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Gmane

From: RoadsEnd <roadsend <at> aol.com>
Subject: Fwd: Dick Cheney and the Russian Mafia
Newsgroups: gmane.culture.discuss.cia-drugs
Date: Wednesday 3rd January 2007 02:22:48 UTC (over 12 years ago)
Begin forwarded message:

> From: [email protected]
> Date: January 2, 2007 12:47:14 PM PST
> To: [email protected]
> Cc: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected],  
> [email protected]
> Subject: Dick Cheney and the Russian Mafia
>
>
> "Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty has reported that Mikhail Fridman  
> (aka Friedman), chairman of Alfa Group Consortium is the vice  
> president of the Russian Jewish Congress. The Globe and Mail deputy  
> editor Chrystia Freeland, in her book, "Sale of the Century:  
> Russia's Wild Ride From Communism To Capitalism", has described  
> Fridman as one of the key [Russian-Israeli Mafia] oligarchs  
> involved in a plot hatched at the World Economic Forum in Davos,  
> Switzerland, to get Boris Yeltsin re-elected in 1996.
>
> "Included with Fridman were such wealthy oligarchs as Pyotr Aven  
> (Fridman's partner in Alfa Group), Vladimir Gusinsky, Boris  
> Berezovsky (whose Mafia ties are described by Forbes senior editor  
> Paul Klebnikov in his book, "Godfather of the Kremlin: Boris  
> Berezovsky and the Looting of Russia"), and Mikhail Khodorkovsky.  
> The oligarchs made their wealth looting the Russian state through  
> the corrupt and rigged "privatization" auctions of state assets.
>
>
>
> http://www.public-i.org/report.aspx?aid=225
> The Center for Public Integrity
> 2 August 2000
> Investigative Report
>
> Cheney Led Halliburton To Feast at Federal Trough
> State Department Questioned Deal With Firm Linked to Russian Mob
>
> By Knut Royce and Nathaniel Heller
>
> WASHINGTON, August 2, 2000 — Under the guidance of Richard Cheney,  
> a get-the-government-out-of-my-face conservative, Halliburton  
> Company over the past five years has emerged as a corporate welfare  
> hog, benefiting from at least $3.8 billion in federal contracts and  
> taxpayer-insured loans.
>
> One of these loans was approved in April by the U.S. Export-Import  
> Bank. [Halliburton] guaranteed $489 million in credits to a Russian  
> oil company whose roots are imbedded in a legacy of KGB and  
> Communist Party corruption, as well as drug trafficking and  
> organized crime funds, according to Russian and U.S. sources and  
> documents.
>
> Those claims are hotly disputed by the Russian oil firm's holding  
> company.
>
> Halliburton, which lobbied for the Ex-Im loan after the State  
> Department initially asserted that the deal would run counter to  
> the "national interest," will receive $292 million of those funds  
> to refurbish a massive Siberian oil field owned by the Russian  
> company, the Tyumen Oil Co., which is controlled by a conglomerate  
> called the Alfa Group.
>
> [ . . . ]
>
> Though there is no evidence that Cheney has espoused business  
> dealings with criminal organizations, Cheney has said publicly that  
> the government should lift restrictions on U.S. corporations in  
> countries that the U.S. government says have sponsored terrorism,  
> such as Libya and Iran.
>
> [ . . . ]
>
> A Russian-American specialist on business practices in the former  
> Soviet Union who has worked with the White House and Pentagon told  
> The Public i that the allegations contained in the 1997 report have  
> been the subject of an investigation by the FSB but that the probe,  
> for unexplained reasons, had been "put away for a better day."
>
> Some of the key elements in the FSB report, a translation of which  
> was obtained by The Public i, are virtually identical to those  
> provided to a former senior American intelligence officer two years  
> earlier by a former KGB major who had been part of the Soviet spy  
> agency's ideological counterintelligence branch.
>
> The former U.S. intelligence officer, who asked not to be further  
> identified, wrote a contemporaneous report of what the former KGB  
> major, at the time working for two banks formed by the KGB, told  
> him in 1995.The intelligence specialist provided a copy of his  
> report to The Public i.
>
> Money laundering, drug trafficking
>
> That document and the FSB report claim that Alfa Bank, one of  
> Russia's largest and most profitable, as well as Alfa Eko, a  
> trading company, had been deeply involved in the early 1990s in  
> laundering of Russian and Colombian drug money and in trafficking  
> drugs from the Far East to Europe.
>
> The former KGB major, who with the fall of communism in the late  
> 1980s had himself been involved in the plan by the KGB and  
> Communist Party to loot state enterprises, said that Alfa Bank was  
> founded with party and KGB funds, and quickly attracted rogue  
> agents who had served in anti-organized-crime units.
