FBI arrests US billionaire Stanford for fraud


This video says about itself:

23 October 2014

Could Allen Stanford go free? Convicted fraudster appeals.

R. Allen Stanford, convicted in 2012 of running a massive global Ponzi scheme that rivals the Madoff scandal, says he is the victim of an illegal prosecution, and “the clearest of assaults on the U.S. Constitution.”

From Reuters news agency:

Stanford, flamboyant Texan, faces criminal charges

Fri Jun 19, 2009 2:05am EDT

By Jason Szep

BOSTON, June 19 – Allen Stanford, the once high-flying Texas billionaire with a Caribbean knighthood and a penchant for publicity and cricket, has been brought down to earth with a thud after surrendering to the FBI.

The founder and chairman of Stanford Group once credited his grandfather with giving him “the inspiration to dream” and “an unwavering desire to build a business that is second to none.” Since February, that business has all but evaporated.

On Thursday, the flamboyant 59-year-old financier turned himself in to the FBI to face criminal charges, four months after U.S. regulators accused him and three of his companies of a “massive ongoing fraud.”

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission says Stanford and two fellow executives fraudulently sold $8 billion in high-yield certificates of deposit issued by Stanford International Bank Ltd in Antigua.

In those civil charges, the SEC said the bank reported “improbable” high returns.

Many burned investors have been clamoring for criminal charges, accusing Stanford of being cut from the same mold as Bernard Madoff, who admitted in March to orchestrating the biggest financial swindle in Wall Street history.

The criminal charges and the SEC’s revelations of Stanford’s empire — stretching from the Caribbean island of Antigua to Houston, Miami and Caracas — complete the picture of a finance king who lost his Midas touch along the way.

In an April interview with Reuters, Stanford said he did not run a Ponzi scheme as U.S. regulators alleged. He asserted, in what may be a preview of his defense, that his companies were well-run until the government seized them in February.

Just last year, the man known as “Sir Allen” in Antigua since being knighted there in 2006 was providing fodder for British tabloids by flying in by helicopter to bankroll international cricket matches in a blaze of publicity. Since February, he has been largely out of sight.

‘FUN BEING A BILLIONAIRE’

Stanford has often walked a fine line between critics and admirers in a business and sporting empire that reaches to Europe and across the Caribbean.

A fifth-generation Texan, Stanford made his first fortune in Houston, snapping up distressed real estate in the early 1980s before inheriting the insurance and real-estate company his grandfather founded in 1932.

Forbes put his personal wealth at $2.2 billion last year and his list of wealth-management clients once included professional golfer Vijay Singh.

Before the scandal surfaced, Stanford credited his success in part to avoiding investments in subprime mortgages that snowballed into a global financial crisis.

Asked by CNBC television in September if it was fun being a billionaire, he smiled and replied: “Yes, yes, yes. I have to say it is fun being a billionaire. But it’s hard work.”

With dual U.S. and Antiguan-Barbudan citizenship, Stanford has homes sprinkled across the region — from Antigua to St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands to Miami. Those residences and other assets have been frozen by court order since February.

A generous patron of several sports, Stanford financed a $1 million-per-player Twenty20 tournament in November in which his “Stanford Superstars” side of West Indian cricketers became instantly wealthy when they beat England’s team at his Stanford Cricket Ground in Antigua.

Back in the United States, he stirred controversy by claiming family ties to Leland Stanford, who founded Stanford University in the 1890s. The university says there is no genealogical connection between the two and sued Stanford Group in October for infringing on its trademark. (Additional reporting by Pascal Fletcher in Miami and Chris Baltimore and Anna Driver in Houston; Editing by John O’Callaghan)

Maybe renaming Allen Stanford “Allen Stanfraud” will help avoiding confusion with the Stanford of Stanford University.

See also here.

Stanford faces years in jail over ‘$7.2bn pyramid fraud’: here.

2 thoughts on “FBI arrests US billionaire Stanford for fraud

  1. Pingback: Poor get poorer, billionaires get richer | Dear Kitty. Some blog

  2. Pingback: United States Vice President’s son grabs at Ukrainian gas money | Dear Kitty. Some blog

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