Kenneth Rijock

Kenneth Rijock

Friday, April 30, 2021

SEEKING TO COUNTER TRUTHFUL MEDIA, MALTA'S LABOUR PARTY NAMES A "CLEAN" FORMER LEADER TO HEAD ITS NEW PROPAGANDA ARM



Malta's ruling Labour Party, clearly feeling the effects of damaging truthful news reports from local English language online newspapers and blogs, has named a former party CEO, whom they judge to be a person  untainted by corruption, to lead its new online English news website,  The Journal. Randolph Debattista, who objected to the pervasive corruption and crime, and who was previously sacked as party CEO, will lead the news project.

The obvious aim is to put what Labour believes is a fresh and clean face to foreign journalists, as well as to those Maltese incensed at the systemic corruption which infects Labour. Obviously, the English language media in Malta has made the regime's criminal conduct easily available to overseas media, with the result that it is being raked over the coals for corruption in foreign online news, and the new site is intended to rebut that truth, and push pro-Labour disinformation and misinformation into their coverage. It won't work, for the prominent English media in Malta is well respected, and the alternative blogs that exist complement that coverage with information mainstream media fears to publish.

One item which was overlooked in the choice of Debattisti to head the news site; he is not as clean as Labour makes him out to be. His Significant Other (Paramour), Cyrus Engerer, has a felony conviction for engaging in revenge pornography, yet he was placed by Labour in the European Parliament, and is a current MEP. In a country which is 99% Roman Catholic, this moral offence, and the fact that an unsuitable candidate closely tied to Debattisti is a serving public official, severely damages his credibility as a reformer, or for any other purpose.




 We trust that foreign media, and indeed, compliance officers at international banks, totally disregard whatever propaganda this news site will spew out, recognizing the source is fatally tainted. Likewise, informed Maltese readers will also ignore the obvious propaganda message.  


Wednesday, April 28, 2021

WHO ARE THE TWO OTHER UNNAMED INDIVIDUALS IN THE DAPHNE MURDER ?


IMPORTANT NOTE: THIS ARTICLE IS INTENDED SOLELY FOR INTERNATIONAL READERS. IF YOU ARE IN THE REPUBLIC OF MALTA, YOU ARE ADVISED TO IMMEDIATELY LEAVE THE PAGE. THIS MATERIAL IS NOT INTENDED FOR YOU. MALTESE READERS ARE ALSO NOT TO LISTEN TO THE AUDIO PORTION OF THIS WEBSITE.

READERS WHO ARE PROCEEDING TO VIEW THIS MATERIAL ARE STRONGLY ADVISED TO DISABLE OR TURN OFF THE AUDIO VOLUME, AS THE DIALOGUE CONTAINS VERY GRAPHIC PROFANITY WHICH THEY MAY FIND OFFENSIVE.


____________________________________________________________________

 

 

                                                Daphne's Watching  by COSIMO

 

 

You are about to listen to a conversation between  MELVIN THEUMA and JOHANN CREMONA. Though it is in the original Maltese, there are English subtitles. Theuma, who was granted a presidential pardon for revealing all he knew as the middleman in the assassination of Daphne Caruana Galizia. He secretly recorded this and other conversations with Cremona and YORGEN FENECH.

This recording exposes the fact that there were two other middlemen involved in the funding of the murder. Melvin was arrested for suspicion of money laundering, after Malta Police were pressured by Europol. The police were interested in his recordings, which he had made as a guarantee, but he was tipped off by various forces in the police and the government.

JOSEPH MUSCAT decided on his own, and without consulting the Cabinet, as required by law, to give Theuma a presidential pardon, to require him to reveal all.

This recording was found on a device. It, together with others, was deleted, but the information was restored and extracted. It shows that there are a total of three middlemen, not only one, meaning Theuma.  We don't have the full picture yet; the mystery deepens.

 

 


 

MARTINELLI BROTHERS LOSE THEIR APPEAL IN GUATEMALA FROM ORDER OF EXTRADITION TO UNITED STATES

Reports from Guatemala confirm that the appeal of LUIS MARTINELLI LIINARES from a lower court ruling ordering the extradition of both Martinelli brothers( RICARDO ALBERTO MARTINELLI LINARES)  to the United States has been denied , paving the way for the eventual transfer of the brothers to the custody of American law enforcement officials, for a flight to the US.

The brothers face an indictment in the Eastern District of New York , on money laundering chages. They allegedly assisted their father, Ricardo Martinelli, Panama's former president, receive and launder millions of dollars in bribes from the construction multinational, Odebrecht. Odebrecht has already pled guilty to criminal charges in the United States.

The Martinelli brothers have no more appeals as a matter of right. Their counsel may attempt some sort of dilatory action, but their extradition will eventually occur, barring any unforeseen events.


 

 

IS JOHANN CREMONA THE THIRD WHISTLEBLOWER IN THE MALTA MONEY LAUNDERING INVESTIGATION ?


 Today's news from Malta, concerning the arrest of former Police Superintendent Raymond Aquilina, in connection with leaks of sensitive information in the Daphne Caruana Galizia murder assassination, reminds us that Yorgan Fenech's business associate and betting business fixer, JOHANN CREMONA, who has been indirectly implicated in the murder, may be the unknown whistleblower rumoured to be cooperating with both American and Italian law enforcement agencies. He does have direct access to inside information regarding Fenech's business empire.

