• Announcements

    • Admin_01

      The Boquete Feria de Las Flores y del Café   01/12/2017

      The Boquete Feria de Las Flores y del Café begins Thursday, January 12th and runs until Sunday, January 22nd. For those who have not yet seen -- and experienced -- this magnificent fair, you are in for a treat, and some inconveniences. Most importantly, you must see all of the flowers and the tiendas at and around the Fair Grounds here in Boquete.  During these eleven days you also need to be extremely careful, especially while driving and in planning your activities. In recent years there have been well in excess of 100,000 visitors to Boquete. Last year that number was closer to 200,000, and some predictions for 2017's Fair are closer to 300,000 people coming to our area to see the Fair. Traffic congestion will be the norm. Getting seats in restaurants will be difficult at times. Parking spaces will essentially be nonexistent. Buying groceries may be difficult and time consuming. Busses will be parked on the side streets, making driving difficult. There will be lots (as in LOTS) of people walking, standing around the bridge and the Feria and the many tiendas (small shops and stands [kiosks]) while taking pictures, talking, viewing the scenery, etc. Please be extremely attentive while driving, and drive slowly. Some streets will be blocked and require passes to use them. Other streets will simply be blocked based on congestion. Please be careful of your personal items, such as purses and wallets. Having so many people in one area creates a prime target for pickpockets and other maliantes to do their thing. To repeat, most importantly, you must see all of the flowers and the tiendas at and around the Fair Grounds here in Boquete.  Three closing thoughts. First: enjoy. Second: be safe. Third: you might wish to post your pictures, comments, reviews, etc., here on CL (start a topic or reply to an existing topic in http://www.chiriqui.life/forum/118-boquete-feria-de-las-flores-y-del-café/).   To provide general feedback or ask for help regarding Chiriqui.Life, please leave a posting in Problems, Feedback and Suggestions or email support@chiriqui.life or private message to @Admin_01.
Keith Woolford

Waked Up - Waked Family Corruption and Money Laundering Investigations / Prosecutions

71 posts in this topic

2 hours ago, Keith Woolford said:

Panamanian officials are currently working on a way to have the Felix B. Maduro companies removed from the Clinton list.

Again, it's my opinion that the U.S. government has been overly heavy-handed in dealing with the affairs of private business in a sovereign nation.

http://www.prensa.com/economia/OFAC-ofrece-salida-Grupo-Felix_0_4497300226.html

Here's the English version of that story as provided by LaPrensa. It seems their translator isn't an early riser.

Steps taken to keep Felix B. Maduro open

The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) of the United States Treasury Department announced Wednesday that measures will be taken to facilitate the continued operation of the Felix B. Maduro department stores.

It said that actions are being taken to protect "the employees" of the department stores.

While the action does not mean that the stores have been removed from the Clinton list, which prohibits it from doing business with U.S. entities, it does mean that, in cooperation with the Panama government, actions can be taken to break the link between the stores and its current owner, the Waked Group. Members of that group have been accused by the U.S. of laundering money for drug traffickers.

People participating in this transaction will not be included in the Clinton list "as long as these non-U.S. people are participating in transactions between independent parties, and in good faith," the U.S. officials said.

The money from the transaction must be placed in a restricted account.

"To the extent that a transaction involves an American citizen or has ties to an American jurisdiction, parties should seek a specific license to participate in the transaction. Requests for such approval can be submitted through the internet site of the OFAC," the Treasury Department said.

On May 5, the Treasury Department identified Abdul Waked and his nephew Nidal - currently detained in Colombia - as the ringleaders of the so-called Waked Money Laundering Organization. The two men, as well as seven other people and 68 companies, were included on the Clinton list.

http://www.prensa.com/in_english/Unidos-desvinculacion-Felix-Maduro-Waked_21_4497510205.html

0

Share this post


Link to post

Felix B. Maduro is a department store founded almost when Panama became a republic.  It could have almost 100 years of being in business.   It was founded by one the most respectable jewish family in Panama.  A couple of years ago the company was sold to the Waked by one member of the Maduro family.  There are a grandson and great grandson of the founder with the same name " Felix B. Maduro" that were not part of the selling transaction and it looks like it was a family problem.  

It is a shame and a pitty that a well renowned store in Panama's market and history will dissapear because the new owners are involved in an investigation for money laundering.  People in Panama says that the founder should be totally angry in his graveyard because what is happening with his name and the store he founded.  

Workers are looking for a solution to the problem of the store and keep their jobs.   The only solution available right now is to seize the corporation and the workers become the owners of the company and then run it with a new management team.  The Waked will lose this company.   This could be done because the amount of salaries, social security and indemnizations owed to the employees is so high that they could have this legal action to have what they are due and in this case keep their jobs and continue working.  

 

 

 

1

Share this post


Link to post

Minister says saving Félix B. Maduro depends on the Wakeds

Minister of Economy and Finance Dulcidio De La Guardia said Thursday that the future of the Felix B. Maduro department stores depends on its owners, the Waked family.

The stores are on the Clinton list, which prohibits it from engaging in any transactions with U.S. entities, including banks. It was placed on the list due to a U.S. investigation that linked Abdul Waked to money laundering.

The U.S. government, to protect the jobs of its employees, has proposed a series of measures to facilitate the completion of a sale of the department stores. The proceeds of the sale would then be placed into an account until Abdul Waked resolves his legal issues.

