlfriend, Rachel Debono, to her Secretariat as then Labour Minister, but secured the post of Legal Officer for her son Luke at the Malta Arts Council. That is alleged cronyism at its best. Back in November, 2015, Daphne confirmed that Dalli's Chief of Staff (Head of Secretariat), was no other than Ronnie Pellegrini, a reputed thug for a criminal organization back in the 1980s, and that she had concealed the fact of his employment, by omitting to list him on the appropriate government lists.

We intend to publish similar profiles, revealing specific instances of repeated and systemic alleged corruption, on a number of  Maltese leaders, in the hope that such bad apples are removed from public office, as their corrupt acts betray the Public Trust, and cost Malta's taxpayers dearly each day.

 


AMERICA'S MOST WANTED TERRORIST - THE WASHINGTON PIPE BOMBER

 


Friday, January 29, 2021

ARE MALTA'S POLICE KEEPING SECRETS ABOUT A MALTESE CAREER CRIMINAL ARRESTED FOR TERRORISM ? DID HE HELP MURDER THE BRITISH JOURNALIST LINKED TO DAPHNE ?

 

This is JOMIC CALLEJA; He was arrested several months ago in Malta, seeking to obtain, amongst other things, Polonium 210, which is a favourite poison of the Russian intelligence services. According to his attorney, he is cooperating with the Police of Malta. So why don't we know whether he was involved in the assassination of the British investigative journalist, Barry Randall, employing Polonium, whether as a middleman or otherwise involved with Montegrin criminals?  And, if so, upon whose orders did he Act ? 

There appears to be a news blackout on Calleja's cooperation, and we suspect that the present government has instructed law enforcement not to release any details of the statements that he made in custody. He was subsequently released on bail, notwithstanding that he also sought explosives, which makes him a danger to the community. These are the tools of a terrorist or an individual engaged in murder-for-hire; he should still be in custody. He is known in Maltese criminal circles to have a very close  relationship with a Labour Party delegate, and that may have been the reason he is out on bail.

Mr. Randall, who is known to have worked with Daphne Caruana Galizia, took a mysterious trip to meet a new source in Montenegro, where it is believed he received the Polonium under circumstances that have not yet been publicly revealed. After hurriedly returning to the United States, he became ill, and subsequently passed away.

Randall's relationship with Daphne came about due to their mutual interest in corruption, specifically in the context of Citizenship by Investment (IIM) programs, which he covered extensively in the five East Caribbean states that, like Malta, offer passport to foreign investors. he also received inquiries ( and veiled threats) from one of Malta's more mysterious businessmen, who is known to front for Chinese interests abroad, using funding to draw unsuspecting Third World countries into the expanding Chinese sphere of influence. 

Are the Police withholding Calleja's confession about his role in the poisoning of Barry Randall ?  Any disclosure in Malta about yet another murder of an investigative journalist would shake the fabric of Maltese country to its roots, and possibly spawn a new protest movement, which the ruling Labour Party candidly could not handle, since the Daphne case is still an open wound that will not heal. Will we ever learn if Calleja  acquired the Polonium for the assassins ? Certainly not from Malta's Police.


Thursday, January 28, 2021

THE INTERNATIONAL SCOPE OF THE MALTA MONEY LAUNDERING INVESTIGATIONS


 

 

 Our recent article, The Fate of Dominica's Financial Criminals is now Inextricably Intertwined with those of Malta (January 27, 2011) appears to have struck a nerve in Dominica. Readers should always keep in mind that international money laundering is always a crime that occurs in more than one jurisdiction, and has transnational consequences. Often, the criminal consequences are unintended by those who engage in those acts, as they are unaware of the reach or impact of foreign laws, and their enforcement by authorities often far removed from the launderers themselves. They find out too late to make corrections.

In the case of Malta money laundering, it is not only the long arm of American law enforcement, and that of the United Kingdom, but given that dirty money that either originates in, or is ultimately destined for, the individuals or governments from regimes in Iran, Syria, Turkey, Russia, and even North Korea, one must expect push back from other nations, notably those of the European Union, of which Malta happens to be a member.

Therefore, let's not be surprised if and when nationals from both Western countries, as well as those from the Eastern dictatorships are named as co-defendants. Money launderers rarely consider the geopolitical consequences of their illicit operations in advance; however, they often rue the day they opened a serious international money laundering investigation from abroad, by merely operating in a place where they should not have been, and woke up the dragon.

US CAPITOL VIOLENCE: DO YOU RECOGNIZE ANY OF THESE INDIVIDUALS ?

