June 26, 2018 brussels – The Public Prosecution Service appeals against the acquittal last month of eighteen suspects of the diamond robbery at Brussels airport in 2013.

brink_x27_s

Brinks of Belgium truck robbed

BRUSSELS — Five years after a brazen multimillion-dollar diamond heist on the tarmac of Brussels Airport, the Brussels Criminal Court on Thursday, May 17, cited a lack of evidence as it acquitted 18 suspects in the case.“They made a very wide sweep. They focused on some famous names,” said defence lawyer Nathalie Gallant, who claimed the investigators “worked with blinkers” on. She said the verdicts were not a surprise to those in the courtroom.
In its judgment, the Brussels court found that “the elements are not sufficiently precise and concordant to establish the guilt of the defendants,” . It lifted all confiscations of their property which had been seized as a precautionary measure. “The Brussels Criminal Court drew conclusions on a case that began with rumors,” said one of the defense lawyers, Pierre Monville,

 ‘Dr. Fantástico’ 6 minutes yields $5M in Brink robbery at Brazil airport   ]

Criminals stormed into the apron of the International Airport of Viracopos, in Campinas, a city some 100 km from São Paulo, Sunday evening, 9:30 pm local time, said Aeroportos Brasil Viracopos, which controls the airport. The criminals used a Hilux truck

[March 6 ]

brink robbery

The Lufthansa jet landed at Viracopos, Brazil’s largest freight airport, from nearby Guarulhos airport in Sao Paulo. The plane was stopping over before flying to Zurich, Switzerland.
The robbers drove a pickup truck plastered with the logo of a local security company into the airport grounds.
Five of the robbers held up guards from the security company Brinks, loaded the money on the truck and drove off, according to Brazilian newspaper Folha de Sao Paulo.
The heist lasted six minutes and none of the guards were hurt.

earlier Brink Antwerp diamond robbery

[May 15 2015 Cannes robbery yields $20066375.00, €17.5 million (£13 million) worth of jewellery and watches ]

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the Cartier jewelery shop on the Croisette in Cannes has been holded up by four armed men who fled with a large amount of jewelry One robber in an old-man mask carrying a pistol burst into a Cartier boutique, letting in two accomplices with scarves around their faces, while a fourth man stood guard outside.
Two employees and a shopper were in the store at the time.
The robbers stuffed jewellery and watches into a leather satchel and jewellery bag. In their rush to make a getaway, they dropped several expensive watches onto the pavement, later recovered by the store.
The thieves made off in a Mercedes reported stolen in March that was later found burned out in a residential part of the town.
The Cartier store lies next to the luxury Carlton hotel – the scene of another daring jewellery raid in July 2013 that saw a lone thief make off with more than €140 million of gems, after breaking into the hotel through a door on the ground floor.

[March 13 Hatton Garden, London: USD $ 298, 570,000.00 in jewels and gold stolen]

Daily Mirror scoop

London Diamond Bourse (LDB) stated that the value of stolen goods has not yet been confirmed, so it will not fuel media speculation by commenting in that respect. London’s media has placed the value of stolen goods at anywhere from $50 million to $300 million.

We are currently one of London’s most successful and leading safe deposit company aiming to provide our clients a secure and cost-effective solution to store and protect important and irreplaceable personal belongings

We are currently one of London’s most successful and leading safe deposit company aiming to provide our clients a secure and cost-effective solution to store and protect important and irreplaceable personal belongings

Over the Easter weekend. burglars used heavy equipment to break into a vault used mainly by jewellers and gold dealers, Hatton Garden Safe Deposit. “The amount of money and the goods that are taken is never fully revealed… and there’s a good chance that not everybody would declare.
“I would not be surprised, given where this one is in Hatton Garden, if £200m is around about the amount stolen.”
In 2003 jewellery, cash and valuables worth an estimated £1.5m were stolen when a criminal, posing as a customer, emptied a number of boxes at the Hatton Garden Safe Deposit company

jewel robbery.

[March 14 9525150 Dollar jewel hijack on French highway]

Just after midnight two trucks were passing through a motorway toll at Avallon, in Burgundy, when they were targeted. Four cars surrounded the lorries – laden with valuable goods – as up to 15 robbers wearing balaclavas and brandishing automatic weapons jumped out.
“The trucks were full of jewels and other valuable goods,” said a judicial source involved in the investigation. “They were driven away along with the four cars being used by the robbers.” [March 14 Difficult, however, to know what the robbers can concretely collect for the loot. “The ratio rarely exceeds 40% of the value for concealment. It is rather on the order of 20%. In all cases, in my opinion, having regard to the manner in which the robbery took place, we will not find the loot. »

[May 39 2014 Diamond heisters were expecting to find a large cash shipment instead of diamonds and were unprepared to deal with what they found]

the men were expecting to find a large cash shipment instead of diamonds and were unprepared to deal with what they found

the men were expecting to find a large cash shipment instead of diamonds and were unprepared to deal with what they found

Authorities in Morocco have reported the arrest of four men wanted in connection with a number of armed robberies, including the diamond robbery that took place at Brussels Airport in February of last year.

The four are wanted for “attempted murder, armed robbery at goods transport warehouses, a major jewel theft at a European airport and an armed attack on a Belgian hospital with the intention of helping a prisoner escape.
[January 3 2014]The man thought to be the brains behind the operation, Frenchman Marc Bertoldi, was released on bail last month. No trace of the stolen diamonds has been found, and investigators have speculated that the men were expecting to find a large cash shipment instead of diamonds and were unprepared to deal with what they found.

The latest suspect is a 43-year-old man identified only as Nordine A. He was arrested on 13 December but released after questioning and after giving a DNA sample. He was arrested a second time on 23 December and formally imprisoned the next day, a spokesman for the prosecutor’s office said. The prosecutor would not confirm that the arrest was related to DNA evidence found at the scene of the robbery.
The robbery at Zaventem took place on 18 February 2013, when eight armed and masked men in police uniforms attacked a Swiss airlines flight.

