Tag Archives: Sir Allen Stanford Arrest

Stanford Ponzi scheme victims looking for love in all the wrong places

“Why is the IMF about to award a $124 million dollars loan to the Government of Antigua, knowing that Antigua was a criminal partner of R. Allen Stanford in the perpetration of the largest pyramidal fraud in history?” questioned Jaime Escalona, leader of the Stanford Victims Coalition (SVC)

“Why help them if its Government has not responded for the $7.2 billion US dollars that were robbed from 27,992 victims distributed among 113 countries? Why do they ridicule us so unmercifully? Why such complicity?”

IMF Rewarding Antigua & Barbuda for Crime?

The International Monetary Fund is about to give a US$124 million loan to the Government of Antigua – and victims of SIR Allen Stanford are calling upon the IMF to stop aiding the government that was his criminal conspirator.

Barbados Free Press is in total sympathy with Stanford’s victims, but we fear that “de fix is in”. The IMF does what it wants to do and it’s not going to allow a few thousand victims of a criminal scheme to upset the house of cards known as the precarious international economy.

Read the sad story at Caribbean 360’s Stanford Investors lash out at IMF

Now let’s compare the Stanford/Antigua losses with the CLICO fraud!

When compared to the CL Financial – CLICO scandal, Sir Allen Stanford looks like a kid who pocketed a sweet without paying.

C.L. Financial’s assets vanished into thin air – $100.7 billion down to $23.9 billion in just 12 months! There were phony shell companies, executives who took bribes to have the company purchase land in Florida for more than its real value and on and on and on.

The CL Financial – CLICO scandal is huge and the people of Barbados deserve better from their news media than they have been getting.

Until the Barbados news media decides that they serve the public interest, Barbados citizens will continue to be kept in the dark about how much of their money went missing, where it went and who profited from their losses.

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Filed under Barbados, Business & Banking, Corruption, Crime & Law, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

What did Robert Hoffman know about Sir Allen Stanford’s crimes, and when did he know it?

Cover Sir Allen & Me Journalist started Antigua Sun newspaper for Crooked Sir Allen

Here is a book I’d love to read – because I want to know if author Robert Hoffman comes clean about how he personally started up Sir Allen’s Antigua Sun newspaper that was used to bait the trap for the suckers who trusted Stanford with their life savings. I’d also love to have an archive of the Antigua Sun sitting beside me while I read this book to see what Hoffman was publishing at the time.

I stand to be corrected by the author, but somehow I don’t think I’d find any investigative journalism at the Antigua Sun exposing Stanford for the crook he was.

Or, perhaps I should say “exposing Stanford for the crook that Hoffman knew he was at the time” ???

It turns out that the publisher’s media release (below) tells of Sir Allen Stanford describing for then-employee Hoffman exactly what his methods were to “lure investors into believing his Antigua operations were legitimate.”

That statement seems to imply that Hoffman knew at the time that he was working for Stanford that the operations were not “legitimate”.

Yes, I will read Sir Allen & Me if for no other reason than to remind myself that despite all the high talk by journalists of “duty to the public interest” that the almighty dollar usually comes first – especially in small societies where the government in power controls the news through advertising revenues that are dispensed like little doggie treats to obedient media lapdogs. And, as the Nation News discovered, a change of master means no treats for you!

Southern Cross Publications says they will send us a couple of review copies if we just provide our address. That’s tempting, but we’ll have to say “no thanks”. I will, however, purchase the book myself as I am anxious to read how the Antigua Sun assisted Sir Allen in luring those suckers in.

Here is the media release about Robert Hoffman’s new book as sent to us by the publisher.

REVEALING BOOK ON DISGRACED BILLIONAIRE PUBLISHED

Texas billionaire and accused Ponzi scammer R. Allen Stanford is the focus of a new book written by a former Stanford executive. Sir Allen & Me: An Insider’s Look at R. Allen Stanford and the Island of Antigua peers into the private and business life of the flamboyant financier, whom the federal government claims operated a “massive” $8-billion confidence game from his bank in the Caribbean nation of Antigua and Barbuda.

Author and journalist Robert Hoffman was hired by Stanford in the mid-1990s to start up the Antigua Sun newspaper. For two years, Hoffman was privy to the billionaire’s political maneuvering and manipulations, including Stanford’s efforts to rewrite the island’s banking laws to favor the Texas money man and to keep prying eyes from the highly questionable running of Stanford International Bank based in Antigua.

Hoffman also tells about Stanford’s forays into the world of cricket, his disastrous stab at establishing a regional airline, his lavish lifestyle and his shameful treatment of many of his loyal employees.

In the book, Hoffman quotes from Stanford describing clearly what his methods were to lure investors into believing his Antigua operations were legitimate by creating what Hoffman calls Stanford’s “financial Potemkin Village” on the island.