 



Wednesday, January 27, 2021

THE FATE OF DOMINICA'S FINANCIAL CRIMINALS iS NOW INEXTRICABLY INTERTWINED WITH THOSE OF MALTA


 

 While many court observers are closely watching for indictments to appear in the Malta money laundering investigation, there is another aspect to the investigation that has been overlooked: the connection between financial criminals in the Republic of Malta and their associates in the Commonwealth of Dominica. It is that criminal connection which will result in the indictment of individuals in Dominica who are engaged in money laundering and corrupt activities, due to their ongoing relationship with co-conspirators in Malta.

While there are few publicly-available facts to support this conclusion, reliable sources inside Dominica have reported that there were multiple international telephone conversations, and electronic mail exchanges, between senior government officials, and those in the public sector, located in Roseau, Dominica's capital, and their partners in crime in Malta, immediately after it became known in Malta that there were cooperating individuals, as well as whistle blowers, providing incriminating information on money laundering activities.Given that there is zero legitimate commerce between the two countries, and the parties ob both ends have a long history of criminal conduct, the content of those conversations becomes of topical interest.

Add to this the evidence available in the public domain that establishes the link between bad actors in both nations, and you have a presumption that all contact must be for illicit purposes:

(1) The CEO of Malta's now-shuttered Pilatus Bank, whose massive money laundering activities have been well established, an Iranian national, HAMIDREZA GHANBARI, holds a Citizenship by Investment (CBI) passport.

(2) The fugitive Colombian money launderer, allegedly the principal laundryman for Venezuela's elite and government officials, had two offshore banks incorporated in Dominica, ASA BANK AND TRUST & FGC BANK AND TRUST. ALEX SAAB MORAN is also linked to Elemento Ltd., a known Malta corporate entity recently sanctioned by OFAC.

(3) The convicted Swiss banker & money launderer, MATTHIAS KRULL, who laundered the proceeds of crime for Venezuelan clients in Miami, also moves over $100m through Malta. Those same Venezuelan organizations have consistently utilized Domincia as an offshore jurisdiction of convenience.

It is not known to what extent Dominica laundrymen and corruption facilitators will ultimately appear in the Malta money laundering case, but due to the transnational nature of their efforts to clean the proceeds of crime, rest assure that a number of Dominica nationals will be included as co-defendants. Dominica's laundrymen will soon find themselves in a case they had not idea would involve them.

 


Tuesday, January 26, 2021

COMMENT IS SPOT ON CONCERNING SYSTEMIC CORRUPTION AMIDST MALTA'S INSTITUTIONS AND AGENCIES


 

He said it all; a private individual, acting as a commentator, responding in the media to an article, delivered a terse yet effective verdict on Maltese corruption this week:

" Politicians obtaining bribes or "commissions" in cash are there for everyone to shame but they still remain in public office. From construction watchdogs, Police Ombudsman, PA, MFSA, IDPC, administrative tribunals, Parliament, OPM, LA, Citizenship, IMA ... all of them are politicised and those in charge abuse of their power, Everyone with eyes can see it. "

There it is. MONEYVAL sees it, too.

 

Monday, January 25, 2021

WILL THE LAWYERS INVOLVED IN MALTA MONEY LAUNDERING OPERATIONS BE INDICTED WITH THEIR CLIENTS ?

 


One question that remains unanswered in the ongoing Malta money laundering investigation: whether any of the attorneys who assisted their criminal clients in  setting up, and operating, full-service money laundering schemes have been named, or will be named, as defendants in the indictments ? We are talking about counsel, not in government service, who are engaged in civil practice, aiding and abetting their clients who move & clean the proceeds of crime, whether their own, or those of others.

Lawyers that form shell corporations, employ their staff to front as as registered agents, officers and directors, thus concealing the identities of their clients, and help cover up their clients' criminal acts, are as guilty as the laundrymen themselves, in the eyes of American Federal Criminal Law. They conspire to assist in criminal conduct. Though they may never personally handle one filthy Dollar or Euro, our conspiracy laws will reach out and tough them.

One more point: the Crime or Fraud Exception to the Attorney-Client Privilege holds that, where the attorney is involved in assisting the client to commit criminal acts, the privilege does not apply, even if he or she does not know that his legal work facilitated crime. When any of the Malta money laundering defendants choose to cooperate with law enforcement, to lessen their sentences, their cooperation will not be blocked if they are attorneys testifying against their dirty clients. We wonder if the principal defendants are aware of that rule of law, given that there are a number of cooperators already enjoying immunity from prosecution.

in any event , we will know soon enough whose lives will forever be changed by the rude awakening when justice touches down in Valletta.


NEW DIRECTOR AT CFPB HAS A HISTORY OF AGGRESSIVE ENFORCEMENT OF THE LAW

                                                                         Rohit Chopra 

President Biden has announced that he has appointed Rohit Chopra to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB). Chopra replaces Kathy Kraninger as Director, whose term at CFPB runs through 2023, but who will most likely be replaced by the new administration.