[July 26 2013]

Marc Bertoldi, the 'criminal mastermind' behind the heist

The grouinds for arrest were based “on anything,” according to his Metz lawyer , M e Olivier Rondu. Or more precisely a document fifty pages in which the Moroccan authorities say they have captured a conversation between Marc Bertoldi and his wife established in Casablanca. After connecting on his cell on 18 and 19 February, the masteremind said he had made a big hit, and if she was watching TV she would understand

Marc Bertoldi, the criminal mastermind behind the heist of at least tens of millions of dollars worth of rough diamonds from an airport in Belgium, has been deported to that country to stand trial. The 43-year-old suspect has a lengthy criminal record. Bertoldi is a French citizen and he was captured in France. Bertoldi admitted that he had sold some of the loot. However, he said he did not participate in the robbery. According to a report from Moroccan intelligence services, he called his wife to tell her to watch the news, saying he had done something big. Dimitri de Beco, his lawyer said that his phone had been left off for two days before the robbery, “This report not, more than five pages and is not signed . The Moroccan intelligence report is that he said to his wife, one day before the robbery, he would not be reachable. “these claims are questionable because Moroccan intelligence services do not specify how or where they got this information.”
Moreover, “the investigators of the Belgian police, who went to Casablanca as part of a commission, had never heard of this report,” says the lawyer, who said that “this information can not under no circumstances be used to keep my client in jail.” The judge Marc Bertoldi ruled that Bertoldi is suspected of being the author or, at least, to have participated in the spectacular robbery.

[May 8]

Brink's of Belgium truck robbed of lots of diamonds

Brink’s of Belgium truck robbed of lots of diamonds

Police in Belgium, Switzerland and France have arrested 31 people in connection with one of the world’s largest robberies of diamonds.

Belgian prosecutors say they have recovered large sums of money and some of the diamonds that were taken in a raid at Brussels airport in February.

Query: why was Brink’s the shipper for a portion of the diamonds going from Antwerp to Switzerland [not the other way around]? Exports of rough diamonds in February fell to 7.49 million carats from 9.10 million carats last year, while declining to US$1.12 billion from US$1.16 billion last year. Global miners such as De Beers and Rio take the entire quantity of rough diamonds directly to major hubs like Belgium, assort them and sell to global processors, to avoid taxes.
Brink’s of Belgium, whose truck was robbed on the airport tarmac of lots of diamonds, has a nasty legal battle with its unions ongoing. An inside job seems likely. They took 120 parcels of diamonds weighing 22lbs . They were uncut, with no certificate. “The perpetrators knew very clearly, ” said Caroline Wolf.

Faced with a complicated labor dispute in 2010, Brink’s cut its losses. Brink’s of Belgium, the cash-delivery business, declared bankruptcy. Its workers were laid off without severance. Brink’s moved management to the Netherlands, while keeping the lucrative Antwerp-based jewelry-delivery business. “We didn’t have a choice, we were losing too much money,” said Mr. Candel.

The unions filed suit in a Belgian court challenging the change in job status and lack of severance. “Brink’s acted as if we wouldn’t be vigilant, but we have lawyers,” said Valerie Van Waregem, a delegate for the socialist union.

Labor experts say Brink’s probably erred in not negotiating a compromise with unions over severance, something that is required in the event of bankruptcy by a 2008 EU directive. “We never refused a dialogue with the unions,” said Mr. Candel. “They refused to work.”

In Europe, “one cannot do what one would be able to do in the United States with a bankruptcy,” said Thomas Kohler, a professor of labor law at Boston College. “In U.S. law, employees are unsecured creditors. It’s a very different situation in Europe.”

The insurance for air transport – handled sometimes by airlines themselves or external insurance companies – is usually relatively cheap because it’s considered to be the safest way of transporting small high value items, logistics experts say.

Exports of rough diamonds in February fell to 7.49 million carats from 9.10 million carats last year, while declining to US$1.12 billion from US$1.16 billion last year. Global miners such as De Beers and Rio take the entire quantity of rough diamonds directly to major hubs like Belgium, assort them and sell to global processors, to avoid taxes.
Brink’s Co., a provider of armored cars to transport valuables, said a diamond robbery at Brussels airport will have a “significant impact” on first-quarter earnings.
A portion of the gems stolen two days ago was being shipped by Brink’s, the Richmond, Virgina-based company said today in a statement.
“The total loss exposure has not been verified, and the loss exposure for Brink’s has not been disclosed,” the company said. Brink’s “has a longstanding insurance program in place to cover its losses.”
Brink’s said that while the loss will hurt first-quarter earnings, the robbery won’t “materially affect” it’s full- year profit forecast.

But a robbery of this size also catches the eyes of people who study the illegal diamond trade. A decade ago, concern over so-called “blood diamonds,” which are diamonds mined in conflict zones, led to industry participation in a regulatory process designed to clarify a precious stone’s place of origin. The goal was to make it harder to use illegal diamond sales to finance armed conflicts.
In effect since 2003, the Kimberley Process is a voluntary system that combines compliance from industry, government, and non-government monitors. This morning’s stolen diamonds should fall under the Kimberly Process rules, which cover “rough” or uncut diamonds, not finished ones. This morning’s stolen diamonds were rough.
If they were going from Belgium to Switzerland, and they were rough, they would have needed a Kimberley certificate

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Unicredit SpA’s German unit’s guilty pleas are connected to violations of U.S. sanctions programs, including those related to IRISL, the state-owned Iranian shipping company sanctioned over weapons of mass destruction, authorities said.

UniCredit’s German unit went to “great lengths” to help the Iranian shipping company evade sanctions and access the U.S. financial system, said U.S. Assistant Attorney General Brian Benczkowski.

