6th January 2019
UNREGULATED, UNREGISTERED MEDICINES FLOODING INTO ZIMBABWE
On 6th January, New Zimbabwe reported that unregulated and unregistered medicines are reportedly flooding into Zimbabwe, with consignments of expired medicines being smuggled into the country.
ZIMBABWE: REVENUE AUTHORITY SENIOR STAFF ALLEGEDLY INVOLVED IN SMUGGLING RACKET
On 6th January, Nehanda Radio reported claims that 10 top managers of the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) have been implicated in a $3 million cooking oil and chicken smuggling racket from 2011-2014.
US SAYS ROMANIAN CRYPTO EXCHANGE BOSS WAS INVOLVED IN MONEY LAUNDERING
Global Crypto Press on 5th January reported that Nistor Vlad Chãlin, CEO of Romania’s largest exchange, Coinflux, has been arrested and is being extradited to the US. Coinflux is reported to have halted operations.
UK AID SUPPORT IN CORRUPT COUNTRIES
On 5th January, the blog of the UK Department for International Development (DFID) posted an item concerned with an article in the Daily Mail about UK aid to the world’s most corrupt countries. A spokesman is quoted as saying that DFID does not provide UK aid directly to the governments of any of the most corrupt countries in the world…UK aid only goes to trusted partners to save the lives of people living in extreme poverty, and DFID has tough measures in place to protect taxpayers’ money.
BULGARIA: WHISTLEBLOWER CLAIMS PASSPORTS SCANDAL GOES RIGHT TO TOP
EU Reporter on 6th January carried an interview with Katya Mateva, former director of the Council for Citizenship. Her investigation revealed a scam, one that appeared to have strong links with the new government’s party. In 2016, Mateva blocked thousands of dossiers (around 7,000) as they didn’t meet the basic requirement for proof of Bulgarian ancestry. For this, she was sacked and openly criticised by Deputy Prime Minister Karakachanov.
GUATEMALA: MIGRATION AGENTS DETAIN UN ANTI-GRAFT INVESTIGATOR AT AIRPORT
Telesur on 6th January reported that the Guatemalan Migration Institute (IGM) barred Saturday the entry into the country of an investigator on the International Commission against Impunity in Guatemala (Cicig), Yilen Osorio Zuluaga. The investigator was detained by security forces upon his arrival at the International Airport La Aurora in the Guatemalan capital.
PHILIPPINE COURT ORDERS ARREST OF JAPANESE CASINO MOGUL OKADA
Reuters on 6th January reported that a Philippine court has ordered the arrest of Japanese pachinko billionaire Kazuo Okada, over charges of alleged fraud after he acquired “through mistake or fraud” $3.15 million in salary and consultancy fees during his tenure as chief executive of Manila casino operator, Tiger Resort. He was arrested in Hong Kong in August in relation to multiple corruption-related charges and is currently on bail.
KUWAIT REQUEST TO DUBAI TO RELEASE $496 MILLION FROZEN FUNDS LINKED TO LAUNDERING PROBE
Reuters on 6th January reported that Kuwait had reiterated its request to Dubai to release $496 million in frozen funds held for over a year and belonging to Port Fund, part of a Kuwaiti private equity business. The funds have been frozen at Dubai’s state-owned Noor Bank since late 2017 following a probe into the lawfulness of their transfer to Dubai from the Philippines. Kuwaiti prosecutors have charged two Port Fund directors with embezzling funds that the Kuwait Port Authority and the Public Institution for Social Security had invested in Port Fund.
INDIA: RACING OFFICIALS REASSURE PUBLIC AFTER FIXTURE CANCELLED FOLLOWING BOOKMAKER ARRESTS
The Racing Post on 6th January reported that officials at the Royal Western India Turf Club (RWITC) have moved to reassure the industry that the cancellation of a fixture at Mahalaxmi racecourse in Mumbai would be a one-off, following the arrest of 18 Mumbai bookmakers on allegations of fraud and tax evasion.
THE PRIVATE SECTOR AND US PEACE ENFORCEMENT
An essay in the Small Wars Journal this defines UN peace enforcement and examines the present and potential role of private military and security companies (PMSC), as well as the role of PMSC in the current US enforcement model. The advantages and disadvantages of using PMSC are addressed, followed by a recommendation that the US seek to privatise its UN peace enforcement contributions by engaging PMSC. It explains that “peace enforcement” means the authorised the use of coercive measures under Chapter VII of the UN Charter to maintain peace, protect civilians, or protect the efforts and personnel of ongoing peacekeeping efforts. It looks at present and potential use of PMSC in the role. It notes that the UN has yet to hire a PMSC to fulfil a specific enforcement role. In this field, it says, the private sector could either take part in operations, or train and supply those who do. Thus far, only the latter has been attempted – in the Central African Republic, Russia has sent 170 civilian instructors (suspected contractors from Wagner Group – described as a pseudo-state asset rather than a purely private sector actor) to train CAR service personnel.