Inner City
        Press' Bank Beat Reporter

  

     Welcome to Inner City Press’ Bank Beat.  We aim to scrutinize the industry, from high to low. Our other Reporters cover Community Reinvestment, the Federal Reserve, and other beats.   ICP has published a (double) book about the Bank Beat-relevant topic of predatory lending - click here for sample chapters, an interactive map, and ordering information. The Washington Post of March 15, 2004, calls Predatory Bender: America in the Aughts "the first novel about predatory lending;" the London Times of April 15, 2004, "A Novel Approach," said it "has a cast of colorful characters." See also, "City Lit: Roman a Klepto [Review of 'Predatory Bender']," by Matt Pacenza, City Limits, Sept.-Oct. 2004. The Pittsburgh City Paper says the 100-page afterword makes the "indispensable point that predatory lending is now being aggressively exported to the rest of the globe." Click here for that review; click here to Search This Site. Click here for Inner City Press' weekday news reports, from the United Nations and elsewhere, which include bank-related topics.

Click here for Inner City Press' weekday news reports, from the United Nations and elsewhere. Click here for a recent BBC piece on Inner City Press' reporting from the United Nations. New: Follow us on TWITTER   BloggingHeads.tv  Click for March 1, 2011 BloggingHeads.tv re Libya, Sri Lanka, UN Corruption by Inner City Press.  Until next time, for or with more information, contact us.

March 30, 2020

Another SDNY Sealed Proceeding For Money Laundering in Miami Diaz in MCC Until Friday

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Decrypt - LightRead - Honduras - Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, March 25 -- Amid the Coronavirus crisis in a sealed proceeding on March 25 a defendant referred to as Mr. Diaz was presented on charges of money laundering in Miami before U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Magistrate Judge Sarah L. Cave.

 Judge Cave earlier in the afternoon had ordered Inner City Press out of the Magistrates Courtroom on the motion of the US Attorney's Office.

  Now Assistant US Attorney Thomas S. Burnett told Judge Cave that he had an ex parte application, and that this proceeding should be sealed and not docketed. Without any written presentation viewable by the Press or public, the applications were all granted.

 The US is favoring the release of Mr. Diaz, but since he is from Costa Rica (it sounded like), they need to find a place for him to go. So he will go to the MCC until Friday - hardly the place for a cooperator.

  AUSA Burnett also said he had an ex parte application to disqualify Federal Defenders as conflicted. He said that there were three others presented on money laundering in Miami charges, once represented by FD, and that Diaz used the same company.
 
  So how hard is this, to triangulate? What is the basis of this sealing and secrecy? Judge Cave asked for nothing more than an update, probably also confidential, in six months. How many cases / defendants / cooperators like this are there?  Watch this site.

Juan Marcos Matos Ruiz was presented not in person but by video on charges of money laundering Brazil bribes,

 Judge Cave, an interpreter, Assistant US Attorney Benet J. Kearney and Inner City Press were all in SDNY Courtroom 24B, the new Magistrates Court complete with social distancing and a big bottle of Purell hand sanitizer.  

 But Juan Marcos Matos Ruiz was in Florida, were he was ordered to not be employed by his Matos LCC and to have no contact with Premier X and Premier RX.

    In the complaint he is described as taking a 15% commission on all laundered funds. The case is US v. Chocron, et al., 20-mj-2246 (Cave).

March 23, 2020

In SDNY Prince Uko Is Bailed On Bank Fraud Charges Amid Coronavirus and GPS Bracelet Shortage

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Decrypt - LightRead - Honduras - Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, March 20 --   A defendant up from Georgia came at 2 pm on March 19 to be arraigned in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

 But in this time of Coronavirus, the usual 4:30 pm cut off for same day presentments has been pushed earlier, to noon. So this defendant, Prince Uko, returned to the SDNY on March 20. 

  The Magistrates Court remains on the 24th floor in a larger than normal courtroom to allow social distancing. In the lobby outside the courtroom, where Midtown Manhattan was not visible due to fog, folding chairs had been set up, each six feet from the other. But they were all empty. 

  In the courtroom, presided over by SDNY Chief Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein, Prince Uko had a publicly-funded Criminal Justice Act lawyer appointed, and pled not guilty. He is charged with bank fraud.  