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/unicredit-bank-ag-agrees-plead-guilty-illegally-processing-transactions-violation-iranian

https://www.dfs.ny.gov/reports_and_publications/press_releases/pr1904151

[November 7 2018 new sanctions go into force ]

Screenshot 2018-11-07 at 10.32.07 AM - Edited

 

U.S. Treasury Department has published a new list of blacklisted Iranian entities. According to vessel-tracking services, the Iranian-owned fleet has “gone dark” and turned off its AIS transponders. As eight American trading partners have waivers to permit continued imports of Iranian crude, and a small number of other buyers will likely attempt to evade the sanctions regime, a subset of NITC’s vessels will likely have cargoes and commercial voyages for the foreseeable future. Iran has resumed the practice of renaming and transferring ownership of its vessels in order to keep its commerce flowing, as it did during the previous round of sanctions. Four ships on the new blacklist recently underwent name changes and partial ownership changes, but are still IRISL property. “The global maritime industry should be on alert for Iran’s use of such tactics and make every effort to thwart Iran’s use of their jurisdictions to create front companies; to revoke their flags from IRISL and NITC vessels; and to deny other means that enable Iran to conceal its interest in the vessels,” Treasury warned.
https://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/Programs/Documents/08062018_iran_eo.pdf

[August 20 2018   China to keep buying Iranian crude despite U.S. sanctions   ]

Image result for National Iranian Tanker Co (NITC)

Chinese buyers of Iranian oil are starting to shift their cargoes to vessels owned by National Iranian Tanker Co (NITC), Iran used a similar system between 2012 and 2016 to circumvent Western-led sanctions which were effective in curtailing exports because of a lack of insurance for the shipments.

It was not immediately clear how Iran would provide insurance for the Chinese oil purchases, worth some $1.5 billion a month. Insurance usually includes cover for the oil cargoes, third-party liability and pollution.
A ban on Iranian oil purchases will start in November. Insurers, which are mainly U.S. or European based, have already begun winding down their Iranian business to comply with the sanctions.

[August 19 Blacklist for Iran from Financiers? ]

fatf-logo-en

Iran has been trying to implement standards set by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an inter-governmental organization which underpins regimes combating money laundering and terrorist financing. It hopes it will be removed from a blacklist that makes some foreign investors reluctant to deal with it. Resistance to compliance with FATF standards argues it could hamper Iranian financial support for allies such as Lebanons Hezbollah

In June, FATF said Iran had until October to complete the reforms or face consequences that could further deter investors from the country, which has already been hit by the return of U.S. sanctions.

We expect Iran to enact amendments to its AML and CFT laws and ratify the Palermo and TF Conventions in full compliance with the FATF Standards by October 2018, otherwise, the FATF will decide upon appropriate and necessary actions at that time. [anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT)] [money laundering and financing of terrorism (ML/FT)] [United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime (UNTOC)-Palermo]

Fosse/Verdon

20 April, 2019

fosse-verdon-fx-season-1-ratings

4/9/2019 01-01 0.13[18-49 demo] 0.614[Viewers(mil) ]

4/16/2019 01-02 0.10[18-49 Demo] -23.08% 0.425[mil] -30.78%[%mil change]

Actress Michelle Williams, now starring in FX’s ‘Fosse/Verdon,’ has separated from musician Phil Elverum, her husband of less than a year.  The news of their split follows rumors of trouble after Williams went sans wedding band at two recent public outings

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Offshore banks in Puerto Rico are able to open accounts with the Fed since the island is a U.S. territory. That gives them a competitive advantage over other offshore banking jurisdictions like the British Virgin Islands, which have to access the U.S. financial system through expensive third-party correspondent banks. Sixteen of Puerto Rico’s 80 offshore banking and financial services firms are owned by Venezuelan individuals or companies, according to corporate registry records, and directors’ LinkedIn pages and personal websites. In July of 2018 DOJ charged Uruguayan national Marcelo Gutierrez with allegedly conspiring to launder funds embezzled from Venezuelan state oil company PDVSA through a “bank in Puerto Rico” that he owned [Vestin Bank International], according to criminal investigation filings in Florida federal court. In February 2019, the FBI raided Puerto Rican offshore bank Banco San Juan International (BSJI) as part of a probe of money laundering and evasion of Venezuela-related sanctions. In 2016, BSJI reached a $300 million credit agreement with PDVSA, according to PDVSA’s financial statements from that year.

Rick Perry to Texas?

17 April, 2019

Rick PerryBloomberg News reports that Rick Perry is preparing to leave his post as Energy Secretary.
A department spokesperson says “There is no truth that Secretary Perry is departing the administration any time soon.”

[January 11 2019 George P. Bush, future face of the Texas Republican party? ]

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George Prescott Bush 2016

“George P. Bush ran ahead of Ted Cruz, got more votes and a higher percentage of the vote than Ted Cruz,” He was the first statewide elected official to call for the Tarrant County Republican Party to stop efforts to remove a Muslim vice chairman from his post. Jeb’s son, George P. Bush, was elected Texas land commissioner in 2014. Bush, whose mother is a Mexican immigrant, was touted as a future face of the party who could help diversify it and make inroads with the growing Latino population in Texas.

The current Attorney General Ken Paxton is facing three felony indictments and is widely seen by Texas Republicans as a political liability who adversely affects the party’s image among general election voters.

If Paxton is forced to resign prior to 2022, Republican Gov. Greg Abbott could appoint Bush to fill the vacancy, or, if not, Bush could file to run in the 2022 election.

[  Sen. Dianne Feinstein: Rick Perry deciding on A-bomb “very dangerous”   ]

Rick Perry

U.S. House of Representatives passed the Fiscal Year 2019 National Defense Authorization Act on May 24, approving their funding plan for the military and mapping out some policy priorities.
The bill, known as H.R. 5515, passed the House with bipartisan support in a 351-to-66 vote. The Senate Armed Services Committee voted overwhelmingly, 25-2, to advance the legislation to the Senate floor.

Proposed National Defense Authorization Act for 2019 [ndaa 2019] will allow the Secretary of Energy to pursue development of a low-yield nuclear weapon without first receiving specific authorization from Congress, the matter will be unilaterally decided by Secretary of Energy Rick Perry. The bill would grant the energy secretary new authority to carry out the weapon’s energy development phase, or any subsequent phase, without Congress’ specific approval. Tom Cotton, R-Ark., authored the bill’s language. Sen. Dianne Feinstein alerted colleagues to the Cotton amendment, reading it at the Democratic Caucus lunch meeting.

She has expressed objection to a Cabinet-level secretary being able to initiate the advanced engineering a new nuclear weapon without Congress’ specific approval.