The 200-page paperback is currently available on http://www.amazon.com (keyword: R. Allen Stanford) and will soon be in bookstores throughout the United States. It can also be purchased at http://www.atlasbooks.com, which is the publisher’s chief distributor to outlets and Internet-sales sites. Retailers can call 800-BookLog to order. Retail price is $14.95.

Southern Cross Publications
86 Union & Mt. Washington / PO Box 24704
Christiansted, VI 00824
(340) 718-0615 / 643-4631
southerncrosspubs@gmail.com

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Filed under Barbados, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Freedom Of The Press, News Media, Offshore Investments

FBI Arrests Sir Allen Stanford, Antigua Government Official & Others For US$7 Billion Fraud, Money Laundering. Striking Similarities With Barbados CLICO Fraud

Sir Allen Stanford - Drug Money, Fraud

Sir Allen Stanford - Massive Fraud, Money Laundering for Drug Cartels, Organised Crime

“…Stanford and his co-defendants engaged in a scheme to defraud investors who purchased approximately seven billion dollars in certificates of deposit, cds, and administered by Stanford International Bank Limited, an offshore bank controlled by Stanford and located in the island of Antigua. According to the indictment, Stanford and his co-defendants allegedly misused and misappropriated most of those investment assets, including diverting at least 1.6 billion dollars into undisclosed personal loans to Stanford himself.

All the while, Stanford and his co-conspirators allegedly misrepresented to investors the financial condition of Stanford International Bank, its investment strategy and the extent of regulatory oversight by the Antigua authorities.

The indictment charges Stanford with conspiracy to commit wire fraud, mail fraud and securities fraud. Seven counts of wire fraud, ten counts of mail fraud, conspiracy to obstruct an investigation by the FTC, obstruction of an investigation by the FTC, and conspiracy to commit money laundering.

Mr. Stanford was taken into custody by Federal agents in Virginia last night. Also charged today and arrested this morning in Houston was Gilberto Lopez, the Stanford Financial Group’s Chief Accounting Officer, and Mark Kuhrt, the global controller for Stanford Financial Group Management. All are expected to make court appearances this afternoon (Friday).

Also charged today is Leroy King, the former administrator and Chief Executive Officer of Antigua’s Financial Services Regulatory Commission, an agency of the Antigua Government that is responsible for monitoring and regulating banking activity on the island.”

… transcribed by Shona from a US Department of Justice press conference shown on CNN. (Stanford Arrest Indictment Video Here – AP)

Antigua Government Official Received Bribes Of Cash, Vacations & BUSINESS JET RIDES

When government officials receive “gifts” from business it just has to influence their decisions and loyalties. I mean, why do corporations give these “gifts” in the first place? When the “gifts” ramp up with vacations, jobs for government officials’ family members, scholarships over and away for their children, the use of corporate business jets and cash, WELL… government officials soon forget about their duty to the public. That is why corporations give “gifts” to government officials.

So it was with Mr. Leroy King, head of the Antigua and Barbuda Financial Services Regulatory Commission (FSRC), who now stands charged with being a “key inside collaborator” assisting SIR Allen Stanford to commit a US$7 billion dollar fraud and money laundering.

It just goes to show how little it takes to buy a country’s integrity and reputation – which is exactly what Sir Allen Stanford did when Antigua said his bank was solid.

Mr. King received “gifts” from Sir Allen Stanford including jet rides, vacations, cash and treats of expensive entertainment like Super Bowl tickets. How much cash? According to the news media, a paltry $100,000. Chicken feed for Sir Allen, but no small sum for me, you or any government official.

PM Thompson Says His Use Of CLICO's Business Jet Is None Of Your Business

PM Thompson Says His Use Of CLICO's Business Jet Is None Of Your Business

Similarities With The CLICO Scandal

In Barbados we have an ongoing situation evolving with CL Financial and an associated company called CLICO – an insurance company regulated by Barbados that was “solid”, “well managed”, “transparent” and “well regulated” …

… until it tumbled like a house of cards.

How are the Stanford and CLICO Barbados cases similar, you ask? Consider this…

1/ Both companies were under Government Regulations & Oversight. Stanford & CLICO were supposedly well regulated by government authorities – Stanford by Antigua, and CLICO by Barbados.

2/Both companies and their upper-level executives maintained close relations personally with individual politicians and corporately with the same government that was supposed to be regulating their activities and standards. In Barbados, CLICO CEO Leroy Parris and Prime Minister David Thompson are so close that they are Godfathers to each other’s child!

Ex-PM Owen Arthur "Just let the FBI be blind to my Swiss accounts, Oh Lawd!"

Ex-PM Owen Arthur "Just let the FBI be blind to my Swiss accounts, Oh Lawd!"