Director-designate Chopra, who will leave his current post as Commissioner at the Federal Trade Commission, has earned a reputation as an aggressive enforcer of Federal Law, while at the FTC, and we welcome his appointment. The CFPB is tasked with the enforcement of financial regulations. and the protection of the rights of consumers. In 2019, cases the agency settled totaled over $777 million.

Chopra is sure to target America's most egregious foreclosure mill, Fay Servicing, of Chicago, which we have previously reported has consistently engaged in the unlawful foreclosure of the residences of senior citizens during the COVID-19 pandemic, and which is reportedly the subject of current investigations by local government agencies in several states.Victims have reported hundreds of instances of deceptive practices by Fay staff officers, many cases resulting in the loss of their homes, when the victims were told that cooperation with Fay would result in saving their residences. 

Two law firms, engaged in bringing the foreclosure actions on the orders of Fay and Wells Fargo, are also the subject of inquiry, according to information received from the victims. They have been identified as Barrett Daffin Flappier and Wright, Finlay & Zak. 

  Victims have stated that the original mortgagee bank, Wells Fargo, whose executives and employees allegedly participated in  fraudulent activities against them, has not been the subject of any agency administrative or legal action, during the past four years, due to the fact that Wells Fargo contributed over $10 million to former President Trump's election campaigns.

Victims have stated that they are hopeful that newly-installed Director Chopra and the US Attorney General will initiate a program of enforcement to bring criminal charges against all the individuals and companies that have violated consumer protection laws in illegal foreclosures.


 

 


Sunday, January 24, 2021

BANKRUPTCY ORDER SPELLS OUT INSIDIOUS NAME CHANGES IN ELEMENTO CIVIL SUIT


 

 

Investigators or compliance officers who wish additional details about Elemento Ltd. can find it in the bankruptcy filing we mentioned in our recent article, United States Sanctions Malta-based Energy Company linked to Venezuela's Laundryman Extraordinaire, Alex Saab Moran,  please note that the 33-page order is marked "Not for Publication, ' which means it will not be reported, and can only be found in the court file, electronically or in person at bankruptcy court. 



Thus will give you an idea of the relevant information you can extract from that order.

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Saturday, January 23, 2021

THE TRIAL PENALTY AND REALITY FOR FEDERAL DEFENDANTS

 


With events soon to place a number of high-profile foreign targets into what many regard as one of life's most stressful events, being indicted in Federal Court for major felonies, this is an appropriate time to discuss what outcomes defendants can expect, whether risks can be mitigated,  to what degree, and how it all plays out in the end.i

It all comes down to one question: will you be convicted or acquitted in a jury trial ?  Before discussing specifics, looking at the statistics allows one to grasp the reality of what happens to those named as defendants in Federal criminal cases. the most recent Pew Research Center study found that:

(1) 90% of defendants entered  plea of guilty.  

(2)  8% of the cases were dismissed before trial.                  

(3)  Just 2% went to trial.                                                                                                                               

(4) Of those who chose to go to trial, less than 1% were acquitted.

If that is not sufficient reason for a defendant to mitigate his or her risk, and enter into a plea agreement which, in most cases, involves the dismissal of some of the pending charges, and a shorter sentence than would most likely be imposed after putting the US Attorney's Office, and the court system, through the expense and trouble of a trial, especially when the evidence is overwhelming, as is the case when the case is properly prepared and tried. In that case, all the counts are generally retained, which increases the sentence. Criminal defense attorneys call this the Trial Penalty,  the fact than individuals who choose to go to trial can therefore face higher sentences if they invoke the right to go to trial and lose. 

Faced with the foregoing, and even in the face of your attorney's assertions that the Government cannot prove its case, and you have a good chance of an acquittal, and if you lose, you have an excellent chance to have your conviction reversed on appeal, Objective risk management in an emotional time dictates that, if the US Attorney has sufficient evidence and the witnesses to convict you, going to trial will only result in a very long sentence. A word to the wise is sufficient.

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UNITED STATES SANCTIONS MALTA-BASED ENERGY COMPANY LINKED TO VENEZUELA'S LAUNDRYMAN EXTRAORDINAIRE ALEX SAAB MORAN

 

As promised, things are starting to move forward on the various Malta money laundering investigations, and we expect them to continue until the Head of the Octopus [Maltese Government Mafia] is arrested and taken into custody by American law enforcement agencies. This week, US Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control, OFAC,  designated a Malta-based energy company, ELEMENTO, for purchasing oil from Venezuela's national oil company, PdVSA, and reselling it to third-party customers, on behalf of its reputed owner, ALESSANDRO BAZZONI, who was also sanctioned. Actual beneficial ownership of Elemento seems to be unverified. it is alleged that some of the illicit oil ended up in Asia.

