Meridian Investment Bank

OffshoreAlert exposed Grenada-licensed Meridian Investment Bank in 2000. The bank’s license was revoked in 2001 and four of the bank’s principals were criminally indicted in Florida in 2002, including a former plumber and an engineer with the Canadian Space Agency. Three pleaded guilty to fraud for which they received non-custodial sentences, but the bank’s Chairman and CEO, Serdar Kalaycioglu, went to trial, at which he was found guilty of multiple counts of fraud by a jury and sentenced to 27 years in prison by the judge.
Timeline
31

January

2000

Latest on massive Grenada banking fraud

Offshore Alert can this month reveal further disturbing details about the massive financial fraud that is being committed on the island of Grenada in what appears to be a joint effort between the island's government and the private sector. What is currently taking place in Grenada mirrors what happened in Montserrat in the late 1980s when approximately 300 'paper' banks established with phantom capital defrauded foreign clients of tens of millions of dollars before eventually being closed down by the UK police in 1989/90.
30

April

2000

Meridian Investment Bank run by former plumber

One of the banks linked with the First International Bank of Grenada group is co-owned and partly run by a former plumber and two former bankrupts, Offshore Alert can reveal. The ex-plumber is Florida resident Sheldon A. Mickelson, 40, who we have been told by two sources is one of the senior partners in Meridian Investment Bank, which is one of the many 'sub-banks' sponsored by FIBG. 
31

May

2000

Business card belies former plumber’s bank directorship denials

Parties involved with Grenada-registered Meridian Investment Bank are still denying that former plumber Sheldon Mickelson and Burdett Streeter are directors of the bank, despite evidence to the contrary.The denials on behalf of Mickelson are particularly bizarre since he has recently been handing out business cards in the US that read 'Meridian Investment Bank Ltd., Sheldon Mickelson, Director'.
30

November

2000

Offshore criminal activity continues unabated in Grenada

Regulators in Grenada are continuing to allow banks belonging to the First International Bank of Grenada group to operate on the island despite FIBG's massive insolvency, we can reveal. The National Commercial Bank of St. Vincent, which is government-owned, is also continuing to provide banking services despite having its UK assets frozen recently over the FIBG fiasco.
31

May

2001

Burdett Streeter sued for alleged fraud in the California

A man who at one time was listed as a Director of Grenada-registered Meridian Investment Bank has been accused of defrauding 59-year-old twin sisters out of $550,000 in a civil lawsuit filed in the United States. California-based Burdett Hale Streeter is alleged to have conned the women out of their savings by selling them into a "High Yield Investment Program" and other schemes that were described as "risk free".
30

June

2001

Meridian Investment Bank principal accused of fraud

A civil fraud lawsuit has been filed in Florida against a former plumber who is a principal of Grenada-registered Meridian Investment Bank. Sheldon Mickelson was named as a defendant in a lawsuit filed at the Seventeenth Judicial Circuit of Florida for Broward County on June 12, 2001. Plaintiffs Atul Bisaria and Deventra Sharma claim that Mickelson and two co-defendants, Mario C. Turcotte and Arthur Godin, defrauded them in a land deal.
30

September

2001

Insider Talking: September 30, 2001

How concerned is the Financial Times newspaper about being used to facilitate fraud? Not enough to stop publishing bogus valuations for the Cayman Islands domiciled Aristocrat Endeavor Fund. The FT is continuing to accept and publish sham Net Asset Values
30

September

2001

Meridian Investment Bank has license revoked in Grenada

Meridian Investment Bank, whose principals include a plumber and an officer with the Canadian Space Agency, has become the latest bank in Grenada to have its license revoked amid allegations of fraud.MIB's banking license was revoked effective September 4, 2001
31

March

2002

Insider Talking: March 31, 2002

Subpoenas have been sent out to several former officers of the First International Bank of Grenada, including Rita Regale, Robert Skirving and Van Brink, to appear for examination in Grenada as part of the liquidation process being carried out by PricewaterhouseCoopers; Yet another Grenada offshore bank has gone out of business amid allegations of fraud against its clients; The Bank of Bermuda has estimated that its remaining potential liability to outstanding litigation relating to the Cayman-based Cash 4 Titles Ponzi scheme, excluding the $67.5 million settlement of a class action lawsuit in the United States, is no greater than $20 million; A civil complaint alleging 'dumpster diving' against international debt recovery firm Interclaim that was reported in last month's edition of OffshoreAlert has been dropped; The incredibly slow - yet inevitable - collapse of The Harris Organization financial services group of Panama appears to be closer than ever; and Bermuda-based stockbroker Carol Green has been ordered by a local court to repay $143,536 of debt run up with her former employer Lines Overseas Management.
31