>
> "They (the rogue agents on the bank’s payroll) quickly determined  
> that dealing in drugs would bring the highest profits with  
> literally no risk in Russia," according to the former KGB officer.
>
> He claimed that a "large channel of heroin transit was established  
> from Burma through Laos, Vietnam, to the Far East [Siberia]." From  
> there the drugs were camouflaged as flour and sugar shipments and  
> forwarded on to Germany. The drug operation was controlled by a  
> Chechen mob family, he said.
>
> The FSB report, too, claimed that the Alfa Group’s top executives,  
> oligarchs Mikhail Fridman and Pyotr Aven, "allegedly participated  
> in the transit of drugs from Southeast Asia through Russia and into  
> Europe."
>
> [ . . . ]
>
> The former U.S. intelligence officer who interviewed the ex-KGB  
> major said that such a pattern was not unusual. He said that the  
> KGB and Komsomol often teamed up with bright young entrepreneurs  
> like Fridman in the late 1980s and early 1990s and provided seed  
> money to launch private ventures, often involving the importing of  
> computers or the formation of banks. He said that Russian oligarch  
> Mikhail Khodorkovsky, whose reputedly heavily mobbed-up Menatep  
> bank folded in 1998, also got his seed money from the Komsomol and  
> also initially dealt in computers. He said that 47 percent of the  
> KGB agents in the Soviet Union had been groomed by Komsomol.
>
> The FSB report also claims that top officials of the Alfa Group  
> "cooperated" with a number of Russian crime organizations, notably  
> the notorious Solntsevo mob family in Moscow. The Russian-American  
> specialist on business practices in Russia, who has a wide array of  
> contacts inside Russia's law enforcement and intelligence  
> communities, agreed that Alfa Bank, as well as others, are used by  
> the Solntsevo crime family.
>
> As with most of Russia's post-Soviet privatization efforts, Alfa  
> Groups takeover of Tyumen Oil was complicated and fraught with  
> allegations of impropriety. In July of 1997, Novy Holdings, a joint  
> venture involving Alfa and a New York-based Russian-American firm,  
> Access Industries, purchased a 40 percent stake in Tyumen Oil from  
> the Russian government for roughly $810 million. The sale, however,  
> was not without controversy. Russian President Boris Yeltsin  
> himself instructed his privatization czar, Deputy Prime Minister  
> Alfred Kokh, to "personally control the investment tender of the  
> TNK company [Tyumen Oil]" because he was concerned that Tyumen's  
> worth might have been grossly undervalued due to Alfas improper  
> influence on the audit of the oil giant.
>
> A second cash auction for the remainder of the oil company was  
> scheduled for later that year, with most analysts predicting that  
> Alfa would seek to increase its stake to a majority position. But  
> the auction was suspended in November of 1997, drawing criticism  
> that the government was deliberately delaying the sale of Tyumen in  
> order to give Alfa additional time to raise the necessary funds it  
> needed to take control of the company. The most outspoken critic of  
> Alfas attempt to wrest control of Tyumen was Viktor Paly, general  
> director of Nizhnevartovskneftegaz, Tyumen Oil's production  
> subsidiary. Paly held a 9% stake in Tyumen Oil through an off-shore  
> company Cadet Establishment.
>
> By February of 1998, however, following meetings at Alfas offices  
> in Moscow, Paly agreed to divest his stake in Tyumen Oil to Alfa.  
> One month later, Alfa bought an additional 1.17 percent of Tyumen  
> Oil as part of the long-delayed second auction, raising its total  
> stake in the oil company to a 51 percent controlling position.
>
> Was Cheney's chief of staff
>
> Tyumen [Oil] could have significant access to the White House  
> should the Bush-Cheney ticket win in the November presidential  
> elections. Tyumen's lead attorney at Akin Gump is James C. Langdon  
> Jr., a managing partner at the firm. He is also one of George W.  
> Bush's "Pioneers," one of the elite fund raisers who have brought  
> in at least $100,000 for the Republican presidential hopeful.
>
> Last June in Washington, Langdon helped coordinate a $2.2 million  
> fund raiser for Bush, and agreed to help recruit 100 lawyers and  
> lobbyists in the capital to raise $25,000 each. Langdon's secretary  
> told The Public i that he was away on travel this week and could  
> not be immediately reached.
>
> Tyumen could also look to one of Cheney's deputies for access  
> should the Republicans triumph in November. One of Halliburton's  
> top lobbyists, Dave Gribbin, was Cheney's chief of staff at the  
> Defense Department during the Bush administration, and his lobbying  
> activities have borne fruit for Halliburton over the last several  
> years.
