DIAK Bank

In 2000, OffshoreAlert revealed that Grenada-licensed DIAK bank was being operated without a license in Saint Vincent and the Grenadines and was offering depositors absurdly-high annual interest of 90%. The bank was petitioned into liquidation in Grenada three years later.
Timeline
31

August

2000

Religion and high interest rates in St. Vincent

Offshore Alert has uncovered an offshore bank that is chartered in Grenada but is operating without a license in St. Vincent, where it is offering depositors annual interest of between 25 and 35 per cent. DIAK Bank is run by Clifford Pitt, a U. S. national who has no prior banking experience and who is described in promotional material as a 'minister of religion' and 'Professor of Theology'.
30

September

2000

Insider Talking: September 30, 2000

As 51-year-old British businessman Leslie Wingham scours the world for places to park millions of dollars allegedly defrauded from clients of Antigua-based Accord Insurance, it is worth taking a look at his none-too-pretty business record over the years; We can report further news on Dominica-based British Trade & Commerce Bank, which acknowledged in our July 31 edition that it was experiencing liquidity and other problems due to having some of its assets frozen in Canada and because of an alleged credit card fraud against the bank; American Eric Resteiner, who bought Viktor Kozeny's luxury home in Lyford Cay in the Bahamas not too long ago, has vacated the property after failing to meet mortgage payments and is believed to be now living in either Switzerland or Cairo, said a source; We recently received another fax from 'Anne Gregory' of The Finance Merchants Group, which purports to sell offshore bank charters from a base in the Bahamas; and We reported last month on how DIAK Bank was being operated without a license in St. Vincent by 'minister of religion' Clifford Pitt and was offering depositors annual interest rates of 25-35 per cent. We have since learned that these rates are peanuts compared with the returns of five per cent per month or 90 per cent annually being offered for five-year certificates of deposits by its sister company, DIAK Asset Management Company Ltd.
31

December

2000

Director of DIAK Bank is defendant in SEC lawsuit

A director of Grenada-registered DIAK Bank is currently fighting a civil lawsuit in which he is accused of participating in an investment fraud relating to a previous venture, we can disclose. Kenneth Lagonia was one of several defendants in a lawsuit filed by the Securities & Exchange Commission on April 14, 1998 at the US District Court for the Southern District of New York.
30

June

2001

DIAK Bank sued for alleged fraud

A Grenada-registered bank that is operated from St. Vincent without a license is being sued for alleged fraud in the United States.DIAK Bank and one of its directors, Kenneth R. Lagonia, are both defendants in a lawsuit filed at the US District Court for the District of Montana on January 17, 2001.
31

March

2002

Creditor forces Mariner International Bank into Receivership

A Receiver has been appointed for St. Vincent & the Grenadines-licensed Mariner International Bank Ltd. following a court application from a creditor claiming to be owed US$818,379. The local High Court appointed chartered accountant Linton A. Lewis as Receiver of MIB on March 15, 2002. Lewis is a former head of the Offshore Finance Authority in St. Vincent.
31

August

2002

Insider Talking: August 31, 2002

European Federal Union Bank Ltd. falsely claims to be based in Antigua; Barbados Central Bank revokes license of Keywest Swiss Investment Bank Inc.; DIAK Bank's Clifford Pitt fails in an attempt to quash a subpoena duces tecum; John Wayne Zidar is gound guilty of fraud and money laundering; US federal court approves IRS motion to serve John Doe summons on MasterCard International for investigation into tax evasion using offshore credit cards; Offshore bankers Julien Giraud and Brian Boeger have each been sentenced to 37 months in prison in the United States; and an auction of property belonging to Imperial Consolidated is due to take place in England.
31

March

2003

Offshore banker implicated in investment fraud scheme

Offshore banker Clifford Pitt, who heads DIAK Bank, which is licensed in Grenada but appears to be managed in St. Vincent & the Grenadines, has been implicated in a fraudulent "high-yield" investment fraud. Pitt assisted Leon F. Harte and Norman Schmidt in a scheme to defraud Colorado-based individuals and institutions out of approximately $20 million, according to the U. S. Government.
30

April

2003

Clifford Pitt investigators target offshore bank accounts

The FBI has obtained a civil seizure warrant for accounts held at the Global Bank of Commerce in Antigua that were used in an alleged $20 million scam.The warrant was issued on March 13, 2003 by the U. S. District Court for the District of Colorado and is part of a criminal investigation that involves St. Vincent-based businessman Clifford Pitt.