Cremona, who reportedly manages Fenech's Bestplay Gaming Ltd., appears to have never been photographed by Malta's media; his LinkedIn webpage does not feature a portrait. He has not been charged with a crime, notwithstanding testimony concerning his alleged role in securing funding for the assassination. He has knowledge of the consortium of middlemen who financed DCGs assassination.

With connections to various Sicilian Mafia families in Catania, he was allegedly involved in football match fixing in Italy and Malta, together with Yorgen Fenech. Fenech was reportedly wanted by the Sicilian Carabinieri for questioning, but Maltese Police never arrested him. Our efforts obtain a photograph have been fruitless; any reader who possesses one is urged to email it to us at miamicompliance@gmail.com ; the public should know who we are referring to.

One source believes that Cremona is also a Confidential Informant for Italian law enforcement, but we are unable to confirm this.

 


WHICH SENIOR DOMINICA OFFICIAL IS SELLING LAND TO A RUSSIAN WITH A CBI PASSPORT ?


 

 

After our recent article asking whether senior politicians in Dominica are stealing land from absentee or deceased property owners, we received, anonymously, these documents from a patriot. Do they show the sale of land, by a most senior government official to a Russian CBI passport holder ? And did the seller acquire the land through illegal or fraudulent means ? And why is the same lawyer involved in all the similar transactions ?


 

Answer the questions, Dominica. 



CARIBBEAN MINISTER SENTENCED TO TWO YEARS IN U.S. COURT FOR CORRUPTION


 

The Department of Justice has announced that DONVILLE INNISS, the former Minister for Industry in Barbados has been sentenced to two years in Federal Prison for three counts of money laundering. Inniss received bribes exceeding $36,000, for  placing insurance contracts with the Barbados Government. He laundered the criminal proceeds through an associate in New York. The District Court also issued a Forfeiture order in the amount he received.

Corruption is rampant among the East Caribbean states, but local law enforcement agencies, improperly influenced and threatened by the senior government officials who are benefiting from this unsavory practice, are unable or unwilling to enforce the law. The United States, which operates under a zero tolerance policy, regarding violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, is determined to root out corruption where American nationals or residents are involved. Inniss, who was a lawful permanent resident, will eventually be deported to his native Barbados, his residency revoked.  

Readers who require additional information about this case are directed to the six prior articles on the subject, appearing on this blog. Use the white search box on the top of the page to access them. This case is of particular interest regarding the FCPA count.

 

 

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

WHY DID MALTA'S LABOUR PARTY NAME A MAJOR SUSPECT AS DIRECTOR FOR ITS NEW "NEWS" WEBSITE ?

 

                                                 Disinformation and misinformation for you from Malta
 

Our inquiry in to who will be running the shop at The Journal,  the Labour Party's new English language news & information website, has turned up something very disturbing.  CHRIS CARDONA appears in official filings as a director of Sound Vision Print Limited, which will operate the website, whose URL is thejournal.mt. This selection demonstrates that party leaders are totally disconnected from reality. 

Cardona is:

(1) Implicated, and directly named, as the alleged mastermind in the Daphne Caruana Galizia assassination. He was named by the actual admitted participants in the fatal bombing

(2) Linked to the failed HSBC Bank heist by witnesses, in sworn testimony.

(3) Regarded as an alleged Person of Interest in the death of an individual who witnessed Cardona engage in activities inconsistent with his then position as cabinet minister.

Obviously, the Labour Party has no moral compass, appointing an individual whose reputed criminal conduct could result in his incarceration for an extended period. Even a propaganda mill deserves better leadership.






THIS FUGITIVE NEEDS NO INTRODUCTION

 


UNDER ATTACK FOR CORRUPTION AND MONEY LAUNDERING, MALTA'S LEADERS TRY TO MANAGE NEWS QUERIES IN ENGLISH

 

                                                   "Say it ain't so, Joe."  by COSIMO
 

If you are a foreign journalist seeking background information on developments in Malta, for an article, and you utilize the principal search engines of the Internet, which are designed to make inquiries in English, you will find all the negative information you need to know about Maltese corruption, money laundering and financial crime on the country's English-language news websites.You will also find that these websites are generally critical of the current government, on account of the offenses being reported.

At present, there are no English-language news websites in Malta that slant the news in favour of the ruling Labour Party; this is about to change, however, with the announcement of the imminent opening of The Journal.mt, a news portal which will tell the stories from the perspective of Labour.  The obvious aim is to counter the truth with what amounts to a propaganda mill.It is not known whether the Journal's staff will pollute the Internet with multiple "news" pages, profiles, and other web trash, all designed to push the search engine results back several pages, to block the stories that tell the truth about Malta, keeping them hidden from view, and pushing Pro-Labour's agenda, which will avoid any of the important issues plaguing Malta at present. 

We call this News Management. It appears in Malta on Labour-sponsored media, but that is in the Maltese language, which foreign journalists, even those who read Italian, will be unable to decipher. No loss, because those sites are not to be trusted.

Who is behind this new venture ? Nobody is telling, but my money is on Malta's EU-designated Corrupter-in-Chief, Joseph Muscat, who has prior media experience with Maltastar, and who is controlling the Party from outside, but probably wants some sort of official role, which being editor or managing director satisfies. It is not known who is financing the operation, but it is feared that foreign interests, with a hidden agenda, may be at work in the shadows.

This "alternative" news source may appear to be an effort to influence voters in the next election, but candidly, Malta's English speakers are far too intelligent to believe Labour's propaganda.

One final note; we hope that bank compliance officers NOT take any of the material they see on that site as true and correct. Get the facts solely from Malta's news websites and independent blogs, when conducting due diligence investigations.