“The amendment, I think, is very dangerous,” she said June 6.   The 1,140-page 2019 National Defense Authorization Act, which still faces months of congressional debate before becoming law,

[March 7   George P Bush clears 50 percent in Texas primary   ]

Bush relied heavily on his support from both Trump and Donald Trump Jr. to clear 50 percent in a race against a field that included former Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson.

[March 3 2018]

[ July 7 2017 Perry economics “pretty simple”]

Rick Perry

Rick Perry gave an ‘economics lesson’ where he got the basic concept of supply and demand completely wrong

‘You put the supply out there and the demand will follow,’ Donald Trump’s Energy Secretary. said.

“I mean, that’s really pretty simple.” Mr Perry said, responding to a question about a shale gas boom,

[Martch 4 Perry confirmed]

Rick and Anita Perry

Rick and Anita Perry

The Senate has confirmed former Texas governor Rick Perry to serve as Energy secretary under President Trump.
The vote was 62-37 on Thursday.
Perry — who once pledged to eliminate the department — has repeatedly promised be an advocate for the agency and to protect the nation’s nuclear stockpile. Perry also has said he’d rely on federal scientists, including those who work on climate change.
Perry has said he’ll work to develop American energy in all forms — from oil, gas and nuclear power to renewable sources such as wind and solar power.

[August 8 2016 President George Prescott Bush]

http://www.cnn.com/2016/08/07/politics/george-p-bush-donald-trump-jeb-bush/#

George P. Bush urges Republicans to back Trump. “The guy probably wasn’t his 10th choice. But he is the nominee we have, and George P. is doing what he needs to do, and I’m sure his father has absolutely no trouble with it.”

sp_bush   Samuel P. Bush

[June 2015 Rick Perry: candidacy for the 2016 Republican nomination for president ]

Hunting lodge of Gov Rick Perry  Texas,  Image is Photoshopped,

Hunting lodge of Gov Rick Perry Texas, Image is Photoshopped

“It was the weakest Republican field in history, and they kicked my butt,” Perry said in a self-deprecating speech at the 2012 Gridiron Club dinner. Rick Perry formally announced his candidacy for the 2016 Republican nomination for president at an event in Addison, Texas, June 4, 2015 Perry, 65, has worked tirelessly to shed his image as a failed presidential candidate. Though he left office on Jan. 20, Perry has unfinished business back home in Austin. He was indicted last year on felony counts of abusing his power as governor by threatening to veto funding for a district attorney unless she resigned because of a drunk-driving arrest. Perry has denounced the case as a political witch hunt, and conservatives have rallied to his cause. Perry served as lieutenant governor of Texas before becoming the 47th governor of the state in 2000, when George W. Bush resigned from the position to assume the presidency.

[August 23 2014 Republican judge, prosecutor got indictment from Grand Jury]

Many reporters in Texas know Perry and are much more familiar with the details in this case, the fact that these are Republicans investigating this and that Perry has a history of hardball politics in forcing people out. This is a much more nuanced story than some in the Beltway understand.” Forrest Wilder, who is covering the story for the Texas Observer, noted in a recent piece that the criminal complaint against Perry filed in June 2013 by Texans for Public Justice was assigned to a Republican judge who then appointed a former prosecutor in the George H.W. Bush administration as special prosecutor.
“There is nothing about this indictment process that suggests partisan bias,” said Wilder. “You had a Republican judge who appointed a special prosecutor who has largely a Republican pedigree who presented testimony from 40 individuals. There were hundreds of documents reviewed and the grand jury decided to indict.”

He also called much of the national coverage “mystifying.”
Mike Norman, editorial director of the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, said
“The indictment is not the case and the national analysis is attacking the indictment and they don’t seem to see how this can be anything other than politics,” “If you’re saying that that process which our legal system set up produced only a political result, then you are saying the whole justice system is corrupt and I don’t believe that is the case.”

[August 16 Rick Perry indicted in Austin ]

Rick and Anita Perry

Rick and Anita Perry

A potential 2016 presidential candidate, Texas Gov. Rick Perry, was indicted in Austin on August 15 for improperly withholding money from a state prosecutorial unit because its Democratic district attorney refused to resign after pleading guilty to drunken driving last year.
He faces felony counts of abuse of official capacity and coercion of a public servant. The first charge carries a maximum punishment of five to 99 years in prison, while the second could lead to two to 10 years behind bars

[October 2 2011 Rick Perry’s West Texas ranch lease documents]

Rick Perry's hunting lease

Rick Perry’s hunting lease

The hunting camp was simple in the 1980s, just a cabin with a long table for cleaning fish and deer, a few bunks and a porch set along a riverbank
A second story was added to the old cabin, along with brown wood siding and an outdoor staircase.

wp

launder - Edited

Deutsche Bank asked two in-house financial crime investigators – Philippe Vollot and Hinrich Völcker – report on the Russian Laundromat.. Their nine-page presentation was shared last year with the audit committee of the bank’s supervisory board and is marked “strictly confidential”.

The pair identified numerous “high-risk entities”. They included 1,244 in the US, 329 in the UK and 950 in Germany. These entities were responsible for nearly 700,000 transactions, the report says, involving at least £62m in the UK, $47m in the US, and €55m in Germany.

As part of its investigation, Deutsche Bank sent 149 “suspicious activity reports” to the National Crime Agency in London. Similar disclosures of potential money-laundering transactions were made to authorities in the US and elsewhere – with 30 private and corporate Deutsche Bank clients reported. Some may have been “unknowingly used”, the report says.

[  Troika Dialog, Quantus Division, Ltd[BVI] $billions out of Russia   ]

The system dubbed the Troika Laundromat by the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project involved at least 75 offshore companies and exported about $4.8 billion between 2006 and 2013, often through fictional deals, with help from a now-defunct Lithuanian bank, according to the OCCRP’s investigative journalists.

The oligarch, Ruben Vardanyan, is the former boss of Moscow investment bank Troika Dialog. The payments were from a company called Quantus Division Ltd, registered in the British Virgin Islands, which is revealed today to have been part of a network of offshore companies that sent billions of dollars out of Russia.

