Global Investigations Review - The law and practice of international investigations

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Friday, 09 August 2019

Former Barclays executives face new charges in Qatar fraud case

The UK Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has added charges of substantive fraud to existing conspiracy to defraud charges against three former executives of Barclays Bank, according to an indictment published on 8 August. 

The charges relate to how Barclays avoided a government bailout in 2008.

The SFO charged Barclays' former executives Roger Jenkins, Thomas Kalaris, Richard Boath and John Varley in 2017. The charges against Varley, the former CEO of the bank, were dismissed in June.

Jenkins, Kalaris and Boath have pladed not guilty and are due to go to trial on 7 October.

AB Inbev’s Brazilian subsidiary caught up in Operation Car Wash

Ambev, the Brazilian subsidiary of multinational drinks company AB Inbev, allegedly made improper payments to two former presidents to prevent an increase in beverage taxes, according to São Paulo newspaper Estadão.

Brazil’s jailed former finance minister Antonio Palocci reportedly made the allegations during testimony he gave as part of a plea deal he signed with prosecutors.

Palocci said that Ambev made the payments to him, as well as former presidents Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva and Dilma Roussef.

According to Estadão, this is the first time that Ambev has been implicated in the Operation Car Wash investigation.

The company told Reuters that the allegations against it were “false and incoherent”.

Lebanese poultry magnate with ties to Hezbollah sentenced for money laundering

A judge at the US District Court of the District of Columbia in Washington, DC, has sentenced Kassim Tajideen to five years in prison for money laundering. He will also forfeit $50 million.

Tajideen reached a deal with the US Justice Department in December 2018, when he agreed to plead guilty to a single count of money laundering in return for guarantees that prosecutors would not file charges against his wife, his four children or the various companies he still owns.

The original indictment, filed in March 2017, accused the Lebanese businessman of violating OFAC sanctions by shipping frozen chicken from the US, which he sold through distributors in Angola, the Gambia, Sierra Leone and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Prosecutors also alleged Tajideen had contributed “millions of dollars” to Lebanese militant group and political party Hezbollah.

Tajideen, who the US Treasury Department has listed as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist since 2009, was reportedly arrested in Morocco on an Interpol warrant in 2017 and extradited to the US to face trial.

SEC approves proposals to simplify disclosures

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced that it has proposed amendments to reporting requirements designed to simplify disclosures proccesses, according to a press release

The amendments are intended to improve the readability of disclosure documents and discourage repetition of information that is not material. 

The proposal is subject to a 60-day public comment period.

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