A U.S. District Judge, in a decision handed down last week in Federal Court in Miami, has held that the claims of diplomatic immunity, made by the Colombian businessman, and accused money launderer, ALEX SAAB MORAN, failed to meet the requirements of the Viennas Convention on Diplomatic Relations, and he cannot be considered a diplomat, with immunity from prosecution. The detailed analysis contained in the decision, rendered as a Final Order on the issues recommended, and can be found, in its entirety, in our recent article Trial Judge holds that Alex Saab Moran has no Diplomatic Immunity from Prosecution in Money Laundering Case .
White-collar criminals, as well as nationals from high risk jurisdictions, and countries designated as state sponsors of terrorism, have been purchasing, for cash (usually US Dollars), diplomatic passports from corrupt government officials in the five East Caribbean states that also sell Citizenship by Investment (CBI) passports, which are:
(A) ST.KITTS AND NEVIS
(B) ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA
(C) COMMONWEALTH OF DOMINICA
(D) ST. LUCIA
When the Iranian oil sanctions evader and career criminal, ALI REZA MONFARED fled the Far East, having used his Dominica diplomatic passport to avoid arrest by local authorities, he brought with him a suitcase filled with cash, financial instruments and precious gems. That suitcase survived his trip back to Dominica, intact, although it violated the currency controls of the countries he transited, again due to his diplomatic passport purchased in Dominica. Unfortunately, his passport did not protect him from his seizure by Iranian agents in the Dominican Republic. He is now serving 20 years in an Iranian prison, and narrowly avoided the death penalty for corruption.
The holders use the diplomatic passports to avoid customs and immigration upon arrival at airports and seaports around the world, as they generally are allowed to use the VIP-only access, which is there for heads of state and real diplomats in transit or arriving at their duty station. The are not using them for a bona fide diplomatic purpose.
Genuine diplomats satisfy these Vienna Convention requirements:
(1) The individual is appointed to serve at a specific mission abroad. in a specific role.
(2) He or she is generally a national of the country where they are acting as a diplomat.
(3) They present their credentials, upon arrival at their destination country, and are received by the new accepting local government as such.
(4) They are immune from criminal prosecution, within the receiving country only, or while in transit to or from their designated country, and at all points in between, provided that they notify all transit states on their travel route, and such status is accepted by those states.
Unless the "diplomat" has fulfilled these requirements, they cannot be considered a bona fide diplomatic representative for any purpose, including diplomatic immunity. We hope that the authorities in the developing world, who have been accepting these criminals as diplomats without question, now begin to examine their true purpose, and imposing their customs and immigrations regulations upon them. They had best confiscate those bogus diplomatic passports, as they are void for such purposes being used solely for criminal facilitation.
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