THINGS YOU MAY HAVE MISSED – MAY 1

Panama Covid-19 – still no deaths, after 3 days, but the positive hit race for tests has risen to 13.3% and the number of active cases shows another substantial rise, up 178 to 6,244. 700 new cases reported, with 14 patients in ICU and 89 in other wards.

1 MAY 2022

PANAMA SEEKS TO AVOID ILLEGAL FISHING RED CARD FROM EU BANNING EXPORTS

On 30 April, Newsroom Panama reported that, 3 years after receiving the “yellow card” as a warning from the EU as a non-cooperative nation in the fight against illegal, unreported, and unregulated (IUU) fishing, Panama hopes to improve its situation.  The EU is the main market for Panamanian fishery exports and is only surpassed by bananas.  Panama hopes to achieve its aim through compliance with best practices, updated technology, and specialised human resources.  In Panama there has been a high-level meeting of responsible agencies as part of the preparation of the audit by the EU.

https://www.newsroompanama.com/business/panama-seeks-to-avoid-illegal-fishing-red-card-banning-eu-exports

http://elsiglo.com.pa/panama/panama-prepara-para-auditoria/24199762

https://www.laestrella.com.pa/economia/220430/panama-lista-evaluacion-ue-lucha-pesca-ilegal

RUSSIAN TECHNOLOGY COMPANIES SEEK PARTNERS IN INDIA TO TACKLE IMPACT OF WESTERN SANCTIONS

On 1 May, In Depth News carried a Telegraph report that a delegation of Russian companies, led by Russoft, an association of software development companies, held business meetings with companies in the technology sector operating in Bengal, ahead of the Bengal Global Business Summit.  The delegation included companies with interests in software development, engineering, hardware, electronics and industrial automation.

https://www.indepthnews.net/index.php/the-world/russia/5267-russian-technology-companies-seek-partners-in-india-to-tackle-impact-of-western-sanctions

FOR BANGLADESHI GARMENT EXPORTERS, BUSINESS AS USUAL WITH RUSSIA DESPITE SANCTIONS

On 30 April, Arab News reported that Bangladeshi garment exports to Russia have not been disrupted by international sanctions, Russia is a growing destination for Bangladeshi producers and last year imported garments worth about $600 million.  However, the head of one of the biggest players in the Russian fashion market said that he was not certain, however, how long Bangladesh would be able to sustain its trade with Russia.

https://www.arabnews.com/node/2073776/world

INDONESIAN NAVY ARRESTS 2 FOREIGN TANKERS SMUGGLING CRUDE PALM OIL

On 30 April, Thai PBS World reported that the  Indonesian government banned export of CPO and its derivatives to meet the domestic demand and to prevent an abnormal price hike at home this ban is in effect until the price is back to normal.  The navy is reported to have detained a Liberian-flagged tanker owned by a Russian national, and a Marshall Islands-flagged tanker with Chinese national captain and crew.

https://www.thaipbsworld.com/indonesian-navy-arrests-two-crude-palm-oil-smuggling-foreign-tankers/

MAN SMUGGLED ENDANGERED ELEPHANT HAIR JEWELLERY ILLEGALLY INTO THE UK FOR SALE

On 1 May, Herts Live reported that a man from Bushey has been convicted of the illegal sale of gold jewellery containing hair from African elephants. He was charged with 7 counts of offering the sale of products containing specimens derived from endangered species.

https://www.hertfordshiremercury.co.uk/news/hertfordshire-news/man-smuggled-jewellery-elephant-endangered-7022064

IRELAND: MAN DUE IN COURT IN WATERFORD OVER BEC MONEY LAUNDERING OFFENCES

On 1 May, The Journal and others reported that a man has been arrested and charged by gardaí in Waterford for money laundering offences as part of Operation SKEIN – an investigation into international BEC/invoice re-direct fraud being committed from Ireland.

https://www.thejournal.ie/gardai-money-laundering-operation-skein-5752760-May2022/

BVI LEADER IN DRUG STING FACED CORRUPTION QUESTIONS 20 YEARS AGO

On 1 May, the Sunday Times reported that he and his banker wife were suspected of having couriered “large sums of money” to the US during a criminal investigation in 2003.

https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/virgin-islands-leader-in-drug-sting-faced-corruption-questions-20-years-ago-6jrd9fkdq

https://insightcrime.org/news/premier-british-virgin-islands-miami-court-cocaine-trafficking-charges/

INDIA’S AML AGENCY SEIZES $725 MILLION ASSETS FROM XIAOMI

On 30 April, the Tech Times reported that the Chinese phone-maker that commands the smartphone market in the country had assets worth around $725 million seized for breaching foreign exchange laws.  The Enforcement Directorate said that it had seized the bank accounts of Xiaomi India after it found out that the telecommunications company had remitted $725 million to 3 foreign-based entities in the guise of royalty payments.

https://www.techtimes.com/articles/274915/20220430/indias-anti-money-laundering-agency-seizes-725m-assets-xiaomi.htm

PRESSURE GROWS ON FOREIGN OFFICE TO HELP FREE BRITON FACING DEATH PENALTY IN IRAQ OVER ARTEFACT SMUGGLING ALLEGATIONS

On 1 May, the Guardian reported that Ministers are under increasing pressure to help free a retired British geologist at risk of facing the death penalty over smuggling allegations.  He has been detained in Iraq for 5 weeks after being accused of attempting to smuggle historic artefacts out of the country.