Sunday, April 25, 2021

IDENTITY MALTA'S DIRTY LITTLE SECRET

 


 

 In Malta, Money doesn't Talk; it Swears. If you are a regular readers of this blog, you have read about my previous experience with Malta as World-Check's Financial Crime Consultant. Whenever I wrote an article about money laundering in the Republic of Malta. government officials, mad as a hatter, would reach out and demand that the article be taken down. They always played the $ card. This means they contacted their W-C sales representative, and made veiled threats to the effect that they would not renew the lucrative subscription contracts the company had with agencies of the Maltese Government if the article was not promptly removed. No, we did not remove the bloody articles. I don't react well to threats and extortion.

Fast forward to 2021. You saw the recent news about the 800+ Russians who secured Malta CBI passports. Did you ever wonder why the European financial and offshore press has been easy on Malta in recent years ? it's the same reason Malta's mainstream press was so gentle until very recently; money. The financial and offshore press had financial reasons to close its eyes whenever negative news surfaced about Maltese money laundering and IIM (citizenship by Investment) misconduct in passport sales to dodgy applicants. 

 

It seems that Identity Malta has used substantial subscription fees, payments for pay-walled website access, donations, and other financial remuneration to rein in the financial/offshore press. They know that, should they expose Maltese financial crime, those lucrative contracts would never be renewed. If it sounds like extortion, it generally is.

You can add this illegal/unethical conduct to the covert referrals that identity Malta has reportedly been paying out to anyone who can refer IIM passport clients, irrespective of whether those acts constitute Conflict of Interest or not. Should Identity Malta be dismantled and abolished ? Bloody right. Send all those individuals, with their fat salaries, packing. You also might want to go after those academics at UM who allegedly trained IM staff, for failing to properly prepare them to follow the law.



 


Saturday, April 24, 2021

WILL THE PASSPORT PAPERS PROVIDE AN INSIGHT INTO WHO WAS BEHIND THE SECOND MURDER OF A JOURNALIST FOR INVESTIGATING MALTA ?

 

 

                                                                      Barry Randall

While the documents now known as the Passport Papers have exposed the sordid details of Malta's dirty little Citizenship by Investment (CBI/IIM) scheme, as a plot hatched between the consulting firm Henley & Partners, and then-hopeful prime minister Joseph Muscat, it is hoped that the leak of internal correspondence and evidence will also aid investigators into who was behind the murder of British investigative journalist Barry Randall, the editor of Caribbean News Now. Randall, a known collaborator of Daphne Caruana Galizia, died under mysterious circumstances leading many to presume he was poisoned while on assignment in Montenegro. He refused to disclose the details of his trip, which he took to interview what was was then represented to him to be an extremely promising source.

Mr. Randal's case has been ignored by Malta's mainstream media, although we have covered it here in painful detail. The British journalist, who was a known critic of Citizenship by Investment programmes, had been sharing information with Daphne prior to her death. He was subsequently targeted in correspondence by the (blacklisted) advisor to the Peoples' Republic of China, Shiv Shankaran Nair after he published a story on his website. China, we have recently learned, was involved in the bribes and kickbacks disbursed to senior government officials in Malta. The Chinese Government obviously perceived Randall's work at a threat; Judge for yourself.

There are unconfirmed reports that Randall died subsequent to Polonium poisoning, which was covertly administered to him while he futilely sought a promised source in Montenegro. We are unable to  verify this, due to a reported pending investigation of the matter in the United Kingdom. We have previously noted that, not long after the rumoured poisoning occurred, a known Maltese organized crime figure was arrested upon arrival in Malta, in possesion of a quantity of Polonium.

Although informed observers have always thought that Joseph Muscat and Keith Schembri were implicated in Randall's murder, there has never been any corroborating evidence to confirm this theory, and we hope and trust that information within the Passport Papers may provide useful clues, including whether any other forces were at work in terminating Randall's investigation, with prejudice.

Barry Randall remains an additional, albeit unacknowledged, casualty of the battle between journalists seeking truth about Malta and the corrupt forces determined to stop them, by any means. Whether there will be justice regarding his death remains an open question, and the Passport Papers could supply the critical information needed to identify, and ultimately convict, the guilty parties.

 


Friday, April 23, 2021

YOUR WEEKEND FOOD FOR THOUGHT

 


 

This should be a textbook case for study at universities where they teach the principles of Public Service, a classic case where immorality, Conflict of Interest and avarice trumped honesty, fidelity and prudence. We can only hope that such an extreme case of corruption is made an example of by the European Union. Otherwise, there won't be any real justice in this modern day Sodom and Gomorrah, and we know what happened to those people. 

     " Will the last three honest and moral Maltese leaving Valletta please remember to turn off the lights."
 



HOW MANY OF THE VENEZUELAN MONEY LAUNDERERS IN MIAMI HAVE MALTA CBI PASSPORTS ?


 

Information contained in the "Passport Papers, " this weeks' leak of documents attributed to the CBI consultancy Henley and Partners has verified yet another link between the Venezuelan money launderers operating out of Miami, the Republic of Malta, and the Swiss banker/laundryman Matthias Krull. Follow the dots, please.

1. FRANCISCO CONVIT GURUCEAGA, a fugitive from justice in the United States since 2018 on money laundering charges,  was part of the team that embezzled money from PDVSA, which was then transferred and laundered through the assistance of Matthias Krull, who will most likely testify against him if and when Convit is in the custody of the Department of Justice. 