                                         Diagram courtesy Alek Boyd

Several variations on the Elemento corporate name exist, which is typical tradecraft for criminal organizations. The Malta incorporated companies are ELEMENTO LIMITED, and ELEMENTO OIL & GAS LTD./ELEMENTO OIL AND GAS LTD. There is also a sanctioned UK company, ELEMENTO SOLUTIONS LTD., and Treasury has also named a Panama-based BVI company, ELEMENTO CAPITAL ADVISORS LTD.. We have found a number of other similarly-named companies abroad, including one in Norway, but it is unknown which are pat of Bazzoni's network, and which are unrelated legitimate enterprises. Criminal organizations often choose corporate names that are widely used in the marketplace, knowing that this makes identification of bad actors more difficult and often confuses investigators.

                                       
 

Notable among the other companies sanctioned by OFAC is SWISSOIL TRADING SA of Geneva, also believed to be under the control of Bazzoni. Significantly, the Colombian money launderer, ALEX NAIN SAAB MORAN, who is known to work for President NICOLAS MADURO of Venezuela, and his inner circle, is also linked to Elemento and the other sanctioned entities. Saab Moran is currently in custody in Cape Verde, fight extradition to the US, where he faces massive money laundering and other charges in Miami; the fact that he is involved may in part account for the amount of attention investigators have paid to Malta in recent months, as he is a primary target of American law enforcement.

                                           President Nicol├ís Maduro and Alex Saab Moran

Bazzoni also shows up as a defendant in a civil case in US District Court in New York, regarding an unpaid $27m promissory note, with a co-defendant corporation formed in Malta, whose debt he later assigns to Elemento, and later transfers to another company, in a complex maneuver that appears to be designed to avoid repayment of the debt.the original name of the Malta company is CT ENERGIA LTD.

While the OFAC sanctions are purely civil in nature, we must assume that there is a parallel criminal investigation, and that citizens or residents of Malta who have been working on the operation with Bazzoni are targets. There is an FBI investigation in progress. We will be making inquiries and will report back on our findings. 

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Friday, January 22, 2021

JUDGE IN HALKBANK CASE RESPONDS TO DEFENSE COUNSEL LETTER ON STAY

 The Court in the Halkbank case replied to this week's letter from the defense, bluntly pointing out that the Stay imposed by the Second Circuit Court of Appeals required that all scheduled matters be paused until the appeal is decided. Whether you think their letter was improper, simply overbearing, or otherwise, here's the Court's comment below, in the signature box to the right.

 


 

 

Thursday, January 21, 2021

A TIMELY REMINDER: THERE IS EXTRATERRITORIAL JURISDICTION OF AMERICA'S MONEY LAUNDERING STATUTES

 


 There seems to be a widespread misunderstanding among foreign nationals, regarding the extraterritorial jurisdiction of US money laundering laws. Many believe that, if they never enter the United States, nor hold bank accounts there, nor engage in trade or commerce with American companies, that they are immune from being charged with money laundering in the US. Nothing could be further from the truth; there is extraterritorial application of United States money laundering statutes.

Basically, the elements of the crime for foreign officials are as follows:

(A) There must be a natural person who is engaged in a financial transaction. This term has been broadly interpreted by Federal Courts.

(B) The individual must know that the transaction involved the proceeds of an illegal activity, known as a Specified Unlawful Activity. Some recent examples; violations of the  Foreign Corrupt Practices Act,  corrupt acts, or violations of the Wire Fraud or Mail Fraud Acts.

(C) The individual intended to conceal the proceeds of the unlawful activity, or promote the activity itself.

(D) If the individual is not a US citizen, it exceeds $10,000, and the conduct in part, occurs in the United States. This is where correspondent banking relationships often invoke jurisdiction, as they can involve movement of the proceeds of crime. They are the necessary conduits of US Dollar transactions, and satisfy the jurisdictional requirements.

Therefore, one may never have any ties to the United States, but receive US Dollars as the proceeds of a criminal act, and deposit those greenbacks, which work their way through the global banking system, including through the New York financial centre, thereby providing jurisdiction.

Alternatively, bribes and kickbacks, paid in US Dollars by American companies to foreign government officials, originated in American financial institutions, did, in part, occur in the United States. There's your jurisdiction another way.

These are but two simple examples of how prosecutors find extraterritorial application of America's money laundering laws. When the senior foreign government official finds out, to his chagrin, that the bribe money he accepted from an American corporation to approve a contract with his nation, he may be literally biting off more than he can chew.

Help us expand our coverage at the upcoming criminal cases. Please donate.

 

CASE INVOLVING MATTHIAS KRULL CODEFENDANTS HAS NO ENTRIES SINCE OCTOBER 2020



If you read my recent article, Are the Seven Other Defendants in Matthias Krull's Miami Money Laundering Case also looking for Someone to Testify Against ? (January 12,2021), you know that there are a fistful of money launderers, all linked to the convicted Swiss banker & laundryman Matthias Krull, who appear to be cooperating with the authorities. There are several guilty pleas, or a total lack of a zealous defense being conducted in the remaining cases. What's up ?

