25 April, 2017
French presidential candidate Emmanuel Macron is married to Brigitte Macron. As Brigitte Marie-Claude Trogneux, the now 64-year-old is the daughter of a family of chocolatiers, an organizer who is one of the masterminds behind the movement’s rise. Trogneux eventually separated from her husband with whom she has three children. In 2007, the two Macrons were married . Critics of the presidential front-runner frequently refer to his wife using the term “cougar” — a not exactly flattering word that describes older women seeking relationships with younger men.
[April 23 No French President Fillon ]
Fillon finished close behind the front-runners with 19.9 percent suppot and Fillon – a former prime minister – received some last-minute public endorsements from former President Nicolas Sarkozy and former Prime Minister Alain Juppe.
Fillon beat both of them in the primary vote to stand for the Republicans party, but his campaign has been hit by a series of allegations and charges of financial irregularities during his time as a government official and minister.
[February 1 Fun in horse race]
What started last week as a page three article in Le Canard Enchaine (it was not even on the front) now has a serious chance of bringing down the man seen as favourite to be the next French head of state. Mr Fillon’s wife Penelope was paid hundreds of thousands of euros in taxpayers’ money for a fictitious job as parliamentary assistant to her husband and his replacement.. So a new method for choosing a replacement candidate would have to be devised. Many eyes are turning to Alain Juppe, the runner-up in November’s primary.
Last week Mr Juppe said there was no way he would let himself be considered again as a candidate – but that was then.
“What is striking to me is how little help there is being directed at Fillon from his fellows in the party,” says Cecile Cornudet. “It doesn’t look good for him.”
Former President Nicolas Sarkozy is no doubt watching closely, and other senior Republican figures are also being mentioned, such as Francois Baroin, Laurent Wauquiez and Xavier Bertrand. Marine Le Pen, French far-right National Front (FN) party president, too is embroiled in corruption allegations, after the European parliament demanded she start repaying around €300,000 it says were wrongly paid to legislative aides and her bodyguard
[December 8 2016 DSK “a dimension outside the system” in second place as left candidate ]
The former IMF chief is back on the podium from left presidential candidates. According to a survey, 37% of French see him as a good candidate.
Dominique Strauss-Kahn is back on the list of best candidates left for 2017, second only Manuel Valls in a ViaVoice poll for Liberation published Thursday December 8. To the question whether each of the nine tested individuals would make a good or a good candidate “for the left in the 2017 presidential election,” 47% of respondents put the head Manuel Valls. DSK reached 37%, ahead of Ségolène Royal (32%), Martine Aubry (28%), Arnaud Montebourg (24%). François Hollande gets only 23%.
Among supporters of the left, Dominique Strauss-Kahn (45%) but ranks only 5th place, preceded by Manuel Valls (67%), Martine Aubry (62%), Ségolène Royal and François Hollande (56% each) . “Data for Dominique Strauss-Kahn are particularly unexpected,” notes political analyst Francois Miquet-Marty on behalf of ViaVoice. According to him, for DSK assets “a dimension outside the system, including during the trial proceedings; in contrast, the image of competence reinforced this time in the heart of the system “, and that” a determination, a perceived strength. ”
Moreover, Nicolas Sarkozy is designated by 28% of the sample as the winner of the presidential election if the were held today (23% for Marine Le Pen, only 9% for Hollande). 63% of respondents disapprove of the present policy (19% approve, 18% did not respond). 34% think that the right would be better that the Socialists if it was in power, and 28% believe that the National Front as it would do better.
Survey conducted online June 23 to 26 among a sample of 1,002 people representative of the French population aged 18 and over. Quota method.
[February 9 Alain Juppé ahead of Nicolas Sarkozy in polls ]
Former French Prime Minister Alain Juppé will win The Republicans party nomination to run for president in 2017, beating Nicolas Sarkozy, according to a poll from Ipsos published in daily newspaper Le Monde February 8.
Forty-four percent of the respondents who are “certain” to vote in the party’s primary elections said they would choose Juppe, compared with 32 percent for Sarkozy, Ipsos, which conducted the survey with the Cevipof political institute, said. While former President Sarkozy may win more votes among party followers, The Republicans’ primaries will be open to all voters, which could allow Juppe to take the lead, the survey shows. France’s two-round presidential elections will be held in May 2017 and The Republicans’ primaries will be held in November. Sarkozy has vowed to slash taxes and pare back public spending if he is elected French president in 2017, as the former leader begins his campaign for nomination.
President Francois Hollande would lose the first round of the 2017 presidential election if either Sarkozy or Juppe win The Republicans’ primaries, according to a poll.
DSK – Comité de soutien
[December 1 2014 Hollande in Dakar row; Paparazzi did not snap Gayet, 5 staff fired ]
Five members of Francois Hollande’s personal staff have lost their jobs after photos were taken of the president and his ‘secret’ lover at the Elysee Palace.
Taken last month, they showed the 60-year-old Socialist with Julie Gayet, the 42-year-old TV actress.There was no possibility of paparazzi having got into the highly secure presidential home in Paris, prompting the speculation that the pictures were taken by staff.
‘Five were immediately placed in the frame, and they are the ones who have been moved on to other duties,’ said a governmental source in Paris.
He said investigators did not know the exact person who had taken the snaps, so all five were ‘being let go’.
[November 29 Sarkozy elected party leader of UMP; Gayet is pictured at Elysee
Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been elected party leader of UMP, gaining 64.5% of the vote. More than 150,000 party members – over 50% – voted in the election [ November 28] Sarkozy faces two internal challengers for the country’s main opposition party, the conservative UMP’s primary in 2016 to choose the party’s 2017 presidential candidate: former prime ministers Alain Juppe and Francois Fillon. Neither is running in the elections November 28,29.
[November 3 Sarkozy: Alain Juppé has become the main obstacle to the political return of Nicolas Sarkozy]
A survey highlights the new popularity of Alain Juppe, who has become the main obstacle to the political return of Nicolas Sarkozy as the candidate in the 2016 primary of the UMP for the presidential election in 2017. The Mayor of Bordeaux in fact exceeds the former president of the Republic in popularity with supporters of the UMP, with 76% of good opinions, compared to 71% for Nicolas Sarkozy. The other potential contenders for the investiture of 2017 are far behind. A survey by polling group LH2 in October showed Alain Juppé, for the first time beating Sarkozy in the run-off due next year for the presidential ticket of their UMP party.
Alain Juppé, a prime minister under center-right French President Jacques Chirac and a senior minister during the presidency of Nicolas Sarkozy, said on August 20 that he would seek to become president in 2017. In 2004, he was forced to put his political career on hold, when a court sentenced him to one year of ineligibility for public office, in addition to a 14-month suspended prison term for having illegally helped militants within his party collect monthly payments from the Paris city hall. At the time, Mr. Juppé acknowledged errors and negligence but said he had never sought to violate the law.
In a brief statement, Jacques Chirac , the former president of the Republic is supporting former Prime Minister candidate in the primary of the UMP for the presidential election in 2017.
“I always knew that Alain Juppe would have an appointment with you his fate and that of France.” Few things could I do more fun, for me- even for him, especially for our country (…) If I had the energy, I would have already booked my place, even a small, at its HQ.”
[July 23 UMP supports Sarkozy despite indictment ]
Atlantico survey published July 17 shows that UMP supporters support Nicolas Sarkozy. Indeed, the former head of state grew by 6 points compared to June 2014, despite his indictment and the Bygmalion case.
Questioned on the first indictment of Nicolas Sarkozy and attacks of the former Head of State against the judiciary, Christiane Taubira wished to recall that “everything is justiciable remedies, it is possible to challenge a decision. At this stage, Mr. Sarkozy has the opportunity to enter the investigating chamber. ” Nicolas Sarkozy has he been humiliated? “It is easy to imagine that a custody unpleasant [but] if the judges have reason to believe that custody is necessary, they do whatever the defendant, and the rule of law ” . regard to very strong criticism by Nicolas Sarkozy, Minister of Justice believes that “it carries a subjective assessment. If the law has not been complied with, there are remedies (…).
Le Monde newspaper published extracts from telephone calls in which Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy reportedly tells Mr Herzog – who has also been charged with corruption – he will help out Judge Azibert in return for the information.
The conversations apparently took place in February on a mobile phone Mr Sarkozy bought using a false name because he knew his calls were being tapped.
Judge Azibert has already been charged with illegally passing on information in relation to an enquiry into money being received by billionaire L’Oreal heiress, Liliane Bettencourt.
In another part of the phone tapes, Mr Sarkozy is also heard saying he will meet with Michel Roger, Monaco’s chief of government.
Mr Sarkozy later discovered that his phone was being bugged, and so did not end up sorting out the job for the judge, it
Former French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been held in police custody for questioning over suspected influence-peddling,Sarkozy had a secret phone registered under an assumed name and it was conversations with his lawyer Herzog, recorded on that device, which triggered the probe, and that he was tipped off that his mobile phone had been tapped by judges looking into the alleged financing of his 2007 election campaign by former Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Sarkozy got a friendly judge to try to influence the outcome of confidential legal deliberations related to the Bettencourt case in return for support securing a lucrative post in Monaco.
They also imply he had a mole in a senior position who tipped him off about a planned police raid on his offices. Such interference in the judicial process is regarded as “influence peddling” in French law and carries a maximum prison sentence of 10 years. The ex-president was accused of “abuse of someone in an impaired state” in the case involving L’Oreal cosmetics fortune heiress Liliane Bettencourt, and was cleared last year of taking Bettencourt’s money when she was too frail to know what she was doing.