 The Assistant US Attorney told  Judge Gorenstein a bail package, the same as in Georgia, had been agreed to. Judge Gorenstein asked her to spell it out, rejected some of the item as already being covered by law.

The AUSA mentioned "stand alone GPS monitoring" and Gorenstein said, Stop. He noted, as Inner City Press first reported this week, that there is a lack of GPS bracelet. The Pre Trial Services officer, sitting in the jury box, said there is a shipment on the way - but that Prince Uko already has a bracelet on.  

So how did he travel to New York from Georgia? The case is back on in front of assigned Judge Denise L. Cote on May 8, at least scheduled for now.

Due to Coronavirus - Judge Gorenstein notably was wearing gloves - she has allowed Prince Uko's co-defendants to get Provisionally Appointed Counsel without showing up in person.

 The case is US v. Uko, et al, 20-cr-179 (Cote / Gorenstein).

March 16, 2020

Amid OCC Contempt For Protest to Steuben Trust Bid By Community Bank NA 3 Branches 39 Workers

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
The Source - The Root - etc

Bronx / DC, March 10 –  With US Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting on December 12 formally moving along with the FDIC to undermine the  Community Reinvestment Act, now with comment period to April 8, hearings have been by held  the House Financial Services Committee. And see our comment here.

On January 11 Inner City Press / Fair Finance Watch filed a CRA protest with the OCC to Community Bank NA's application to acquire Steuben Trust Company. It was filed electronically, but there was no response at all from the OCC until a snail-mailed January 27 letter stating "The OCC has decided not to extend the comment period and will not hold a public hearing/meeting."

  Now, without any inquiry or disclosure by Otting's OCC, both branch closings and job cuts are being openly bragged about by these two banks: "Community Bank System plans to close three Steuben Trust branches as the two banks merge, but Steuben Trust's Clarence branch will not be among those affected.  Steuben Trust branches in Alfred, Bolivar and Geneseo are set to close and be combined with nearby Community Bank locations.  The deal still needs the approval of regulators." If you can call Otting a regulator. And what does "nearby" mean? Otting doesn't care. Nor about this: "As Community Bank takes over Steuben Trust Co. and eliminates duplication in some areas, it expects to lay off 39 Steuben Trust Co. workers. Community, based in Dewitt, Onondaga County, plans to close three Steuben branches in communities where both banks had been represented. They are in Alfred and Bolivar, both in Allegany County; and in ... "


Here's from the underlying comment: "Dear Deputy Comptroller Kiefer, Ms. Cummings and others in the OCC, including Barry Weides (and Otting) --      This is a timely first comment opposing and requesting an extension of the OCC's public comment period on the Application by Community Bank NA to acquire Steuben Trust Company.       This comment is timely. Community Bank N.A. is getting worse and worse. Even as reflected by the too-limited 2018 HMDA data available on the CFPB's website, in New York State in 2018 Community Bank NA made 3636 loans to whites - and only FIFTEEN to African Americans, out of proportion to the demographics of its service area and of other lenders' activities in it.       

Significantly, while Community Bank NA in NYS in 2020 originated six loans to whites for each of its denials to whites, for African Americans it made only 1.66 loans to every denial. See attached, for hte records. CBNA is 3.6 times more disparate to African Americans than whites, denying then 3.6 times more frequently than whites, worse than its peers       This application should be denied. And for the record, the CFPB's elimination of the HMDA informaiton that has been available on the FFIEC's and even its own website for 2017 data is part of the destruction of CRA and HMDA of which the OCC is a part.      

Also for the record, CBNA is bragging about closing branches, to investment analysts:     "During Community Bank's earnings conference call, CEO Mark Tryniski provided some commentary on the pending deal:  [W]e're thrilled to be partnering with Steuben Trust Corporation, a $570 million asset bank in Western New York. This is a high-value, lower-risk transaction of a solid performing in-market institution. We have considerable close proximity branch overlap and so also have consolidation opportunities."      

Each branch closing plan must be disclosed before the comment period closes, and public hearings should be held.          In this context, the comment period should be extended so that public evidentiary hearings can be held, and the application should be denied." Watch this site.

March 9, 2020

On Community Reinvestment Act Northfield Bank Challenged To OCC of Otting

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - CJR - PFT

SOUTH BRONX, March 7 –   The current US Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting cashed out of his position with OneWest Bank in California by overseeing fake comments in favor its acquisition by the CIT Group.

