February 12, 2010 Leave a comment
October 27, 2009 1 Comment
As Antigua and Barbuda awaits final word from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) on a loan it says it needs, victims of the alleged Stanford fraud are trying to stop the twin-island nation from accessing any funds from the lending agency.
In its latest campaign against the island, the Stanford Victims Coalition (SVC), through lawyers from the New York firm Morgenstern & Blue LLC, has written to members of Congress to get help blocking any IMF loan.
Antigua and Barbuda recently held talks with the Washington-based institution and are close to a final deal, although the amount it would receive has not yet been finalised. Read more of this post
October 16, 2009 Leave a comment
Billionaire financier and cricket entrepreneur Sir Allen Stanford spat up blood in court after suffering a severe beating in a jailhouse brawl.
The tycoon is facing a 375-year prison sentence for allegedly masterminding a $7bn (£4.3bn) scam.
The 59-year-old, who denies fraud and money-laundering, removed the blood using tissues and a cup during a preliminary trial hearing in Houston, Texas.
Judge David Hittner interrupted the proceedings to ask Stanford’s lawyer Kent Schaffer: “Is your client okay?” Read more of this post
May 11, 2009 1 Comment
A (BBC) Panorama investigation has suggested that Sir Allen was shielded from an earlier inquiry into his activities because he co-operated with a US Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) attempt to track money laundering by Latin American drug cartels.
US officials closed down his banking activities in February, alleging a vast fraud centred on his Antigua-based offshore bank. Sir Allen, 59, previously most famous as the sponsor of the Twenty20 cricket tournament, has vowed to clear his name.
No criminal charges have yet been filed but the US Securities and Exchange Commission described his activities as a “massive Ponzi scheme”.
A former law enforcement official said in February that the FBI and other agencies started looking into Sir Allen’s possible involvement in money-laundering in the 1990s but could not find sufficient evidence to charge him. Read more of this post
February 20, 2009 2 Comments
Five West Indian players, including Shivnarine Chanderpaul, are set to lose their million-dollar winnings in the fall-out from the Allen Stanford fraud probe that has left English cricket reeling.
The players – Chanderpaul, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Kieron Pollard, Sylvester Joseph and Dave Mohammed – were part of the Stanford Superstars team who thrashed England in Antigua last November in the first of what was supposed to be five Twenty20 matches with a million dollars going to each member of the winning side.
Although Stanford, who has gone missing ( but since found in Virginia on Thursday, and served with a complaint accusing him of an $8 billion fraud) after being accused of ‘massive fraud’ by U.S. regulators, paid the players in full, the five are said to have been persuaded to reinvest the money with the controversial Texan and now risk losing it all. Chanderpaul, one of the world’s top batsmen, has cut a subdued figure here at the third Test since news which has seriously embarrassed the ECB, who signed a five-year deal with the American last year, broke on Tuesday.
And it is particularly poignant that Mohammed, the Trinidadian spinner, is one of those affected because it was his mother who was pictured overcome with joy at the end of the match over what seemed a life-changing experience for her son.
The five players are not the only West Indians to regret trusting Stanford with their money. Joel Garner, one of the Stanford ‘board of legends’ sacked in December when the American’s problems were first exposed by Sportsmail, is said to have invested his earnings with Stanford, while Lance Gibbs, the Superstars manager, has not been paid the $100,000 he was due for working with the American.It is highly unlikely he ever will be. Pertinently, the West Indian board have not been paid the £3.5m they were due from the $20m prize fund, which flies in the face of the claim of Giles Clarke, the ECB chairman, that Stanford had paid all that was due from the tawdry week of challenge matches.
February 19, 2009 4 Comments
As Bernard Madoff was arrested and charged with the world’s biggest scam on December 11, another billionaire was just 24 hours away from watching his own alleged fraud unravel before his eyes.
Among the millions of hapless investors, banks and charities who scrambled to discover how much they had lost to Mr Madoff was Allen Stanford, whose vast investment empire stretched across the US, the Caribbean and Latin America.
