Panama Covid-19 update – the Parque Metropolitano, the bit of tame jungle adjacent to the city, reopens tomorrow…meanwhile, according to the health ministry (Minsa), while most people are complying with the restrictions, several groups of people insist on having parties, barbecues, dances, cock fights and other activities that are not authorised and, by implication, putting others at risk and helping to keep the daily figures higher than they might be.
633 another new cases reported today. with 9 more fatalities. Of the 21,054 active cases, 110 are in ICU, 733 in other wards and 392 in hotel rooms.
4 October 2020
UAE BENEFICIAL OWNER REGULATION
BSA Ahmad Bin Hezeem % Associates LLP has published an article about a recently-published regulation re the minimum obligations of the corporate entities incorporated in the UAE mainland and in the non-financial free zones requiring disclosure at the initial incorporation/registration stage, and maintenance thereafter, of a “Register of Real Beneficiaries” and “Register of Partners or Shareholders”.
PANAMA – CHANCE TO CASH-IN ON SEIZED PROCEEDS OF CRIME
On 4 October, MENA-FN reported that the proceeds of criminal activities in Panama will go on the auction block in October with beach houses, apartments, Rolex watches cars and boats, up for bidding. The Directorate of Seized Assets (DABA) of the Ministry of Economy and Finance (MEF) is scheduled to hold an auction on 16 October.
TRINIDAD & TOBAGO: TANKER CREW DETAINED IN DRUG PROBE BEG TO GO HOME
On 4 October, the Trinidad & Tobago Guardian reported that, in September, the Star Balboa arrived to dispose of garbage and replenish their water and provisions but the vessel was arrested by local shipping agents for an outstanding bill of close to $80,000. Then, after the bill was settled, a joint team of police, coast guard, immigration, customs and even prison officers boarded to execute a search warrant for dangerous drugs based on intelligence, and officers searched every inch of the vessel, sending divers below and even wanted to empty the fuel tank and came up empty-handed. The vessel is now anchored 4 miles off the coast. Even though the searches ended after the court action, the Coast Guard ordered the crew not to leave and threatened to use lethal force if they did. Among the crew are 8 Panamanians, 3 Venezuelans, including the captain Colombian, Peruvian, Nicaraguan and Argentine nationals – many of whom have apparently contracted covid-19.
IRAN EVADES SANCTIONS BY USING OTHER NATIONS TO GET WMD
On 2 October, the Jerusalem Post reported that an intelligence report has been released by the German state of Hesse, and that has reviewed the 384-page intelligence report in connection with all references to the Iranian regime threat. The Hesse intelligence document covers the year 2019 and outlines the most pressing security threats faced by the state. The report warned about Iran’s exploitation of the research and academic fields to advance its nuclear weapons programme.
SEIZURE OF 21 KG JEWELLERY AT HYDERABAD AIRPORT PUTS NEARLY DOZEN JEWELLERS UNDER SCANNER
On 4 October, The Indian Express reported that, even after 24-hours of the seizure nobody has approached the officials to stake claim of the seized consignmentof 21 kg of jewelry by the Customs officials at the domestic air cargo complex of the Rajiv Ghandi International Airport in Hyderabad. It is said that at least a dozen jewelers, some of them said to be big players in the market, are now under suspicion.
EL JABAO: THE GREATEST CUBAN CRIME SYNDICATE YOU HAVE NEVER HEARD OF
On 3 October, the Sun-Sentinel carried an article which starts with details of a gold heist in Florida in 2012, saying that the gold heist is just one of a litany of crimes perpetrated by a larger, incredibly dangerous and highly sophisticated criminal syndicate, said to be called by the US authorities the El Jabao Organization – Jabao is a Spanish Caribbean slang term for a person of mixed race. Operating between the US, Cuba and Mexico, authorities suspect the group of orchestrating thefts, armed robberies and murders. Its members have been charged in federal court with home invasions, kidnappings, human smuggling, money laundering, extortion and drug smuggling.
PARAGUAY: RUINED BY VIOLENCE AT HOME AND FAKE DIPLOMACY ABROAD
On 4 October, an Op-Ed article in Eurasia Review reflects on the situation in Paraguay, said to be suffering from drought, corruption, poverty etc.
PAKISTAN INTERNATIONAL AIRLINES FIRES 54 MORE EMPLOYEES OVER FAKE CREDENTIALS AND MORE
On 4 October, Simply Flying reported that PIA has sacked 54 more employees over various issues, including use of fake credentials. PIA has already suspended 150 pilots for possibly using fake licences.