 A quick check of the docket, strangely enough, shows no entries whatsoever since Last October. Either I have lost my touch in interpreting between the lines, or these defendants are all looking for sentence reduction through cooperating against targets who make the mistake of going to trial. Given that Krull was involved in, not only the major Venezuela-to-Miami money laundering case, but also movement of over $100m to and through Malta, how many of the seven other defendants have first-hand knowledge or evidence that they could employ against the Malta money launderers at trial ? Food for thought, gentlemen.

Also, don't forget number eight, Matthias Krull himself, who otherwise must start serving his ten-year sentence.

READ MY COMMENT TO THE ARTICLE ALLEGING THAT MY INFORMATION ON JOSEPH MUSCAT IS NOT CORRECT

Readers of Malta Today last Sunday noted the an article critical of yours truly, and this blog, claiming that the information written about the criminal activities of Malta's cashiered ex-Prime Minister, who resigned in disgrace, is not true. I was never consulted to respond to the article, which leads me to believe that it was published under the orders of the Labour Party, and most likely actually written by them, meaning the Toxic Dodger himself, Muscat. I did respond on this blog.

Today, the article appeared online, and here is my Comment, posted after the story.

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Tuesday, January 19, 2021

WILL MALTA'S LABOUR PARTY SURVIVE THE ONCOMING STORM ?


                                 A Plague on Both your Houses,  By Twitch*
 

 Political parties in any country, including the United States, are not immortal.They can implode due to a massive scandal, or the public's loss of faith their ability to deliver on promises, or total loss of relevance.  We await the judgment of history upon the Labour Party of the Republic of Malta. Its titular leaders, and power brokers, are about to suffer a legal Tsunami that will shake the party to its very roots. Whether it survives as a viable entity is anyone's guess.

 Why is this happening ? It seems that the Party's Socialist roots (think Dom Mintoff) have been cast off in favour of what objective observers call Champagne Socialism, where the leadership espouses populism and socialism, but drowns in bribes and kickbacks, offshore tax haven shell corporations, and Mafia-style participation in just about every form of crime that a country could have operating within its borders.

The avarice and greed have become so all-consuming that the Party leaders have, while engaging in transnational crime, unintentionally awakened the Tiger, and they are about to end up inside it (no pun intended). If you insert yourself where the Big Boys are playing, and interfere with their game, you will pay the price, one way or another. 

 This might be a good time for the people of Malta to create a new political party, or resurrect an old one that has sentimental value, for things are about to change; Strap in and buckle up.  

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*Note that the deteriorating Enviromnent, Daphne's assassination, Pilatus Bank, and Panama have all been swept under the rug, whilst the vultures fight over the remaining spoils. Twitchcraft.

Help us expand our coverage of the Malta money laundering cases; one man cannot cover three courts in three different American cities, which we expect will soon be upon us. We need assistance through engaging court observers. Please help us by donating through the website, which you can access on your laptop and desktop. If you would like to donate, look for the Donate icon,


PILATUS BANK ATTORNEYS HAVE NOT ASKED THE COURT TO ACCEPT THEIR LATE SERVICE UPON THE COMPETENT PERSON

 

I am still trying to figure out why counsel for Ali Sadr Hashemi Nejad, the owner of defunct Pilatus Bank, has not yet asked the Court to allow their late service of process upon Lawrence Connell, the former Competent Person who was administering the Maltese bank's affairs, in their quest to obtain Discovery from Connell. The order stated that the case was dismissed if their did not serve him shortly before Christmas, and this was not accomplished. Do the lawyers think the Court will overlook this little detail ?

I would think that their first order of business would be to persuade the Court to approve of their late service, and insure that the case remains active. Their stipulation with Connell's attorney, for an extension of time to respond, had a court order attached, to rubber stamp their agreement, but it has not yet been signed by the District Judge. What's wrong with this picture ? Perhaps the Court does not approve.

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Monday, January 18, 2021

MALTA'S IL DUCE REQUIRES SEVERAL ARMED BODYGUARDS WHEN HE TRAVELS IN PUBLIC

                                                                         DUCE

 He may have left the office of prime minister more than a year ago, but Joseph Muscat will not go out in public unless he is accompanies by several armed bodyguards. Is he still afraid of an Eastern European hit squad, as has been rumoured ? In any event, he is no longer  entitled to government-supplied (and paid for) hired guns, so why is Robert Abela, the current PM, protecting the man named as the EU's most corrupt government official in 2019, we ask. It is because he still rules Malta's Labour Mafia.  