2. Convit applied for a IIM (CBI) passport from Malta, but later abandoned it, notwithstanding he paid deposits and fees to Henley & Partners. If he applied, how many of the others in the "Miami money laundering crew", meaning JOSE VINCENTE AMPARAN CROQUER, CARMELO URDANETA AQUI, ABRAHAM ORTEGA, GUSTAVO FERNANDEZ FRIERI, HUGO RAMALHO GOIS, MARCELO GUTIERREZ ACOSTA Y LARA and MARIO BONILLA VALLERA, also sought Malta CBI passports ?

3.Three of these above laundrymen have pled out, and will be sentenced in the coming months. At that point, we may be able to confirm which actually secured Maltese CBI passports.

4.Remember than a large portion of the millions taken from PDVSA was laundered, initially through Malta, employing Pilatus Bank and Portmann Capital Management. It is not known whether any of the Venezuelans were working with Maltese laundryman at those two entities, and who may have visited Malta during the operations, which would have exposed them to offers of CBI passports.

5. The labeling of the Miami money launderers as Foreign Corrupt Practices Act cases, due to the bribing of Venezuelan officials, rather than strictly money laundering cases, intersects with the long-held belief that Maltese money launderers were FCPA violators first and foremost. Are there targets common to both cases ?




 As you can see,  we only have a small portion of the jigsaw puzzle, but one thing is certain; there are a lot of links & connections among Miami money laundering crews, Maltese laundrymen, and Matthias Krull's transnational operation, which we have yet to find. More to follow.


MARIA EFIMOVA GOES TO INTERPOL

 

 Readers who commented upon the recent hijacking of Malta whistleblower Maria Efimova's document delivery to INTERPOL headquarters will be relieved to learn that a second courier package was delivered intact shortly thereafter. The original package disappeared on the day it was to arrive at INTERPOL, and there was a report of a forged delivery receipt. It is assumed that certain interests in Malta were responsible.

Malta's government, to whom she has applied for formal whistleblower status and the protection that such designation carries with it, refuses to approve her request. It is believed that this failure to name her as a whistleblower is upon the direct orders of Malta's disgraced former prime minister, Joseph Muscat, to prevent Maria from submitting evidence that shows Muscat's wife, Michelle Muscat, was the beneficial owner of an offshore corporation named EGRANT, which was used to hide and launder bribes and kickbacks received by Joseph Muscat during his seven years as PM in Malta.

FOR ACAMS MEMBERS WHO ATENDED YESTERDAY'S ACAMS/CASE WESTERN RESERVE UNIVERSITY LECTURE

 


 

 If you were one of the 390 attendees at last night's money laundering lecture, which was a joint presentation of ACAMS and Case Western Reserve University's Masters program, and you did not get the opportunity to submit your question, feel free to email me at miamicompliance@gmail.com. 

I have made my autobiography, The Laundry Man, available to the ACAMS chapter,  in electronic form, and you will shortly be receiving a copy with my compliments. 



Thursday, April 22, 2021

MALTA'S WHISTLEBLOWER'S SECOND INTERVIEW WITH GREEK MEDIA REVEALS ADDITIONAL INFORMATION

 

                                  Malta has fallen; will it ever get up ?   by COSIMO
 

As we previously promised, here are extracts from Maria Efimova's second interview with  Greek media (Reporters United), regarding her experiences with Malta and  Cyprus. While the interview primarily involved  questions posed to her husband, Greek Cypriot Pantelis Barnabas, and the bogus criminal charge Maltese authorities prevailed upon Cyprus to drum up, to pressure Maria to surrender herself in Malta, she had a lot to say on the topics of interest.

 Again  we wish to advise that these are unofficial translations from the original Greek:

1." A colleague of Pantelis had told us that at some point they were looking for all the transactions that Pantelis had made all those years at the Bank of Cyprus. In fact, the current warrant of Cyprus is exactly the same as the one issued against me in 2017. It was cancelled by INTERPOL, judging that it was issued for political reasons. Today, Pantelis is accused of the same things,  as my accomplice. I believe that they needed a new category in order for the new warrant to be a little different from the old one in order for INTERPOL to pass it, and they found this with the Bank of Cyprus. I'm sure the warrant is intimidating to me". " When we started, could could not imagine how high this would go".

2. "I have been in contact with Malta for a year about whistleblower status, but I have not yet received a response".  

3. "When the prime minister [Joseph Muscat] was forced to resign, I was very happy, because I believed that now, we would be able to get the [Egrant] documents out. Their authenticity needed to be verified, so that I would not be accused of fraud. This certification alone cost €12,000. That's why we started fundraising, as well as for the lawyer, so that I and my family can be protected, so that they cannot condemn me for how I got them. the amount was collected, but, as Pantelis said, the people from the Opposition who would help, disappeared". 

4. Regarding whether she thinks they did the right thing, " i believe that things were done in such a way that all this came to the surface. I don't regret". 

5."It is devastating to fear that it is the police every time that the doorbell rings. we will fight and i hope that things will change. In both Cyprus and Malta, people now understand very well what is happening".

A final note, when they worked in Malta, one day Pantelis was approached by someone who said 'Hello from Joseph." It was clearly an attempt to intimidate both of them. If you had any questions about who was really behind the bogus criminal charges against both Maria and Pantelis, there's your answer. It's Malta's Godfather himself, Joseph Muscat.


 

 

Wednesday, April 21, 2021

DOESN'T ANYONE IN MALTA CONDUCT DUE DILIGENCE ANYMORE ??