The network was managed by a Moscow investment bank, Troika Dialog, whose chief executive at the time was Mr Vardanyan, who was the 99th richest man in Russia two years ago,

[December 19 2018  U.S.Sanctions- Oleg Deripaska real estate seized — Rusal sanctions lifted   ]

olegd

Oleg Deripaska

12/19/2018
Today, OFAC submitted a notification to Congress of its intention to terminate the sanctions imposed on En+ Group plc (“En+”), UC Rusal plc (“Rusal”), and JSC EuroSibEnergo (“ESE”) in 30 days…to remove sanctions on Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska’s aluminum company, United Co. Rusal, after reaching an agreement to significantly reduce his ownership stake.

Deripaska will remain under U.S. sanctions and his property will remain blocked,

https://www.treasury.gov/resource-center/sanctions/OFAC-Enforcement/Pages/20181219_33.aspx

[October 8 2018]

Washington has frozen Oleg Deripaska’s US-based assets, including massive mansions in Manhattan and Washington, DC. But the feds are also negotiating with him to give up some of his European-based operations to keep them running free of sanctions, Treasury officials say.

Deripaska’s US assets include a mansion at 11 East 64th St.
FBI agents tried unsuccessfully to flip Deripaska in exchange for information on Russian organized crime — and Russia’s aid to President Trump’s 2016 campaign, the New York Times reported last month.
In an affidavit attached to a July 2017 application, an FBI agent said he had reviewed tax returns for a company controlled by Manafort and his wife that showed a $10 million loan from a Russian lender identified as Oleg Deripaska. When Manafort joined the Trump campaign, he owed Deripaska close to $20 million, according to legal complaints Deripaska’s lawyers filed in the Cayman Islands and New York

 

[ September 2018  Abramovich divorced then transferred holdings to her   ]

Listed by Treasury as Putin-related oligarch, Roman Abramovich has transferred Manhattan property to his  ex-wife (2017).

On Sept. 14, the city recorded the transfer of the three townhouses at 9, 11 and 13 E. 75th St. from Roman Abramovich to Dasha Zhukova for a total $74 million. In addition, Abramovich transferred 15 E. 75th St. to Zhukova for $16.5 million. (11, 13 and 15 are the ones being combined after June approval from the Landmarks Preservation Commission.)

Abramovich also transferred a fourth floor co-op at 225 E. 73rd St. to Zhukova for $900,000, as well as another first floor co-op at 215 E. 73rd St. for another $900,000, according to property records.

 

[April 22   Oerlikon is neither sanctioned nor blocked   ]

b77e55769d8dad9e6ea8d8c41c7c27bf_400x400

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the US Department of the Treasury has identified Viktor F. Vekselberg and Renova Group, Moscow, as specially designated nationals pursuant to US sanctions rules, effective April 6, 2018.

Viktor F. Vekselberg indirectly holds an interest of 43.04 % in Oerlikon. Pursuant to the regulations of the OFAC of the US Department of the Treasury, Oerlikon is neither considered a sanctioned nor a blocked party because Mr. Vekselberg’s ownership interest in Oerlikon is less than 50 %. US persons and entities, as well as any other persons and entities, are therefore not restricted in their dealings with Oerlikon or in investing in Oerlikon. Press release(04/09/18).

Assets totaling between $1.5 billion and $2 billion have been frozen as a result of sanctions imposed on Russian oligarch Viktor Vekselberg and his Renova Group conglomerate, Renova, which is headquartered in Moscow and has a subsidiary in Zurich, intends to maintain its Swiss holdings, which include a stake in Oerlikon (OERL.S).

[ April 10 Oleg Deripaska is a SDN. What does that mean? ]

Image result for EN+Image result for NornickelImage result for Rusal

 “We [Oleg Kouzmin and Daniel Salter] note that the fundamentals surrounding the Russian market remain mostly unchanged and that Russian equities still provide among the healthiest dividend returns globally. We would thus ignore the current jitters and buy into the current weakness, particularly with dividend season almost upon us.”

The economic impact of the new sanctions was also unclear and analysts said it was too early to revise forecasts.

[April 7]

SDN stands for “Specially Designated National.” In its statement announcing the sanctions, the U.S. Treasury Department said U.S. entities will be “generally prohibited from dealings with” the people and firms on the sanctions list.

In addition, it said, companies outside the United States “could face sanctions for knowingly facilitating significant transactions for or on behalf of” sanctioned entities.
Deripaska, with a net worth of $6.7 billion, is the main owner of the conglomerate EN+, which in turn is the co-owner of some of the world’s biggest metals producers, Rusal and Nornickel.

Hong Kong-listed Rusal is one of the world’s biggest aluminum producers. It says exports to the United States account for over 10 percent of its output.

Rusal owns assets in Italy, Ireland, Sweden, Nigeria, Guyana, Guinea. It owns a stake in Australian QAL, the world’s top alumina refinery.

Nornickel has assets in Finland, in Australia, where it holds a license to develop the Honeymoon Well Project, and in South Africa, where it has a 50 percent stake in the country’s only nickel concentrate producer, Norilsk Nickel Nkomati.

Swiss-headquartered Glencore is a shareholder in Rusal, and his said it plans to switch those shares to Deripaska’s newly-created holding company, EN+. According to a Rusal prospectus, its major customers include Glencore, Toyota, and Rio Tinto Alcan.

Other foreign firms with ties to Deripaska’s empire include Austrian construction company Strabag, in which the Russian’s firm Rasperia has a blocking stake, and Singapore’s Changi Airports International, which is a partner with a Deripaska-owned airports firm.

https://www.nbcnews.com/business/business-news/coca-cola-about-cost-you-more-thanks-trump-s-tariffs-n894951

