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Insider Talking: April 30, 2005

The biggest creditor in the bankruptcy of Christopher Davy, who was once a senior officer of the tax evasion group The Harris Organization, is none other than the IRS; the dubious liquidation of Imperial Consolidated spin-off Invaro Ltd.; and Canadian Timothy Ryan Babuin receives an eight-year prison sentence for a telemarketing scam against mainly elderly people that ended up causing huge losses for the Bank of Bermuda and Bermuda-based credit card processor First Atlantic Commerce.

David Dodwell settles torturous litigation after 12 years of filings

Bermuda hotelier and ex-Minister of Tourism David Dodwell has settled litigation with a former business partner that lasted more than 12 years, spanned courts in three countries and was notable for its acrimony. An order dismissing U. S.-based Lee Koehler's complaint against Dodwell and garnishment actions against The Reefs Beach Club Limited, of Bermuda; and Windward Properties Limited, of Nevis, was entered at the U. S. District Court for the District Court of Maryland on July 14, 2004.

Antigua & Barbuda: Lester Bird et al

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence - pursuant to a request for judicial assistance from Antigua & Barbuda - for a criminal investigation into Lester Bryant Bird, Asot A. Michael, John E. St. Luce, Robin Yearwood, and Bruce Rappaport for suspected corruption and fraud.

Former Antigua minister investigated for alleged money laundering

Antigua's former Finance Minister has taken legal action in an attempt to thwart a criminal investigation into whether he was involved in money laundering.Asot Michael and Bellwood Services SA filed a civil complaint against The Bank of Bermuda and Bermuda's Commissioner of Police at Bermuda Supreme Court on November 1, 2004.

ASD Bank of Bermuda

Warning by the Bermuda Monetary Authority against ASD Bank of Bermuda, a.k.a. ASD Bank.

Bank of Bermuda clients go on trial for money laundering

Two Bank of Bermuda clients who once ran an illegal gaming business from an office of Hemisphere Management before it was bought by Mutual Risk Management have gone on trial for another scheme.Lewis Denton Rowe, 75, and Patrick Thomas Tibbetts,

Insider Talking: March 31, 2004

A company formed by British investment fraudsters Lincoln Fraser and Jared Brook to disrupt the administration liquidation of their failed Imperial Consolidated Group, including perpetrating an asset recovery fraud against Imperial's investors, is about to go the way of most,

Bermuda hotelier’s nemesis seeks to renew judgment

An application has been made in the United States to renew a $2 million default judgment against Bermuda hotelier and current Shadow Minister of Tourism David Dodwell. It is the latest salvo in legal action that has been going on

Bank of Bermuda sued by former business partner and shareholder

E-commerce solutions provider First Atlantic Commerce Ltd. has filed a lawsuit against its one-time business partner The Bank of Bermuda. Neither party would go into specific details about the nature of the action, which was filed at Bermuda Supreme Court on February 10, 2004.

Bermuda firms affected by $600 m hedge fund collapse

Several Bermuda-registered companies or their clients have been affected by the failure of a hedge fund group which allegedly defrauded its investors of more than $600 million. Subsidiaries or affiliates of the Bank of Bermuda, Bank of Butterfield, Conyers Dill & Pearman, Lines Overseas Management, and the Meridian Group are on the service list for filings at federal court in Miami.

Letter from Bermuda: Poor handling of HSBC’s proposed purchase of the Bank of Bermuda

Among teaching methods used at business colleges is the case study, of which IBM is considered the classic example. Its rise to the top is taught as a shining example of how to manage a new company. Now, the way in which the Bank of Bermuda has handled the public relations side of its potential buy-out by HSBC can be added to the list of case studies, but sadly as a model of how not to do things, a kind of negative case study. People who pay attention to such things say that the deal could hardly have been handled worse. Since shareholders will not vote on the buyout for several weeks, this study may not yet be complete.

Letter from Bermuda: The psychological impact of HSBC’s purchase of Bermuda’s crown jewel

We were not a little surprised this week when the Bank of Bermuda (BoB) announced that it wanted to be purchased by Hong Kong & Shanghai Banking Corporation. The bank is our largest financial institution and the largest private sector employer, until the deal is sealed. We have yet to hear from the bank's shareholders and the Bermuda Monetary Authority, neither of whom is expected to throw up much opposition, although why the shareholders would choose not to turn this deal down is beyond understanding.