 


The reluctant admission, by  Brian Tonna, that he failed to conduct any due diligence in the Electrogas power station assessment, is stunning. Tonna, the Managing Partner at Nexia BT, stated amazingly enough, that it was not part of his responsibility.

An independent report noted that no due diligence investigations were carried out to rule out fraud, bribery, corruption, the absence of internal controls and ethical conduct. In truth and in fact, Tonna was directly responsible; to pretend otherwise is not only incorrect, it demonstrates the total lack of an effective compliance culture. His statements betray a don't ask- don't tell mentality that only makes legitimate  European investors considering Malta choose other offshore financial centres.

If this is what one of the country's better professionals does when engaged to conduct an investigation, then Malta's vaunted status as a user-friendly tax haven is in jeopardy. Soon, only "Flight Capital" (dirty money) will be interested in placement in Malta and its financial institutions. MONEYVAL was right.

 

GLENN BEDINGFIELD ATTACKING STANDARDS COMMISSIONER GEORGE HYZLER

 

                              A Picture is worth a Thousand Words  by COSIMO


RUSSIAN NATIONAL ANNA BOGACHEVA WANTED FOR INTERFERING WITH AMERICAN ELECTION

 


Tuesday, April 20, 2021

MALTA DISCLOSES THAT IT SPENT €7.5m ON THE PILATUS BANK INVESTIGATION, BUT REFUSES TO CHARGE THE GUILTY

                                                                

                                    Corruption throwing Malta into the Fire  by COSIMO               

 If you wanted further evidence that Malta's dysfunctional government is totally corrupt, consider this: After a two-year investigation costing more than seven million five hundred thousand Euros, and after a confidential report was released last December recommending that the responsible officers and directors be charged with money laundering, and after a senior police official stated months ago that arrests were imminent, nobody has been arrested or charged, nor will there be.

If the Pilatus Bank directors are charged, then they will surely finger the senior Maltese government officials who received bribes to grease and fast-track the bank license approval, and more bribes to insure that regulators ignore the rampant money laundering, and still more bribes to allow certain Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) from abroad to place funds diverted from governments they allegedly served into the bank.

In short, if Pilatus Bank officers and directors were ever arrested, so would several members of the present, and immediate prior, governments, all the way up the chain of command to the top.  That is why there is no justice in Malta, and the money launderers from Pilatus Bank remain free to do it again somewhere else.

ARE THERE NEW DEFENDANTS IN THE ALEX SAAB MORAN MONEY LAUNDERING CASE ?

 

We are monitoring new developments in the money laundering case pending against former University of Miami professor Bruce Bagley. He is expected to be a witness against the fugitive Colombian money launderer, ALEX NAIN SAAB MORAN, The Venezuelan Maduro regime's most prolific international laundryman.

We note these recent items:

(1) Professor Bagley's Sentencing Date, which was scheduled for the end of this month, has been reset for May 18. Saab lost his last appeal in Cape Verde, and  most observers are estimating that he will be extradited to Miami in May. The Cape Verde authorities have determined that the ECOWAS appeal filed on Saab's behalf in Nigeria, did not bind Cape Verde in any way. The "appeal" which was accompanied by the payment to individuals, to simulate popular support for Saab, is not authorized under local law.

(2) Recent filings in the court, under seal, may indicate that one or more additional defendants have been indicted. Saab controlled ELEMENTO LTD, a Malta company engaged in extensive money laundering in that offshore financial centre. Whether any of the Malta money laundering targets are now named as defendants in any of Saab's cases, we are unable to determine through publicly-available court filings.

Does the Saab Miami case intersect with a rumoured sealed New York Federal indictment against the Malta money launderers ? Until more information regarding Elemento and ELEMENTO OIL AND GAS LTD. becomes available, it remains a question.


MALTA'S SLIPPERY ACCOUNTANTS ATTEMPT DAMAGE CONTROL IN THE FACE OF THE TSUNAMI

Just before you are hit by a Tsunami, the water level at shoreline recedes far below what one sees at low tide ; that's your one and only signal to head for high ground.Otherwise, you will most likely be swept away and drowned, your decaying corpse to be found amongst the debris days later by a rescue party.

That's precisely what Malta's small army of sleazy accountants and money managers are doing these days, the ones that launder the proceeds of crime through local front companies. Their clients are European tax cheats, Latin American PEPs and drug kingpins, Russian oligarchs, and a long list of the Usual Suspects from the Dark Side of finance. 

 

                                         Riding Evil; Tonna declines to Testify  by COSIMO

 

They are closing down active money laundering operations, cleaning up books and records, and otherwise performing damage control, ahead of expected criminal investigations, and requests for document production. They are burning records of cash transactions, and dummying up others.

How do we know this ? One company, known to be a front for laundering bribes and kickbacks received by Malta's former prime minister Joseph Muscat, and employing his wife Michelle as intermediary, now mysteriously reports a substantial loss, rather than the healthy profits we are used to seeing. Cooking the books, perhaps ? Taking the incriminating records out of Malta through a diplomatic pouch, are we ?

Other accountants are making travel plans; they will relocate to a non-extraditable jurisdiction where they will conveniently join an international firm with a local office. At least two have obtained immunity from prosecution in the USA through cooperation. Their clients are going to be surprised that they folded so quickly, given the lucrative fees they demanded and received. Remember, these are family men, soft from years of the good life; they would not adjust well to sharing a cell with other criminal lowlife. 