[April 6 Oligarchs and Russian meddlers sanctioned: up to April 6 2018 ]

meddler

Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin

AKIMOV, Andrey Igorevich,
BOGDANOV, Vladimir Leonidovich,
DERIPASKA, Oleg Vladimirovich,
DYUMIN, Alexey Gennadyevich (a.k.a. DYUMIN, Alexei),
FRADKOV, Mikhail Efimovich (Cyrillic: ФРАДКОВ, Михаил Ефимович),
FURSENKO, Sergei (a.k.a. FURSENKO, Sergey; a.k.a. FURSENKO, Sergey Aleksandrovich);
GOVORUN, Oleg,
KERIMOV, Suleiman Abusaidovich (Cyrillic: КЕРИМОВ, Сулейман Абусаидович) (a.k.a. KERIMOV, Suleyman)
KOLOKOLTSEV, Vladimir Alexandrovich,
KOSACHEV, Konstantin,
KOSTIN, Andrey Leonidovich,
LEONE MARTINEZ, Miguel Jose (a.k.a. LEONE, Miguel),
MILLER, Alexey Borisovich,
PATRUSHEV, Nikolai Platonovich,
PEREZ ALVEAR, Jesus (a.k.a. “Chucho Perez”),
REZNIK, Vladislav Matusovich,
ROTENBERG, Igor Arkadyevich (a.k.a. ROTENBERG, Igor Arkadevich)
SHAMALOV, Kirill Nikolaevich
SHKOLOV, Evgeniy Mikhailovich
SKOCH, Andrei Vladimirovich (a.k.a. SKOCH, Andrey)
TORSHIN, Alexander Porfiryevich,
USTINOV, Vladimir Vasilyevich,
VALIULIN, Timur Samirovich,
VEKSELBERG, Viktor Feliksovich,
ZHAROV, Alexander Alexandrovich (a.k.a. ZHAROV, Aleksandr)
ZOLOTOV, Viktor Vasiliyevich,

• AgroHolding Kuban
• Basic Element Limited
• B-Finance Ltd.
• EN+ Group PLC
• JSC EuroSibEnergo
• GAZGroup
• Gazprom Burenie, 000
• Ladoga Menedzhment, 000
• NPV Engineering Open Joint Stock Company
• Renova Group
~ Russian Machines
~ United Company RUSAL PLC
• Any other entity in which one or more of the above persons own, directly or indirectly,
a 50 percent or greater interest

e, all transactions and activities
otherwise prohibited by the Ukraine Related Sanctions Regulations, 31 C.F.R. part 589, that are
ordinarily incident and necessary to divest or transfer debt, equity, or other holdings in the following
blocked persons to a non-U.S. person, or to facilitate the transfer of debt, equity, or other holdings in
the following blocked persons by a non-U.S. person to another non-U.S. person, are authorized through
12:01 a.m. eastern daylight time, May 7, 2018:
• EN+ Group PLC
• GAZ Group
• United Company RUSAL PLC

https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/sm0338

[ March 15 targets are the same as Mueller’s? ]

Targets are the same as those identified by an indictment by Robert Mueller?

Internet Research Agency LLC

Yevgeniy Viktorovich Prigozhin
Concord Management and Consulting LLC
Concord Catering
Dzheykhun Nasimi Ogly Aslanov
Anna Vladislavovna Bogacheva
Maria Anatolyevna Bovda
Robert Sergeyevich Bovda
Mikhail Leonidovich Burchik
Mikhail Ivanovich Bystrov
Irina Viktorovna Kaverzina
Aleksandra Yuryevna Krylova
Vadim Vladimirovich Podkopaev
Sergey Pavlovich Polozov
Gleb Igorevich Vasilchenko
Vladimir Venkov

Officials
Sergei Afanasyev
Vladimir Alexseyev
Sergey Gizunov
Igor Korobov
Igor Kostyukov
Grigoriy Molchanov

https://home.treasury.gov/news/press-releases/sm0312

[February 1 Oligarchs listed by U.S. Treasury – from Forbes ]

Yevgeniy Kasperskiy

“A lot of work had gone into compiling the original list, but  someone high up in the administration had ordered for it to be binned and replaced by the Forbes-based list.

In an emailed statement to Forbes, a Treasury spokesperson explained that the unclassified report was derived from open sources, including Forbes and others

UNCLASSIFIED

Appendix B: List of Oligarchs

1 Aleksandr Abramov
2. Roman Abramovich
3. Araz Agalarov
4. Farkhad Akhmedov
5. Vagit Alekperov
6. Igor Altushkin
7. Aleksey Ananyev
8. Dmitriy Ananyev
9. Vasiliy Anisimov
10. Roman Avdeyev
11 Petr Aven
12. Yelena Baturina
13. Aleksey Bogachev
14. Vladimir Bogdanov
15. Leonid Boguslayskiy
16. Andrey Bokarev
17. Oleg Boyko
18. Nikolay Buynov
19. Oleg Deripaska
20. Aleksandr Dzhaparidze
21. Leonid Fedun
22. Gleb Fetisov
23 Mikhail Fridman
24. Aleksandr Frolov
25. Filaret Galchev
26. Sergey Galaskiy
27 Valentin Gapontsev
28. Sergey Gordeyev
29. Andrey Guryev
30, Yuriy Gushchin
31. Mikhail Gutseriyev
32. Sait-Salam Gutseriyev
33. Zarakh Iliyev
34. Dmitriy Kamenslichik
35. Vyacheslav Kantor
36. Samuel Karapetyan
37. Yevgeniy Kasperskiy
38. Sergey Katsiyev
39 Suleyman Kerimov
40. Igor Kesayev
41. Danil Khachaturov
42. German Khan
43. Viktor Kharitonin
44. Aleksandr Klyachin
45. Petr Kondrashev
UNCLASSIFIED

UNCLASSIFIED

46. Andrey Kosogov
47 Yuriy Kovalchuk*
48 Andrey Kozitsyn
49. Aleksey Kuzmichev
50. Lev Kvetnoy
51 Vladimir Lisin
52. Anatoliy Lomakm
53 Ziyavudin Magomedov
54. Igor Makarov
55 Iskander Makhmudov
56. Aleksandr Mamut
57 Andrey Melnichenko
58. Leonid Mikhelson
59 Yuriy Milner
60. Boris Mints
61. Andrey Molchanov
62. Aleksey Mordashov
63. Vadim Moshkovich
64. Aleksandr Nesis
65. God Nisanov
66. Aleksandr Ponomarenko
67, Sergey Popov
67, Sergey Popov
68. Vladimir Potanin
69. Mikhail Prokhorov
70. Dmitriy Pumpyanskiy
71. Megdet Ralchimkulov
72. Andrey Rappoport
73 Viktor Rashnikov
74. Arkadiy Rotenberg*
75. Boris Rotenberg*
76. Dmitriy Rybolovlev
77. Ayrat Shaymiyev
78. Radik Shaymiyev
79 Kirin Shamalov
80. Yuriy Sheller
81. Albert Shigabutdinov
82. Mikhail Shishkhanov
83. Leonid Simanovskiy
84. Andrey Skoch
85. Aleksandr Skorobogatko
86. Rustem Sulteyev
86. Rustem Sulteyev
87 Aleksandr Svetakov
88. Gennadiy Timchenko*
89. Oleg Tinkov
90. Roman Trotsenko
91 Alisher Usmanov
92. Viktor Vekselberg
93. Arkadiy Volozh
94. Vadim Yakunin
95. Vladimir Yevtushenkov
96. Gavril Yushvayev