Readers: please assist us with our expansion of court coverage, due to the anticipated US criminal cases expected to be filed in the near future. We anticipate that we will be required to cover New York, DC and Miami. Please DONATE  to permit us to engage court observers in those additional cities. 

 


FCPA PROSECUTIONS IN US OF FOREIGN OFFICIALS EFFECTIVELY EMPLOY AN ALTERNATIVE REMEDY TO OBTAIN CONVICTIONS

While Malta was engaged today in paying close attention to the testimony of its former Prime Minister, Joseph Muscat, with many having followed online the real-time summaries of the questions posed and the his responses, this is a good time to clear the air regarding his exposure, as a foreign official, to America's Foreign Corrupt Practices Act., as well as that of other Maltese government officials who accept bribes, kickbacks or other items of value from Americans and their companies to direct government business or contracts to them.

While Muscat, and the attorneys who are representing him, most certainly have asvised him that foreign government officials may not be charged under the FCPA, there is an alternate method through which  Federal prosecutors obtain a conviction for corruption. Bribes operate as a Predicate Act, otherwise known as Specific Unlawful Activity (SUA), and such corruption produces what some commentators regard as "proceeds which generate money laundering transactions."

To be more specific, corruption cases meet the test for money laundering when, knowing that the property involved in a financial transaction represented the Proceeds of some form of Unlawful Activity, the targets conducted or attempted to conduct a financial transaction, which in fact involved the proceeds of that specific Unlawful Activity, or with the knowledge that the transaction was designed at least in part to conceal or disguise the nature, location, source, ownership or control of the Proceeds of the Unlawful Activity.

Muscat's attorneys are correct; he probably cannot be charged under the FCPA. but he can most certainly be indicted for money laundering.

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Sunday, January 17, 2021

HALKBANK'S ATTORNEYS POINTEDLY REMIND THE TRIAL JUDGE OF THE STAY ORDER

 

 If you have been following our coverage of United States vs. Turkiye Halk Bankasi,  the Halkbank case, you know that the Second Circuit court of Appeal has ordered a Stay of trial court proceedings, pending a decision in the bank's appeal of the Court's denial of its Foreign Sovereign Immunity defense. On January 15, bank counsel sent this letter to the Court, which appears to be a pointed reminder to the judge of the terms of the Stay. Counsel specifically asked "to vacate all pretrial, trial and related deadlines in this Court." 

It may have been made with respect, but the letter still appears to be out of line, in our humble opinion. The Court has a staff, including attorneys who function as law clerks, who would have brought these issues to the attention of the Court, if in fact the Court would not have already taken care of it. Is the letter insulting ? We cannot say, but in a case where defense counsel has pulled out each and every effort to extricate their client from the case, the letter is a bit too much. Judges receive Stay orders often; they know what to do when they receive one.



AS ITS DAY OF RECKONING APPROACHES, MALTA'S CORRUPT LABOUR PARTY ATTEMPTS TO SHOOT THE MESSENGER


 

We note that an article appeared today, in one of Malta's government-controlled newspapers, that attempts to smear this blog and your blogger, by openly doubting that the information appearing therein is true and correct. Furthermore, the article clumsily attempts to discredit yours truly, with half-truths and disinformation, all of which is designed to convince the people of Malta not to read our stories, especially when they concern their cashiered former Prime Minister, Joseph "Artful Dodger' Muscat, and his Labour Party.

Nothing in that poorly-written article should persuade our readers to stop seeing the painful truth about their corrupt government, its dark alliance with international criminals, and its ultimate destiny, which shall be total disgrace when its leadership is indicted abroad. Truth to Power, my friends.

Regarding the incomplete picture painted in the article, longtime readers of my work know that I have been, while engaged in other pursuits, a journalist for more than fifty years, beginning when I wrote combat stories while riding atop an armoured personnel carrier in the Vietnam war, as a soldier fighting Communism. In all that time, including over 8000 articles on financial crime, I have only been found once, by any court, to have published information later found to be untrue, and by the way, that was due to lies told by two sources, though I have not been ordered to pay one cent for damages, nor will I be required to. I consider that a pretty good track record, considering the huge number of articles I have published.

The writer of the article about me cleverly ignores the fact that that I am a recognized expert in the field of money laundering, due to my open acknowledgement of my participation in that dark art in my youth, and have testified before the United States Congress three times as such, in 1999 and 2000. You can find the transcripts online in the Congressional Record.  I have lectured on the subject of how to identify and suppress financial crime in over 100 countries, and have consulted with law enforcement agencies in the United States and Canada, for more than 25 years. 