   Then, emboldened, he devoted the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency to weakening or destroying the Community Reinvestment Act which provides for the public process that he subverted with fake comments.

   Inner City Press, which along with CRC opposed the merger and then pursued a Freedom of Information Act request for all documents about Otting's fraud, soon found its and Fair Finance Watch's comments to the OCC being rejected, or ignored, or returned. 

  Now on March 6 Fair Finance Watch and Inner City Press filed timely comments with Otting's OCC on the application by Northfield Bank to buy Victory State Bank: "Re: Timely Initial Comment Opposing Application of Northfield Bank to acquire Victory State Bank     Dear Deputy Comptroller Kiefer, Ms. Cummings and others in the OCC:      This is a timely first comment opposing and requesting an extension of the OCC's public comment period on the Application by Northfield Bank to acquire Victory State Bank.       This comment is timely.  While Comptroller Otting has said he never saw discrimination (except being told by family members about it), consider for the record on this application that even as reflected by the too-limited 2018 HMDA data available on the CFPB's website, in New York State in 2018 made 91 loans to whites - and only TWO to African Americans, out of proportion to the demographics of its service area and of other lenders' activities in it.       While making only TWO loans to African Americans in NYC in 2018, Northfield Bank denied seven applications from Africans, much more disparate that its ratio for whites: 91 loans made, 97 denial: more than three times more disparate to African Americans.       This application should be denied. And for the record, the CFPB's elimination of the HMDA informaiton that has been available on the FFIEC's and even its own website for 2017 data is part of the destruction of CRA and HMDA of which the OCC is a part.        On consumer (non) protection, consider for the record these:

 "This has got to be the WORST bank I've ever been in. I accompanied a friend to this Northfield branch because they had to take care of a problem. They had been trying to speak to the manager about it, but he was never in. My friend spoke to someone who said she was the assistant manager and she was VERY rude,condescending, and a know it all.  I've been a businessman for 30 years and have never come across a person this rude to a customer before. If she worked for me, she would have been fired. Another lady in the back was talking to a customer at the window very loudly and I was almost embarrassed for them. Totally unprofessional employees! I had been thinking of opening an account there, but after seeing how my friend was treated, no way! There are too many better banks in the area. No wonder it was empty! Why do they hire people who give such poor customer service??I hope their other branches aren't like this.  It's a disgrace, and I plan to tell all my friends and colleagues to stay away from this bank.  I hope my friend goes up the chain with their complaint.     This review is for the 1123 Kings Highway branch which is not even listed on Yelp. They are a terrible bank! They are unprofessional liars. I would never trust them with my money.

      Also for the record, any and all possible branch closing or consolidations which result from this proposal must be disclosed, during the comment period. Public hearings should be held.            In this context, the comment period should be extended so that public evidentiary hearings can be held, and the application should be denied."

  While Inner City Press' FOIA requests get fee waivers from the Federal Reserve and a range of agencies in the US and beyond, Otting's OCC suddenly started denying them, hindering access to the merger applications on which CRA is enforced.   

Otting is trying to push through this CRA-killing proposal on a short comment period, cognizant of the other CRA, the Congressioal Review Act. Now it's been extended a single both. It is not enough - Otting must recuse.  But it is obvious that even banks want more time.

On January 26, in advance of Otting's belated January 29 House of Representatives appearance, Inner City Press / Fair Finance Watch submitted a formal comment, here.

March 2, 2020

Lincoln Financial Fired Lesnik After His Wells Fargo Bankruptcy Now He Names Price Off the Record

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Patreon
BBC - Decrypt - LightRead - Honduras - Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Feb 28 -- Jeffrey Lesnik was a stock broker working for Lincoln Financial Advisors Corporation when they fired him in November 2017, he says because he had filed a bankruptcy petition due to misdeeds by Wells Fargo.  

Jump-cut to February 28, 2020, when Lesnik's lawsuit against Lincoln Financial, reassigned to Judge Lewis J. Liman, still relatively new in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, came up for a status conference. 

  Lesnick's lawyer Seamus P. Barrett of the Derek Smith Law Group PLLC said he too might file a motion for summary judgment. Judge Liman said, if you want to spend your client's money that way.

   Barrett replied, We work on a pure contingency fee basis, so we only file a motion if we think we will prevail.

  Judge Liman replied that whether counsel before him are paid by the hour or on contingency, he presumes they have a basis for the motions they file, under Rule 11, until he's shown differently.

