Hong Kong

Hong Kong: Cassandra Keung Yuen-Mun

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence for a criminal investigation in Hong Kong into Cassandra Keung Yuen-Mun for allegedly defrauding PacificNet Limited of approximately US$830,000 between November and December 2004.

Insider Talking: December 5, 2005

Liechtenstein-based offshore provider Bryan Jeeves and his Jeeves Group of Companies have been named as defendants in more civil lawsuits alleging racketeering that have been filed at federal courts in the United States regarding South Carolina-registered Derivium Capital LLC; Ex-Bahamas resident and former Grenada diplomat Eric Resteiner is unhappy with the way a criminal action against him is proceeding at the U. S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts, where he is defending 42 counts of fraud and 18 counts of money laundering; and In a move that shames its counterparts in the United Kingdom, Japan and other countries in Europe and the Caribbean, the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission has reprimanded an investment broker and suspended its major shareholder and managing director for three years for “gross negligence” and “serious misconduct” in selling investment products connected with the Imperial Consolidated Group at a time when the group - which was based in the UK and Grenada- was widely known to be suspect.

PayPal records targeted by IRS in offshore tax evasion investigation

The IRS has asked a U. S. federal court for permission to serve a “John Doe” summons on Internet money transfer firm PayPal Inc. as part of a clampdown on tax evasion using offshore credit and debit cards.“The records requested in the summons will identify the holders of bank accounts at, or payment cards issued by banks in, the listed jurisdictions, information which is not otherwise readily available to the Internal Revenue Service,” stated the IRS in its petition.

Newt Utopia: Asian Offshore Centers

Offshore in China; Hong Kong, a brief history; Hong Kong as an Offshore Administrative Base; Macau, a brief history; Macau as an Offshore Administrative Base; How modern Offshore Bookies are operating; and No-Lose Wagering.

Belgium: Sebastiano Di Luciano

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence for a criminal investigation by Belgium into Sebastiano Di Luciano, who was described as "an active member of an international criminal organization for money laundering".

IRS receives permission to serve subpoena on First Data Corp.

The world's largest processor of credit card payments has been ordered by a United States court to assist the IRS in its investigation into tax evasion using offshore accounts.First Data Corp. must turn over information about transactions by holders of American Express, Visa and MasterCard credit cards that were issued by or on behalf of certain offshore financial institutions.

Boss of BVI hedge fund arrested in Hong Kong

The principal of a British Virgin Islands-registered hedge fund administered by the Bank of Bermuda has been arrested in Hong Kong on suspicion of defrauding investors of approximately $56 million. Charles Schmitt, who operated the CSA Absolute Return Fund Ltd., was released on bail on June 17 pending further investigation by local police and the Hong Kong's Securities & Futures Commission.

Pembroke Securities Ltd.: Section 304 Petition

Section 304 Petition for Assistance in Insolvency Proceedings in Australia by Anthony McGrath, as the Foreign Representative of Pembroke Securities Limited, HIH Insurance Limited, HIH Investment Holdings Limited, FAI Insurances Limited, FAI Leasing Finance Pty Limited, FAI Investments Pty Limited, First Mentor Group Pty Limited, FAI Home Security Holdings Pty Limited, HIH Casualty and General Insurance Limited, FAI General Insurance Company Limited, Lanlex No. 65 Pty Limited, CIC Insurance Limited, FAI Overseas Investments Pty Limited, FAI Traders Insurance Company Limited, and World Marine and General Insurance Pty Ltd., at the U. S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

Ukraine: IM Didenko

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence for a criminal investigation in Ukraine into officials of Gradobank for allegedly stealing money received from Germany that was intended to compensate victims of Nazi persecutions.

Lloyd George (Bermuda) defendant in Eaton Vance class action suit

A Bermuda-registered investment firm is a defendant in a class action lawsuit filed by investors in mutual funds operated by Massachusetts-based Eaton Vance, which manages approximately $75 billion of assets. Lloyd George Investment Management (Bermuda) Ltd., which is operated from Hong Kong, was an investment adviser to Eaton Vance's funds during the class period.

Citco slammed by Lancer Group Receiver

An offshore fund administrator has been accused of "impeding" the investigation in the United States into the $600 million collapse of the Lancer group of hedge funds. Citco Fund Services (U.S.A.) Inc. has refused to turn over records concerning BVI-registered Lancer Offshore Inc. and The OmniFund Ltd., which its Netherlands Antilles affiliate administered.

Hong Kong broker and UK bank take action against NASD Resolution Inc.

A Hong Kong-based securities broker and an affiliated U.K.-based bank have applied for a court injunction to prevent a United States regulator from asserting jurisdiction in a dispute with a client.The application was made by Prudential-Bache Securities (Hong Kong) Ltd. and Prudential-Bache International Bank Ltd. at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York on July 28, 2003.