I know money laundering when I see it, and Malta is completely infected with it; while claiming to help the people, Labour are proven Champagne Socialists, raking in bribes and kickbacks, while paying lip service to the principles of Dom Mintoff. I therefore pose a direct threat to Malta's financial criminals and their facilitators in the Labour Party. No wonder they want to discredit me; Let them try. Their party's continued existence is at stake here, for if their corrupt leadership is indicted abroad, it could implode, thereafter to be left in the dustbin of history; No wonder they are afraid.

                                               
                              

The article asks whether my predictions about Malta's future will come true. Watch this blog for the answer.

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Saturday, January 16, 2021

JUSTICE IS ON FINAL APPROACH FOR MALTA

US DOJ on Short Final to MLA, wheels & flaps down.
 
  .

 If you have been reading between the lines, you know that major developments in the Malta money laundering cases are expected in the immediate future. You also know that two of the principal Persons of Interest a/k/a Suspects are now operating outside of Malta, believing that they have cheated justice. They have no clue about what is about to happen. Readers are advised to monitor this Blog on a daily basis, as we will bring you all developments as they occur, which will be most likely be after the close of business, CET. It is suggested that you either check at the end of your day, or set an alert up for all new articles that are published.

                        Malta's Prime Minister, Artfully Guided by his Predecessor by COSIMO  

___________________________________________________________                                                   We again ask those longtime Malta readers who have still not made a contribution to assist us to expand our reporting with court observers to cover all the expected criminal filings and appearances in Federal Court. Please make a Donation to help us bring all the relevant US news to you as it happens. You will need to access the website using a laptop or desktop computer, as the Donate icon is not on the mobile version of the site. Please DONATE.




WTF IS HAPPENING IN THE US PILATUS BANK LETTERS ROGATORY CASE ??



In re Pilatus Bank PLC,  the Leters Rogatory (Discovery request) matter, in which the bank is seeking information for its pending EU action to reinstate its license, as well as a proposed civil suit for bamages against the European Central Bank, remains a mystery.What is the status, we ask ?

Here's what we know:

(1) the District Judge gave the bank until just before Christmas to amend, and to serve Lawrence Connell, the Competent Person in the Malta Pilatus Bank disposition. If there was no service, then the case would stand dismissed.

(2) Notwithstanding this, Pilatus' Miami attorneys served Connell AFTER the deadline, which  may or may not stand. The Court has not yet been requested to reinstate the case, nor has it acted Sue Sponte ( on its own) to do so.

(3) Now, the parties have executed  Stipulation to extend time for Connell to respond to the Amended Petition. There is a section for the Court to approve of the Stipulation, but to date we have not seen it do so.

Question: Does the Court still have jurisdiction over the action? We cannot say.but we wish somebody would seek some judicial guidance in the way of a ruling. Also, is Connell going to fight compliance with the Discovery request ?  Please, let's get some answers. 


 

 



Friday, January 15, 2021

YOU KNOW THE LEGAL TIDAL WAVE IS COMING WHEN ...

 


You know things are about to happen to the Malta money laundering targets when a South Florida criminal defense attorney, who handles White Collar Crime, is advertising on the website of the leading Malta newspaper; I guess the word is out. While it might be considered improper to disclose his name, the lawyer appears to be of Italian heritage. We wonder who tipped him off ?

THE BLOG WILL EXPAND INTO TWO SECTIONS FOR THE US CRIMINAL CASES INVOLVING MALTA

 

                                                  The Laundry Man (Polish Edition)

 

We are going to devote a Special Section of this Blog to the criminal cases that are soon to be filed, so that readers may go directly to the information. Case status, recent developments, and our analysis will all be covered. needless to say, this expansion of our material each day means that we need your help in expanding our coverage.

Please give generously, if you have not previously help to support our mission. Donate, using your laptop or desktop computer, as the Smart Phone version of the page does not include the "Donate" icon, which you must click on to access payment methods. Thank you for your support PLEASE DONATE.

CORRUPT APPOINTMENT OF NEW COMPETENT PERSON IN PILATUS BANK WIND DOWN LINKS DIRECTLY TO JOSEPH MUSCAT AND ALI SADR HASHEMI NEJAD

 


 While Malta media is slowly waking up to the idea that there's something very rotten about the MFSA appointment of ROBERT ANCILLERI as Competent Person in the Pilatus Bank matter, given that he was, in January, appointed an Non-Executive Director of DF Consultancy Services, part of DF Advocates,  Sadr's attorneys, there's so much more that makes the appointment unfit for any purpose:

(1) While he resigned from that directorship, the Conflict of Interest still stands, by any objective measure.

(2) DF is very close to former minister, and Muscat associate, CHRIS CARDONA; they worked for him when he held ministerial rank.

(3) Government officials who are Labour Party Members were so quick to fill in the shoes of Lawrence Connell, so that Sadr's attorneys no longer need the Discovery case in the United States;  thet can get all the information they need for Ancilleri, who is a known friend of Sadr's Malta attorneys.