  Barrett brought up the possibility of Judge Liman referring the case to a Magistriate Judge for settlement talks. Judge Liman, with Inner City Press openly in the otherwise empty gallery, asked the parties if they agreed to have the court reporter stop transcribing. They did. 

 Lincoln Financial's lawyer said her client is willing to negotiate but that Plaintiff is asking for too much. Then she named the figure, which for now we omit in this format. More on Patreon here.  

 Barrett replied that his client would never again be able to make the $200,000 to $300,000 a year he had been making at Lincoln Financial, and so a multi-million dollar settlement would not be unreasonable.

  But Lincoln Financial's lawyer was implacable. Judge Liman went back on the record and said he will not be referring the case for mediation, or to a Magistrate Judge. He set a trial date of May 4, 2020. The case is Leznik v. Lincoln Financial, 18-cv-3656 (Liman).

February 24, 2020

RBC Planning Bank Only For the Richest Highlights Community Reinvestment Act Fight

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Guardian UK - Honduras - CJR - PFT

SOUTH BRONX, Feb 22 – Royal Bank of Canada has said openly it plans a new bank in the United States only for the most affluent. This steps right in the middle of a bank deregulatory move by U.S. Comptroller of the Current Joseph Otting, and comes after Fair Finance Watch and Inner City Press documented already disparate lending by RBC and its apparently not-enough Los Angeles-based prey, City National, here and here in the LA Times.

  Royal Bank of Canada plans to open a consumer bank in the United States early next year targeting wealthy clients, with the aim of expanding deposits, its chief financial officer said on February 21. “We want to broaden the product and service offering that we have (in the U.S.), similar to what we have in Canada,” CFO Rod Bolger said. RBC’s consumer bank would initially focus on high-net-worth clients in U.S. but eventually target the 'mass affluent' as well, he said.  RBC’s U.S. business, including City National bank, which it acquired in 2015, accounts for 23% of total revenue.

   This comes alongside the proposed Morgan Stanley acquisition of E-Trade, whose E-Trade Bank was almost shielded from the Community Reinvestment Act by Otting. Fair Finance Watch and Inner City Press will be raising the issues.

February 17, 2020

On Crypto IMF Tells Inner City Press It Did Not Suggest Any Digital Currency to ECCU

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Decrypt - LightRead - Honduras - Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Feb 13 – Before the International Monetary Fund's February 13 embargoed briefing, Inner City Press asked the IMF to confirm or deny something in the crypto-currency media, that "IMF ADVISES EASTERN CARIBBEAN STATES TO TRIAL DIGITAL CURRENCY."

Inner City Press covers not only the IMF but also all things crypto in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, for example SEC v. Telegram and the prosecution of Virgil Griffith formerly of Ethereum.   Inner City Press asked the IMF, "It is reported that to the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union, the IMF suggests to experiment with a common digital currency, on a blockchain. Can you elaborate?"  

 While IMF spokesperson Gerry Rice during the briefing answered Inner City Press' Somalia and Egypt questions, it was afterward that this answer arrived by e-mail, "attributable to Gerry Rice, IMF Spokesman and Director of Communications:    

'The IMF did not suggest to experiment with a common digital currency. In March 2019, the Eastern Caribbean Central Bank (ECCB) launched a central bank digital currency pilot project, using blockchain technology, on its own initiative.

  As noted in the IMF Concluding Statement of the 2019 discussion on the common policies of the Eastern Caribbean Currency Union (ECCU) member countries, the digital currency could expose the ECCB and the financial system to various risks, including for financial intermediation, financial integrity, and cybersecurity. Given these risks of the digital currency, the IMF stressed that the ongoing pilot project should proceed cautiously.”   

So there. (A OneCoin / Bulgaria question remains outstanding). We appreciate the IMF's answer. Watch this site, for IMF news and... all things crypto, good, bad and ugly.

Manafort Lender Steven Calk Cannot Move Trial to Chicago SDNY Judge Schofield Rules

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Patreon
Honduras - The Source - The Root - etc

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Feb 14 – Steven M. Calk of FDIC-regulated Federal Savings Bank was presented and arraigned on May 23 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for financial institution bribery for corruptly using his position with FSB to issue $16 million in high-risk loans to Paul Manafort in a bid to obtain a senior position with the Trump administration, namely Undersecretary of the Army.