UNCLASSIFIED
3

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-5634145/Putin-linked-Russian-billionaires-bid-hide-183m-superyacht-ex-wife-fails.html

a96ae63c-03c1-11e9-b0d2-cf4a0f50367e_1320x770_141331

The foreign ministry in Beijing and the Chinese embassy in Ottawa both issued strongly worded statements after Canada’s announcement on April 12 2019 .
“China strongly opposes Canada’s insistence to proceed with the so-called extradition of Ms Meng Wanzhou, and it has made a solemn representation,” the ministry said in a statement released on April 13 2019.
“It is a serious political incident. We again urge the US to rescind its request for the extradition of Ms Meng and call for Canada to release her immediately.”

Meng faces 13 charges of bank and wire fraud, violating US sanctions against Iran, and obstructing justice. When arrested she was carrying a iPhone 7 Plus, a MacBook Air, and an iPad Pro,

[March 22 2019 RCMP must show what was found on Sabrina Meng Wanzhou ]

The RCMP to provide copies of the content on seven electronic devices, an iPhone, an iPad, a Macbook Air, a Huawei phone, two SIM cards and a flash drive, on Meng Wanzhou when she was arrested at Vancouver’s airport. Within three days a representative of the Mounties must provide the electronics to the force’s technical crime unit so content can be extracted onto devices provided by Meng. Justice Heather Holmes of the British Columbia Supreme Court

[Narch 4 2019 sues about her arrest ]
Screenshot 2019-03-04 at 8.40.14 AM - Edited

Extradition could be a long process, and Meng’s lawsuits could draw it out further.

[March 1 2019 Sabrina Meng Wanzhou’s extradition to proceed March 6 2019 ]
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-47046264

 

An extradition hearing against a Huawei Technologies Co Ltd executive can proceed, a court in the Pacific province of British Columbia to start a formal extradition hearing. “The United States is a country with which we share a legal culture” and which Canada trusts, said Joanna Harrington, a law professor at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, an international human rights law specialist.

Screenshot 2019-03-01 at 9.21.22 AM - Edited.png

What came up after author posted the above

[   January 30 2019   ]

The judge moved the start of her extradition hearing to March 6, a month later than previously scheduled, in order to allow the defense time to review the evidence.

https://www.justice.gov/opa/press-release/file/1125021/download

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/chinese-telecommunications-device-manufacturer-and-its-us-affiliate-indicted-theft-trade

A spokesman for Canada’s justice department confirmed receipt of the extradition request. A copy of the request wasn’t immediately available.

United States will proceed with the formal extradition from Canada of Huawei executive Meng Wanzhou, David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the United States said.

[December 13 2018 , arrested as she travelled to Mexico ]
December 20 2018: Chinese Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying identified the third Canadian as Sarah McIver, who was serving “administrative punishment” due to “illegal employment”.

Michael Spavor is a businessman based in Dandong, near the Chinese border with North Korea. He has ties to the North Korean government and has met its leader Kim Jong-un many times. Canadian foreign ministry spokesman Guillaume Bérubé confirmed that Mr Spavor had contacted them earlier in the week because “he was being asked questions by Chinese authorities”.

https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/doj-tool-trade-chinese-exec-case-official-vows/story?id=59775531

“If I think it’s good for the country, if I think it’s good for what will be certainly the largest trade deal ever made – which is a very important thing – what’s good for national security – I would certainly intervene if I thought it was necessary,” Trump

The US has until January 8, 60 days from the arrest date to turn over its full extradition case with supporting evidence.

A British Columbia justice granted bail of $10 million Canadian (US$7.5 million) to Meng, but required her to wear an ankle bracelet, surrender her passports, stay in Vancouver and its suburbs and confine herself to one of her two Vancouver homes from 11 p.m. to 6 a.m.

Former Canadian diplomat Michael Kovrig was detained. Kovrig works for the International Crisis Group, an independent conflict resolution think-tank. Saying he was “deeply concerned,” Public Safety Minister Ralph Goodale confirmed that Canada was aware a Canadian citizen was detained in China.

Screenshot 2018-12-08 at 8.30.45 AM - Edited

Shi Yinhong, director of Renmin University’s Centre for American Studies and an adviser to the State Council, said that the Meng incident put China in a bind between the need to show it can protect its business people abroad without spooking other advanced industrial nations with a strong response against Canada.

The Global Times’ editor-in-chief, Hu Xijin,

“It is also one of China’s core interests to improve China’s relations with the U.S. and the West, and not to lead Sino-U.S. relations to the direction of a Cold War,” Hu said, at one point holding up his iPhone.

Meng Wanzhou, Huawei’s chief financial officer, John Gibb-Carsley, the lawyer representing Canada’s attorney general told a Vancouver bail hearing ,refused to visit the US, where her son attends school, which was evidence of a sustained effort to evade a criminal investigation.

Meng was arrested on December 5 as she travelled to Mexico.