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2022/may/01/pressure-grows-on-foreign-office-to-help-free-briton-facing-death-penalty-in-iraq

CHILE: ONE MORE DEPARTURE POINT FOR EUROPE-BOUND COCAINE

On 29 April, Insight Crime reported that a recent string of drug seizures in Chile, coupled with cocaine discovered on ships originating there, points to the country emerging as another key departure point in the European cocaine pipeline.  Drugs smuggled from Bolivia have been turning up regularly in Chile.  While Bolivian cocaine has long been smuggled into neighbouring Chile for the domestic market, traffickers now appear to be targeting the country’s ports in their search for new maritime shipping points to Europe.

https://insightcrime.org/news/european-bound-cocaine-increasingly-travelling-through-chilean-ports/

A COURT OF APPEAL DECISION REINFORCES THAT, IN THE ABSENCE OF A REGISTERED DESIGN, ATTEMPTS TO ESTABLISH COPYRIGHT IN THESE PRODUCTS AS “WORKS OF ARTISTIC CRAFTMANSHIP” WILL FACE SIGNIFICANT HURDLES

On 27 April, an article from Herbert Smith Freehills said that, designers and manufacturers launching new products, registered designs are the most appropriate means of protecting the design of, or embodied in, those products.  A recent decision reinforces that, in the absence of a registered design, attempts to establish copyright in these products as “works of artistic craftmanship” will face significant hurdles, particularly where the design of those products is influenced by functional considerations.

https://www.herbertsmithfreehills.com/latest-thinking/to-register-or-not-state-of-escape-decision-reinforces-value-of-design-registration

INTERPOL AND KENYA GOVERNMENT PROBE 2 NIGERIAN FINANCIAL TECH TYCOONS

On 28 April, Sahara Reporters reported that 2 Nigerian Fintech tycoons and another Nigerian, are under probe in Kenya for a string of suspicious transfers of $221 million from Nigeria.  It says that an investigation revealed that money was wired into Kenya from Nigeria between October and November 2020.  Local media in Kenya revealed that a network of 6 companies moved money from Nigeria to Kenya before wiring some of the funds to countries in Europe and Asia.

http://saharareporters.com/2022/04/28/interpol-kenya-government-probe-two-nigerian-financial-tech-tycoons-demuren-nehikhare

SOUTH AFRICA’S ALLEGED ‘TINDER SWINDLER’ CUTS A LONELY FIGURE IN COURT

On 29 April, News 24 reported that Amon Namara, the man dubbed the South African ‘Tinder swindler’, didn’t look like the millionaire he claimed to be when he appeared in the Johannesburg Magistrate’s Court.  He is accused of swingling women he met on Tinder and faces charges of money laundering and fraud.

https://www.news24.com/news24/southafrica/news/south-africas-alleged-tinder-swindler-cuts-a-lonely-figure-in-court-20220429

US: CONSUMER FINANCIAL PROTECTION BUREAU (CFPB) INVOKES “LARGELY UNUSED” DODD-FRANK LAW TO SCRUTINISE FINTECHS

On 28 April, Fintech Futures reported that the CFPB has said it is invoking a largely unused legal provision to increase scrutiny of non-bank financial institutions.  Under the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act of 2010, Congress tasked the CFPB with supervising nonbanks, large depository institutions with more than $10 billion in assets, and their service providers; and regulations give the CFPB the authority to review records of regulated non-banks which do not have a bank, thrift, or credit union charter.  CFPB says that they cover non-banks of any type whose activities pose risks to consumers.

https://www.fintechfutures.com/2022/04/cfpb-invokes-largely-unused-dodd-frank-law-to-scrutinise-fintechs/

MALTA: POLICE TOOK 7 YEARS TO ISSUE AN ARREST WARRANT FOR SUPERMARKET TYCOON RYAN SCHEMBRI

On 1 May, the Times of Malta reported that it  took police nearly 7 years to issue an international arrest warrant for the man at the centre of a massive money-laundering case, raising concerns of deliberate inaction over one of Malta’s most infamous fugitives.  He has now been arrested in the UK and extradited to Malta to face charges of fraud and money laundering estimated to be in the tens of millions of euros.

https://timesofmalta.com/articles/view/police-took-seven-years-to-issue-an-arrest-warrant-for-ryan-schembri.951787

PAKISTAN ANTI-GRAFT WATCHDOG STARTS INQUIRY AGAINST EX-PRIME MINISTER’S FAMILY FRIEND.

On 29 April, the Times of India reported that the the National Accountability Bureau (NAB) has ordered an investigation into Farah Khan, a close friend of the wife of Imran Khan..

https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/world/pakistan/pakistan-anti-graft-watchdog-starts-inquiry-against-ex-pms-family-friend/articleshow/91166107.cms

RUSSIA’S ADVANTAGE IN THE INTERNATIONAL NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY MARKETPLACE

A paper from the Journal of Strategic Studies on 3 April says that the US established itself as the dominant supplier of civil nuclear technology in the 1960s.  However, Russia soon caught up, supplanting the US after the Cold War.  It asks what led to the rise of this autocratic nuclear marketplace?  This was, of course, before the Ukraine war.

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/01402390.2022.2052725?src=

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