  On Friday, November 8 Calk filed a motion to move the case to his hometown of Chicago, arguing in part that his "business" there will be disrupted if the case is not transferred. He says he "remains an owner of TFSB." But as Inner City Press noted on November 8, he ignores the New York connections of his Manafort loans.

 Now on February 12, Calk's motion to move the case has been denied: "OPINION AND ORDER as to Stephen M. Calk: As the location of the Defendant is the only factor that weighs in favor of transfer, and that factor is not dispositive, Platt, 376 U.S. at 24546; accord Parrilla, 2014 WL 1621487, at *14, Defendant's motion for transfer is DENIED.The Clerk of Court is respectfully directed to close the motion at Docket No. 33. (Signed by Judge Lorna G. Schofield on 2/12/2020)."  Inner City Press will continue to follow this case.

  An August 26 filing in the case says that the SDNY prosecutors have as discovering "produced in excess of 1.2 million pages to date, the majority of which were from files of this Office" - in New York.

 Perhaps in response the SDNY prosecutors will more directly link Calk's case to wider Trump inquiries? Inner City Press, which has followed this case and the weak regulation of for example of Comptroller of the Currency Joseph Otting, will continue on this case. Watch this site.

February 10, 2020

In OneCoin Case Now David Pike Charged With Bank Fraud For Scrubbing Ruja Ignatova Name

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon
BBC - Decrypt - LightRead - Honduras - Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Feb 7 – David Pike was repeatedly mentioned during the November 2019 trial which culminated in a jury convicting Mark Scott of money laundering for OneCoin, before U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York Judge Edgardo Ramos.  

  But Pike did not appear in the trial as a cooperating witness, as did OneCoin's now disappeared founder Ruja Ignatova's brother Konstantin Ignatov. See Inner City Press' first coverage here, and pick-ups here and here (BBC). Pike was not a defendant, or even in the same indictment as Scott and the OneCoin siblings.  

 Now on February 7 there's been the filing of a superseding indictment against Pike, after his waiver of indictment. Pike is indicted for Conspiracy to Commit Bank Fraud, with a quote from his email about "scrubbing" Ruja Ignatova from documents. More on Patreon here.

Inner City Press has requested more information from the US Attorney's office - watch this site.

February 3, 2020

On Luanda Leaks Inner City Press Asked IMF Which Says 3 Year Program Includes Fighting Corruption

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR PFT NY Post

NEW YORK CITY, Dec 19 – When the International Monetary Fund held its biweekly embargoed media briefing on November 7, Inner City Press submitted questions including on Equatorial Guinea, see below.

On January 30, Inner City Press in connection with thee 9:30 am embargoed briefing submitted questions about Luanda Leaks, Cameroon and some other topics. On Luanda Leaks, Inner City Press asked, " On Luanda Leaks, what have been the IMF's findings and actions given the evidence that has come out in the growing scandal?" This was emailed before 11 am:

    Luanda leaks     We do not comment on ongoing criminal investigations, trials and leaked documents.     Angola has a three-year EFF program with the IMF. As in other IMF programs, the fight against corruption is an important part of the program with Angola. This involves, inter alia, the strengthening of relevant legislation, such as working on an enhanced AML/CFT law, and other laws promoting stronger governance in public institutions. The effort also involves increased public transparency, for instance the timely publication of certified annual accounts by state-owned enterprises and increased use of the government’s electronic platform for procurement.   

Cameroon     The Executive Board has completed the fifth review of the arrangement under the Extended Credit Facility for Cameroon on January 22. For more details I would kindly suggest to consult our press release here

On November 7 Inner City Press asked: "On Equatorial Guinea, what is the status (and dollar volume) of the IMF's consideration of a program, and the weighing if at all on the length of time Obiang has been in power? "The loan, the amount of which has not been revealed, is scheduled to be considered by the IMF executive board in December."

 From the IMF's November 7 transcript, with video on page: "There's another question from Matthew, which I'll take on Equatorial Guinea, asking what's the status and the volume of the IMF's consideration of a program for Equatorial Guinea and the weighing, if at all, length of time that President Obiang has been in power. On that, I can say that just recently on October 21st, the Equatorial Guinea authorities and an IMF team reached staff level agreement on a three-year arrangement. Again, under the extended Fund facility, which is the more concessional arm of the IMF's lending. The authorities are working on an agreed set of measures that could allow the new program to be considered by the IMF's Executive Board in December. And Matthew had asked about the volume. We're looking at the program that could be supported by approximately $280 million. So, that's four [sic] Equatorial Guinea.  And anything else in the room?"

