UBS laundering service
Captain Marlow posted:
Congressional investigators probing whether the world’s largest “wealth management” firm, UBS, may have laundered $5 billion in American currency for state sponsors of terrorism are pushing for the American government to block or seize any assets that may be held by the Castro regime at the Swiss bank’s vault in Zurich, according to correspondence obtained by The New York Sun.
According to congressional staff familiar with discussions between UBS and investigating congressmen, the Swiss bank has yet to indicate that the Cuban account – fed by monthly shipments of American banknotes flown from Havana to Zurich on a jet designated by the Castro regime specifically for that purpose, according to congressional investigators – has been closed.
On October 22, 2004, six months after UBS paid the $100 million fine, the International Financial Action Task Force Against Money Laundering adopted Resolution IX, which, according to a Task Force press release, “calls on countries to stop cross-border movements of currency and monetary instruments related to terrorist financing and money laundering and confiscate such funds.”
Three days later, on October 25, Mr. Castro announced that he was ending the use of American dollars as the currency of the Cuban economy, encouraging the use of Euros, Swiss francs, and other foreign banknotes instead.
But wait, it wasn’t just Fidel,
When, in April 2003, American troops liberating Iraq found $762 million in American cash in hideouts belonging to Saddam Hussein, the banknotes were traced to UBS and the ECI program. In the process of probing the origins of the Iraqi cash – which UBS has told congressional investigators was initially sent to the Central Bank of Iran – American investigators subsequently discovered that the Swiss bank had also provided $3.9 billion in American currency for Cuba, $1 billion for Iran, $30 million for Libya, and less than $1 million for Yugoslavia. Cuba, Iran, and Libya appear on the State Department’s official list of state sponsors of terrorism.
The ayatollahs were in,
The Islamic Republic of Iran has emerged as a central player in ongoing investigations into possible money laundering by the world’s largest “wealth management” firm, UBS, as congressional staff disclosed yesterday that $762 million in American currency controlled by Saddam Hussein may have made its way from the Swiss bank to Iraq via the Central Bank of Iran.
The congressional investigation will also focus on whether UBS and Swiss officials abetted an anti-American axis between Iran and Cuba.
but fidel’s nest-egg‘s big, really big, and the money flowed to him:
One of several lingering questions is who controls the Cuban accounts to which UBS credited $3.9 billion over the course of 1,900 transactions between 1996 and 2003.
According to a scholar of the Cuban economy and a former banker, Maria Werlau, it is “highly unlikely” that the account is operated exclusively by the Cuban National Bank. Based on accounts from former top Cuban government officials who defected from the island, Ms. Werlau said, it was probable that the UBS account is part of the Fidel Castro’s vast network of overseas bank accounts used for his private business interests, a system known as the “Comandante’s reserves.” According to Ms. Werlau, who has been researching Mr. Castro’s personal fortune – estimated by Forbes magazine at around $500 million – the reserves also consist of fleets of automobiles and trucks, stored food, and luxury items.
The Comandante’s reserves, according to Ms. Werlau’s research, are fed by a web of enterprises run by the dictator. They include assigned percentages of revenues from tourism, of remittances sent by Cuban-Americans to their relatives on the island, and from illegal activities such as drug trafficking, money laundering, and terrorism. That cash flow, according to Ms. Werlau, is systematically deposited in bank accounts in Switzerland, Grand Cayman, London, Lichtenstein, and Panama. The accounts are controlled solely by Mr. Castro, and are used to finance a plethora of activities – including Mr. Castro’s propaganda and subversion efforts in other Latin American countries, his financing of international terrorist groups, the provision of bribes to world leaders, and Mr. Castro’s personal real-estate interests, including a castle in Austria.
I speculate that in addition to banks in Switzerland, Grand Cayman, London, Lichtenstein, and Panama, one could add Venezuelan banks to that list. Just my guess, though.
The average person in Cuba has to get by on $20 and a book of rations each month. But of course, Fidel and his apologists blame the “embargo” for that. No embargo kept that $3,900,000,000 from enriching fidel, though.
And that doesn’t begin to include any transactions from 1959 to date that didn’t go through UBS.