(4)  We understand that Connell was sharing his information and evidence with American law enforcement investigators; did he resign due to the pressure of the Federal lawsuit, and other non-record activity ? We understand that Connell's cooperation was making Joseph Muscat extremely nervous.

(5) There have been repeated rumours to the effect that Sadr has threatened Muscat and his associates in government with public exposure of all of Pilatus' dark money laundering secrets, including Egrant, and that is why he has not been, nor will he be, charged with cleaning dirty money at the bank. Sadr 's evidence could put Michelle Muscat in prison for a very long time, and he could testify about bribes paid to secure, on a fast-track basis, the Pilatus banking license.

Ancilleri should be immediately replaced with an experienced accounting and banking professional who is not under the thumb of Joseph Muscat and his Merry Men of corruption. To do any less marks Malta, again, as the most corrupt government in the European Union.

 



Thursday, January 14, 2021

WHY DID FINANCIAl PROFESSIONAL OVERSEEING WINDING UP OF PILATUS BANK SUDDENLY RESIGN ?

 


LAWRENCE CONNELL, appointed in March 2018 as the Competent Person assigned to manage the affairs of Malta's Pilatus Bank, abruptly resigned his office, in the wake of a failed effort by the bank's shareholder, the Iranian businessman ALI SADR HASHEMI NEJAD, to obtain Discovery from Connell, through judicial proceedings filed in an American Federal Court. No reason has been publicly given for the resignation, which was effective forthwith, and which raises serious questions regarding the circumstances surrounding that decision. Was there pressure exerted upon Connell, to resign, and if so by whom ? The dismissed US case indicated that Pilatus wanted him to provide evidence used to cancel the bank's license by the European Central Bank (ECB).

Malta's financial regulator, the MFSA, immediately appointed the Maltese accountant/auditor, ROBERT ANCILLERI. There is no indication that he was selected from a list of qualified accounting professionals who were available for the position. Ancilleri, who is known to be close to the Labour Party, although he is not a registered Member, could therefore be subject to undue influence from party leadership, or government officials who are Labour Party Members. 

If Ancilleri, for any reason, chooses to withhold, or fails to locate and produce, evidence unfavorable to Pilatus Bank, the outcome of the pending Annulment action against the ECB, seeking to reinstate its banking license, it may affect the outcome. Rampant corruption, which infects literally all court and administrative proceedings involving Malta, could result in the bank's reinstatement, notwithstanding a Magistrate's report, concluding that there was massive money laundering in the bank.

This matter is yet another reason for the Magistrate's Report on Pilatus Bank, which reportedly recommends that all of the bank's directors, its senior officers, and the Money Laundering Reporting Officer, be charged with money laundering. The Attorney General is known to have received the Report, but is reportedly sitting on it, as it allegedly recommends charges against JOSEPH MUSCAT, the country's disgraced ex-Prime Minister, as well as others living and working in Malta.

 

 


Tuesday, January 12, 2021

ARE THE SEVEN OTHER DEFENDANTS IN MATTHIAS KRULL'S MIAMI MONEY LAUNDERING CASE ALSO LOOKING FOR SOMEONE TO TESTIFY AGAINST ?



Perhaps the targets in the Malta money laundering investigations might want to pay closer attention to the Matthias Krull Miami Federal case, as our recent review of the case file reveals that several of the seven other defendants may also possibly be testifying against them in new Miami, New York or DC cases:

The other defendants: 

(1) FRANCISCO CONVIT GURUCEAGA

(2) JOSE VICENTE AMPARAN CROQUER

(3) CARMELO URDANETA AQUI

(4) ABRAHAM EDGARDO ORTEGA

(5) GUSTAVO ADOLFO HERNANDEZ FRIERI

(6) HUGO ANDRE RAMALHO GOIS

(7) MARCELO FEDERICO GUTIERREZ ACOSTA Y LARA

                                                                                                                                                                           

Here's what I learned from my review:

(1) Most have pled guilty to money laundering and other related offenses.

((2) Their sentencing dates have been postponed or have curiously not been scheduled.

(2) Many of them have documents and filings sealed by the Court.

(3) Many of them have cooperated in agreeing to government forfeiture of their real estate assets.

Meanwhile, MATTHIAS KRULL, whom we already know needs to find a way to have his ten year Federal Prison sentence reduced, was granted a Christmas holiday in Orlando, which required an order from a District Judge. it is only the most recent of many court-approved trips out of Southern Florida, where he is restricted to, by virtue of his bond status. 

There's nothing in the court file to indicate what links exist between the other defendants in the Krull case and Malta, because of all those guilty pleas, but given the broad nature of Federal Conspiracy laws, one must understand that, even if these individuals never met the Malta targets, that their evidence will be relevant, and very damaging. I doubt that many of the targets in Malta understand their situation.