US Department of Justice investigates Genesis Fund

The United States Department of Justice is conducting a criminal investigation into the collapse of a Costa Rica-based investment fund which collapsed with up to $50 million of investor funds missing.The existence of the investigation has been acknowledged in at least two letters sent this year from insiders to investors in The Genesis Fund Ltd., which is incorporated in Nevis.

Insider Talking: November 30, 2002

The British Columbia Securities Commission has scheduled a hearing for December 10 11, 2002 to consider applications to vary asset freeze orders relating to accounts at the Bank of Montreal in Vancouver that were frozen in 2000 as part of

Self-dealing CEO Gregory Pek retires from Brek Energy

Canadian national Gregory Pek has retired as President and CEO of loss making Brek Energy, formerly First Ecom.com, and been replaced by 57 year old Richard Jeffs.Pek stepped down only a few months after overseeing Brek's purchase for $770,000 of

United Kingdom: Neil Edward Walker et al

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence for a criminal investigation in the United Kingdom into Neil Edward Walker, James George Thomas Brooman, Ian David Cale, Irnraan Abid Karim, Barrie John Connor, Timothy Theobald, David Hodgson, Simon Morley, Craig Mark Ireland and Iftekhar Ahmed for alleged tax fraud.

United Kingdom: Nathan Meyyappan et al

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner for a criminal investigation in the United Kingdom into Nathan Meyyappan, Richard Parfett and Ronan Moss for allegedly dishonestly receiving stolen goods, dishonestly arranging to receive stolen goods, conspiracy to commit burglary and conspiracy to receive stolen goods.

Three convicted drug dealers own preferred shares in The Harris Organization

New evidence obtained by OffshoreAlert shows that THREE convicted drug dealers are beneficial owners of the British Virgin Islands-registered parent of The Harris Organization financial services group. The traffickers all own preferred shares, which purport to pay annual interest of 10% in the case of Wallace Stull and James Somerville, and 7% for Lawrence Boulanger.

Sweden: Sven Olof Gothe

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence for a criminal investigation in Sweden into Sven Olof Gothe and Carl-Gustav Backman for alleged embezzlement, breach of trust and bribery.

US court approves application to serve summonses on VISA International for tax evasion investigation

A California court has approved a request by the Internal Revenue Service for leave to file "John Doe" summonses on VISA International as part of an investigation into tax evasion using offshore credit cards. The order, issued on March 28, 2002, allows the IRS to examine the records of VISA credit or debit cards issued "by, through, or on behalf of banks or other financial institutions" in 31 offshore jurisdictions.

Stirling Cooke and First Ecom.com face NASDAQ de-listing

Bermuda-based insurance broker Stirling Cooke Brown Holdings and offshore-owned electronic payments processor First Ecom.com, which is funded largely with offshore money, face having their shares de-listed from in the first half of 2002 unless their stock prices improve. They have until February 11 to get their stocks above the $1 minimum bid that is required for continued listing on the NASDAQ National Market.

Reorganization continues at scandal-plagued Imperial Consolidated

Michael Gilbert, who was severely criticized by a New Zealand judge in a recent court ruling (see separate story), is part of a reorganization that involves the Imperial Consolidated Group and companies with the prefix 'Alpha'.The firm that he is a director of changed its name from Imperial Consolidated (New Zealand) Ltd. to Alpha Equities Asia-Pacific (NZ) Ltd. on November 29, 2001.

Mexican police arrest Andy Mann

Joseph Andy Mann, who is a client of Nevis-based offshore provider Robin Cotterell, was arrested on or around July 23 in Mexico, where he lives.At the end of the month, he was still in custody pending the outcome of extradition proceedings, said a source.

Leon Brener v. Malcolm Alan Novack et al: Complaint

Complaint in Leon Brener v. Malcolm Alan Novack, Marilyn Novack, Watermark (International) Holdings Ltd., Buckingham Holdings International Ltd., Pembroke Trading Company Ltd., and Gabelle Holdings Ltd. at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.

First Ecom.com share price falls below $1, jeopardizes NASDAQ listing

Electronic credit card processing firm First Ecom.com, whose plight was highlighted in the previous edition of Offshore Alert, officially became a penny stock during December. On December 27, 2000, the company's share price fell to just 59 cents on the full NASDAQ system, compared with a high of $34 on the over-the-counter market just ten months earlier.

Court rejects Price Waterhouse bill of $76 m for 63 days of liquidation work

A Hong Kong judge has hit out at the provisional liquidators of the Bermuda-registered Peregrine Group after they and their legal advisers charged fees of $76 million for just 63 days of work. Doreen Le Pichon, Judge of the Court of First Instance High Court, said she was "greatly troubled by the amount involved" and refused to accept the charges of accounting firm Price Waterhouse and its legal advisers unless they could prove the work was reasonable and necessary.