3/ Both companies were heavily involved in politics and funding political campaigns. In the USA, Stanford provided millions to both the Republicans and the Democrats – covering all bets by backing both John McCain and Barack Obama in the last Presidential election! Only God knows how much Stanford gave to Antigua and Barbados politicians. The same God might also know how much CLICO gave to the BLP and the DLP, including Prime Minister Thompson’s last campaign… because campaign donations in Barbados are kept secret from the citizens.

4/ Government officials and politicians used company business jets. In Antigua the head of the Antigua and Barbuda Financial Services Regulatory Commission used Sir Allen’s jets. In Barbados, Prime Minister David Thompson used CLICO’s private jet.

5/ Years in advance, there were reports and signs of trouble brewing that were ignored and covered-up by the respective government agencies and the politicians in power.

6/ Both companies were allowed to break various government laws and requirements to file financial records and audits. In Antigua, government officials allowed faked outside audit reports and even faked government audits. In Barbados, under both the current David Thompson DLP government and the past Arthur/Mottley BLP government, CLICO was allowed to violate laws respecting reserves and financial integrity of insurance companies.

In the case of David Thompson, he personally acted as CLICO’s lawyer when the company failed to file financial statements for 13 years!!! (See Keltruth blog’s Did Thompson’s DLP Have Audited Financials for the Companies that they Bailed Out?)

7/ Both Stanford companies and CLICO “invested” in risky property deals and provided highly irregular loans for such “investments” to associated companies – sometimes paying much more for land than the true value. These actions transferred company funds to other entities and people even as investors were told their funds were safe in highly liquid and conservative assets. In Barbados, CLICO provided loans to other CL Financial companies that paid hundreds of millions of dollars for Florida swampland that wasn’t worth anywhere near the purchase price… and kickbacks were paid to CL Financial / CLICO company officials!

EXCLUSIVE REPORT: Bribes paid to insiders in CLICO land fraud. Read our stories…

EXCLUSIVE REPORT BY BFP: CL Financial Group Collapse – Insiders Took Bribes To Have Company Purchase Land For More Than Market Value!

CL Financial, CLICO Fraud Report: Dummy Company, Phantom “Consultancy” Payments, Vanishing Money Transfers From Company To Company

8/ Politicians approved unusual land deals for both companies. In Antigua, Stanford’s companies purchased and developed lands where others had been unable to obtain permissions. In Barbados, CLICO did many questionable land deals and was not challenged when it allowed a Barbados national heritage site – Sam Lord’s Castle – to deteriorate beyond saving. In another deal with the devil, CLICO’s land holdings in the Graeme Hall Wetlands were excluded from RAMSAR protection by the BLP government. Subsequently, the DLP government changed the law to allow building on the Graeme Hall wetlands.

9/ Government officials and politicians continued to defend both companies and their upper executives long after it was obvious to everyone that something was rotten.

10/ Even after the scandals broke, Government officials and others took action to protect themselves and their friends in high places. In Antigua, the head of the Antigua and Barbuda Financial Services Regulatory Commission falsified audits. In Florida, Stanford’s security staff shredded bank documents after a court order freezing the business records. In Barbados, Prime Minister David Thompson refused to allow the supervisor of insurance to take over CLICO. Instead, and without any legal authority to do so, Thompson appointed a group of “special” people to a board to oversee CLICO’s operations because he couldn’t afford to lose control to the courts.

The One Big Difference Between Stanford & CLICO Frauds

Antigua has integrity legislation, so presumably Mr. Leroy King, as a government official and head of the Antigua and Barbuda Financial Services Regulatory Commission, could not receive gifts legally from Sir Allan Stanford.

PM Thompson Lied About Integrity Legislation

PM Thompson Lied About Integrity Legislation

Contrast the situation in Antigua with that of Barbados where it is perfectly legal for elected and appointed government officials to accept “gifts” from persons or entities they deal with in government service. In fact, we have no Integrity Legislation or conflicts of interest laws that prohibit government officials from profiting from their position. Heck, it is perfectly legal for Barbados government officials to award government contracts to themselves or their immediate family members!

Thanks To Prime Minister David Thompson, Barbados Government Officials Can Still Legally Use Their Office For Personal Profit

Prime Minister Thompson and the DLP promised to implement Integrity Legislation within 100 days of being elected and to implement a Ministerial Code immediately that would define and prohibit conflicts of interest for government officials.

Now a year and a half after the DLP took power, it is widely acknowledged that the DLP and David Thompson lied about Integrity Legislation, Freedom of Information laws and conflicts of interest rules.

And finally…

No word yet from either the Barbados Labour Party or the Democratic Labour Party as to how much in “campaign donations” they received from Sir Allen Stanford over the years.