July

2002

Former FIBG director arrested for another alleged bank fraud

A former director of the fraudulently-operated First International Bank of Grenada has been arrested in the United States on suspicion of committing a $6.6 million fraud involving another bank.DuSean Berkich was arrested in California on May 3, 2002 - nine days after being criminally indicted at the United States District Court for the Northern Mariana Islands on April 24.
31

August

2002

Arrested Bahamas-based accountant has history of involvement with fraudulent companies

Bahamas accountant Michael M. Hepburn, who has been arrested and charged with money laundering in Miami, has a history of involvement with crooked companies, OffshoreAlert can reveal. Hepburn, 54, has provided fake audits for several offshore insurers that have collapsed amid heavy losses and allegations of impropriety, including Paramount Reinsurance Ltd., formerly First Reinsurance Ltd., of Barbados; and Alpine Assurance Ltd. and Savoy Reinsurance Co. Ltd., both of the Turks & Caicos Islands.
30

September

2003

Former FIBG director DuSean Berkich ‘commits suicide’, says attorney

A former director of the fraudulently operated First International Bank of Grenada has apparently committed suicide while awaiting sentence for another banking fraud, according to his attorney.DuSean Berkich apparently killed himself on August 10, 2003 - less than two months
18

October

2003

Three offshore bankers admit fraud conspiracy

Three ex-offshore bankers who were criminally indicted in 'Operation Bermuda Short' in 2002 have each pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud.They are Sheldon Mickelson, 44, a former plumber of West Palm Beach, Florida; Mario Turcotte, 49, of Canada; and Richard Carson, of Westmount, Quebec, Canada, who helped to operate Meridian Investment Bank Ltd., a now-defunct bank once licensed in the crime-ridden Caribbean island of Grenada.
24

January

2004

Jury finds former Canadian Space Agency engineer guilty of fraud involving offshore bank

Former Canadian Space Agency engineer Serdar Kalaycioglu has been found guilty of fraud involving an offshore bank and a bogus mutual fund following a jury trial in the United States that spanned seven weeks. After 21 days of hearing testimony and four days of deliberations, the jury found 40-year-old Kalaycioglu guilty of 11 counts of wire fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida.
29

February

2004

Insider Talking: February 29, 2004

The U. S. Government is seeking to seize the alleged proceeds of narcotics trafficking that are held in accounts at Barclays Bank, in London, England in the name of British Virgin Islands-registered Auxerre Corporation; St. Kitts and Nevis-based Crowne Gold Inc., which is secretly controlled by offshore provider Terry Neal, has been slammed by an Ontario, Canada-based client for allegedly not assisting in the recovery of nearly US$6,000 that the client claims was defrauded from his account by a third-party; U. S.-based Spherion Corporation, which specializes in staffing, recruiting and workforce management, filed a civil complaint against the Cayman Islands Department of Tourism at federal court in the USA on January 29, 2004. Three former insiders of a now-defunct, Grenada-licensed offshore bank have each received non-custodial sentences for their participation in an investment fraud; Meanwhile, two other former insiders with another Grenada-licensed offshore bank, Robert John Skirving and Paul James Peiffer, both of Oregon, have suffered setbacks in their attempts to have their debts wiped out via bankruptcy; Investors who lost millions of dollars in the failed Bahamas-registered Oracle Fund have reached a settlement with the Fund's administrator, reported the Bahama Journal on January 23, 2004; The number of foreign-owned legal entities registered in Bermuda fell by 2.5 per cent from 13,870 to 13,528 during 2003, according to figures recently released by the Registrar of Companies; For a company that claims to manage so much money - more than $2.5 billion - Bermuda-based Orbis Investment Management Ltd. has surprisingly little transparency; A company in which St. Vincent and the Grenadines-licensed offshore bank Omnicorp Bank invested was named as a defendant in a civil lawsuit filed by the SEC at the U. S. District Court for the District of Utah on February 23, 2004; and A participant in an offshore-oriented scam perpetrated by an organization doing business as the Global Prosperity Group or the Institute of Global Prosperity has pleaded guilty to tax evasion in the United States.
28

April

2004

Offshore fraudster Serdar Kalaycioglu jailed for 27 years

Former Canadian Space Agency engineer Serdar Kalaycioglu has been sentenced to 27 years in prison for his role in an offshore banking fraud. The sentence was delivered on April 26, 2004 by Judge Daniel Hurley at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida in West Palm Beach and is one of the longest ever handed down for an offshore-related scam.