>
> As with Halliburton's campaign donations, the company's lobbying  
> expenditures increased under Cheney's watch. In 1996, the company  
> spent $280,000 on lobbying. In 1997, the company increased those  
> expenditures to $360,000, to $540,000 in 1998, and to $600,000 in  
> 1999.That upward trend parallels the increasing success Halliburton  
> has had in winning government contracts, loans, and guarantees  
> under Cheney's direction.
>
> Not surprisingly, several key issues relating to Halliburton's  
> success in securing government largesse appear frequently on the  
> company's lobbying reports. Among them are "OPIC Reauthorization,"  
> Defense Appropriations Bills," and "Foreign Operations  
> Appropriations Bills Funding EXIM, OPIC, and TDA" [the Trade and  
> Development Agency, a government agency similar to Ex-Im and one  
> that also funds Halliburton projects around the world]. Gribbin  
> also lists "EXIM," "OPIC," and "TDA" as federal agencies that were  
> contacted as part of the company's lobbying activities. Gribbin did  
> not return repeated calls from The Public i.
>
> In no small irony, the official Bush Web site, recently revamped to  
> accommodate the addition of Cheney to the ticket, notes in the  
> "Foreign Policy" section that the duo supports "redirecting  
> American assistance, investment and loans to the Russian people,  
> not to the bank accounts of corrupt officials."
>
>
>
> Scandals herald a purge of Yeltsin's allies
>
> STRATFOR.COM
> Global Intelligence Update
> September 2, 1999
> http://www.atimes.com/c-asia/AI03Ag01.html
>
> An avalanche of allegations and investigations is rapidly burying  
> the allies and officials of the Yeltsin administration. The timing  
> and evidence suggests this is far more than just Luzhkov versus  
> Yeltsin in pre-election scandal-mongering. This is a full-scale  
> assault on Yeltsin's ruling political and economic cabal by  
> elements of Russia's security apparatus, which could quickly lead  
> to Yeltsin's replacement by Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. If the  
> purge gets out of hand, will Putin and his backers fall victim to a  
> still more reactionary force?
>
> Analysis:
>
> Russian President Boris Yeltsin's administration and his allies are  
> besieged by allegations and investigations. The most recent, which  
> broke on the front page of the New York Times August 19, involved  
> allegations that Yeltsin administration officials were involved in  
> laundering billions of dollars from criminal activities and  
> possibly from IMF loans through the Bank of New York and the  
> Republic National Bank. The IMF has denied that its funds have been  
> laundered through U.S. banks.
>
> Concurrent with this are ongoing investigations into allegations  
> that close Yeltsin ally Boris Berezovsky diverted funds from the  
> state airline Aeroflot to a private Swiss bank account and that  
> Yeltsin, his family members and his administration accepted bribes  
> from the Swiss construction firm awarded the contract to renovate  
> the Kremlin. All these scandals come hot on the heels of confirmed  
> reports that the Russian central bank diverted IMF loans through an  
> offshore shell company, using them to speculate on the global  
> currency markets.
> A silent coup has occurred in the Kremlin [http://www.stratfor.com/

> SERVICES/GIU/082399.ASP]. Now the purge is under way. Those  
> reportedly under investigation in the Bank of New York case  
> include: Yeltsin's daughter and close advisor Tatyana Dyachenko;  
> former Deputy Prime Minister Anatoly Chubais; former Deputy Prime  
> Minister Oleg Soskovets; former Finance Minister and now G-8  
> Relations Advisor Alexander Livshits; oligarch and former Finance  
> Minister Vladimir Potanin; oligarch Mikhail Khodorkovsky; and  
> reputed Russian mob boss Semyon Mogilevich, who reportedly had  
> business relations with senior Russian officials, including Chubais  
> and Viktor Chernomyrdin.
>
> Also under investigation are 33 Russian companies that do business  
> with the Bank of New York, including Khodorkovsky's Yukos oil  
> company, Avtovaz and Sibneft, both connected to Berezovsky, and  
> Lukoil, headed by oligarch Vagit Alekperov. Berezovsky is joined by  
> Yeltsin's son-in-law under investigation in the Aeroflot scandal.  
> And the Mabetex scandal drags in Yeltsin himself, his two daughters  
> and Borodin.
>
> Great swaths of Yeltsin's family, administration and the oligarchs  
> who supported him, are poised for conviction for economic crimes.  
> They are even feeding on one another, with Berezovsky taking on  
> oligarchs Vladimir Gusinsky and Rhem Viakhirev, and Khodorkovsky  
> beginning to turn against the administration. The swirling scandal  
> not only holds the possibility of gutting the kleptocracy and  
> ousting Yeltsin, leaving Putin as president before next year's  
> elections, but also plays into a strong domestic anti-American and  
> anti-Western sentiment.