Insider Talking: October 31, 2003

A New York-based investment banker who once hired celebrity attorney Robert Shapiro to sue Bermuda-based investment firm Lines Overseas Management was arrested on October 2, 2003 after being criminally indicted for alleged securities fraud; British Virgin Islands-registered Kesman Overseas has been named as a Specially Designated Narcotics Trafficker by the Office of Foreign Assets Control in the United States; A recent report entitled 'Global Economic Crime Survey 2003' by PricewaterhouseCoopers, in association with Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering, of New York, contains some interesting statistics; Banks in the Channel Islands have reported renewed efforts by fraudsters attempting to deceive customers into unnecessarily providing important personal banking information, according to the Commercial Crime Services division of the International Chamber of Commerce; Bermuda's local business industry was coming to grips this month with an announcement that the Bank of Bermuda - a 114-year-old national institution and the world's largest offshore-based bank - is to be bought by HSBC Holdings PLC for US$1.3 billion.

Fraudster pleads guilty, US Attorney to seek $1.6 m from Bermuda firm

A telemarketing fraudster has agreed to assist in an attempt to recover US$1.6 million that the United States Attorney in Los Angeles believes is being held by Bermuda-based e-commerce firm First Atlantic Commerce.Prosecutors believe the funds are the proceeds of Timothy Ryan Babuin's fraudulent activities, according to a plea agreement that he entered into at the U. S. District Court for the Central District of California on July 3, 2003.

Insider Talking: August 31, 2003

Fund manager Brian Paul Kuhn pleads guilty at the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands to several counts of theft of client funds; Switzerland investigates theft of financial data by computer hackers; HedgeWorld Limited closes Bermuda office and relocates its staff to New York; "Marc Harris stole your funds", investment fraudster tells clients; Bermuda-based Bank of Butterfield and Bank of Bermuda expand overseas; and career conman David Tedder is sentenced to five years in prison, fined $1.06 million and ordered to forfeit $2.7 million at federal court in the USA.

Bank of Bermuda CEO files to sell shares worth $2.3 m

Over the last nine months, Bank of Bermuda CEO Henry Smith has notified the SEC that he plans to sell 69,000 of his shares in the bank with an estimated open market value of $2.32 million.SEC filings show that Smith made eight separate 'Planned Sale' filings with the SEC from December 19, 2002 to August 19, 2003. However, there are no filings yet showing that he has sold any.

Insider Talking: June 30, 2003

The Bank of Bermuda sacked 14 staff in June after catching them distributing pornographic e-mails, reported The Royal Gazette newspaper; Imperial Consolidated co-founders Jared Brook and Lincoln Fraser are close to being arrested by the Serious Fraud Office in the United Kingdom, according to the June 12, 2003 edition of 'Private Eye', a British satirical magazine; Meanwhile, UK-registered financial services firm Kingsbridge Holdings PLC has partly blamed its "very disappointing" loss of £1.397 million (US$2.3 million) for the six months ended February 28, 2003 on Imperial Consolidated; While owners of web-sites in the United States are legally protected against libel actions from people who believe they have been defamed on Internet message boards, that does not appear to be the case in the Cayman Islands; In the United States, where there is a tax protester, there is usually an illegal offshore investment scheme not far behind and Eddie Ray Kahn, who lives in Sorrento, Florida, is no exception; The British Virgin Islands Financial Services Commission issued a warning about Richmont Investments Inc. on April 10, 2003; Former Bank of Bermuda (Cayman) officer Marc Vanmarsenille, who lost his job in the aftermath of the Cash 4 Titles fiasco, is a defendant in a civil lawsuit filed at the Turks & Caicos Islands Supreme Court on November 7, 2002; At the same court, a lawsuit has been filed against TCI-registered Sealand Housing Corporation in an attempt to collect on a judgment awarded in the UK High Court; Two businessmen previously exposed in OffshoreAlert for their involvement in the sale and operation of sham offshore credit unions involving Nevis, Panama and the United States have each been sentenced to 25 years in prison, ten of which is suspended, for defrauding a 101-year-old woman out of her life savings; and If creditors of Bahamas-based Suisse Security Bank & Trust were wondering why the winding-up of the bank is taking so long, they should read the prelude to the recently-released written judgment by Bahamas Supreme Court Justice Austin Davis in which he turned down the bank's attempt to regain its banking license, which was suspended on March 5, 2001 and revoked on April 2, 2001.

Affiliate of former BSX-listed firm accused of securities fraud

The Hartcourt Companies has become the latest affiliate of Bermuda-registered Mezzanine Capital, whose shareholders have included subsidiaries of Lines Overseas Management and the Bank of Bermuda, to be accused of securities fraud in the United States. A civil lawsuit was filed by the SEC at the U. S. District Court for the Central District of California on May 27, 2003 against The Hartcourt Companies Inc., which is registered in Utah and based in California; Alan V. Phan, 57, of Long Beach, California; and Yongzhi Yang, 45, of Los Angeles, California.

