Naiive statement for February; how can a telecom minister carry on in his job when an uncontroversial paper like the Royal Gazette makes statements like:
In a written statement yesterday confirming the move, Ms Cox said that it was sometimes necessary to take legal action “to address seeming breaches of our laws and apparent regulatory infractions”.
Some matters relating to the case have been passed on to the Bermuda Police Service for investigation.
The legal action is the latest twist in the IPOC saga, which has sparked litigation in several countries amid claims that the Fund was a money-laundering vehicle.
It was alleged that it was effectively a holding company for around $1 billion in telecommunications assets transferred through a network of shell companies. The WSJ claimed the scandal went all the way up to the Russian IT and Communications Minister Leonid Reiman.
A Swiss tribunal in May last year, found that Mr. Reiman was the “sole beneficial owner” of the Fund. The tribunal stated that the close ally of President Vladimir Putin had amassed great personal wealth in the IPOC Fund by taking advantage of his role in public office.
Puisne Judge Ian Kawaley later upheld the ruling in a related case in the Bermuda Supreme Court.
It was alleged in Zurich that money skimmed during the privatisation of the Russian telecommunications industry during the early 1990s was laundered through the Bermuda-based fund.
IPOC has consistently claimed that Danish lawyer Jeffrey Galmond is the Fund’s owner. Mr. Galmond did not respond to our call yesterday.
KPMG Advisory Services was commissioned by the Ministry of Finance in 2004 to carry out an investigation of IPOC. The findings were passed on to Government in June last year.