>
> Newsweek, September 6, 1999
>
> The Gangster State
> The Clinton administration hoped Yeltsin and his reformers would be  
> able to
> lead Russia toward democracy. Instead, what Russia got was  
> kleptocracy.
>
> By Michael Hirsh
>
> It began as a spore of suspicion — a tip that British investigators  
> picked up
> in some boxes of corporate documents last summer. That led them to  
> Canada,
> and then, along with the FBI, to several accounts at a respectable,  
> midsize
> New York bank. Nothing very startling — until authorities realized  
> that
> billions and billions of dollars were getting "laundered" through  
> the Bank of
> New York accounts, apparently shunted through a maze of companies  
> traced to
> Russia. Today the case has become a scandal that threatens to  
> unravel the
> whole threadbare structure of relations between Russia and the West.
>
> The facts of the case, first reported by The New York Times on Aug.  
> 19,
> remain murky. A senior FBI official familiar with the investigation  
> cautioned
> it is still at an early stage, and along with other officials he  
> expressed
> concern the story may have been prematurely overblown by some  
> media. "All we
> know is that lots of money was going in and out of these accounts.  
> Whether
> it's nefarious or not we really don't know," the FBI official said.
> "Basically we don't know if this is legitimate money or illegitimate."
>
> Investigators say at least $4.2 billion and as much as $10 billion  
> may have
> been laundered — funneled through legitimate accounts so it appears  
> clean —
> from as early as October 1997 to March of this year. This was done  
> through
> Bank of New York accounts largely in the name of Benex Worldwide  
> Ltd., a firm
> that authorities say is controlled by Semyon Mogilevich, allegedly  
> a vicious
> mafioso known as the "brainy don." The accounts flowed through a  
> department
> managed by Natasha Kagalovsky, a bank executive who has since been  
> suspended.
> Her husband is Konstantin Kagalovsky, an admired economic reformer  
> who was,
> as recently as 1995, Russia's chief delegate to the International  
> Monetary
> Fund. Neither she nor her husband has been charged with any  
> wrongdoing.
>
> Playing the Blame Game
>
> Some of Russia's most prominent names have been mentioned in  
> connection with
> the money-laundering scandal. Who did what isn't at all clear.  
> Investigators
> are still trying to unravel the connections. All of the people  
> mentioned deny
> wrongdoing, and none has been charged.
>
> Tatyana Dyachenko: Did Yeltsin's daughter launder money through a  
> mobster and
> share $1 million in Swiss 'pocket money'?
>
> The Kagalovskys: Was Russian-born Natasha, a top Bank of New York  
> executive,
> in cahoots with oilman-husband Konstantin?
>
> Yuri Luzhkov: Moscow's mayor wants to be president, but has he been  
> playing
> footsie with money-launderers in the mob?
>
> Boris Berezovsky: If Yeltsin's circle wanted to launder money,  
> rivals ask,
> wouldn't they turn to his favorite tycoon?
>
> The biggest mystery is where all these billions came from. It's too  
> much
> cash, most investigators agreed, to have flowed only from  
> "traditional"
> Russian mob pursuits like prostitution, drugs or even arms sales. More
> likely, authorities believe, the money was looted from IMF loans  
> (The IMF has
> asked for a new audit of Russian central-bank transactions,  
> NEWSWEEK has
> learned) or represents revenues from state assets like oil or  
> aluminum. It
> might even be legitimate capital fleeing Russia. Whatever the  
> source of the
> money, it probably originated with some of Russia's leading  
> political and
> business figures, many of them engaged in what seems to be an  
> unholy alliance
> with Mogilevich.
>
> How do two men like Mogilevich and Kagalovsky — seemingly from  
> opposite poles
> of Russian society — get linked to the same scandal? Investigators  
> say it's
> the main problem in Russia today. Virtually no one, from the nation's
> business elite to President Boris Yeltsin to his major political  
> opponents
> in next year's presidential election, seems untainted any longer by
> corruption. Here the connection may amount only to innuendo. But if  
> it turns
> out that massive laundering is involved, "this [case] is a dagger  
> aimed at
> the heart of the Russian elite we have built up in the post- 
> communist era,"
> says a U.S. official with knowledge of the investigation.
>
> Authorities are fairly convinced that Mogilevich is a kind of  
> lodestone
> drawing in a vast network of official Russian corruption. One U.S.  
> official
> familiar with the probe says Mogilevich and other principals in the  
> case have
> corporate links with both of Russia's main power centers: Boris  
> Berezovsky,
> the industrialist and media baron who is Yeltsin's main financier; and
> Systema, a group of companies supporting Yeltsin's main political  
> rival,
> Moscow Mayor Yuri Luzhkov. Indeed, by last weekend both the Yeltsin  
> and
> Luzhkov camps were hurling charges of corruption at each other  
> based on the
> case.