On September 26 Spokesperson already then Gerry Rice,  for new Managing Director Kristalina Georgieva, on Turkey said "this is also from Matthew, he has asked ' On Turkey, what is the IMF's response to ruling AKP deputy chair Numan Kurtulmuş criticizing a meeting between IMF & opposition parties, saying Turkey has "closed the topic with the IMF."'

  Then Rice said it is normal to meet with opposition - except in Cameroon, apparently - and that there has been no indication from the Turkish authorities they are looking for a program.

  On September 12 Inner City Press asked the IMF: "On Zimbabwe, please confirm or deny IMF's Patrick Imam saying that "it is clear, compared to the projections of the original SMP, which did not foresee the severity of the drought and its secondary impact, nor the electricity shock, that growth is almost certainly going to be revised downwards and inflation upwards compared to the original SMP forecasts." And what is the IMF's view of the (economic) impact of the crack down on protest and human rights defenders?"

  Spokesperson Gerry Rice said that the IMF team is in Harare, from September 5 to 17. On human rights, he said the IMF "focuses on economics" and that such questions should be directed to... bilateral creditor. At least he didn't say the UN, which under Guterres doesn't care.

More here.

January 27, 2020

Amid Credit Suisse Denial in Mozambique Scandal Corrupt Roles of UNSG Guterres

By Matthew Russell Lee, CJR PFT CEFC Video

FEDERAL COURTHOUSE, Dec 2 – As international bribery scandals particularly in Portuguese speaking countries involving UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and his family expand but are not acted on by US prosecutors, apparently due to immunity, their EDNY case against Jean Boustani regarding Mozambique resulted on December 2 in not guilty verdicts.

  Amid Guterres' cover-up of his role in Lisbon based Gulbenkian Foundation's attempted sale of its Partex Oil and Gas' operations in Angola and elsewhere, there's been this other case in Federal Court in New York City, this time in Brooklyn, with another UN bribery echo. Here's the (redacted) indictment. On December 2 an EDNY jury acquitted Boustani of three counts: conspiracy to commit securities fraud, wire fraud conspiracy and conspiracy to commit money laundering.   Boustani testified and admitted to making payments to officials in Mozambique but denied that he defrauded investors.  Credit Suisse's Global Financing Group's Andrew Pearse, Detelina Subeva and Surjan Singh pled guilty; Pearse and Singh testified for the prosecution at Boustani's trial.  Three former officials of Mozambique, including ex-Finance Minister Manuel Chang, are also charged in the case, as is Privinvest's chief financial officer, Najib Allam, but they have not made U.S. court appearances. Chang has been detained in South Africa pending possible extradition to the U.S.  The government was represented by Hiral D. Mehta and Mark E. Bini of the US Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of New York, Sean W. O'Donnell and Margaret Moeser of DOJ's Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section as well as David M. Fuhr and Katherine Nielsen of DOJ's Fraud Section.  Boustani was represented by Randall Jackson, Michael S. Schachter, Casey E. Donnelly and Philip F. DiSanto of Willkie Farr & Gallagher LLP and Daniel Gitner of Lankler Siffert & Wohl LLP.  The case is US v. Boustani et al., 18-cr-00681 (Kuntz).

  Now Credit Suisse has claimed that the loan of 622 million US dollars that it extended in 2013 to the fraudulent Mozambican company Proindicus is legitimate, and the Mozambican government must pay up for defaulting on the loan.  Credit Suisse was replying this week in a London court to the case made by the government that the loan was illegal, and that it is Credit Suisse that should reimburse Mozambique, and not the other way round.  According to a report by the Portuguese news agency Lusa, Credit Suisse argues that the Mozambican government guarantee for the Proindicus loan is binding, and that the bank is entitled to the payment of damages.

 What Lusa does not report is Antonio Guterres' links not only to UN briber CEFC China Energy, but the money he took from Angola's dos Santos family to get / buy the UNSG position. We'll have more on this.

January 20, 2020

In SDNY Judge Cave Declines To Stay Millennium Discovery Against Citi BOM Chase and Truist

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon