Kenneth Rijock

Kenneth Rijock

Saturday, May 27, 2017


Attorney Anthony Astaphan

Most observers of the R Allen Stanford/Stanford International Bank Ponzi scheme case believe that the eight-year delaying action, brought on behalf of former Financial Services Regulatory Commission head, Leroy King, was to prevent him from ever being extradited to US District Court in Texas, where he faces what amounts to, in effect, a life sentence, for assisting Stanford in keeping us regulators at arms' length for years. His Guidelines sentence, after conviction, could be 30 years, due to the size of the Ponzi, and his use of his office to protect Stanford.

To avoid that outcome, and draw a shorter sentence, King would be required to cooperate with prosecutors, and such cooperation, Antigua correctly fears, could implicate one or more members of the prominent Bird family, in the acceptance of illegal compensation from Stanford, specifically bribes. That is the presumed reason for the dilatory tactics, engaged in not only by King's atttorneys, but by several members of Antigua's judiciary as well, to significantly delay the case.

There are others who fear the consequences of King's testimony, including some of the attorneys who advised the Bird family, during the time that Allen Stanford was filling the pockets of Antiguan officials, while he fleeced his victims. One of the prominent members of the East Caribbean bar who provided legal advice to the Bird family during that period was Dominican attorney Anthony Waddy Astaphan, SC. Astaphan's role in the Bird's connection to the Stanford International Bank scandal remains  a mystery, but, if facing a long prison term, Leroy King may just choose to disclose those details to the Department of Justice.

Leroy King & Allen Stanford

 Could a RICO (Racketeer Influenced Corrupt Organization) charge be lodged against Bird family attorneys ? We cannot say, but we will be closely monitoring the King extradition proceeding, and will advise on all developments, as they occur.


Readers who wish to review the complete text of the Non-Prosecution Agreement, entered into between the Department of Justice, Banamex USA, and Citigroup, which resulted in a civil fine of $97.44, for Bank Secrecy Act violations, may access it here. The fine was based upon profits of $92.8m.
Citigroup stipulated that it willfully failed to maintain an anti-money laundering program, and willfully failed to file Suspicious Activity Reports.


 As we have repeatedly demonstrated, the out-of-control Citizenship by Investment Program, operated by the Commonwealth of Dominica, has experienced multiple unintended consequences. Money received has been diverted to a number of illegal actions, all designed to maintain indefinite political power of a party whose leaders line their pocket with the proceeds of the CBI program, and utterly fail to achieve economic progress for the people of Dominica. It is not fulfilling its mandate.

At this point, the only way to save the program is to literally take it away from it greedy governmental operators, and assign it to an outside, nonprofit organization, who can funnel all the money back to its intended recipients.

What are some of the issues that warrant the removal of the CBI program:

(1) This week's dismal statistic: the amount of money spent for marketing Dominica's Citizenship by Investment (CBI) program is twice that devoted to due diligence on applicants, during the same period. What's wrong with this picture ? It means that the acquisition of clients, and the compensation of agents, who are mainly not professionals, but commission-oriented salesmen, is deemed far more imnportant than vetting the clients.

(2) The CBI program is used as cover for an illegal, parallel diplomatic passport program, which has resulted in a half-dozen "diplomats," being arrested overseas, on a variety of criminal charges.

(3) CBI money is used to literally buy votes at election time, charter airliners, to bring into Dominica expats, who will vote to keep the Dominica Labour Party in power, and pay the party's supporters and officials.

(4) The lure of CBI money, in a country with a failed agricultural economy, is simply too strong, meaning that the recipients, instead of having new jobs, created as the result of proper application of those funds, are totally dependent upon this "free money," and are now unable to resist its attraction.

The Dominica CBI program needs to be assigned to a responsible, uncorruptible, international NGO, who can administer it, and use the proceeds to actually advance the economy of Dominica, not pay off corrupt leaders, and their willing associates.

Friday, May 26, 2017


A high-ranking American government official, and a representative of the United States Marshals Service,  who were in Antigua this week, to take custody of former Antiguan banking regulator, Leroy King, met with the country's Attorney General, Steadroy Benjamin. The US has sought King's extradition since 2009; he is charged with multiple counts, including money laundering, for his role in facilitating the  billion dollar Stanford international Bank Ponzi scheme, and the final legal impediments to his extradition were removed recently.

 Unfortunately,  the Americans learned that neither the Court of Appeal, nor the High Court, has ever chosen to rule upon two bogus appeals, neither of which is supported by the law, as his appellate remedies were long ago exhausted. His attorneys filed those cases anyway, in a  patently transparent effort to delay justice.  Antigua's reputation, as a jurisdiction whose courts follow the rule of law, was severely diminished, as the result of the King case. Its courts have even played a game of "musical chairs" with the King case, sending it from one member of the judiciary to another, in what can only be interpreted as a purely dilatory procedure. Such tactics often directly result in an increase in Country Risk.

Most observers of the Caribbean political scene are well aware that King has information regarding corruption, at the highest level of government in Antigua, and that, to avoid a life sentence, he could potentially testify against certain powerful officials, as well as certain prominent local attorneys, who represented those officials during the period that Stanford International Bank operated its massive Ponzi scheme. Whether he will ever pay for his crimes remains to be seen, given the history of the past nine years.

Thursday, May 25, 2017


Reliable sources in Panama have confirmed that the country's former president, the fugitive, Ricardo Martinelli, has recently made several trips to the Dominican Republic, that he has purchased a lavish estate there, and he intends to permanently relocate, most likely eliminating the possibility that he will ever see the inside of a Panamanian courtroom or prison. Martinelli's ownership of two private jet aircraft allows him to quietly engage in international travel, outside of media scrutiny. Remember his original arrival in Miami, where he has resided since leaving office, was never reported, raising questions of official American assistance in concealing his presence here.As the most corrupt president in the history of Panama, many Americans are offended at the favored treatment he has enjoyed, since he was allowed to enter, notwithstanding that corrupt foreign leaders are barred, pursuant to US law.

The Dom Rep is a well-known place of refuge for individuals who are wanted in Panama, notwithstanding the fact that the two countries executed an extradition treaty in 2015. Corruption in the DR remains a major impediment to the recovery of fugitives who have fled there.

Many Panamanians are upset that the United States has failed to honor the extradition warrant presented to the State Department last September. Some observers believe that the US does not want to get involved in the ongoing internal Panamanian political dispute, between Martinelli supporters, and those of the Varela administration, much of which centers upon charges, and counter-charges, of corruption. Unfortunately, there is more than enough corruption, in both camps, to go around. 


His Interpol notice

Forgetting for a minute the bogus procedural tactics of his Panama attorneys, which include his immunity claims, due to a defective ( and belated) appointment to the Central American Parliament, Parlacen,is there some legitimate procedural reason why the United States has failed to extradite Ricardo Martinelli since September, 2016 ?

Many sources in the Republic of Panama have their own theories:

(1) Panama's President Varela fears that Martinelli, on the stand, will reveal massive corruption committed by Varela, when he was Vice President, and for that reason, intentionally flawed extradition documents were forwarded to the US State Department.

(2) Varela's expended relationships with Russian organized crime operations in Panama, which are known to Martinelli, caused him to deliberately slow down the extradition process.

(3) The 9-month delay in securing an INTERPOL Red Card on Martinelli is additional evidence that Panama's government does not want Martinelli testifying in court.

Whatever the reason, we may never see Panama's most corrupt president sitting in the dock, paying for his sins and transgressions.  

Tuesday, May 23, 2017


Hello from Sunny Miami !

 Multiple reports from the Republic of Panama, including case numbers, confirm that a Red Notice has been issued for the fugitive, former President of Panama, Ricardo Martinelli Berrocal, who faces at least a dozen criminal charges, including the operation of an illegal electronic surveillance program, where he spied upon prominent Panamanians. Thius means that he is subject to arrest, and removal, to Panama.

The Red Card was issued, notwithstanding that Martinelli has been the subject of an outstanding extradition request since September, 2016, and has been living openly in Miami. For some unknown reason, the US State Department has ignored Panamanian demands, raising questions about whether he is cooperating with US law enforcement or intelligence agencies, and if those agencies have interfered with Martinelli's extradition petition, which was filed at State.

Rumors continue to fly around his native country; will he actually run for Vice President, or Mayor of Panama City, while facing serious criminal charges  ?