[December 7 CFO of Huawei arrested while changing planes   ]

Screenshot 2018-12-05 at 8.41.07 PM - Edited.png

Sabrina Meng Wanzhou, chief financial officer of China’s Huawei Technologies, 46, faces “unspecified charges in the Eastern District of New York” and was arrested when she was transferring flights in Canada.
In April, the U.S. Department of Justice opened an investigation into whether Huawei, which manufactures smartphones and other electronics, sold equipment to Iran despite sanctions on exporting to the region.  The Trump administration urged America’s allies to stop using Huawei telecommunications equipment because the Chinese company poses a security threat,    Last month New Zealand blocked Huawei from rolling out 5G mobile coverage over national security fears, following scrutiny of the firm by the UK, Japan and others.   CFO Sabrina Meng Wanzhou allegedly told employees in an earlier internal talk on compliance that there are scenarios where the company can weigh the costs and accept the risks of temporary non-compliance.

[December 3   Rise of China’s technology: 5G fearmongering?   ]

china 5g

5G development has become a bogeyman for the Trump administration .

If “big data” is the new oil of the digital era, then 5G is the next set of pipes that will deliver it – and unlike previous generations, China is determined to own more of this infrastructure, giving it mastery of its own industrial future. This not only sets it up a competitive technology clash, it also raises a number of national security issues for Western governments concerned about the integrity of 5G networks.
Phones, tablets, computers – devices such as home appliances, cars, dog collars, and many more are getting connected via the Internet of Things. 5G, which stands for “fifth generation,” is an upcoming standard for mobile telecommunications service. 5G technology will utilize a higher-frequency band of the wireless spectrum called millimeter wave that allows data to be transferred much more rapidly than the lower-frequency band dedicated to 4G. The downside is that millimeter wave signals don’t travel as far: The new 5G networks will require many more (albeit smaller) antennas spaced closer together than previous wireless generations. 5G home broadband, is essentially broadband without the cable. Of course, 5G is also much faster.

“Basically, power, money and politics is going east,” Younger said. “That’s a new political reality we need to adjust to.”

He said 5G reliance on Chinese technology was something Britain needed to discuss, though a bigger issue was the likely Chinese future dominance of emerging technologies.

Younger said he had been struck by President Xi Jinping’s “made in China” ambitions and that Beijing could within decades dominate all of the key emerging technologies, particularly artificial intelligence, synthetic biology and genetics.

“This is something we really need to think about,” Younger said. “The future of knowledge is in play.” The head the Secret Intelligence Service, or MI6, Alex Younger.
Huawei dismisses American fears about its intentions as nationalistic fearmongering. It says it has no more connection to the Chinese government than Apple or Google and that installing backdoors for spies in its network hardware or software would be tantamount to market suicide.

[ July 29 2011  China Oil corruption: Zhou Yongkang, the backer of Bo Xilai, now ensnarled   ]

China’s ruling Communist Party has put former security chief Zhou Yongkang — one of its most powerful men — under investigation.
Zhou had been a patron of Bo Xilai, who he is said to have backed for a slot on the PSC. Bo was jailed for life in September 2013 for corruption and abuse of power. Bo’s fall from grace, and that of his convicted murderer wife Gu Kailai, was China’s most dramatic political scandal since the trial of the Gang of Four after the Cultural Revolution. It was inevitable the Bo investigation would soon ensnarl Zhou too.

Zhou, 71, was born in the eastern industrial city of Wuxi in 1942, the son of a senior Communist defence procurement bureaucrat. Three years after entering Suzhou Middle School in 1958, he enrolled in the Beijing Petroleum Institute, now called the China University of Petroleum. He got his start in the 1970s as a technician for the Liaohe Oil Exploration Bureau in the northeastern province of Liaoning, home to China’s third-largest oil field.

In ordering the investigation of Mr. Zhou, Xi has broken with an unwritten understanding that members of the Standing Committee will not be investigated after retirement.
Two of Zhou’s former secretaries – Yu Gang and Ji Wenlin – and one of his former security guards, Tan Hong, faced charges over accepting bribes. Xinjiang’s former No 2 party official, Yang Gang, faced similar charges.
Mr. Zhou’s son, a sister-in-law and his son’s mother-in-law held assets worth some $1 billion, much of it in the oil and gas sector that was Mr. Zhou’s political fiefdom.
3/31/2014 China has seized at least $14.5 billion of assets from family and associates of the country’s former security chief Zhou Yongkang in the biggest corruption scandal since the Communist Party came to power in 1949
More than 300 of Zhou’s relatives, political allies and staff have been taken into custody or questioned.
The amount of money involved vastly exceeds the $2.7 billion of assets said in 2012 to be controlled by the family of former Chinese Premier Wen Jiaobao.
If the reported $14.5 billion of assets were ultimately owned by Zhou and excluded debt, his fortune would rank at No. 69 on Forbes magazine’s latest tally of the world’s billionaires.
7
1 September 2013 Jiang Jiemin is also the subject of a corruption investigation. Until March Mr Jiang was head of the China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC), which has faced a number of corruption allegations. Another four CNPC executives were under investigation for corruption.

Historian Zhang Lifan said the investigation into Zhou showed factional struggles within the party were intensifying.

“We need to watch whether the struggle stops with Zhou. Xi might have won the ultimate victory, and it could stop there,” Zhang said. “After all, such a struggle is hurting the party, too, because it reveals to the public so many ugly things.”

[October 4 2011 Financial contagion from Chinese export dip

Yuan contagion

Yuan contagion

Now Beijing is expanding the use of the RMB in other financial centers, to allow for foreign holdings of the currency to be used for direct investment in China. According to Arvin Subramanian of the Financial Times, “the process is micro-managed, interventionist, and enclave-based – not a day seems to pass without some foreign entity, or country being granted greater but selective access to the renminbi.” Last week, the Financial Times reported that “China is for the first time to give formal backing to moves by British banks to turn the City of London into an offshore trading center for the renminbi.” Furthermore, the Economist reports that “in Singapore, banks now offer yuan deposits and bond funds. Its central bank is one of a dozen that have agreements with the Peoples Bank of China to swap their currencies for yuan.” here

As Premier Wen Jiabao famously put it back in 2007, the country’s growth is “unstable, unbalanced, uncoordinated and unsustainable.” In such a crisis, China’s economic weight would become a liability. The IMF estimates that the impact of Chinese demand on the world’s largest economies has more than doubled over the past decade. A deteriorating outlook for Chinese imports could send commodity prices plummeting, precipitating heavy losses for investors and risking financial contagion. more