Whether accounting as a profession suffers a major loss of prestige after the legal tsunami passes through we cannot say, but young Maltese interested in a profession would be better served going to law school, as Malta will certainly need more lawyers than it presently fields, especially in criminal defence.


Monday, April 19, 2021

ATTORNEY FOR LAWRENCE CONNELL; PILATUS BANK'S PETITION REMAINS FATALLY FLAWED

The law firm representing Lawrence Connell, formerly the designated Competent Person in the Pilatus Bank matter, has filed its"Surreply in Support of Mr. Connell's Opposition to the Amended Petition of Applicant Pilatus Bank PLC," which makes a strong case for dismissal on the merits.

The major arguments:

1. The Amended Petition fails to cure the defects in the original Petition. Remember, the Court dismissed the original petition, as fatally flawed.

2. Should Mr. Connell disclose the matters disclosed by Pilatus Bank, he will be in violation of Maltese Law, which is punishable by a 2-year prison sentence and €150,000 fine. What the Petition seeks is a backhanded way to obtain information that the bank is not allowed to obtain.

3. The MFSA had specifically directed Connell not to answer the questions posed by Pilatus, and the bank is seeking a way to evade Maltese Law by requesting the information in the United States.

4. The information Pilatus Bank sought is privileged and protected under Maltese Law. Those privileges and protections are held by the MFSA,  as well as the Malta Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit (FIAU), and they have not been withdrawn. The MFSA position, correcting Pilatus' allegations, appears at the bottom of the page.

5. Such request for information must satisfy specific statutory requirements under US Law, and the bank has the burden of proof, which it has failed to establish.

Question: is it improper for Pilatus Bank counsel to seek to obtain information that their client cannot legally request in Malta ? Is it a violation of ethics rules ? We cannot say, but we are anxiously awaiting the District court's decision, for Federal judges generally run a tight ship, and the defects in the Amended Petition are obvious to anyone  who has read the pleadings. Whether there will be sanctions remains an open question, but there is a bright line between zealous representation of a client, and being candid with the court.  

 


 

 




HAPPY PATRIOTS DAY, AMERICA. REMEMBERER THEIR SACRIFICE.

 

 

 

 

                                     April 19, 1775; the Battle of Lexington and Concord

DEAR MALTA; THROW THE BOOK AT THE POLICE COMMISSIONER FOR TIPPING OFF A MONEY LAUNDEING SUSPECT

 

Evidence that surfaced this week, to the effect that former Police Commissioner Lawrence Cutajar, in addition to tipping off an individual that he was a suspect in Daphne's murder,  also illegally conveyed law enforcement sensitive information, that the target was also the subject of a money laundering investigation. Cutajar thus betrayed his badge and his oath as a law officer.

Anyone who discloses confidential information to targets, to alert them about a pending criminal investigation deserves to serve a very long term in the same exact prison where the same inmates who he originally arrested are serving their sentences. He should not receive any special consideration, due to his former law enforcement status. His hidden liquid assets, which he obviously accumulated through bribes and theft, should be disgorged and seized. Any pension rights, whether vested or not, should be forfeited, and any investment property he owns should be sold by the state to pay the costs of his trial.

Remember, this is the person who allowed organized crime to run rampant throughout Malta, and obeyed  the orders handed down from Joseph Muscat, to close his eyes to serious money laundering activity. He deserves a long term of incarceration, to be served in the most uncomfortable surroundings available.



Sunday, April 18, 2021

IS YOUR NEW AFFLUENT BANK CLIENT FROM TURKEY IN TRUTH AND IN FACT AN IRANIAN AGENT INVOLVED IN SANCTIONS EVASION WITH A CBI PASSPORT ISSUED BY TURKEY ?

 


You've heard the story before; your staff onboards a wealthy businessman, in this example, he is from Turkey, he says he is making new investments abroad, and he has chosen your bank for his accounts, which will consistently carry a seven-figure balance. The banker who landed him as a client is already counting his end of year bonus. 

It is only a year later, after your good client has moved large amounts of US Dollars to offshore financial centres, and then mysteriously disappeared, that you get an unannounced visit from your least favorite law enforcement agent, armed with a subpoena, and the Story from Hell. Apparently, your great new client was actually an Iranian government agent, engaged in repatriating illegal oil profits back to Tehran. 

He presented you with a valid Turkish passport, but if someone in Compliance had done their job, they would have informed you that it was probably a Citizenship by Investment (CBI) passport, purchased through Turkey's expanding programme. It had been recently issued, and buried in the text was the fact that his Place of Birth was Yazd, which happens to be in Iran. It's also important that all conversations with your client were in English. Unfortunately, nobody ever conversed with the client in Turkish. If they had, perhaps things must have been differentm because he didn't speak a word of it. Get ready for an obscenely high regulatory civil fine, adverse publicity, and possibly something much worse. Somebody was asleep at the switch.

According to reliable industry sources,  Turkey's CBI programme has sold over 20,000 citizenships/ passports to foreign nationals, and an estimated 800 applications are being received each month. Iranian nationals who reside in Iran are NOT prohibited from acquiring Tiurkish CBI passports. It is not known precisely how many Iranian nationals  are currently holding passports from Turkey, but it doesn't take much imagination to realize that the number has to be substantial, because a Turkish passport allows the holder entry in both the UK and US Business investor visa programmes. Connect the dots, please.

If you are a compliance officer charged with Country Risk assessments, raise your rating on Turkey, and advise your staff to thereafter subject all new Turkish clients to Enhanced Due Diligence. Govern yourselves accordingly, please.