>
> U.S. intelligence sources tell NEWSWEEK that the CIA, which has long
> watched Mogilevich, believes he also had business interactions with  
> other
> members of the political elite, especially former prime minister  
> Viktor
> Chernomyrdin and former economic czar Anatoly Chubais (both of whom  
> deny
> wrongdoing). Russia's political and business elite sought out  
> Mogilevich,
> officials say, because of his money-laundering savvy. Mogilevich  
> has also
> denied criminal activity, and the FBI official cautioned that,  
> contrary to
> some reports, there is as yet no direct criminal evidence linking  
> the Bank of
> New York case to President Yeltsin or his powerful daughter,  
> Tatyana, or to
> so-called oligarchs like Berezovsky (who like Luzhkov has also said  
> he is
> guilty of nothing criminal).
>
> Whatever the details, the case is really about the unmaking of a myth.
> Throughout the 1990s the Clinton administration has unstintingly  
> promoted the
> idea that in Russia, liberal democracy was slowly replacing  
> communism. That
> may still happen, but for now Russia seems mired in a transition  
> stage that
> no one anticipated: the gangster state. "We probably have been  
> deluding
> ourselves that reform has taken hold," says Brent Scowcroft,
> national-security adviser to President Bush. Many investigators and  
> Russia
> experts now say that the so-called Russian mafia is so tied in with  
> the
> Russian state that the two are no longer distinguishable.
>
> Ironically, it may be Al Gore who pays for the sins of the Russian  
> elite.
> Last week GOP presidential candidates criticized the vice  
> president, the
> leading Democratic contender, for his deep involvement in the Clinton
> administration's Russia policy. Some Clinton critics suggested that  
> key
> Russia policymakers in Washington — especially Deputy Secretary of  
> State
> Strobe Talbott and Secretary of the Treasury Larry Summers — basically
> facilitated the fleecing of Russia by looking the other way at  
> corruption.
>
> But the Clinton administration is not admitting defeat, yet. "Calm  
> down,
> world," Talbott said in an interview with NEWSWEEK. "We have been  
> aware from
> the beginning that crime and corruption are a huge problem in  
> Russia and a
> huge obstacle to Russian reform." Talbott insisted: "Russian reform  
> is not
> over." But "it's going to take decades [and] the problem will only  
> get worse
> if you isolate Russia." Others note that some reform, like the  
> banishment of
> central planning, has taken hold.
>
> In the end, the Bank of New York case may rank as one of the great  
> swindles
> of the 20th century — or it may just be another case of vast  
> capital flight
> from the wreckage of the Russian economy. The bank, which also denies
> wrongdoing, on Friday fired another Russian-born executive, Lucy  
> Edwards,
> reportedly for gross negligence and falsification of bank records,  
> among
> other reasons.
>
> But the real mystery was Kagalovsky and her husband, Konstantin.
> After leaving his IMF post, he plunged into Russia's financial  
> world, working
> as VP at Menatep Bank. The now bankrupt Menatep was known to
> have been deeply connected to the Russian central bank — the  
> recipient of IMF
> money — through its purchase of Russian treasuries. Through their  
> New York
> attorney, Stanley Arkin, the couple said they "have never been  
> involved in
> money laundering in any way, shape or form." The point was well  
> taken: is it
> even possible to "launder" from a country where the theft of state  
> assets is
> not against the law? That's one of many questions that  
> investigators may
> spend years pondering.
>
> With Owen Matthews in Moscow, William Underhill in London, Daniel  
> Klaidman in
> Jerusalem and Gregory Vistica in Washington
>
> *******
>
> The Times (UK), August 30 1999
>
> Russian mafia boss mocks FBI 'ravings'
>
> BY DAVID LISTER, ALICE LAGNADO AND JAMES BONE
>
> THE secretive Russian mafia boss at the heart of a massive money- 
> laudering
> investigation broke his silence over the weekend to claim that he  
> was the
> victim of "delirious ravings" by the FBI.
>
> Semyon Yukovich Mogilevich, who has been linked to an inquiry said  
> to involve
> up to $15 billion (£9.4 billion) of laundered money, protested his  
> innocence
> to a Moscow newspaper. In an interview with Moskovsky Komsomolets,  
> he mocked
> accusations that he had laundered money: "Once I accidentally  
> washed five
> dollars I'd left in a shirt pocket. I must say they looked a lot  
> cleaner and
> brighter after that. And the exchange bureau happily changed them  
> for me.
>
> "If I could earn - I stress earn, not steal - just a third of that  
> money, I
> could say that I had been lucky in life. Alas, I have only been  
> able to read
> about this kind of money."
>
> In a direct swipe at the FBI, which is leading an inquiry focusing  
> on the
> Bank of New York and allegations that it was used as a conduit to ship
> illegal Russian money out of the country, Mr Mogilevich said: "All the
> accusations about 'laundering' money, drug trafficking,  
> prostitution and
> contract killings are the fruit of delirious ravings on the part of  
> the FBI
> as they try to get more funds from the US Congress for their fight  
> against
> the 'Russian mafia'."
>
> Mr Mogilevich, known as "The Brainy Don", is alleged to be the head of
> Solnetsevo, Russia's largest organised crime group. He is based in  
> Hungary,
> but is thought to have gone to Moscow in recent weeks. He says that  
> he is a
> legitimate businessman.
>
> The Russian mafia is said to have all but taken over most of Russia's
> commercial banks earlier this decade and has actively sought to  
> channel money
> out of the country after the collapse of communism and the  
> privatisation of
> large areas of Russian industry. Mr Mogilevich referred to the  
> accusations
> that up to $15 billion had been transferred out of Russia as  
> "clownery".
>
> He said: "There just cannot be this kind of money in Russia. In  
> better times,
> our oil companies - Lukoil, Sibneft and the others - would extract  
> about 150
> million tonnes of oil. If you sold all of it - and this is Russia's  
> main
> source of hard currency - without returning one cent, that would  
> hardly bring
> you $15 billion. Where's the rest?"
>
> Mr Mogilevich has been linked to the widening scandal through a  
> network of
> companies all going under the name of Benex, which held an account  
> at the
> Bank of New York.
>
> His relationship with the Bank of New York has focused on the role  
> of Peter
> Berlin, a director of a British company called Benex Worldwide and  
> an officer
> of Benex International, a American company based in New Jersey.
>
> Mr Berlin is the husband of Lucy Edwards, who was dismissed from  
> the Bank of
> New York's London office on Friday. Ms Edwards was spotted last  
> week in the
> lobby of a stylish Moscow hotel.
>
> It was also reported at the weekend that Natasha Gurfinkel  
> Kagalovsky, who
> works in the bank's New York office and has been sent on paid  
> leave, has now
> turned up in London.
>
> In a new claim, a senior Russian businessman linked to the  
> inquiries said
> that Moscow officials moved considerable sums of cash abroad just  
> before the
> devaluation of the rouble last year.
>
> Mikhail Khodorkovksy, the former chairman of Menatap, a Russian  
> bank that is
> one of several under investigation, told The New York Times that  
> Russian
> officials began selling government securities because they had inside
> knowledge of the devaluation of the rouble. He said they  
> transferred the
> money abroad through a "front company" and then into the Bank of  
> New York.
>
> Anyone who sold government securities before the Russian financial  
> collapse
> and devaluation of the rouble last August would have gained  
> immensely from
> knowing that the currency was about to be devalued.
>
> The investigation is also said to have touched on whether some of  
> the money
> moved through the Bank of New York may have been diverted from aid  
> given to
> Russia by the International Monetary Fund. The claims have led to  
> renewed
> calls for tighter controls on IMF loans to help to prop up Russia's  
> faltering
> economy.
>
> In the US, the claims have also caused embarrassment to Al Gore, the
> Vice-President, and are threatening seriously to hurt his ambitions  
> to become
> President Clinton's successor in the White House.
>
> Mr Gore has repeatedly put the case for fresh funds to Russia to  
> help the
> tottering state in its transition from former communist state to  
> capitalist
> democracy.
>
> ----------------------
>
> http://www.telusplanet.net/public/mozuz/odynsky/

> lemieszewski20020729macaulay.html
> Mr. Minister, in my opinion, any current concern over national  
> security in Canada involving terrorists and organized crime should  
> take into account the Russian Mafia. In our neighbouring country  
> south of the border, the Russian Mafia and its threat to their  
> national security was highlighted by remarks made by Louis Freeh,  
> former head of the American Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI),  
> who said: "the Russian Mafia was the greatest threat to US national  
> security". That remark was made before the 9-11 tragedy.
>
> However, with reports that the Russian Mafia is providing arms to  
> Al Qaeda and has access to nuclear weapons from the former USSR,  
> there is no diminishment in need for concern.
>
> It has been estimated that the Russian Mafia has grown to more than  
> 8,000 groups and has invaded North America displacing the Cosa  
> Nostra as the most powerful criminal syndicate. It has not only  
> made alliances with the Italian Mafia, but also with the Colombian  
> drug cartels, the Chinese Triads and Japanese Yakuza, and the  
> Israeli Mafia (eg. cornering the market on ecstasy drug smuggling).  