He was told on December 15 – less than a week after the alleged Madoff “Ponzi” scheme collapsed — that his firm had lost a relatively modest $400,000.
But the loss marked the beginning of the end for Mr Stanford. His business activities, which included a bank and a fund-management company, had already aroused the suspicion of his own clearing bank, Pershing, one of the world’s biggest financial institutions.
On December 12 Pershing had effectively thrown in the towel on Mr Stanford by ceasing to process any wire transfers for his investment firm because it had grown concerned about the lack of transparency in his business. Pershing had no idea who Mr Stanford’s clients were or how he made his money.
Mr Stanford relied on Pershing to process his commercial transactions. Between 2006 and December 2008, Pershing had sent to the Stanford Bank in Antigua about 1,635 wire transfers worth about $517million, from about 1,700 accounts.
As Mr Stanford allegedly lied to his anxious investors — telling them that his own businesses had no exposure to Mr Madoff — the American financial regulators had begun an investigation into Mr Stanford. It took them three months, until Tuesday afternoon, to charge him and two of his associates with fraud.
Apart from the obvious two connections between Mr Madoff and Mr Stanford – that one invested in the other and that both have been charged with fraud — they have a good deal else in common.
The investment schemes of both came to light primarily because of the slump in the US economy and the collapse of world stock markets. Mr Madoff’s alleged “Ponzi” scheme was laid bare after his own investors rushed to withdraw their savings, which they believed to have been held in stocks and shares.
Mr Stanford had run into trouble after big investments such as holdings in Florida property started to unravel.
The two alleged frauds are also similar in scale – though Mr Madoff’s victims believe that they lost about $50billion, far more than the $8billion fraud with which Mr Stanford is charged. And both have involved American, offshore and British financial regulators scouring the globe for assets.
May 28, 2008 Leave a comment
Room No.374 of the Pegasus Hotel In Kingston, Jamaica may one day become the basis of a murder mystery in the future.
Cricket Tournament in foreign country
Foreign cricket coach stays at hotel
Fans want team to win finals
Pressure and tension in the air
Team loses to lesser team
Coach found dead in hotel room
The room where Bob Woolmer, [former Pakistan World Cup cricket coach], died has become a magnet for scores of tourists wishing to stay in the room or get as close as possible by staying on the same floor.
Not this tourist here. I sure will not find myself staying in that room. I will just be uncomfortable knowing that someone died in there. After all the whole idea of a vacation is to relax right?. Well I can’t relax if I am uncomfortable with that glaring fact!.
But there are people and then there are people.
“We have had quite a few occasions where people have asked to stay in the Woolmer room… and others have asked to stay on the same (12th) floor,” hotel manager Eldon Bremner was quoted as saying in the ‘Courier Mail.’
“Woolmer’s death here has not affected business and bookings are high. We thought about closing the room or even dedicating it to Mr Woolmer. But I didn’t think that was appropriate to his memory, and I also did not want to offend his family,” he said.
But profiting off a dead man memory will not offend his family? What kind of twisted logic is that?!!!
Further reading – Woolmer’s Room Attracts Tourists
May 26, 2008 Leave a comment
West Indies all rounder Dwayne Bravo have been saying a lot recently since a change of fresh air blew in the Windies camp in the form of David Williams, [the former West Indian wicketkeeper] as assistant coach and David Moore [a former Australian state cricker] the interim head coach who are part of the management team trying to bring back some respectability to the West Indies team.
David Moore replacing his former boss Bennett King [who Ken Gordon described his contribution to West Indies cricket as "mixed''] seems to have more of an interest to see the Windies back on their feet as oppose to just taking monies and making a lot of catchy statements to appease the ears of those justified in hiring him in the first place.
Bravo giving credit where credit is due more now than ever, praise David Moore as a critical component of their improved consistency. Read more of this post
April 19, 2008 Leave a comment