Lawyers for former President Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife Carla Bruni announced that they would file a complaint for invasion of privacy for privacy after the release of recordings made by former presidential adviser Patrick Buisson . An interim (emergency procedure) will “soon” filed in the High Court of Paris. Referred to the civil justice aims to stop “a manifestly ilicit” emergency and thus prevent further broadcasts excerpts or transcripts from such recordings. Substantive proceedings may nevertheless be the result. Nicolas Sarkozy and his wife cannot accept that the remarks, made in a private capacity , have been recorded and are distributed without their consent , the confidentiality of private conversations constituting also one of the foundations of a democratic society, “wrote Thierry Herzog and Richard Malka lawyers in a statement. By this procedure, the couple “decided to continue by way of interim relief which will soon be before the Tribunal de Grande Instance of Paris, capturing, recording and dissemination of some of their statements, in violation of Articles 226-1 and 226-2 of the Criminal Code, “they said. Both items are designed to achieve the intimacy of private life by recording words or images without the consent of the persons concerned and the preservation of such records and the fact of wearing or leave to inform the public. These facts are punishable with one year’s imprisonment and a fine of € 45,000
facts are punishable with one year’s imprisonment and a fine of € 45,000
Mary-Kate Olsen, 27, and Olivier Sarkozy , the half-brother of former French president Nicolas Sarkozy and French banker, 44 are engaged. “Mary-Kate’s family thinks Olivier is the best thing to happen to her,”
Olsen won’t have a hard time adjusting to motherhood, either. She’s already close to Sarkozy’s two children Julien, 12, and Margo, 10, from his previous marriage to Charlotte Bernard.
On March 3, 2008, he was appointed Co-head and Managing Director of the Carlyle Group’s Global Financial Services Group. Olivier Sarkozy is based in New York City and is a member of the Board of Directors of BankUnited. They share a US$6 million townhouse in New York City.
123 East 10th Street – East Village, New York Olivier Sarkozy, the half-brother of former French president-slash-casanova Nicolas, is already selling off his 19th-century East Village rowhouse at 123 East 10th Street, which he bought last August for $6.25 million. Dubbed a “love nest” for him and much-younger girlfriend Mary-Kate Olsen, the Frenchman picked up this 1854 five-bedroom, four-bathroom house at 123 East 10th Street?designed by James Renwick of Grace Church and St. Patrick’s Cathedral fame?because it was old. (Insert joke about their 17-year age difference here.) Signs, a.k.a. the tabloids, report that, even after a year of dating, the couple is still canoodling all over the city, so perhaps he’s trading it in for a more modern residence. The handsome red-brick home with multiple parlors, eight fireplaces, original parquet floors, detailed moldings, and a garden is listed for $6,995,000.
123 East 10th Street – East Village, New York Erected in 1854 by James Renwick, one of the most famous American Architects of his time, amongst Grace Church, St. Patricks Cathedral and other internationally acclaimed projects, 123 East 10th stands out as one of the most exquisite Row Houses built. This house remains to be as attractive and architecturally significant today as it was almost two centuries ago. The home boasts at least five bedrooms and currently only four bathrooms but can easily accommodate more of each. An old world layout with a double parlor greets one with a lovely grand entrance and can accommodate multiple sitting rooms.
Elizabeth Olsen on Tuesday (March 4) in Paris, France.
[September 9 2011]
(Comité de soutien de Dominique Strauss Kahn communiqué) Dominique Strauss-Kahn will not be the primary candidate of the Socialist Party for President of the Republic of 2012! DSK Club regrets to announce that DSK has taken an irrevocable decision in view of the impediment that has retained a New York court because of a hasty and prejudice that have played against him …! Being a man of responsibility and duty, he agreed to step back from his position as DG of the IMF to protect the institution he has reformed and put his candidacy aside to allow the socialists to debate calmly and prepare an alternative to the presidency of Nicolas Sarkozy! see DSK Club site
20 April, 2017
￼Contribution records from President Trump’s inaugural committee, released by the Federal Election Commission, show Christopher Cline, a billionaire coal magnate who owns Foresight Energy Partners, gave $1 million. Trump has vowed to bring back coal jobs.
[March 18 Vonn: No Squaw Valley]
PYEONGCHANG, South Korea (March 4, 2017) – Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CqO) finished second to lead four American women into the top 11 in Saturday’s downhill at the Audi FIS Ski World Cup test event for the 2018 Olympic Winter Games. Vonn , who is still progressing on her comeback after breaking her arm last November, has not won a Super-G at a World Cup event since January last year. World Cup overall leader Mikaela Shiffrin skipped the South Korean speed races to prepare for next week’s giant slalom and slalom in Squaw Valley, Calif.
CORTINA D’AMPEZZO, Italy (AP) — Lindsey Vonn avoided more serious injury when she fell and crashed into the safety netting during a World Cup downhill training session Friday.
Italian veteran Elena Fanchini fell in the same spot, also without serious consequences.
♦Vonn lost control and slammed into the safety netting in the same spot where she crashed in Friday’s training run. in the final downhill before the world championships in St. Moritz.. After collecting herself, Vonn skied down to the finish area. She had already had a small bobble earlier in her run but was 0.18 seconds ahead of winner Lara Gut at the first checkpoint just before her crash. Vonn had asked the International Ski Federation’s race director to smooth out a small lip that gave her trouble in training. “They changed it, but I still caught air,” Vonn said. “I just caught my edge and did the splits. It happens, unfortunately.”
[November 12 2016 humerus bone in my right arm compound fracture ]
Unfortunately, [November 10] I crashed while training in Copper and severely fractured the humerus bone in my right arm. I had successful surgery last night in Vail and everyone took great care of me.
While I am beyond frustrated by this latest setback, at least my knees are ok and I will return to the slopes as soon as possible, as I always do!
[October 11 Tiger Woods abandons Safeway: “my game is vulnerable” ]
“After a lot of soul-searching and honest reflection I know that I am not yet ready to play on the PGA Tour or compete in Turkey,” Woods said. “My health is good, and I feel strong, but my game is vulnerable and not where it needs to be.
Sir Nick Faldo. “Tiger has been having problems getting out of his golf cart this week,” Faldo said at the conclusion of the 2016 Ryder Cup. “So I don’t know how he’s going to go out and play 72 holes.”
[October 8 Tiger Woods officially commits to Safeway ]
[October 2 Tiger Woods in 2016 Safeway Open, Oct. 13-16? ]
47-year-old Tiger Woods battling a 30-year-old Jordan Spieth for major championships? Cal Berkeley sophomore Collin Morikawa, 19, has received a sponsor’s invitation to play in the Safeway Open, The Safeway Open will be Morikawa’s second PGA Tour-sanctioned event of 2016, as he lost in a playoff at the Web.com Tour’s Air Capital Classic.
Woods, 40, announced on Wednesday that he hopes to make his long-awaited return to golf at the 2016 Safeway Open, Oct. 13-16, at Silverado Resort and Spa in Napa, Calif.
“My rehabilitation is to the point where I’m comfortable making plans, but I still have work to do,” Woods said on tigerwoods.com. “Whether I can play depends on my continued progress and recovery. My hope is to have my game ready to go.” Woods’ long absence from the game – which will have reached nearly 14 months by the time the Safeway Open comes around.
I’m hoping we can get paired together,” Mickelson remarked. “That would be really fun. I would love it. It’s great to have him back, and hopefully he’s physically able to practice the way he needs.”
Olympic alpine ski racer Lindsey Vonn has dropped $3.55 million on a contemporary-style home for sale in Los Angeles, CA. Vonn’s new home, built in 2016, is a four-bed, five-bath custom home Measuring 4,018 square feet,
September 12 Woods and Nordegren have a solid relationship ]
Elin Nordegren brought her ex-boyfriend Chris Cliner reunited about a month ago after the 57-year-old coal tycoon’s split from Kelly Crosby Heyniger. Kelly Crosby Heyniger is the CEO of Age Reverser LLC . The duo dated for a year before calling it quits in August 2014. It was Nordegren’s first serious relationship since her 2010 divorce from Woods, 39, in the wake of his cheating scandal.
In a recent interview with Time, Woods gushed over Nordegren, his ex-wife, revealing they currently have a solid relationship. The parents of daughter Sam, 8, and son Charlie, 6, are “best friends” now, Woods revealed. “Having the relationship that I have now with her is fantastic,” he added. “We’re able to pick up the phone, and we talk to each other all the time. We both know that the most important things in our lives are our kids. I wish I would have known that back then.”
[May 11 Elin Nordegren’s Cline needs $23.6 million before May 17 ]
Chris Cline’s St. Louis-based coal miner Foresight Energy LP said it lost $41.7 million in the first quarter, or about 32 cents per common unit. That compared to profit of $42.3 million, or 33 cents per common unit, in the same quarter last year. It announced a tentative plan last month to restructure its debt but last week extended the deadline to finalize the agreement to May 17.
Tiger Woods has registered for the U.S. Open, which is to be played at Oakmont Country Club June 13-19, 2016. But that doesn’t necessarily mean he will tee it up at the Pennsylvania course where he tied for second in 2007. Woods was required to register by Wednesday’s deadline if he wants to play. According to the United States Golf Association, he registered at 4:33 p.m. on April 4 — three weeks ago. All 51 players who are fully exempt for the 116th U.S. Open have registered, including defending champion Jordan Spieth and Jason Dufner.
Foresight Energy Lp Extended term of forbearance agreement that was entered into on Dec 18 with certain holders of issuers’ 7.875 pct senior notes due 2021 . As a result of extension, forbearance period runs through April 15, 2016, unless further extended – SEC filing. FELP and bondholders are near a deal in which billionaire founder Chris Cline would inject cash to repay the creditors. FELP, which is attempting to resolve the dispute with bondholders who claim they are owed more than $600M, needs an agreement to help stave off bankruptcy.
[March 14] Billionaire Christopher Cline, 57, hailed as the savior of the Illinois coal industry, is the founder of Foresight Energy LP, which has until March 15 to pay $23.6 million of overdue bond interest.
[February 29 Vonn injury ]
[February 16 Lindsey Vonn perfect weekend is the first after her return to racing ]
[April 21 2015 Tiger wins $155,000 for Masters 2015]
Amanda Boyd Dufner purchased a Jupiter, Florida, three-bedroom, three-bathroom, 3,000 sq.-ft. home for $675,000 in May 2015 nine miles from Tiger Woods estate.
Woods, who won only $610,775 in an injury-plagued 2014 season, topped the list with $55.1 million in earnings.