> The Russian Mafia has been using its expertise through former KGB  
> members who have joined the mob in great numbers after the breakup  
> of the USSR. The Russian Mafia have also been corrupting  
> governments around the world with proceeds from narcotics and arms  
> smuggling.
>
> For example, I wish to point out that the press has reported  
> extensively about the Jewish gangsters in the Solntsevo criminal  
> syndicate of the Russian Mafia. It has mentioned the names of  
> Solntsevo members such as Semion "Brainy Don" Mogilevich, Grigori  
> Loutchansky and Vadim Rabinovich. The New York Review of Books  
> (16Nov00) reported that Grigori Loutchansky and Vadim Rabinovich  
> were Mogilevich's "lieutenants". Mogilevich has been described as  
> "The World's Most Dangerous Gangster" (Village Voice; 20May98).  
> Crime Digest (produced by the U.S. Embassy in Ukraine) has reported  
> that Mogilevich is a high-ranking members of the Solntsevo criminal  
> syndicate.
>
> Other media has linked Mogilevich to arms smuggling (including the  
> provision of Scud missiles to Iraq and arms to the Al Qaeda), drug  
> trafficking, prostitution, extortion, and political corruption.  
> According to Friedman, Mogilevich made huge sums of money smuggling  
> heroin from Canada into Russia. He even bought an airline in  
> Georgia to smuggle heroin from the Golden Triangle into Europe.  
> Friedman writes that Mogilevich also sold millions of dollars of  
> pilfered weapons. And your government has not prevented him from  
> operating in Canada during the 1990s in stock fraud on the Toronto  
> Stock Exchange through the YBM Magnex company.
>
> You may recall, Mr. Minister, that Mogilevich was the founder of  
> YBM Magnex, a front shell company for the money laundering of the  
> Russian Mafia in Canada. YBM Magnex has since gone bankrupt in one  
> of the largest stock scams in Canadian history involving almost $1  
> billion in capitalization. YBM Magnex is currently the subject of  
> OSC hearings which have included testimony by David Peterson, the  
> former Liberal Premier of Ontario and Board of Director member of  
> YBM Magnex. Mogilevich has also been linked to the estimated $10- 
> $15 billion in money laundering for the Russian Mafia through the  
> Bank of New York.
>
> The press has reported that Grigori Loutchansky is also involved in  
> arms smuggling and nuclear materials smuggling. Apparently his  
> background is with the KGB. He is associated with a company called  
> Nordex which was set up to facilitate the flight capital transfer  
> of the Communist Party out of the former USSR. Loutchansky has been  
> dubbed as "the world's most investigated man" ("The Russia  
> Connection"; TIME; 8Jul96) and has the distinction of being the  
> sole subject of a two-day conference by Interpol, an organization  
> where Canada has membership.
>
> Remarkably, despite his criminal record, Loutchansky was able to  
> attend a fundraiser in the USA for President Bill Clinton and Al  
> Gore. Recently, Loutchansky was wanted for questioning as part of  
> "Operation Spiderweb" in Europe, a police investigation of  
> organized crime, where some 50 people were arrested in a widespread  
> sweep. The Observer (16Jun02) reported that the criminal ring  
> laundered as much as $9 billion. Bank accounts in Europe and Canada  
> were seized. The European money laundering ring was also linked to  
> Mogilevich and the Bank of New York money laundering scheme for the  
> Russian Mafia.
>
> The press has also reported that Vadim Rabinovich, Grigori  
> Loutchansky's Nordex partner, is also a member of the Solntsevo and  
> has been linked to arms smuggling. Rabinovich is also the president  
> of the All-Ukrainian Jewish Congress in Ukraine.
>
> Despite having a criminal record, Rabinovich also attended a  
> fundraiser in USA for President Bill Clinton and Al Gore. Both the  
> Mossad and FBI have accused Rabinovich of weapons smuggling and  
> having ties to the Russian Mafia (Deutsche Presse-Agentur;  
> 15May01). Rabinovich, Mogilevich, and Loutchansky have criminal  
> records according to media reports.
>
> It has also been reported that Loutchansky/Nordex were linked to  
> Marc Rich, the fugitive on the FBI's "Most Wanted" list. Marc Rich  
> was wanted for tax evasion and trading with some of the countries  
> recently mentioned by President Bush as belonging to the "axis of  
> evil" in the "war against terrorism."
>
> You may recall, Mr. Minister, that Marc Rich also had ties to the  
> Russian Mafia (and even the Mossad according to the New York Post  
> edition of 5Feb01) and was given a very controversial last minute  
> pardon by President Clinton after Clinton received some $500,000  
> for his presidential library from Denise Rich (ex-wife of Marc Rich).
