Privinvest corruption

Press accounts and indictments issued in Mozambique and the United States blame the scandal on Jean Boustani, an executive with Privinest, a Middle Eastern shipbuilding firm; three now ex-employees of Swiss banking giant Credit Suisse; and Mozambican officials Boustani and the bankers allegedly bribed.

Privinvest has denied involvement in the scheme as has Boustani. Credit Suisse claims the employees evaded its elaborate controls meant to keep it from becoming enmeshed in such schemes. Thanks to a surprise development Monday, Privinvest and Credit Suisse may find it harder to continue ducking responsibility for the corrupt, fraudulent scheme and the massive harm it inflicted on Mozambique.

Detelina Subeva, one of the former Credit Suisse employees named in the U. According to Bloombergin admitting wrongdoing she told the court:. I agreed to accept [my cut from the deal] and keep these monies knowing that they were proceeds of illegal activity. The speculation is that Subeva has agreed to cooperate with prosecutors in return for a lesser sentence. If she can provide American prosecutors with texts, e-mails, or other material to corroborate the claim, Privinvest may soon find itself answering U.

Subeva may also have information of interest to bank regulators in the United States and Europe. Were they that clever? Or was bank management incompetent? Or too interested in the profits their deals were generating to ask questions?

Most importantly, what Subeva knows could help the government and people of Mozambique recover damages from the two companies for the massive harm the debt scandal has caused. UNCAC offers the government and its citizens several options.

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Her plea makes it urgent they be carefully assayed and an action plan developed. Pingback: Panafricanmedia Networks. Pingback: President Filipe Nyusi claims landslide in Mozambique elections.

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You are commenting using your WordPress. You are commenting using your Google account. You are commenting using your Twitter account. You are commenting using your Facebook account. Notify me of new comments via email. Notify me of new posts via email.The target: Emmanuel Macron. The reason: colonialism and migration. They are pegged to the Euro and backed by the French treasury — but only in return for holding half the foreign currency of participating countries.

France says this provides financial stability and credibility, critics say it hinders economic development. In Africa, some take away wealth from the people and the continent.

France is certainly among them. Its research and development program focuses on marine renewable energy. As for Safa himself, he was born in in Beirut into a Maronite Christian family. He worked for a few years in Saudi Arabia before taking over Constructions Mecaniques de Normandie, a French shipyard.

Within two years he turned around a business that was on its last legs into a successful company. Privinvest is now one the largest ship-building companies in Europe and the Middle East. Privinvest played a key role passing money between them and Safa was allegedly at the heart of the deal, having previously sold the country military and surveillance equipment through Privinvest.

The country still has not recovered from the resulting debt crisis. E-mails show the parties openly discussing bribes. Luanda in recent times has turned a cold shoulder to Lisbon, and instead warmed to Paris.

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Part of this shift was a deal signed in September with Privinvest. The problem was two-fold: firstly, Angola only has around 1, sailors and little ship-building experience, making the deal suspicious; and secondly, the country was in dire financial straits. Okonjo-Iweala said the proposal meant Nigeria would have to shoulder all the risk, and that such a large loan would have to be approved by the National Assembly. The deal was not signed, and Okonjo-Iweala had no regrets. Welcome to Africanews Please select your experience.

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By using this website, you agree with our use of cookies to improve its performance and enhance your user experience. More info in our Cookies policy page.The indictment was previously unsealed on January 3, as to co-defendants Jean Boustani, a Privinvest executive, Manuel Chang, the former Finance Minister of Mozambique, and Andrew Pearse, Surjan Singh and Detelina Subeva, former high-ranking investment bankers at an international investment bank the Investment Bank.

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Each defendant is charged with wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy. Richard P. Sweeney, Jr. The proceeds of the loans were intended to fund three maritime projects for which Privinvest was to provide the equipment and services. The loans were subsequently sold in whole or in part to investors worldwide, including in the United States.

In doing so, the participants in the scheme conspired to defraud these investors by misrepresenting how the loan proceeds would be used, the amount and maturity dates of other financial obligations held by Mozambique and the ability of the government of Mozambique to repay the loans.

Boustani was arrested in Queens, New York on January 2, and arraigned later that day in federal court in Brooklyn. Boustani has pleaded not guilty to the charges, and a trial date has not yet been set. Allam remains at large. Nhangumele has not yet been arrested on the charges in this indictment and Nhangumele is not currently in U. Do Rosario has not yet been arrested on the charges in this indictment and is not currently in U.

Chang, a citizen and resident of Mozambique, was the former Finance Minister of Mozambique, and is charged for signing guarantees on behalf of Mozambique for the three corrupt loans. Chang was arrested on December 29,in South Africa, pursuant to a provisional arrest warrant issued at the request of the United States.

The United States is seeking his extradition. At the time of the charged scheme, Pearse and Singh were managing directors, and Subeva was a vice president, of the Investment Bank. Each has been charged for facilitating bribe payments to government officials in Mozambique and for circumventing the internal accounting controls of the Investment Bank, which arranged two of the three loans.

privinvest corruption

Pearse, Singh and Subeva were arrested on January 3,in the United Kingdom, pursuant to provisional arrest warrants issued at the request of the United States. The United States is seeking their extradition. The charges in the indictment are allegations, and the defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty. Amatruda and Mark E. Fuhr of the Fraud Section are prosecuting the case.