IRAN’S SPACE PROGRAMME AND THE WALL BETWEEN “PEACEFUL PURPOSES”
On 1 October, a post from the Center for Strategic & International Studies says that Iran claims its space programme is peaceful, while the US disputes this. The article considers what peaceful use might mean, looks briefly at the development of Iran’s programme and asks if there is a relationship to missile or WMD programmes.
US: THE CLOUD ACT
On 2 October, a post from the centre for Strategic and International Studies considers the Clarifying Lawful Overseas Use of Data Act (or CLOUD Act) in the light of the bilateral agreement between the US and the UK on Access to Electronic Data for the Purpose of Countering Serious Crime, with 2 further agreements said be being negotiated. The post reviews the Act and its impact to date.
TOP DEPUTIES ACCUSE TEXAS ATTORNEY GENERAL OF CRIMES
On 4 October, ABC News and others reported that Several top deputies of Texas’ attorney general have accused him of crimes including bribery and abuse of office in an internal letter saying they’ve reported the actions to law enforcement
SOUTH AFRICA: SLEW OF ARRESTS IN KWAZULU-NATAL
On 4 October, the Daily Maverick reported a slew of arrests in KwaZulu-Natal relating to investigations dating back to 2009. The most high-profile fraud and corruption case playing out in KZN may be the Durban Solid Waste tender scandal involving former eThekwini mayor Zandile Gumede, but the biggest – and possibly most complex – known investigation in monetary terms that the Hawks are dealing with involves the alleged tender fraud within the metro’s water and sanitation department.
ROGUE PILOTS TRAFFICKED A BILLION DOLLARS IN CARTEL DRUGS ACROSS US WHILE NO ONE WATCHED
On 2 October, the Louisville Courier Journal reported that Robert Carlson, a California businessman who dreamed of becoming the cocaine king of the skies, used private jets to funnel a billion dollars’ worth of cartel drugs through smaller airports across the country — exploiting a security blind spot – before being busted in 2017. The case is said to expose gaping holes in security at the majority of the nation’s more than 2,500 general aviation airports, where there are no Transportation Security Administration checkpoints.
US-SEIZED GASOLINE CARGO FOR VENEZUELA DISCHARGES IN NEW YORK AFTER 3-MONTH JOURNEY
The Hellenic Shipping News reported that the first of 2 tankers carrying cargoes of Iranian gasoline seized by the US has discharged in New York, part of the consignments that the DoJ seized in July seized from 4-privately owned tankers bound for Venezuela. The Singapore-flagged Maersk Progress discharged 557,000 barrels of gasoline in New York after loading in Sri Lanka on 4 July.
THIRD IRANIAN FUEL TANKER ARRIVES IN VENEZUELA WATERS
The Helleic Shipping News has reported that the third of 3 tankers en route from Iran to Venezuela has now entered Venezuelan waters.
VENEZUELA’S STATE-RUN ‘DEFI’ CRYPTO EXCHANGE GOES LIVE
On 2 October, Bitcoin.com reported that the decentralised finance (defi) is allegedly coming to Venezuela after a recent decree from Venezuelan President Nicolás Maduro. The new exchange application is available now via the Google Play app store for Android devices.
SEAGRAM LIQUOR HEIRESS JAILED FOR ROLE IN US SEX-TRAFFICKING RING
On 4 October, Al Jazeera reported that Clare Bronfman, 41, heiress to the Seagram liquor empire, has been sentenced to more than 6 years in prison for her role in a New York self-help organisation that US federal prosecutors say engaged in forced labour, extortion and sex trafficking. The group is alleged to have manipulated, enslaved and blackmailed its members as part of what federal prosecutors labelled a racketeering conspiracy. Bronfman joined the organisation in 2003 and provided financial backing to Raniere, prosecutors said.
$2 MILLION OIL WELL SCHEME IN TEXAS AND MONTANA LANDS 80-YEAR-OLD IN PRISON
On 30 September, the Miami Herald reported that an 80-year-old man accused of defrauding investors is going to prison, federal officials say. Kenneth Thomas White has been sentenced to 4 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to a money laundering charge. He is accused of raising $1,850,000 to fund 5 oil well drilling projects he either didn’t own or that didn’t exist.
I had omitted the following link (as it did not seem to generate much interest!), but it seemed time to add it again and say that, if you would like to make a (polite) gesture and help me with my removal and computer costs, I have a page at https://www.buymeacoffee.com/KoIvM842y