>
> Fugitive Rich was the subject of intense lobbying for a pardon by  
> Jewish individuals and organizations such as Abraham Foxman of the  
> Anti-Defamation League, Marlene Post of Hadassah and Birthright  
> Israel, Birthright Israel founder Michael Steinhardt, and Rabbi  
> Irving “Yitz” Greenberg, chairman of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial  
> Council and president of Steinhardt’s Jewish Life Network. Other  
> media reports have also described Marc Rich's involvement with the  
> Russian Mafia in the 1990s (ABC News, Newsday) and partnership with  
> Grigori Loutchansky (Intelligence Newsletter; 8Mar01).
>
> According to Robert I. Friedman's book, "The Red Mafiya: How The  
> Russian Mob Has Invaded America", the Solntsevo criminal syndicate  
> established a beachhead for the Russian Mafia in Brighton Beach,  
> Brooklyn, where the Russian Jewish Mafia was known as the  
> Organizatsiya. The Organizatsiya was headed by Vyacheslav  
> "Yaponchik" Ivankov, whose relative, Vyacheslav Sliva, was the boss  
> in Canada, based in Toronto. The Canadian Jewish News of 23Aug01  
> has a book review of the Red Mafiya (though they misspell  
> Mogilevich as Mogilovich).
>
> Another Russian Mafia gangster based in Toronto was Joseph Sigalov.  
> According to Friedman, Sigalov's legitimate business affairs "were  
> little more than a cover for international heroin smuggling, arms  
> trafficking, and extortion". Sigalov was linked to both Ivankov and  
> Sliva. Friedman writes that Robert Kaplan, the former Liberal  
> Member of Parliament, and "Canada's solicitor general in charge of  
> the Royal Canadian Mounted Police and the Canadian Security  
> Intelligence Service (the nation's CIA) from 1980 to 1984, and a  
> member of Parliament for twenty-five years until he stepped down in  
> 1993, was Sigalov's business adviser for thirteen months beginning  
> sometime in 1994." Friedman goes on to say that "Sigalov was the  
> publisher of Exodus, an influential Orthodox Jewish newspaper in  
> Toronto sponsored by the Chabad movement, which was active in  
> resettling Russian Jewish refugees."
>
> Rabinovich is not the only Jewish Congress member linked to the  
> mafia by the press. Vladimir Gusinsky was the former president of  
> the Russian Jewish Congress and perhaps is still on the executive  
> of the World Jewish Congress (see "Russia's Biggest 'Mafia' Is the  
> KGB"; Wall Street Journal Europe; 22Jun94). Dmitri Simes even  
> compared Gusinsky to Meyer Lansky (PBS's NewsHour with Jim Lehrer;  
> 16Jun00). Gusinsky's business partner was Mikhail Mirilashvili, who  
> was the director of the St. Petersburg chapter of the Russian  
> Jewish Congress. Mirilashvili is currently on trial for kidnapping  
> (see "Top Russian Jew Arrested"; CBS News; 24Jan01).
>
> Gusinsky was replaced for the top job at the Russian Jewish  
> Congress by Leonid Nevzlin, who was the co-founder and No. 2  
> executive at the Menatep Group. The Menatep Bank has been linked to  
> the Russian Mafia money laundering scandal at the Bank of New York  
> (see the "Russian Money Churning Has a Familiar Connection";  
> Washington Report on Middle East Affairs; Oct/Nov99; pp.64-65).
>
> Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty has reported that Mikhail Fridman  
> (aka Friedman), chairman of Alfa Group Consortium is the vice  
> president of the Russian Jewish Congress. The Globe and Mail deputy  
> editor Chrystia Freeland, in her book, "Sale of the Century:  
> Russia's Wild Ride From Communism To Capitalism", has described  
> Fridman as one of the key oligarchs involved in a plot hatched at  
> World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, to get Boris Yeltsin re- 
> elected in 1996. Included with Fridman were such wealthy oligarchs  
> as Pyotr Aven (Fridman's partner in Alfa Group), Vladimir Gusinsky,  
> Boris Berezovsky (whose mafia ties are described by Forbes senior  
> editor Paul Klebnikov in his book, "Godfather of the Kremlin: Boris  
> Berezovsky and the Looting of Russia"), and Mikhail Khodorkovsky.  
> The oligarchs made their wealth looting the Russian state through  
> the corrupt and rigged "privatization" auctions of state assets.  
> Mikhail Fridman, Pyotr Aven and Alfa's links to drug trafficking  
> were described in an article by the Center for Public Integrity on  
> 2Aug00 (see Note #5 below). There were reports in early 2001 that  
> Alfa Group, through its Crown Resources, was trying to buy the  
> assets of pardoned fugitive Marc Rich in Switzerland.
>
>
>
 
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