APPEALS COURT HEARS HALKBANK ARGUE IT IS IMMUNE FROM PROSECUTION FOR MONEY LAUNDERING

 


Oral Argument was recently held before the Second Circuit Court of Appeals in the Halkbank case, where the issue is whether the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act applies to criminal cases. There is a split of authority amongst the two circuits that have weighed in, and the Government argued at the hearing that the pending criminal case against the bank, in the Southern District of New York, should proceed to trial. The bank has sought, for several years, to delay or end the case, on various grounds. the lower court case has been stayed pending a decision by the 2nd Circuit.

It is alleged that the bank was co-defendant Reza Zarrab's primary vehicle to evade US and international sanctions on payment to Iran for oil sold illegally on the world market. There are a large number of sealed documents in the court file, which raises the presumption that there are additional defendants outside the United States with sealed indictments on file against them. 

When a decision is published, we will update our readers accordingly.

Saturday, April 17, 2021

MALTA'S WHISTLEBLOWER, IN INTERVIEW, SLAMS CORRUPT GOVERNMENT, PILATUS BANK LAUNDROMAT, MICHELLE MUSCAT

 

 Maria Efimova, the bank employee who blew the whistle hard upon Malta's Pilatus Bank, after the bank cheated her out of her salary and later filed bogus criminal charges against her to avoid paying her, was recently interviewed in Greece by Reporters United. As a public service to the people of Malta, we are summarizing relevant portions of her extensive interview, in the hope that it will eventually result in the dismissal of bogus criminal charges fled against her and her husband, Pantelis Barnabas, which were obviously filed to discourage Maria from personally giving damning evidence against Pilatus Bank officers and directors, as well as certain corrupt government officials and PEPs.

Her key points, as translated from the original Greek:

(1) After three months on the job at Pilatus Bank,  Maria was terminated; she left her employment and awaited her back pay, a figure just short of €6000. When she later contacted the bank, they told her, " we are sorry, but you have never worked at our bank. What you did here was just practical." She was later arrested and charged with the theft of fifteen thousand Euros. The charges were politically motivated, to deter her from either collecting her money, or of giving any damaging testimony against Pilatus. When that did not work, Corrupt officials in Malta, in coordination with Pilatus, had her husband charged with bogus crimes in Cyprus, obviously for political reasons.

(2) What did she know ? That the bank never inquired as to its depositor's Source of Funds, and she was often asked to create bogus documents.  There was panic at the bank when the FIAU, the banking analyst agency, came for a visit. Maria, to protect herself. started copying documents, not to blackmail anyone, but to protect herself. She said the bank, which never had more than 130 customers in total, half of whom were Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs), many from Azerbaijan.

(3) One day, the Financial Intelligence Analyis Unit (FIAU), the government regulator, visited, and she recalls that there was "panic in the office." She feared that she might be involved in illegal activities, with signatures "that she has never really put herself."

(4) She reached out to Daphne for help, as a foreigner alone in Malta. She already was familiar with Pilatus Bank's issues, "and was looking for additional resources." " She only wanted the truth to be known."

(5) On Michelle Muscat and Egrant, when Daphne publicly accused the prime minister's wife " she was considered " a madwoman who wanted to eat the prime minister."  Maria  gave her testimony anonymously, to an assistant judge, but the next day all her testimony was published, due to Malta's systemic corruption. She named Michelle Muscat at the Beneficial owner of Egrant.

(6) Two "private detectives" visited Maria's family in Russia, suggesting that she leave Malta. Daphne, whom they stated should also leave, was murdered shortly after that.

Will Malta's utterly corrupt and dysfunctional government ever dismiss the bogus, politically motivated charges filed against her and her husband ? Will Whistleblower status ever be conferred upon her ? We cannot say, but she remains the Conscience of Malta, notwithstanding the government's amoral efforts to silence her.


 


THE TWENTIETH ANNIVERSARY OF 9/11 APPROACHES

 


WHICH BANKS IN MALTA WILL BE CHARGED WITH TERRORIST FINANCING ?

 


 If you read the crime stories in the Maltese media regularly, you know that the authorities are constantly seizing cash, in Euros and other currency, that bulk cash smugglers are attempting to sneak into Istanbul. While some of the smugglers are acting for tax evaders. or common criminals, a large portion of the cash is bound for Hamas' foreign operations centre, which is located in Turkey. Money collected globally, as donations from well-meaning donors, or extorted by Palestinians from affluent expats, finds its way into Malta's financial institutions. Malta's socialist government's open sympathy for Palestinian causes means that there will not be any regulatory or law enforcement inquiry into this flow of illicit capital. Palestinians resident in Malta are involved in the collection, and subsequent movement, of the funds to Hamas in Turkey.

Therefore, any local Maltese banks that are accepting these funds from abroad, and converting the wire transfers into cash, for handing off to the smugglers, are exposed to terrorist financing charges in several other countries, notably the United States, especially where US Dollars are involved. The individual bankers who supervise those accounts can also be charged for willful blindness, as well as facilitating the operations of a designated terrorist organization.

What will it take for this illegal movement of terrorist funding through Malta ? Increased airport surveillance, perhaps supplemented by technical assistance provided by European or North American law enforcement agencies, could take a bigger bite out of the smugglers' operation. Maltese regulators cannot be trusted to police the banks, unless bankers begin to be arrested in Malta, which is doubtful. The problem remains, unfortunately, and Hamas continues to receive funding for its terrorist operations in Israel, and elsewhere. 