[December 10 2015]
The indisputable speed queen, Lindsey Vonn scored World Cup career wins 68, 69 and 70 at the FIS World Cup speed season opening at Lake Louise, her perfect weekend is the first after her return to racing from a long series of injuries. Only in October, she opted out of the season kick-off on the Austrian glacier to give her ankle – injured in a training crash at a snow camp – more time to heal. With her three wins, Vonn now leads the overall World Cup rankings after six races so far this season.
Friday, Dec. 4 – Audi FIS Ski World Cup ladies’ downhill 1
Saturday, Dec. 5 – Audi FIS Ski World Cup ladies’ downhill 2
Sunday, Dec. 6 – Audi FIS Ski World Cup ladies’ Super G
[October 27 2015 Tiger Woods had back surgery on Sept. 16 and is hopeful to return to competitive golf early in 2016.]
— lindsey vonn (@lindseyvonn) September 18, 2015
[August 24 Tiger Woods 10th-place finish — his first since 2013 at Wyndham]
The 10th-place finish — his first since 2013 …a triple bogey at the 11th and a bogey at the 12th [earlier]For the first time in more than two years, Tiger Woods is in the lead at a golf tournament, Wyndham Championship. He shares the top spot — with a rookie pro, Tom Hoge
[August 20 Lindsey Vonn breaks ankle, back home]
[August 17 returning from practice in New Zealand]
” crashed today and have a small fracture in my ankle. Headed home”
[July 20 Tiger Woods:Exits british open]
Woods.more‘ odds on Bovada were moved from 40-1 after the US Open to 20-1 after the Greenbrier. That’s what a 7-under score of 273 will do for you.
[Juiy 4 Greenbrier Classic July 4. Tiger in the mix – Lindsey in makeup]
Tiger Woods will play the weekend at the Greenbrier. Tiger Woods followed up his 66 in the first round with a 69 in the second at the Greenbrier Classic in round two. He’s now had as many rounds in the 60s this week as he had all season up to this point.
Lindsey Vonn nominated for two ESPY awards, July 15
Tiger Woods dropped a 4-under 66, his lowest round of tournament golf since March 2014 at the Greenbrier Classic July 2.
[July 2 Tiger to take another endorsement slide?]
Woods, 39, is said to be dating Amanda Boyd, 27, Jason Dufner’s ex-wife
They began seeing each other after they ‘flirted’ on the tour circuit
Pair have now developed a ‘serious relationship’ according to one source
He reportedly flew her to Seattle as he prepared for last month’s US Open
But Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg says the allegations are a ‘complete lie’
In May DailyMail.com revealed Vonn dumped Woods because he cheated
Boyd and Dufner divorced in April after ‘irretrievable marriage breakdown’
Woods allegedly cheated in February, Dufner and Boyd split same month
Tiger Woods still made the most money in golf in 2014, according to the Golf Digest 50, an annual ranking of those making the most in the game.
Woods earned $55,110,775 in 2014, according to the magazine, with endorsements making up an astounding 98.8 percent of his take.
It’s the least money Woods has earned in a single year since 2000, when the magazine says he made $49 million.
Woods, who has been at the top of the list for all 12 years it has been published, had three years — from 2007 to 2009 — where he made more than double what he made last year. He pulled in $121.9 million in 2009 but took a huge slide after his extramarital affairs were revealed late that year.
May 3 Woods splits with Vonn, Elin Nordegren gets Florida award]
Place of Hope is a faith-based, state-licensed child welfare organization.
The Lindsey Vonn-Tiger Woods relationship that began about three years ago has ended, with each athlete citing their hectic schedules as a contributing factor. Woods’ 2010 split with Elin Nordegren cost him handsomely
[April 21 Tiger wins $155,000 for Masters 2015]
Tiger Woods 17th place finish at the Masters 2015 Apr 9 The Masters T17 $155,000
[March 16 Nordegren’s Chris Cline sells out for $1.4 Billion]
In exchange for $1.4 billion cash, billionaire Chris Cline, 57, is selling 50% of publicly traded Foresight Energy LP and an 80% interest in Foresight’s general partner. The buyer is Murray Energy, the largest privately held coal miner in the country, controlled by cantankerous, 75-year-old Robert Murray. “This is a great day for American coal,” said Cline, in a statement.
February 24 Vonn crashes at Marbor, her surgically repaired right knee wasn’t hurt]
[February 5 Elin’s Swedish island from Woods on the block]
62-acre island has six private tees for golf practice and ultimate privacy, about an hour by boat from Stockholm.
The property in Lake Malaren features a 2,500 square-foot main house, a 900 square-foot hunting lodge, and a landing strip for a propeller plane
The Florida Woods family home near Orlando was sold to golfer Bubba Watson in 2012.
[January 25 Lindsey Vonn gets 64th World Cup victory in super-G at St. Moritz]
[ January 18 ]
[January 15 Lindsey Vonn 10th in Cortina d’Ampezzo]
[December 22 2014 Lindsey Vonn lands on elbow in a World Cup Super-G]
The four-time World Cup champion crashed out of December 21’s super-G race after entering a gate slightly too wide in Val d’Isere, France.
Although Vonn did no damage to her troublesome right knee, she landed heavily on her right elbow.
Lindsey Vonn finished second in a World Cup super-G in Lake Louise, Alberta, on Sunday, completing her first weekend of races this year with two podium results.
Vonn was .37 of a second slower than Swiss winner Lara Gut on Sunday, one day after Vonn won her first race in nearly two years in a downhill.
Slovenia’s Tina Maze finished third, increasing her World Cup overall lead. Tiger Woods shot 72, finished at even par in first tournament back.
[December 6 Lindsey Vonn won the downhill at Lake Louise in one minute 50.48 seconds]
American skier Lindsey Vonn claimed victory in just her second race back after almost a year out through injury.
The four-time overall World Cup champion won the downhill at Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada, in a time of one minute 50.48 seconds.
The 30-year-old’s time was nearly half a second quicker than USA team-mate Stacey Cook, with another American, Julia Mancuso, in third.
[December 6 Tina Maze wins Lake Louise Ladies Downhill December 5 -Lindsey Vonn finishes 8th]
Lindsey Vonn finished eighth in her first race in nearly one year, a World Cup downhill in Lake Louise, Alberta, on December 5.“I skied really well in the technical parts,” Vonn said. “I definitely can clean up some turns for tomorrow (another downhill in Lake Louise), but I think it was a really solid start. I’m happy with it.”
Vonn is skipping a World Cup giant slalom race in Aspen November 29,30 to focus on training for the speed events, two downhill races and one super-G,
LADIES DOWNHILL/DAMES DESCENTRE
December 5 – 6 Decembre
LADIES/DAMES SUPER-G December 7 Decembre
For months, the four-time overall World Cup champion had planned to return around the races in Lake Louise, Alberta, during the first week of December. After some solid training days, Vonn said she is considering coming back for the events in Aspen, Colo., over Thanksgiving weekend. “I’m a little more tentative still on the more difficult terrain,” said Vonn, who will wear a knee brace this season. “That just comes with time. With more training and more confidence, I’ll be good.”
FIS Alpine World Cup Ski Racing: Women’s World Cup ski racing returns to its regular spot on the Aspen events calendar this year. The giant slalom is on November 29 and the slalom is on November 30, with both events held at Aspen’s historic ski racing venue on the Lift 1A side of the mountain. The top female ski racers in the world, including Mikaela Shiffrin and Anna Fenninger, are expected to make starts over the weekend.
[September 15 Coal in doldrums, Elin splits]
Speculation of Elin-Woods get riposte:
Elin Nordegren 34, and 54-year-old coal tycoon Chris Cline have split after one year of dating,
Chris Cline, owner of The Cline Group, is the majority owner of Foresight Reserves, which is part of the Carlyle Group, a global assent management firm.
Foresight Energy Partners,is a subsidiary of Foresight Reserves
Murray Energy Corp. sued a Foresight Energy LP (FELP) unit, claiming it used confidential information to acquire property and mineral rights directly in the path of Murray’s operations in southern Illinois.The tracts “provide no mining potential to Williamson,” Murray said. “The only economic value of these purchases to Williamson is to frustrate MEC’s ability to execute its mining plans.”In 2008, Murray disclosed its longwall strategies to Williamson as it considered selling off operations in three Illinois counties, according to the complaint. Williamson was allowed to see the information only after agreeing to not disclose it or otherwise use it to acquire mineral or property rights related to Murray’s operations for eight years, according to the complaint.
When the companies failed to reach a deal, Williamson and its affiliates allegedly started overpaying for mineral rights in Murray’s planned longwall path in 2009 and continued to do so as recently as 2013. Murray said in the complaint that the tracts aren’t sufficient to support independent mining.
Murray said those purchases have forced it to pay more for its own acquisitions, caused it to relocate equipment and threaten its ability to meet production contract requirements.
[April 25 Tiger Woods with Elin Nordegren and Lindsey Vonn]
Vonn, the reigning Olympic and World Cup downhill skiing champ, will not compete in next month’s Winter Olympics, according to a post Tuesday on her official Facebook page.
January 07, 2014
I am devastated to announce that I will not be able to compete in Sochi. I did everything I possibly could to somehow get strong enough to overcome having no ACL but the reality has sunk in that my knee is just too unstable to compete at this level. I’m having surgery soon so that I can be ready for the World Championships at home in Vail next February. On a positive note, this means there will be an additional spot so that one of my teammates can go for gold. Thank you all so much for all of the love and support. I will be cheering for all of the Olympians and especially team USA! XO Lindsey
For the moment, there’s no question of thinking about skiing,” US women’s team head coach Alexander Hoedlmoser told the Austrian APA news agency.
Vonn had another scary run during the World Cup downhill in Val d’Isere, clutching her knee in pain after losing her balance and missing a gate on December 21. But shortly afterward, she said no new damage had been done to the surgically repaired knee and her plans for the Sochi Olympics were still intact.
“I didn’t hurt myself more than I’m already hurt,” said Vonn, the reigning Olympic downhill champion. “It was a small compression, and it was fully loaded on the right ski and my knee just completely gave out. I tried to pressure the ski again and it gave out again. I had no chance of making that gate, unfortunately.”