No sir… the DLP and the BLP are pretty quiet on that one!

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Filed under Barbados, Business & Banking, Corruption, Crime & Law, Ethics, Freedom Of Information, Offshore Investments, Political Corruption, Politics, Politics & Corruption

Four Days After Barbados Free Press Broke The Sir Allen Stanford – Drug Cartel Link, Nation News Steals Our Story

UPDATE: Just a note that Allen Stanford has been under suspicion for money-laundering drug money for 20 years or so – according to The Independent article The Stanford Files: FBI’s first probe was 20 years ago.

Original article…

On Wednesday, February 18, 2009, at 11:50pm Barbados time, Barbados Free Press was the first Bajan news outlet to report that Sir Allen Stanford was being investigated by US Authorities not only for fraud, but also for money-laundering for a Mexican drug cartel. We also reported that one of his aircraft had been seized with drug money aboard.

Our story Stanford Trying To Flee USA! US Federal Authorities: Allen Stanford Money-Laundering For Drug Cartels was sourced from an ABC Network News article (link here).

Here we are four days later and now Albert Brandford at the Nation News is “breaking” the same story and using the same source that we used.

Good work, Albert! We love it when the Nation, CBC and the Barbados Advocate duplicate our articles and use the same sources. And not only does the Barbados media steal our story ideas, sometimes they even go so far as to scoop quotes from our story – actual phrases – without attribution. (For one of many examples see Nation News Steals Quote and Story Ideas From Barbados Free Press – Fails To Credit Source)

How often do Bajan “professional” journalists steal story ideas and sources from the blogs?

Every day, my friends. Every day.

Oh… Albert…?

Were happy to help, but you really should tell the folks where you first heard about the story you’re now breaking… OK?

It is all about ethics and integrity.

If you and your paper have any integrity left, we hereby give you our full permission to use another one of our stories. Let’s see if you have the integrity and the courage to copy this BFP story…

How Many “Political Donations” Did Sir R. Allen Stanford Give To Barbados Politicians?

Thanks!

Cliverton

Old News “Broken” By Albert Brandford

Drug Link In Stanford Money Saga?

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Filed under Barbados, Caribbean Media, Ethics, Freedom Of The Press, News Media, Offshore Investments

How Many “Political Donations” Did Sir R. Allen Stanford Give To Barbados Politicians?

Cocaine Bosses Were Victims Too?

Cocaine Bosses Were Stanford Victims Too?

“Stanford’s business is headquartered on the Caribbean island of Antigua. In the last decade, Stanford and his companies have spent more than $7 million on lobbyists and (US) campaign contributions in efforts to loosen regulation of offshore banks. Among the top recipients: Senator Bill Nelson (D-Fla.), Congressman Pete Sessions (R-Texas), Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), Senator Chris Dodd (D-Conn.) and Senator John Cornyn (R-Texas), one of the members who took a trip to Antigua where he was entertained by Stanford.”

Stanford On The Run From Police

SIR Allen Stanford won’t be attending many public cricket matches for the next little while because news reports are coming in that the once-billionaire high-flying “banker” who practically owned the country of Antigua is on the run from police.

Stanford Spent Millions Lobbying Politicians!

Tell Us The Truth, PM Thompson!

Tell Us The Truth, PM Thompson!

American politicians are required to report donations and gifts, but the same is not the case with Barbadian politicians and other government officials. How much did Stanford donate to Prime Minister David Thompson’s campaign? How much to the Barbados Labour Party?

Keep guessing my friends – because David Thompson lied about the Ministerial code of ethics he said he would implement “immediately upon forming a government.”

The scandal of no oversight into offshore banking does not begin or end with the present case involving Sir Allen Stanford: the wild west Caribbean atmosphere with few rules and even less oversight is directly attributable to the our politicians throughout the region who resist any efforts for Integrity, Transparency and Accountability Legislation (ITAL). Like the current liar in chief, Prime Minister David Thompson, they all have promised ITAL and then forget all about it when elected.

Prime Minister Thompson: How much money did you or your party receive from Sir Allen Stanford or his companies in the last two years?

Stanford Banks Were Favourites With Colombians!

News stories are also reporting that many of Sir Allen’s customers are from Colombia and other South and Central American countries – and while they don’t say that the customers are rough looking men who always travel with eight or ten rougher looking bodyguards, you can bet that Sir Allen had a few such clients.

Or maybe more than a few. Current and past allegations include drug money-laundering by Stanford’s companies.

Nope, upon consideration we reflect that perhaps Sir Allen’s main concern is not being arrested or even going to jail. His concern is that the jail is filled with friends and employees of some of his rougher clients.

All we can say about this story about another crooked financial wizard is… Who’s next?

ABC News: Accused Financier Scammer Stanford Missing

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