The Department appreciates the significant cooperation and assistance provided by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission. The Department also appreciates the assistance provided by law enforcement authorities in the United Kingdom and in South Africa. You are here U. Department of Justice. Thursday, March 7, Docket No. Attachment s :. Download Indictment. Topic s :. Component s :. Criminal Division. Criminal - Criminal Fraud Section.Maputo — The definitive charge sheet from the Public Prosecutor's Office against 20 people accused of involvement in Mozambique's largest ever financial scandal gives exhaustive details of bribes paid by the Lebanon-based company Privinvest.

Loans on this scale to recently formed companies with no track record, and run by the Mozambican security and intelligence service SISEwere only possible because government officials, notably Finance Minister Manuel Chang, signed loan guarantees - pledging that, if the companies did not repay, the Mozambican state would be liable.

Privinvest became the sole contractor for the three companies, providing them with boats and other assets at vastly inflated prices.

privinvest corruption

But, initially, it was not clear that the Privinvest scheme would win Mozambican political approval. So, according to the prosecutors, one of the Mozambicans working on the project, Teofilo Nhangumele, contacted his old friend Bruno Langa, a SISE officer, to ask how to unblock matters. Langa turned to his friend and business partner, Ndambi Guebuza, the oldest son of the then President, Armando Guebuza. He agreed, provided he received adequate "thanks".

He took the project to his father, who did indeed give the green light. Then the bribes began to flow. The largest bribe paid by Privinvest was for 33 million US dollars, paid to Ndambi Guebuza, the prosecution says. The first major payment from Privinvest was for 14 million dollars, deposited on 26 Marchin Guebuza Junior's Abu Dhabi account.

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In order not to alert the Mozambican financial authorities to what was going on, Ndambi Guebuza opted to use South African companies as middlemen. Hence on 18 JunePrivinvest transferred 2. The FNB was taken aback at the size of this transfer and asked for an explanation of the relationship between Ndambi Guebuza and Privnvest. Apparently they were satisfied with Guebuza's explanation, since the money became available on 20 Junejust two days after the transfer.

The money was then used to acquire real estate, automobiles and for other expenditure. Thus Guebuza Jr acquired one property in South Africa for On 17 JunePrivinvest transferred a furtherdollars to Jouberts Attorneys, at Guebuza's request.

That money was used to buy a Ferrari luxury sports car. Privinvest then, on 23 Apriltransferred Loans on this scale to recently formed companies with no track record, and run by the Mozambican security and intelligence service SISEwere only possible because government officials, notably Finance Minister Manuel Chang, signed loan guarantees — pledging that, if the companies did not repay, the Mozambican state would be liable.

Privinvest became the sole contractor for the three companies, providing them with boats and other assets at vastly inflated prices. But, initially, it was not clear that the Privinvest scheme would win Mozambican political approval.

So, according to the prosecutors, one of the Mozambicans working on the project, Teofilo Nhangumele, contacted his old friend Bruno Langa, a SISE officer, to ask how to unblock matters.

Langa turned to his friend and business partner, Ndambi Guebuza, the oldest son of the then President, Armando Guebuza.

He took the project to his father, who did indeed give the green light. Then the bribes began to flow. The largest bribe paid by Privinvest was for 33 million US dollars, paid to Ndambi Guebuza, the prosecution says. Tags: Africa anti-corruption corruption. Search ACD. Latest Videos. Follow Us. Subscribe Daily Newsletter.

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privinvest corruption

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Three Former Credit Suisse Bankers Arrested for Involvement in Mozambique Debt Deals

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Boustani beats Mozambique charges in US court

Opinion Show more Opinion. Personal Finance Show more Personal Finance.Manuel Chang was arrested on Dec. Tambo International Airport, en route to Dubai from Maputo. He appeared in a Johannesburg court twice this week where his lawyers tried, but failed to argue, that his arrest was unlawful. They face charges related to bribery, securities and wire fraud and money laundering. Boustani negotiated on behalf of Abu Dhabi-based holding company Privinvest.

The IMF suspended hundreds of millions of dollars in much-needed aid and investors were spooked. The investigation, led by the US, reveals a blueprint for how desperately needed development could be exploited by unscrupulous international bankers and greedy politicians.

The indictment also fingers three Mozambicans in addition to Chang, one a senior official in the finance ministry and the other a relative of a senior official. The head of state at the time was former president Armando Guebuza, who stepped down in after serving two terms.

In yet another, they created fake competing bids to convince their colleagues. A second bank is also cited but not named. The investigation shows just how susceptible state companies are to corruption. The deal would see Privinvest supply materials and training to the country still exploring newly discovered off-shore gas deposits.

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Proindicus never did any significant work or generated any real revenue and was set to default on its loan repayments. The investigation shows just how easily state officials can be corrupted. Unsurprisingly, Ematum did no fishing, made no money and defaulted on its first loan payment, due January It became clear Mozambican officials were hiding something when they refused to hand over their books.

A default on these is what finally led to a surprise public scandal in and the subsequent criminal investigation. In the years since the scandal, businesses have closed and jobs were lost as foreign investment decreased, says Matine. Angry Mozambicans want redress. Mozambican civil society has welcomed the US-investigation, which they believe will absolve tax-payers from paying for a crime.

In an election yeara scandal implicating members of the ruling party could be a political disaster, but not so says Matine. Skip to navigation Skip to content. Quartz Daily Brief. Subscribe to the Daily Brief, our morning email with news and insights you need to understand our changing world. Sign me up.

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