With boyfriend Tiger Woods watching from the bottom of the slope, Vonn skied out after her left ski came up in the air, putting all her weight on the troublesome right leg. There are three downhill races on the World Cup circuit in January. Her appearance in at least one of those would seem essential to Vonn the competitor. Vonn the brand, however, may be impervious.
Lindsey Vonn will skip December 14 World Cup stop at St. Moritz, Switzerland, and is planning to return to the circuit in a downhill at Val d’Isere, France, Dec. 21.
The 29-year-old American returned to competition at Lake Louise, Alberta, December 6, ten months after tearing two ligaments in her right knee and breaking a bone in that leg during a crash at the world championships. She also had a setback when she partially re-tore one of those surgically reconstructed ligaments in a fall during practice Nov. 19.
Vonn finished 40th in a downhill December 6 in her World Cup season debut, then 11th in another downhill December 7, and fifth in a super-G on December 8.
Asked after that last event what those 72 hours of racing told her, Vonn replied: ‘‘It tells me that I do need a couple more starts. I want to make sure that I get on the podium at least once, if not win, before . . . Sochi. For me, mentally, I really want to have that in my back pocket.’
[ December 4]
LAKE LOUISE, Canada – The U.S. Ski Team says Lindsey Vonn has been cleared to begin World Cup downhill training. Olympic gold medalist
Lindsey Vonn is skipping the Alpine Skiing World Championships in Austria this weekend, giving herself some extra time to get back into competing form ahead of the Sochi games.
2010 Olympic downhill gold medalist, coming off a knee injury suffered in a crash at the World Championships last season, on September 16, Lindsay Vonn said she felt good training on snow in South America recently, is ahead of schedule with her rehab and may be able to race later this month at the World Cup opener Oct. 26-27 in Soelden, Austria.
In Chile, she eased her way back with two gentle and relaxed training runs. The next day, she revved it up a little more, taking a few gradual turns along the course in Portillo, Chile.
Vonn married fellow 2002 Olympian, and former U.S. Ski Team athlete, Thomas Vonn on September 29, 2007, at the Silver Lake Lodge in Deer Valley, Utah. In November 2011, it was announced that the couple had begun divorce proceedings after four years of marriage. Their divorce was finalized on January 9, 2013.
Lindsay Vonn is following Tiger Woods’ group at the Players Championship on May 12 as she watches him try to pick up win No. 4 on the season.
Vonn and Woods, who have confirmed they are dating, made an appearance at the Met Ball earlier this week, and Vonn was spotted every day at the Masters earlier this year.
Lindsay Vonn gets the Enquirer spotlight [April 22]here
Tiger’s wife never had a clue, never hit him.Tiger Woods’ 33-year-old ex-wife has been dating 53-year-old billionaire Chris Cline since the holidays.
Source of Wealth: coal, self-made
Residence: North Palm Beach, FL
Country of Citizenship: United States
Education: Drop Out, Marshall University
Marital Status: Divorced
Both Nordegren and Cline — a coal magnate worth a reported $1.2 billion dollars — own homes in a North Palm Beach, Fla. oceanfront community called Seminole Landing.
The reports of Nordegren’s new romance come nearly two months after The National Enquirer claimed that Woods was trying to win back his ex by offering her a $200 million pre-nup. Woods refused to comment on the reports.
In February, the ex-couple was photographed together for the first time in years at a local youth sporting event with their two young children.
Nordegren and Woods — who were married for nearly six years — divorced in August 2010 in the wake of the golfer’s heavily publicized cheating scandal.
Tiger Woods, 33, was unconscious after he struck a fire hydrant and a neighbor’s tree about 2:30 Friday morning,November 29, 2009.
The wife of the world’s No.1 golfer Tiger Woods used one of his tools — a golf club — to smash open a window of his crashed SUV and then pulled him out of the damaged vehicle after an early-morning accident Friday outside their Isleworth mansion.
By the time a Windermere police officer arrived about 2:25 a.m., Elin Nordegren Woods had dragged her husband out of his 2009 Cadillac Escalade. He was lying on the ground, dazed and bleeding from his lips and with blood in his mouth.
Elin Nordegren, the Swedish former nanny, purchased a $12.2 million beachfront mansion in North Palm Beach’s Seminole Landing enclave. Coal mogul Christopher Cline owns the property next door to Nordegren’s new digs.
Nordegren took a job in a Stockholm clothing store called Champagne, where she met Mia Parnevik, wife of Swedish golfer Jesper Parnevik, who hired Nordegren as the nanny to their children, a job that required her to move to the U.S. He introduced her to Woods during the 2001 Open Championship. After Woods’s subsequent infidelity was revealed, Parnevik was quoted as having said, “I’m kind of filled with sorrow for Elin since me and my wife are at fault for hooking her up with him, and we probably thought he was a better guy than he is.” [People Magazine] Previously, Woods had asked for a year to be introduced to Nordegren, who was seeing someone else at the time In November 2003, Woods and became officially engaged.
Lindsay Vonn had surgery on her right knee on February 10 after she shredded two ligaments during a crash last week at the world championships.
The U.S. Ski Team said Dr. William Sterett, a physician for the squad, operated on the four-time overall World Cup champion in Vail, Colo., on Sunday morning.
Sterett was optimistic at a full recovery and said of Vonn: “She will do everything in her power to return as quickly as possible to competitive skiing.”
Lindsay Vonn may be changing her plans for knee surgery to repair the damage caused by her crash at the world alpine championships.
U.S. Ski Team physician Bill Sterett would do her surgery February 10 in Vail. Sterett has treated her since she was 13 years old.
But it was looking like she would seek a second opinion.
“I think there’s a real possibility that she’s going to have it done someplace else,” Vonn had never had a serious knee injury, which is rare for ski racers.
Lindsay Vonn’s father says she may get second opinion before surgery
Vonn tore her anterior cruciate ligament and medial collateral ligament in her right knee. The broken bone was described as a lateral tibial plateau fracture.
“The fracture is called an impaction fracture,” Sterett said. “It should not require any surgery. It just needs to be non-weight on crutches.”
The accident happened after Vonn landed a jump in the opening super-G race at the championships. As she hit the ground, her right leg gave way and she spun forward, throwing an arm out to protect herself. She ended up on her back as she smashed through a gate.
Tiger Woods owns a Gulfstream G550. It is a perfect business jet aircraft. Its unique feature is that it is capable of carrying up to 16 people in standard seating configurations and can fly up to 6,500 nmi (12,000 km). It is the longest range business jet ever made. Chris Cline owns one too,
[December 3, 2009]
General Motors Corp., 24 November, agreed to discontinue a marketing accord with Tiger Woods, the world’s top-ranked golfer, at year’s end as plummeting sales spur cost cuts at the automaker. The golfer was driving a Cadillac Escalade, made by General Motors, when he crashed into a fire hydrant and then a tree at 2am 27 November. A spokesman for GM said that Woods received the car as a prize for winning the Buick Open golf tournament, which was sponsored by GM.
5 April, 2017
Formr U.S. senator and Democratic presidential hopeful John Edwards’ return to the courtroom as a lawyer ended with a settlement and a mistrial.
The family of Kaiden Gaymon also sued the hospital, and Edwards said both sides reached a $13 million settlement that should help the boy get treatment for his health problems.
[April 27 2014 ‘Bunny’ dies: not guilty of campaign law violation]
At Bunny Mellon ’s funeral, the service was open to the public, so it was impossible to determine if former senator John Edwards (D-N.C.), was welcome or if this was another stop on the Edwards Redemption Tour. Edwards and his eldest daughter, Cate, arrived too late to be seated in the church and were directed to a side building, where they joined the overflow crowd. After the service ended, Edwards stood near the gravesite, then worked the crowd. Published: March 28
Bunny with Jackie
In his 2012 memoir, “Dropped Names,” actor Frank Langella, a longtime friend of Rachel “Bunny” Lowe Lambert Mellon, wrote candidly about the Edwards episode. “ ‘Well I suppose it’s my own damn fault,’ she told me, ‘he was so attractive. White shirt, white pants, sleeves rolled up. And you know I’m weak on good looks.’ ”
Rachel “Bunny” Mellon, the Listerine fortune heiress who married arts patron and philanthropist Paul Mellon, was a confidante of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis and redesigned the White House Rose Garden, died March 17 at her home in Upperville, Va. She was 103. Rachel Lowe Lambert was born in New York on Aug. 9, 1910, into a family that had made its fortune producing Listerine mouthwash. Her father, Gerard, was president of the Gillette Safety Razor Co. Her paternal grandfather, chemist Jordan Lambert, was the inventor of Listerine, which was later marketed by her father. Her mother, Anne Elizabeth Parkhill, related to GHWB, GWB, “thomas walker” “Bush” At 101, she found herself improbably drawn into the legal battle of John Edwards, the former U.S. senator and presidential aspirant charged with violating campaign finance laws.
Edwards, a North Carolina Democrat, was tried in 2012 on charges that he took nearly $1 million in illegal campaign contributions from wealthy donors to support his mistress, Rielle Hunter, and conceal her from voters during his 2008 bid for the Democratic presidential nomination. Prosecutors attributed more than $700,000 to Mrs. Mellon and $200,000 to Texas lawyer Fred Baron.
Mrs. Mellon, who was not accused of breaking any laws, was entranced by the charismatic Edwards and wanted to help his quest for the presidency after he was criticized during the campaign for having a $400 haircut, according to witnesses in the case. Edwards dropped out of the race in January 2008.
On May 30, 2012, a federal jury in Greensboro, N.C., acquitted Edwards of one charge, and the judge declared a mistrial on the remaining five charges. The Juj. stice Department later decided not to retry him on the five charges.