Insider Talking: April 30, 2003

Nevis Premier Vance Amory seeks independence yet again, Panama ignores multi-million dollar frauds against foreigners but leaps into action when foreigners defraud locals of a relative pittance, U. S. helps BVI authorities obtain evidence against Canadian national Terry Turl, judgment for $2.7 million entered against David Rose, criminal proceedings in Texas against Yank Barry take another extraordinary twist, Towry Law seeks to recover £30 million defrauded from clients, Grenada intends to revoke license of Bank Crozier, Patrick English ordered to testify at trial of civil action involving the Bank of Bermuda, criminal action stated against Dnipropetrovsk, Ukraine branch of Parex Bank, Cayman prosecutors drop money laundering charges against Melvin Taves because of his age, and Banca del Gottardo files complaint in Switzerland against unnamed parties who alleged that it held accounts in the name of ousted Iraqi President Saddam Hussein, including one in the Bahamas. 

Investors in failed Cayman fund file fraud lawsuit

A lawsuit alleging fraud has been filed by multiple plaintiffs who say they invested approximately $79 million in three failed hedge funds, including Cayman Islands-domiliced Bristol Fund.

Estate of cancer victim sues asset protection firm

Asset protection firm Merrill Scott & Associates (in Receivership) helped a U. S.-based doctor hide millions of dollars from his creditors, including a woman dying from cancer, it has been alleged. MSA set up offshore structures for Dr. Thomas Shelton Powers in several offshore centers, including the Bahamas, Belize, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Dominica, Nevis and Panama, according to a complaint filed at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas on December 24, 2002.

Canadian regulators raid boiler room

Canadian securities regulators and armed police have raided a Vancouver boiler room operation closely linked with Brek Energy, whose offshore investors, including the Bank of Bermuda and clients of Lines Overseas Management, have lost tens of millions of dollars in

Insider Talking: October 31, 2002

In the wake of action taken by Swiss authorities against the Zurich based Sovereign Finance Group, which is being investigated for money laundering involving Russia and the Caribbean, regulators in St. Vincent & the Grenadines are taking action against Sovereign

Five years in prison for Cash 4 Titles boss Richard Homa

Another of the masterminds behind a massive investment fraud that cost the Bank of Bermuda tens of millions of dollars has been sentenced to five years in prison. Charles Richard Homa was also ordered to pay restitution of $157 million

Dennis Herula faces new prison threat

Businessman Dennis S. Herula, who was jailed for one month in Bermuda nine months ago trying to open a bank account with false documents, is facing prison again - this time in his native United States.A hearing has been set

Brek Energy fiasco continues, more losses and restated earnings

The farce that is Brek Energy continued in August with the reporting of yet another quarterly loss and a restatement of previous earnings because the firm had classified some expense as revenue.Brek, into which the Bank of Bermuda and clients of Bermuda-based Lines Overseas Management invested in excess of $28 million, reported a net loss of $3.4 million for the quarter ended June 30, 2002.

Brek Energy – past allegations against CFO

OffshoreAlert has uncovered further information casting doubt on the legitimacy of Nasdaq-listed Brek Energy, whose dismal operating results caused the Bank of Bermuda to write off its entire $14.3 million investment.We have obtained details of allegations of impropriety against the firm's Chief Financial Officer in 1995 relating to a former employer.

Suspicious trading in shares of Brek Energy, formerly First Ecom

Stock manipulation or a happy coincidence? That is the unanswered question surrounding the recent share activity of perennial loss-maker Brek Energy, formerly First Ecom.com.For more than ten months, the firm's shares had closed at below $1 on the Nasdaq National Market System in breach of the Exchange's $1 minimum bid requirement for continued listing.

Bermuda firm suspected of fraudulent transfer of assets

A company partly-owned by former Bermuda Premier Sir David Gibbons and other Bermuda-based investors is being investigated for a suspected fraudulent conveyance of assets in the United States. It is the latest chapter in the sordid saga of NimsTec Ltd., a 3-D technology firm which - together with predecessor companies and affiliates - has lurched from one fiasco to another over many years.

USA v. Alvin Irwin Moss et al: Criminal Indictment

Indictment filed by USA against Alvin Irwin Moss, Frederick John Collier, Avraham Zohar, a.k.a. Avy Zohar; Richard Titterington, Geoffrey L. Feldman, Sherrie-Lee Doreen Cave, Peter James O'Sullivan, Rosalind Rose, Wayne Budd, Thomas Montgomery Bayer, Robert Murray Bohn, Stacy Layne Beavers, Beverly Ann Moss, Jeffery Allen Moss, Larry Charles Moss, Michael Joseph Harkin and Michael Elliot Cole at the U. S. District Court for the Western District of Tennessee.

Bank of Bermuda Nasdaq listing – possible arbitrage opportunities

The secondary listing of Bank of Bermuda shares on Nasdaq, effective April 23, has created arbitrage opportunities for traders.Between its U.S. listing debut and the end of April, the bank's stock closed at a higher price on Nasdaq than the BSX on day, once by as much as $1. Nasdaq volume was more than 12 times greater.