A note to travelers: if anyone asks you to carry a package to Turkey, politely decline.

 



Friday, April 16, 2021

LET HER MEMORY BE A BLESSING AND AN INSPIRATION

 

                                                         "Follow Me" by COSIMO

May we never forget her, and honor her memory by rooting out corruption wherever it exists.

Thursday, April 15, 2021

GOVERNMENT OF ST. LUCIA CENSORS NEWS FROM THE UNITED STATES AND THREATENS U.S. SEARCH ENGINE

 

 


Saint Lucia Government officials and attorneys acting on its behalf have threatened GOOGLE with totally blocking its content and Search Engine on the island, unless it took down our news article, which originated in the United States, reporting on rampant official corruption among judges, lawyers and senior government officials. Reportedly, Google removed an article, without specifically advising the American author of either the groups for removal, or the process for appealing the action.

Our article, Corrupt Judge and Attorneys who Implemented Saint Lucia Land Theft named,  which was published on this blog, "Kenneth Rijock's Financial Crime Blog." on April 14, 2021, identified a number of professionals and government officials who conspired to steal real estate from citizens of St. Lucia who were living abroad, or who had deceased relatives. The article does not violate any of the provisions of Google's published Community Guidelines, nor does it libel or slander any of the officials named.

 Press freedom in Saint Lucia is limited, and subject to self-censorship and government intimidation, and there are a number of unsolved homicides of individuals who have opposed the current government, which most observers have accused of violating the Civil, Human and Constitutional Rights of its citizens.

We have notified the appropriate US Government agencies of Saint Lucia's actions. Please note that St. Lucia is still under US sanctions in place against security forces, pursuant to the Leahy Amendment to the Foreign Assistance Act (FAA). The sanctions apply to the Royal Saint Lucia Police Force, and any military, reserve, border guards, customs police, or any other units authorized to use force, for what the law describes as Gross Violations of Human Rights, for Extrajudicial Killings.

 

 

CONTROVERSY ERUPTS IN PILATUS BANK U.S. DISCOVERY CASE

 

 


The attorneys for Pilatus Bank, which is seeking to make Discovery upon Lawrence Connell, the former Competent Person, who was supervising the defunct Pilatus Bank in Malta, refused to allow Connell's lawyers additional time to reply to Pilatus' filing. The Court, apparently wondering why Pilatus counsel would refuse to extend professional courtesy to another attorney, gave Pilatus a very short window to explain.

The answer can be found at the end of the Response,. it appears that Pilatus counsel disagrees with Connell's characterization that Pilatus' Reply contains "New Issues."  Don't look for any cooperation from Connell's counsel on the Discovery. This looks to be a contested matter, with Connell's counsel not agreeing to produce any of the evidence Pilatus claims it needs to sue the European Central Bank. The Court has not yet ruled on the issues presented by the latest version of the petition.




 

Wednesday, April 14, 2021

WHAT WILL MALTA LOOK LIKE IN 2025? HERE IS ONE POSSIBLE SCENARIO TO BE CONSIDERED

                                                       
 

Peering into the crystal ball, a future Malta looks dark indeed. Not only is the Labour Government gone, but the party has been outlawed by a United Nations Administrator ruling Valletta with an iron hand, supported by a small army of UN Military Police from seven member countries, who enforce the law, for the first time in memory. There is no more sovereign state; it's under UN supervision.




Malta's omnipotent local version of the Mafia has been stripped of all its senior leaders, known murderers and Enemies of the State. Mafiosi are being kept in very crowded facilities, and criminal charges are being prepared against them by experienced Anti-Mafia prosecutors recruited from Italy. EUROPOL has a major enforcement operation headquartered there, to help clean up the criminal class.

Many of the members of the Muscat and Abela Cabinets are awaiting trial in pretrial detention centers in the United States. Joseph Muscat, the onetime King of Malta's Corrupters, is serving a Life Sentence, without the possibility of parole for Providing Financial Support to a Terrorist Organization. Muscat moved criminal proceeds for a Palestinian organization that supported Hamas, which used the funds to conduct a terrorist operation in Israel that resulted in several deaths. He was lucky that he didn't receive the death penalty. Palestinian expats found to be funding terrorism are convicted,  Hezbollah associates deported to Lebanon.


 

The Bank of Valletta was returned to its original shareholders; Times of Malta to its rightful heir. Government agencies were cleansed of Labour Party hacks. The Constitution Party was reestablished; the Nationalist Party was renamed the Reform Party. Tourist flights from the UK were finally back, after a four year absence, and the US Army permanently moved its AFRICOM headquarters to Malta.


 


 The former British naval facility, which is now the home of the United States Sixth Fleet,  is the center for counter-terrorism operations in Africa. Malta has not been removed as a member of the European Union, but only because complicated legal proceedings to accomplish that goal would take many years.


 

All IIM (Citizenship by Investment) passports have been revoked, and CBI consultants found to have played a role in the sale of passports to white collar criminals forced to disgorge all their profits, with interest, causing their financial ruin. All offshore corporation corporation laws have been declared void, and most of the corporate services companies closed down on the orders of the UN Administrator, who also disavowed major loans owed to China and Azerbaijan, as they were not arms length transactions, and were infected with bribes and kickbacks.

This is just one possible future; what happens to Malta by 2025 ? It may all sound like fantasy, but current affairs will have a tremendous impact on a future Malta. It's up to its people to decide what the future brings. Govern yourselves accordingly.