This is an excerpt of a remarkable article by Alice BrightSky, senior director of Fordham Law's compliance programs. Why People Commit White Collar Crimes (And How to Stop Them) ...Perpetrators of many white collar crimes were not career criminals who set out to defraud their employers, clients, and shareholders, but rather businessmen and women … who committed criminal acts in response to overwhelming personal pressures. One felon states … "Most white collar crimes are the cover-ups that come after a [...]
Islamic banking in Luxembourg and the conflict of law The financial center of Luxembourg, in its quest for diversification away from former niche banking made impossible through automatic reporting, has turned among others to Islamic Finance. Products formerly unknown are listed on the Luxembourg Stock Exchange, Parliament recently authorized the first Luxembourg Sukuk, and private banking based on Sharia is offered by many financial institutions. We are here at the intersection of Sharia and Luxembourg’s secular law. Conflicts will arise, [...]
FedEx pleads not guilty to online pharmacy charges As reported by CNBC: "The shipping company is accused of delivering controlled substances and prescription drugs from illegal Internet pharmacies despite multiple warnings from government authorities, according to a 15-count indictment filed earlier this month. Instead of closing the pharmacies' accounts, FedEx is accused of changing the shipping account classification." says the article. For insiders, the possibility of government doesn't surprise anymore, since UPS got under similar scrutiny last year. The general [...]
US Corruption investigation looks for part of $1 billion bribes in Luxembourg The Wall Street Journal reported today about the US Department of Justice's effort to seize $1 billion in bribes allegedly stemming from global telecom companies seeking licenses in Uzbekistan. The investigation has been underway at least since last year. A string of front companies close to the glamorous Gulnara Karimova, daughter of the immovable President of Uzbekistan Islam Karimov were used in the operation. Members of the excellent [...]
US-Luxembourg FATCA treaty signing ceremony Embassy report: On Friday (note: March 28) Ambassador Mandell and Finance Minister Gramegna signed The Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act, or FATCA, an agreement which introduces reporting requirements for foreign banks with respect to certain accounts held by U.S. taxpayers. This reporting will help increase transparency and reduce tax evasion. According to Ambassador Mandell, "By working together to detect, deter and discourage offshore tax abuses through increased transparency and enhanced reporting, we can help to [...]
In an article today, the Wall Street Journal carries a lengthy report about BNP Paribas' problems with the US Justice Department and regulators. It is an elaboration on former news, where the bank faces allegations of doing business with sanctioned entities, such as Iran or Cuba. In the time frame of 2 months, expectations about possible fines went from $1.1 billion, to $5 billion to now more than $10 billion. That is $10,000,000,000. The bank is expected to withstand that [...]
Quotes from the South China Morning Post: "The bonds, the first to be listed in the euro zone by a Chinese firm, will be issued by BOC’s Luxembourg branch and carry a maturity of three years. Luxembourg is the third city outside China where the state-backed bank has chosen to issue an offshore yuan bond." Note: The three cities are London, Singapore and Luxembourg.
The Wall Street Journal reports: "The Paris-based lender said Thursday it set aside $1.1 billion for possible violation of laws, in particular those of the U.S. Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control, related to transactions dating from 2002 to 2009." A violation of the only OFAC list costs an arm and a leg. Though this investigation covers a time period before 2010, it is amazing that still today financial institutions treat this risk with benign neglect. Or worse, that willfully [...]
US Treasury fines Luxembourg Firm for Skirting Iran Sanctions Clearstream Banking S.A. settled with the US Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) over the allegations to have violated US Iran sanctions regulations. According to the Miami Herald: "Clearstream provided the Government of Iran with substantial and unauthorized access to the US financial system", OFAC Director Adam J. Szubin said in a statement. Clearstream Banking will pay $152 million in a settlement according to the linked settlement agreement.
Make that $326,000,000 After 22 years (!) the liquidation process was closed. Wrongfully? A Luxembourg court will tell. Remarkably, against the odds and expert advice, a large percentage of the nominal moneys were retrieved. If successful, these additional funds might get recuperated. About 250,000 clients in 70 (+) countries were victims of the "Bank of Crooks and Criminals". BCCI victims pursue extra £200M payout