[May 31 2012]
Waiting for Edwards jury to adjourn for weekend on May 18
John Edwards and Rielle Hunter
In UNITED STATES OF AMERICA v.JOHNNY REID EDWARDS, IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE MIDDLE DISTRICT OF NORTH CAROLINA, A federal jury of four women and eight men in Greensboro, North Carolina, today found Edwards not guilty of one count of violating campaign finance laws. On that charge, the government alleged that in 2008 Edwards knowingly accepted more money from campaign donor Rachel “Bunny” Mellon than was allowed by law and the judge declared a mistrial on the five other charges. [May 18]The prosecution and defense had given their closing arguments on May 17. The government retold its case, moving chronologically just like it did when presenting evidence on its side of the case. They asked the jury to use common sense when deliberating, in considering if Edwards was unaware of this entire effort.
Defense attorney said there is an important difference between a wrong and a crime. John Edwards committed an offense against his family but broke no law. He has committed a sin but no felony. He was a bad husband who tried desperately to hide his affair. He is not guilty of campaign finance violations. The other main thing that Lowell did today was really continue his assault on the prosecution’s key witness Andrew Young. The jury were taking notes for really the full four hours, a lot of eye contact with some of the lawyers. They were nodding at times with the d. efense attorneys, not sure what that means, whether they’re just following along or in agreement, but they were nodding along.
The defense team rested May 15 without calling the two-time Democratic presidential candidate or his one-time mistress to the witness stand, The defense rested after less than three days of testimony. Closing arguments are scheduled to begin May 16, and the jury is expected to start deliberations on May 17.
In violation of Title 2, United States Code, Sections 441a(a)(1)(A), 441a(f), and 437g(d)(1)(A)(i) and Title 18, United States Code, Section 2. Edwards is charged with knowingly and willfully accepting and receiving contributions in excess of the limits of the Election Act, and other crimes
31 March, 2017
Credit Suisse said March 31 that its offices in London, Paris and Amsterdam were searched March 30 by authorities in connection with client tax matters.
The U.K. tax authority is investigating “senior employees” at a global financial institution, it said in a statement. Australia’s Serious Financial Crime Taskforce said it had identified 346 of its citizens “with links to Swiss banking relationship managers alleged to have actively promoted and facilitated tax evasion schemes.”
Credit Suisse has previously been hit hard in tax probes. The bank was fined $2.6 billion in the US in 2014 after pleading guilty to helping American citizens evade tax and it was also fined €150 million in Germany in a similar case back in 2011.
[July 7 2015 Fana Hlongwane, SA agent on Gripen sale, had HSBC Swiss account]
Former South African arms deal advisor, Fana Hlongwane, holds one of more than 2,000 accounts held by South Africans at HSBC . Saab and BAE paid over a billion rand in commission to agents to secure the sale of 26 Gripen fighter jets to South Africa,
Apparently R154 million of the R1.5 billion in commission was paid to Fana Hlongwane, adviser to late defence minister Joe Modise. According to Expressen, R2 million was paid to Hlongwane in October 1999 via the company Red Diamond. The money then travelled via a Swiss agent into Hlongwane’s company Westunity.
In February 2015 the HSBC leak found 100 million kronor ($11.7 million) in three Swiss bank accounts belonging to Hlongwane. The programme reported that the money was related to the sale of Gripens to South Africa.
[May 14 HSBC Brazil CEO Guilherme André Brandão has no details on Switzerland bank accounts]
According to documents leaked by Hervé Falciani, which lists client names as of 2006, a total 8,000 Brazilians had accounts with HSBC Switzerland in that year. But no further information on suspected fraud has emerged so far
HSBC Brazil CEO Guilherme André Brandão was heard May 5 by a congressional committee of investigation (CPI) at the Senate that is probing potentially fraudulent bank accounts held by Brazilians with HSBC Switzerland. He claimed he has no details on Switzerland bank accounts, not even those held by Brazilian nationals.
According to Brandão, when a Brazilian client contacts the bank to open an account in Switzerland, bank executives in Brazil merely refer the applications to the agents overseas in charge of analyzing and approving investment recommendations and account applications. The bank’s office in Brazil holds a list of client referrals, but has no information as to which of them are successful.more on “operation Car Wash”
[February 21 Geneva’s Attorney General Olivier Jornot raids HSBC- implications for the bank]
Swiss prosecutors investigating allegations of tax avoidance have raided HSBC’s Geneva offices. The FT’s Martin Arnold and Jonathan Guthrie discuss the implications for the bank, and what this means for investors.
[February 18 Geneva’s Attorney General Olivier Jornot raids HSBC]
FEB 18, 2015 – 10:47 ” A search is currently under way in the premises of the bank, led by Attorney General Olivier Jornot and the prosecutor Yves Bertossa,” Geneva’s prosecutor said in a statement. The Geneva public prosecutor says it has initiated proceedings against the Swiss branch of HSBC for suspected money laundering. The prosecutor announced that following recent public revelations about the HSBC Private Bank – a Swiss subsidiary of a leading British bank – a criminal case has been filed against the bank and unknown persons for money laundering.
Regardless of the criminal liability of its employees, the bank can be prosecuted if it failed to take all the organisational measures necessary to prevent infringement from occurring.
Depending on its evolution of the investigation, the process is also likely to extend to individuals suspected of participating in money laundering within the bank, according to a statement by the prosecutor’s office. read more
[February 14 HSBC scandal in U.S.: Loretta Lynch avoided criminal prosecution of bank officers?]
Republicans believe leak ‘throws a monkey wrench’ into Lynch becoming the next attorney general as questions swirl over her role in $1.9bn bank settlement in 2012
The office of Sen. David Vitter, R-La., announced it is investigating why Loretta Lynch, in her capacity as U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, allowed banking giant HSBC to avoid criminal prosecution of bank officers and other employees. HSBC paid a hefty fine, instead, for laundering uncounted billions of dollars of illegal drug and terrorist money through its U.S. bank in the service of Mexican drug cartels and Middle Eastern terrorists.
Main Justice prosecuted these cases, Lynch’s name just appeared on the press releases, it was Eric Holder’s show. But as a federal prosecutor, Lynch could have easily made decisions to charge individuals after the settlements were completed. She had the information at her disposal. But she chose instead to go along to get along, and you can see her elevation to attorney general as part of the reward.
[February 12 HSBC & Lord Fink “‘I didn’t object to his use of the word tax avoidance, because tax avoidance – everyone does it’.]
Shabana Mahmood, the shadow Treasury minister, has called for a “full and frank” statement from Lord Green, the former HSBC boss and former Tory trade minister, about what he knew about the tax scandal at HSBC.
Launching Labour’s education policy for the May general election at his former school in north London, Mr Miliband accused the coalition Government of failing to “act properly against tax avoidance”. The Labour leader said: “Yesterday a Conservative donor challenged me to stand by what I said in the House of Commons. I do. “And believe it or not, now today he confirmed it as well. He has just said, and I quote ‘I didn’t object to his use of the word tax avoidance, because tax avoidance – everyone does it’. “David Cameron must explain why he appointed a treasurer of the Conservative Party who boasts about engaging in tax avoidance and thinks it is something that everyone does. Baron Fink is a British former hedge fund manager, the former CEO and deputy chairman of the Man Group plc
The peer branded the Labour leader’s jibe in the Commons yesterday “untrue and defamatory” and challenged him to step out from the cover of parliamentary privilege so he could take legal action: he had a Swiss bank account because he was working for the Man Group in the country for four years from 1996 to 2000. “During this time I had need of a local bank account to do simple things like receive my Swiss franc salary and pay grocery bills,” he said.
[February 10 HSBC Private Bank (Suisse) SA -Hillary Clinton’s Foundation received $1M from account]The files released by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalism detail 30,000 accounts held with the bank between 2005 and 2007 covering assets of nearly £78 billion. The files cover almost 7000 UK citizens and have been in the hands of HMRC since 2010.
HMRC has clawed back around £135 million from some of the 3600 British clients of the bank alleged to have avoided tax. Only one person has been prosecuted.
[February 9HSBC files show how HSBC Private Bank (Suisse) SA helped clients dodge taxes and hide millions
Data in massive cache of leaked secret bank account files lift lid on questionable practices at subsidiary of one of world’s biggest financial institutions. Data from around 130,000 customers at the Anglo-Asian bank -see below
Under the terms of the 2012 agreement, HSBC was obligated for five years to both fully cooperate with prosecutors on any other investigations and commit no crimes after it signed the deal. HSBC Holdings plc (HSBA.L) could see its 2012 deferred prosecution deal with U.S. authorities over anti-money laundering lapses reopened as a result of separate, ongoing probes into the bank’s alleged role in manipulating currency rates and helping Americans evade taxes.
[November 21 2014 HSBC tax fraud and money laundering charges in France, Belgium from Hervé Falciani, whistleblower in Switzerland]
“We confirm that HSBC Private Bank (Suisse) SA has been placed under formal investigation by French magistrates who are examining whether the bank acted appropriately between 2006-07 in relation to certain clients of the bank who had French tax reporting requirements, as well as in relation to the way the bank offered its services in the country,” HSBC Private Bank In connection with the investigation, the bank has agreed to deposit a bail bond of 50 million euros ($62 million.
The investigation follows the theft of personal details of HSBC private banking clients in Switzerland that were passed on to Belgian and French authorities in 2010. HSBC Private Bank was charged with tax fraud and money laundering in Belgium on November 17.
At the end of 2008, Hervé Falciani committed what is believed to have been the most portentous theft of banking data in history. The systems engineer and former employee at the Geneva offices of HSBC left Switzerland for France and took data from around 130,000 customers at the Anglo-Asian bank along with him.
France’s finance minister at the time, current International Monetary Fund head Christine Lagarde, then handed data supplied by Falciani on to other countries. With the help of the information, authorities were able to uncover hundreds of cases of tax evasion, including those involving members of Spain’s Botín banking family. In Greece, the data, which is often referred to as the “Lagarde List,” was largely forgotten until it returned to the headlines during the debt crisis.
Falciani, 41, has also cooperated with the American authorities. Indeed, on the strength of the information he provided, HBSC was forced to pay a $1.9 billion settlement with the United States after a Senate committee found that failures in HSBC’s money-laundering controls had enabled terrorists and drug cartels to gain access to the US financial system.
Last year, officials in Spain arrested Falciani in Barcelona. After a Spanish court rejected a Swiss extradition request for the Franco-Italian, he returned a few weeks ago to France, where examining magistrates have opened a new investigation into HSBC. The Botin family, which owns barely 2 percent of Santander, paid 200 million euros in penalties in 2011 to avoid charges of tax evasion related to a secret Swiss bank account. ‘Botin was the unofficial king of Spain.’
[October 22 Accounting system by consortia evades 1.7 billion euros in taxes for private companies of national importance]
Italy’s financial police on Tuesday said they had broken up a ring of companies they believe used false accounting to defraud the state of 1.7 billion euros ($2.2 billion) of tax. Police said two Rome businessmen, Pierino Tulli and Maurizio Ladaga, created a system using false invoices issued by intermediary subcontracting companies in areas such as security services and industrial cleaning to perpetrate the fraud. Using these false invoices, large sums of money were put into the accounts of shell companies. The funds were then taken out in cash and deposited in San Marino or Luxembourg, and the companies declared bankrupt, the police said.
The mechanism fraudulently used since 2001 to today’s date consisted generally in foster subcontracting services to co-operative societies specially constituted by the consortia administered by the suspects, who reportedly accounted for contracts from public entities, both by private companies of national importance . Cooperative societies, in turn, through the issuance of invoices for nonexistent transactions for about 400 million euro – credit the money received to further cooperative so-called “final”, whose accounts were gradually emptied by withdrawals cash, not justified by any business logic.
A total of 62 people are suspected of taking part in the fraud to some degree.
FBI believes North Korea was responsible for the heist $81 million from the Bangladesh central bank’s account at the New York Federal Reserve last year.
U.S. prosecutors were building potential cases that would accuse North Korea of directing the heist, and would charge alleged Chinese middlemen.
“Bangladesh Bank’s SWIFT network was made insecure by some bank employees in connivance with some foreign people,” Dhaka police investigator said. “They knew what they were doing.”
He said investigators were now trying to find out how the mid-ranking officials were connected to the hackers and whether they benefited financially from the heist. Asked if the officials would be arrested, Alam said: “We are very close to it.” $81 million was successfully transferred purportedly for payments in relation to Bangladeshi infrastructure projects, including bridges, a power station and the Dhaka metro to four fake accounts in a branch of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp (RCBC) (RCB.PS) in the Philippines. A dollar account is opened at RCBC in the name of William So Go, who denies involvement. Funds transferred via that account and via Philrem, a remittance company: About $29m then made its way into accounts held by Bloomberry Resorts and $21m to Eastern Hawaii Leisure Company, with another $31m delivered in cash by Philrem to an individual by the name of Weikang Xu, described by one Bloomberry representative as a “junket agent” organising trips for gamblers. The four RCBC accounts that initially received funds were frozen, as well as the accounts of Eastern Hawaii; Kam Sin Wong, one of the signatories to the account of Eastern Hawaii; Mr Go, and his Centurytex Trading business. On February 29 the story of the scam was broken by the Philippine Daily Inquirer.Cyber security experts do not think such inside persons would have been essential for a crime that could have been committed from outside by sophisticated criminal hackers from eastern Europe or elsewhere.
[March 12 $81 million stolen by hackers, an internal investigation is ongoing ]
Bangladeshi Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith March 8 accused Federal Reserve Bank of New York of “irregularities” that led to the unauthorized transfer of $100 million from the account of Bangladesh central bank. The funds had been stolen by hackers and some had been traced to the Philippines. The money was converted into pesos and deposited through a branch of Rizal Commercial Banking Corp.in the account of an unidentified Chinese-Filipino businessman who runs a business flying high net worth gamblers to the Philippines. Four requests to transfer a total of about $81m to the Philippines went through, but a fifth, for $20m, to a Sri Lankan non-profit organisation was held up because the hackers misspelled the name of the NGO, Shalika Foundation, leaving $81 million unaccounted for. Initially, the Sri Lankan transaction reached Pan Asia Banking Corp, which went back to Deutsche Bank for more verification because of the unusually large size of the payment, a Pan Asia official said.
Hackers misspelled “foundation” in the NGO’s name as “fandation”, prompting a routing bank, Deutsche Bank, to seek clarification from the Bangladesh central bank, which stopped the transaction, one of the officials said. The hacking of Bangladesh Bank happened sometime between 4-5 February, over the Bangladeshi weekend, which falls on a Friday, the officials said. The bank’s offices were shut.
You have to admit that stealing a hundred million bucks — and attempting to steal almost a billion — is pretty impressive! And all they needed was a SWIFT code. It makes all that hard work in heist flicks like “Ocean’s 11” and “The Italian Job” seem pretty silly by comparison.
The ECB had to resort to negative deposit rates to scare European banks into taking cash out of the Eurosystem and putting it to work elsewhere. Maybe when a hundred million bucks vanishes into thin air from under the nose of the U.S. central bank, it will have an even greater effect!
[October 30 2013 Fines for corporate wrongs cost of business? Brother Circle gangster apparatchiks and Yamaguchi-gumi yakuza group ]
A consumer finance company affiliated with Mizuho, made at least $2 million in small loans to buyers with links to Japan’s organized crime syndicates without properly vetting their backgrounds. The syndicates use the loans to help finance their activities.
Mizuho Bank, which bought and bundled these loans from its affiliate, found gangster-linked loans on its books in 2010 but failed to inform the authorities, according to a report by outside lawyers appointed by the bank to investigate the case.
But the lawyers said they could find no evidence that Mizuho officials intentionally tried to hide the loans from investigators.
Mizuho’s management instead simply “failed to appreciate the gravity of collaborating with organized crime,” Hideki Nakagomi, who headed the panel of lawyers, said on Monday. He acknowledged that many officials at the bank had told the investigators “they did not remember what happened.”
Mizuho, based in Tokyo, announced late on Monday that its president and chief executive, Yasuhiro Sato, would keep his job, though he and 53 other current and past executives will take a pay cut for up to six months. Mr. Sato also serves as president and chief executive of the bank’s parent, the Mizuho Financial Group.
“I apologize from the bottom of my heart,” Mr. Sato said at a news conference, bowing deeply in front of cameras. “I take very seriously the fact that we find ourselves in this situation.”
The group’s chairman, Takashi Tsukamoto, who plays a mostly advisory role at Mizuho, will step down.
The scandal has done little damage to the company’s stock, which actually rose 2.45 percent on Monday after news of the report.
The shady lending came to light after the Japanese banking regulator, the Financial Services Agency, censured Mizuho last month over its handling of the loans. The loans underscore how organized crime groups continue to draw money from the financial system here despite efforts to shut them out.
Used-car loans have long been known to be part of illicit fund-raising schemes run by gangsters. In one often-used method, gang members conspire with a dealer to buy a car — like a slick, black Mercedes-Benz of the type favored by gangsters here — for a far higher amount than the usual asking price, then apply for a used-car loan to cover the inflated price. The scheme gives gangsters access to easy financing; the car can be sold or fitted with new license plates so it can be used to apply for further loans, according to local news reports.
Members of organized crime groups are not supposed to have such access to financing from big banks like Mizuho as a result of a 1991 law that made money-laundering illegal. Since then, the Japanese authorities have bolstered rules requiring that banks more vigorously scrutinize potential clients to check for any ties to organized crime. Mizuho said its loan officials typically checked applications against its nationwide database of known members of organized crime groups and their associates.
But the auto loans in question, about 230 transactions totaling about $2 million, were made by the Orient Corporation, a much smaller consumer financing company affiliated with Mizuho that carried out far less stringent background checks on potential buyers, the report from the outside panel said. Last week, an investigation by the daily Mainichi Shimbun said used-car loans from Orient, known as Orico, were typically approved in about 15 minutes with minimal identification checks that were conducted by fax.
Mizuho periodically bought up bundles of these loans from Orico and did not stringently check each loan, the report said. When some gangster-linked loans came to light during a routine internal inspection, Mizuho instructed Orico not to give further loans to those gangsters. But it did not cut off existing loans or inform the authorities.
The bank initially said that knowledge of the matter went only as far as the bank’s compliance officers but later acknowledged that Mr. Sato and other members of Mizuho’s board had been aware.
Mizuho Financial Group Inc. President Yasuhiro Sato gave up six months of pay for failing to stop loans made to yakuza crime syndicates. Takashi Tsukamoto will also forgo a half year’s compensation and give up his role as chairman of Mizuho Bank Ltd., keeping his post at the parent company.
No leading bank executives have been jailed since the global financial crisis. The largest lenders are so big that criminal charges could threaten the global economy, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder said in a Senate hearing this March, saying that made it “difficult for us to prosecute.”
Executive-suite alterations, docked pay and company fines need to be paired with criminal prosecutions, according to Jennifer Taub at Vermont Law School.
“You have to have some kind of pain,” she said, “and some kind of shame.”
The US has targeted organised crime by freezing the financial assets of two groups – Japan’s Yamaguchi-gumi yakuza group and the Brothers’ Circle.
The Brothers’ Circle (f.k.a. Family of Eleven; f.k.a. The Twenty) is a Transnational Criminal Organization, multi-ethnic criminal group composed of leaders and senior members of several Eurasian criminal groups largely based in countries of the former Soviet Union
The Department of the Treasury said it was also freezing the assets of key members, including Yamaguchi-gumi leaders Kenichi Shinoda.and Kiyoshi Takayama
KHRISTOFOROV, Vasily Alexandrovich (a.k.a. KHRISTOFOROV, Vasiliy; a.k.a. “VASYA”; a.k.a. “VOSKRES”), Murjan 6 Sector, Tower D01-T03.1, Apartment 401, Dubai 39409, United Arab Emirates; DOB 12 Mar 1972; POB Gorky Oblast, Russia; National ID No. 76481815 (United Arab Emirates); Passport 63-7186356 (Russia) (individual) [TCO]
KOLBAYEV, Kamchybek Asanbekovich (a.k.a. KOLBAEV, Kamchibek; a.k.a. KOLBAYEV, Kamchy; a.k.a. KOLBAYEV, Kamchi; a.k.a. KOLBAYEV, Kamchibek; a.k.a. “KAMCHI BISHKEKSKIY”; a.k.a. “KOLYA-BISHKEKSKIY”; a.k.a. “KOLYA-KYRGYZ”), Bahar 1 Sector, C09-T02 Tower, Apartment 3203, Dubai 31672, United Arab Emirates; Volokolamskoye Shosse, House 15/22, Moscow, Russia; DOB 3 Aug 1974; alt. DOB 1 Jan 1973; POB Cholpon-Ata, Kyrgyzstan; citizen Kyrgyzstan; Passport A0832532 (Kyrgyzstan) expires 17 Mar 2009 (individual) [SDNTK] [TCO]
LEONTYEV, Vladislav Vladimirovich (a.k.a. LEONTIEV, Vladislav; a.k.a. LEONTIEV, Vlantislav; a.k.a. LEONTYEV, Vyacheslav; a.k.a. LEONTYEV, Vadim; a.k.a. LEONTYEV, Vadik; a.k.a. “BELOBRYSYY”; a.k.a. “BELYY”), Al-Fattan Building, Dubai, United Arab Emirates; DOB 5 Jul 1971; POB Gorky, Russia; alt. POB Caracas, Venezuela; National ID No. 60229551 (United Arab Emirates); Passport AB4065216 (Greece); alt. Passport H2214925 (Ghana); alt. Passport C1602418 (Venezuela) (individual) [TCO]
MANUYLOV, Aleksandr Leonidovich (a.k.a. MANUILOV, Alexander; a.k.a. MANUYLOV, Alexander; a.k.a. “SASHA SAMARSKIY”); DOB 3 Mar 1962; POB Russia; Passport 3056306 (Russia) (individual) [TCO]
RAKHIMOV, Gafur Akhmedovich (a.k.a. RAKHIMOV, Gofur-Arslonbek; a.k.a. RAKHIMOV, Gafur-Arslanbek Akhmedovich), The Meadows, Villa Number 64, Sheikh Zayed Road, near Emirates Hills, Dubai, United Arab Emirates; DOB 22 Jul 1951; POB Tashkent, Uzbekistan; National ID No. 03101200302034752 (United Arab Emirates); Passport CA1804389 (Uzbekistan); alt. Passport CA1890392 (Uzbekistan) (individual) [TCO]
SHAYBAZIAN, Lazar Gurgenovich (a.k.a. SHAYBAZYAN, Lazar); DOB 1 Apr 1966; Passport CA2485930 (Uzbekistan); alt. Passport CA2179793 (Uzbekistan) (individual) [TCO]
SHINODA, Kenichi (a.k.a. TSUKASA, Shinobu); DOB 25 Jan 1942; POB Oita Kyushu, Japan (individual) [TCO]
TAKAYAMA, Kiyoshi ; DOB 5 Sep 1947; POB Tsushimasi, Aichi Prefecture, Japan (individual) [TCO]
ZAYTSEV, Aleksey Alekseyevich (a.k.a. ZAITSEV, Alexei; a.k.a. ZAYTSEV, Alexey); DOB 7 Sep 1965; POB Leningrad, Russia; National ID No. 74914883 (United Arab Emirates); Passport 63-4604880 (Russia); alt. Passport 4103417473 (Russia); alt. Passport H2029462 (Ghana) (individual) [TCO]
YAMAGUCHI-GUMI (a.k.a. ROKUDAIME YAMAGUCHI-GUMI; a.k.a. SIXTH YAMAGUCHI-GUMI), 4-3-1 Shinohara-honmachi, Nada-Ku, Kobe City, Hyogo, Japan [TCO]
21 March, 2017
A money laundering investigation led by police in Moldova and Latvia has been running for three years. Registered firms played a prominent role in the money laundering network – and the UK’s high street banks processed $740m from the operation without turning back any of the payments
The banking records were obtained by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project (OCCRP) and Novaya Gazeta from sources who wish to remain anonymous. OCCRP shared the data with the Guardian and media partners in 32 countries.
The documents include details of around 70,000 banking transactions, including 1,920 that took place in the UK and 373 in the U.S.
NCA had been in touch with the authorities in Moldova since 2014 about the Global Laundromat, which he described as “big and pretty unusual”.
Twenty million transactions go through the City and in trades through the money markets each day. A vast amount of business, and only a small amount will be money laundering.
“It’s the size of the challenge which is the problem. It’s beyond a human scale. The sophisticated money launderer will know the tolerances that will trigger alerts. There are pretty smart guys out there. This needs more sophisticated solutions than throwing people at it. It’s not just about the size of the staff.
[December 12 2016 Vladimir Plahotniuc, the country’s main nominally pro-European oligarch]
The election of the pro-Russian socialist Igor Dodon as Moldova’s new president obscures the fact that Vladimir Plahotniuc, the country’s main nominally pro-European oligarch won most from the outcome.Throughout the whole of last year and the first half of 2016, the small, poor republic was shaken by anti-government protests in which tens of thousands of angered citizens took to the streets. The catalyst for the protests was that $1 billion had been syphoned out of three Moldovan banks, seemingly with the connivance of high-level officials.
An apparent paradox of the protests was that people flew European Union flags while demanding the resignation of a pro-European government. But a broad coalition of forces supported the protests, including both the pro-Russian Dodon and the pro-European Sandu.
Throughout its post-independence history, Moldova has fractured on East-West lines, so this union of different forces was unprecedented. Opposition politicians of different allegiances put away their party flags and selected white chrysanthemums as the neutral symbol of the protests.
They were united by an anti-corruption agenda and by a common enemy—the oligarch, Deputy Chairman of the ruling Democratic party Vladimir Plahotniuc. Despite not holding the highest office, Plahotniuc was well known to control the government, the parliament, and the largest media conglomerate in the country.
Moldova’s Constitutional Court had frequently made rulings in Plahotniuc’s favor, and on March 4 this court put an end to the short-lived protest movement. One Friday evening, it decided to repeal the amendment to the Moldovan constitution, enacted in 2000, under which the head of state, the president, has limited powers and is elected by parliament. As the current president, Nicolae Timofti, was set to leave office in March, the court effectively fired the starting gun for the next presidential election.
[June 20 interoperability of Moldovan forces proceeds ]
According to LTC Tudor Martea, Commander of Special Forces Battalion “Fulger”, the exercises included 4 modules of training: advanced firing techniques, close quarters combat, artillery fire call, and a field training exercise.
LTC Martea mentioned that within the exercise, over 80 service members were trained by their American colleagues to carry out different missions. Also, they carried out shooting drills with heavy and light infantry weapons of National and US Armies.
June 7, 2016 WARSAW, Poland — Poland has kicked off its joint multinational exercise with heavy US Army participation in order to test readiness and interoperability using 31,000 soldiers from 24 countries, 100 aircraft, 12 vessels and 3,000 vehicles.
[October 8 2015 nuclear smuggling
The United States and Moldova have been working together for years to counter nuclear smuggling, said Eric Lund, spokesman for the Department of State’s Bureau of International Security and Nonproliferation.
• In July 2010, police seized 1.8 kilograms of Uranium 238, known as yellowcake, in a garage in Moldova’s capital, Chisinau. The uranium was worth €9 million ($10.1 million at today’s rates), but the suspects had tried to sell the uranium for €5 million ($5.6 million). Seven people were arrested, including two officers of the former Soviet army.
At the time, Moldova said it wasn’t sure where the uranium came from.
• In 2011, seven people were caught trying to sell 1 kilogram of Uranium 235 that had come from Moldova’s separatist Transnistria region. The suspects had sold a sample to undercover investigators. One of the suspects escaped, though others were arrested. A year later, an appellate court in Chisinau freed three and sentenced the rest to three to five years in jail.
When uranium is mined, it is 99.3% Uranium 238 and 0.7% Uranium 235, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission says.
Nuclear reactors must have a higher concentration of Uranium 235 than naturally exists in the mined material, so the U 235 isotope is enriched to about 5%, the commission says.
• In February 2015, authorities arrested two Moldovans in the capital on suspicion of trying to sell a half kilogram of radioactive Caesium 135. The arrest came after the suspects sold a sample of 83 grams for €100,000 ($112,440).
Moldovan authorities cooperated with the FBI in all three investigations, Balan said.
[August 10 Moldova: bank failures prompt IMF visit]
An IMF mission was now expected to visit from September 21 to look at prospects for a new support program after bamk failures.
Fraudsters in Moldova in November 2014 pulled off a $1 billion bank theft, led in turn to the bankruptcy of the country’s three major banks, a currency crisis, and a sharp economic slump. The mechanisms used for shifting the funds from BEM and Banca de Sociala – in particular the tell-tale use of Scottish shell companies established at the same addresses – repeat the mechanisms used in previous corporate raids and major money-laundering schemes in Moldova. This suggests that at least the engineers of the scheme were high-placed Moldovan insiders. But why would high-placed insiders implement such a scheme for the benefit of an outsider such as 28-year-old businessman Ilan Shor ? Or is Shor rather a proxy or fall guy for them?
The Scottish shell companies involved, Manitoba Management Limited, was registered at the 41 Duke Street address; another two companies, Dixon Corporation and Ayden Management Limited, were registered at 69 Brunswick Street and 71 Brunswick Street, respectively. Fortuna Limited and Novland Limited, were registered at the 18/2 Royston Mains Street address.
[May 21 Moldova at Riga EU meeting tempted by Russia]
While the European market is much bigger and richer than Russia’s, Mr. Putin imposed tight trade restrictions in 2013 on Moldova in retaliation for its flirtation with the West. For now, exports to Europe have not yet risen enough to make up for what was lost in Russia
Apr 21, 2015 “Wind Spring 15” – NATO military exercise in Romania, near the Moldovan and Ukrainian border
“Wind Spring 15” – Over 2.000 military and 500 army vehicles, of which 400 tanks and armored vehicles, involved in a NATO military exercise in Romania, at the Smardan firining range in Galati county, near the Moldovan and Ukrainian border.
[March 21 Russia warns against U.S. military maneuver, convoy of 120 U.S. Army Strykers departs Estonia]
A “Dragoon Ride” will take 3rd Squadron, 2nd Cavalry Regiment, troops from training locations in Estonia, Lithuania and Poland and convoy them through Latvia and the Czech Republic to Vilseck.The US Army squadron wrapping several months of training with allies in Poland will take its Strykers through the Baltics March 21 through April 1, stopping in a new community each night. The vehicles are part of an armored brigade’s worth of equipment the Army plans to station in Europe. The U.S. military maneuver, set to begin March 21, will involve a convoy of 120 U.S. Army Strykers. Over ten days, the eight-wheel-drive combat vehicles will stop in a different border area community each night to showcase the ability of U.S. forces to transport troops quickly, and to assure Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland of NATO’s commitment.
Such an exercise, Russia’s foreign ministry said March 20, undermines the Russia-NATO Founding Act. “According to our estimates, in case of the deployment of U.S. armour on the permanent basis on NATO’s eastern flank in the mentioned amounts there will emerge solid reasons for calling in question the alliance’s compliance with these liabilities.”
March 6 Riga summit, on 21-22 May 2015: “deliverables”]
The Eastern Partnership (EaP) is the EU initiative covering relations with Ukraine, Moldova, Belarus, Georgia, Armenia and Azerbaijan. It is the wish of the hosts that all countries be represented at the level of heads of state and government, this was a decision to be taken by consensus among the 28 member countries. The previous such summit, held in Vilnius in November 2013. Member states had no consensus on offering membership perspective to the Union to any of the countries covered. Some EU countries wanted “deliverables” a jargon term for the possibility of granting a visa-free regime to Ukraine and Georgia. In EU jargon, this is called “visa liberalisation”, while “visa facilitation” is offered to countries less advanced in the process of lifting the visa barrier with the EU.
[February 25 2015 U.S. Army Second Cavalry Regiment in military parade to mark Estonia’s Independence Day.]
The soldiers from the U.S. Army’s Second Cavalry Regiment were taking part in a military parade to mark Estonia’s Indepen- dence Day.
[February 24 Moldova:pro-Western businessman the country’s next Prime Minister.]
[February 17 Moldova: a slumping domestic economy]
The leu has lost 25 percent against the dollar since the start of 2015, pressured by a rapidly slowing domestic economy, a currency crisis in Russia and conflict in Ukraine. Former Soviet countries are feeling the pain as Russia, for many the main trading partner, suffers from Western sanctions over Ukraine and a weak oil market, which sent the rouble down about 40 percent against the dollar last year. Moldova’s economy, which grew 9.2 percent in 2013, is expected to have contracted by up to 2 percent last year. “The national exchange rate mirrors the economic situation, which was hit by three shocks,”citing a Russian embargo on Moldovan wine and certain food products, a decline in exports, and a fall in remittances from migrant workers, 400,000 of whom work in Russia.
[January 27 Moldova: Two pro-European parties plus Communists may form government]
Two pro-European parties have agreed to form a minority government in Moldova but will need support from the Communist Party to pass legislation. They have 42 seats in the 101-seat legislation. The Communists, with 20 seats, say they will support the government depending on who is proposed as prime minister.
[January 1 Putin Christmas wish, U.S. Marines in Balti]
December 31 2014: In a New Year’s address Russian President Vladimir Putin wished Moldovan President Nicolae Timofti a Merry Christmas and “expressed hope” that the two countries would work together “in order to strengthen regional stability and security.” Some experts fear that the eastern pro-Russian Moldovan territory of Transnistria, which borders Ukraine, will be the next area in Eastern Europe to take up a violent separatist campaign with the help of Russia.
January 1, 2015: U.S., Marines headed into the small, former Soviet republic to talk anti-armor best practices with local troops. A mix of about 15 assaultmen and anti-tank missilemen with the Romania-based Black Sea Rotational Force arrived in Balti, Moldova for the weeklong joint training exercise.
The detachment of Marines led a mix of conscripts and career soldiers with varying specialties — most were artillerymen — in discussions about doctrine, tactics, techniques and procedures. The event, which included a live-fire exercise, saw the troops use the FGM-148 Javelin, AT4 Anti-Tank Weapon and shoulder-launched multipurpose assault weapons, as well as Moldova’s rocket propelled grenade system and 70mm recoilless rifle.
First Lt. Ben Skarzynski, executive officer for the rotational force’s weapons company who oversaw the exercise, would only go so far as to describe it as giving the Moldovans the “capability to provide for themselves.”
;December 20 Putin forgets Moldova]
“We have basically only two bases abroad, and those are in terroristically dangerous directions: in Kyrgyzstan after militants from Afghanistan entered that country, at the request of the Kyrgyz authorities, and in Tajikistan — also on the border with Afghanistan.”
in Transnistria, Russia keeps about 1,500 troops in the Moldovan breakaway republic, based in the de facto capitol Tiraspol as well as in the Bender Fortress. On August 4, Moscow accused Moldova and Ukraine of trying to block Russia’s access to its troops in Transdniester.
Moldova is one of the poorest countries in Europe, and it relies heavily on remittances from the several hundred thousand Moldovan citizens working in Russia. Most Moldovans convert the rubles they earn into dollars or euros before
[December 17 MEPS compensate Moldova’s producers for their Russian losses]
Moldova will be able to export up to 40,000 tonnes of fresh apples, 10,000 tonnes of fresh table grapes and 10,000 tonnes of fresh plums to the EU duty free, thanks to a proposal backed by MEPs on Wednesday. This should compensate Moldova’s producers for their losses due to Russia’s politically-motivated ban on imports of Moldovan produce.
Moldova will be able to import duty-free
40,000 tons of fresh apples (= 0.4% of EU output)
10,000 tons fresh table grapes (= 0.6% of EU output)
10, 000 tonnes fresh plums (= 0.7% of EU output)
Most of these imports are likely to go to Romania.
MEPs approved the concession by 551 votes to 67, with 23 abstentions.
[December 2 pro-EU parties had around 44% while the opposition had around 40% in parliamentary elections]
The United States congratulates the people of Moldova on the November 30 parliamentary elections, another milestone in their nation’s democratic development. The OSCE’s Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) found that the technical conduct of the elections yesterday was in line with international standards and norms. We share ODIHR’s concern with the decision of Moldova’s Central Election Commission to remove one party from the ballot only a few days before the elections.
[earlier]With nearly 80% of votes counted, the three pro-EU parties had around 44% while the opposition had around 40%.
The subsequent inevitable tough bargaining will be watched closely by Russia.
[November 30 Moldova’s central election committee declares elections valid]
With about 30% of the vote counted, the pro-Russian Socialist Party was in the lead with about 23%, election officials said. The main opposition party – the Communist Party – was running a close second with 20%.
The Liberal Democrats, who want Moldova to achieve EU candidate status by 2017 and full membership by 2020. They were polling about 18%.
Its coalition partner, the Democratic Party, was polling about 16%.
The most strongly pro-EU and pro-Nato party, the Liberals, was on about 7%.
Tough post-election bargaining is predicted.
About 2.7 million people are eligible to cast their ballots, electing a single-chamber 101-seat parliament by a system of proportional representation. The turnout was just under 56%.
[Earlier]Moldovans are voting in parliamentary elections November 30. German Chancellor Angela Merkel told Russian President Vladimir Putin in a telephone conversation not to attempt to destabilize Moldova, on March 23.
On March 23, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization’s top military commander warned that Russia had a “very sizable” force on Ukraine’s eastern border that could easily pass through Ukraine to seize Moldova’s breakaway region of Transnistria.
The Russian annexation of Crimea is threatening to reignite a conflict in an often forgotten corner of Europe: the self-styled breakaway republic of Transnistria.
Transnistria, a thin strip of land sandwiched between Ukraine and the former Soviet republic of Moldova, has close ties with Moscow. Last week lawmakers in the region formally asked the Duma, Russia’s parliament, if it could
Ms. Merkel nonetheless reiterated Germany’s position that it won’t recognize the annexation of Crimea, Mr. Seibert said.
Moldova’s central election committee declared the elections valid with turnout at 39.2 percent of voters as of 3:30 p.m. local time, Interfax reported, citing the body’s chairman, Yury Chokan.
[February 28 MAKO Group’s Oleksandr Yanukovych and deposed president, Viktor Yanukovych have Swiss assets seized, also Austria and Liechtenstein]
Geneva’s chief prosecutor’s office searched the premises of a company owned by Oleksander Yanukovych. The Swiss authorities have frozen all assets of Ukraine’s deposed president, Viktor Yanukovych, and launched a money laundering investigation into him and his son.
The foreign ministry said all assets and bank accounts held by Yanukovych and 19 other people of his entourage in Switzerland were blocked
Austria and the principality of Liechtenstein announced a similar asset freeze.
Yanukovych’s MAKO Group of companies (majority shareholder is Oleksandr Yanukovych) was assessed by (auditor) PricewaterhouseCoopers as having $212 million in assets in 2011, grossing $663,000 from sales. (In March 2012 Yanukovych’s net worth was estimated to be at least $130 million by Kyiv Post.) In 2011 time MAKO consisted of 16 enterprises located in Ukraine, Switzerland and the Netherlands and it employed some 700 people in 2011.MAKO Group is primarily involved in property development and construction, banking, and the export of high-grade coal. MAKO started to grow heavily since 2010. Before 2013 the company had denied it has bid for government public procurement contracts, taking part in government privatizations of state assets, or being involved in the extraction of natural resources. In November 2012 Forbes Ukraine reported that companies linked to (Oleksandr) Yanukovych in 2012 at no cost had taken over majority stakes worth an estimated $10 million in five coal enrichment plants from the state.[ This had been denied by Yanukovych; he claimed it was Black PR aimed against his father. As of February 2013 Forbes Ukraine claims (Oleksandr) Yanukovych earned most in Ukrainian Public Procurement contracts then any other businessmen since the beginning of 2012. Forbes.ua reported in February 2014 that in January 2014, for example, his businesses won 50% of all state tenders.
In early 2014 his personal assesses were claimed to be over $500 million