"The solution was provided after many weeks and hours of work by the government. This solution was brought to the Wakeds yesterday afternoon. The final decision about whether the stores are saved remains dependent on the shareholders of the company," said Minister Dulcidio De La Guardia.

"The solution involves the creation of a trust and the transfer of ownership of the stores to that trust. All documents are in the hands of shareholders. They only lack their signature," the minister added.

- See more at: http://www.prensa.com/in_english/Salvar-Felix-Maduro-Dulcidio-Guardia_21_4497510210.html#sthash.jcFzEKaP.dpuf

Edited by Keith Woolford
0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Waked workers plan US embassy protest

Posted on June 2, 2016 in Panama

Wisa-620x264.png
Post Views: 20

WHILE  workers at the Colon FreeZone HQ of the Waked Group, some with over  15 years service, plan to demonstrated  at the US Embassy, are Minister of Labor Luis Ernesto Carles said today that the government will do anything it can to help employees of the Waked Group in Colón after the companies were placed on the Clinton list.

Carles said that the immediate efforts are focused on ensuring the company can meet its next payroll.

“We are going to ensure that entrepreneurs who are interested in investing in these companies will make their first priority the hiring of  these workers,” said the minister, who said that he is also meeting with banks to ensure workers are protected.

Carles said that he will meet with employees again next week to provide them with an update.

According to figures from the ministry, to date 290 Waked employees  plus over 429   La Riviera staff have been fired since the companies owned by the family were placed on the Clinton list by the U.S. Treasury Department due to their ties to drug trafficking.

Sara Lee Hotman, one of the spokespersons for the workers, said that this process has been very painful, especially for those with more than 15 years working for the company.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/waked-workers-plan-us-embassy-protest

0

Share this post


Link to post

No wonder they're protesting.

Panamanian workers did not commit any crimes. Nor did employees of La Rivera in Nicaragua, Guatemala and Colombia, and other countries who have lost their livelihood.

Imo, these people are innocent victims whose lives have been put in economic limbo by some over zealous bureaucrats in the United States.

Folks who own the businesses which employ them have been accused of breaking U.S. laws and they're being dealt with, but it's the employees who are the most severely impacted.

0

Share this post


Link to post
31 minutes ago, Keith Woolford said:

Imo, these people are innocent victims whose lives have been put in economic limbo by some over zealous bureaucrats in the United States.

Folks who own the businesses which employ them have been accused of breaking U.S. laws and they're being dealt with, but it's the employees who are the most severely impacted.

"Accused,"  and "allegedly" breaking US laws. In the meantime, without offering any proof or convictions of those "allegedly" breaking US laws, many people employed by those companies have lost their jo9bs.

0

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, Keith Woolford said:

No wonder they're protesting.

Panamanian workers did not commit any crimes. Nor did employees of La Rivera in Nicaragua, Guatemala and Colombia, and other countries who have lost their livelihood.

Imo, these people are innocent victims whose lives have been put in economic limbo by some over zealous bureaucrats in the United States.

Folks who own the businesses which employ them have been accused of breaking U.S. laws and they're being dealt with, but it's the employees who are the most severely impacted.

Keith

I do agree with your comment.   

Why going against the companies and not against the persons who they acussed of being committing a crime of money laundering?

To me this smells fishy.  

 

0

Share this post


Link to post

Having dealt with many IRS and federal funding agents in my past life, the attitude seems to be that of, if an employee is aware of corporate US laws being broken they are almost obligated to contact the IRS or the funding foundation anonymously.  There is little if no consideration for those who lose their jobs because of wrong doing however, the squealer is in some instances is compensated for their information if they chose to be named.  I am sure other parts of the government feel the same way since the pervasive attitude is "I have the power and you do not".

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Felix B. Maduro Companies Can Be Sold

In order help keep the chain stores operating, the Office of Foreign Assets Control has authorized the breakdown of links to the ownership and control of Wisa Group.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

The aim of these measures is to "protect the workforce", at Felix B. Maduro, Importadora Maduro, S.A. and Maduro International, S.A. Grupo Wisa, which can now start a process to disassociate themselves from Wisa, Abdul Waked and Mohamed Abdo Wake

A statement from the OFAC says: "Based on consultations with and the actions taken by the government of Panama, the OFAC understands that the government of Panama is working on breaking the bonds of ownership and control that the SDNT has with the Felix Maduro Group in an effort to protect the financial systems of Panama and the United States from abuse. We support these efforts to deny resources to SDNT and protect the international financial system. "

The OFAC understands that non-US persons, including Panamanians and other institutions in the region, may have to engage in transactions necessary to facilitate the removal of the ownership and control of the SDNT from the aforementioned entities. :

  • Felix B. Maduro S.A., Panama; RUC # 811226-1-498041 (Panama); alt. RUC # 78-273-13798 (Panama) [SDNTK]
  • Importadora Maduro, S.A., Panama; RUC # 558-472-101708 (Panama) [SDNTK]
  • International Maduro, S.A., Panama; RUC # 5651-184-69069 (Panama) [SDNTK]

Read full release.

http://www.centralamericadata.com/en/article/main/Felix_B_Maduro_Companies_Can_Be_Sold

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

US Ambassador holds out hope for Felix Maduro

Posted on June 3, 2016 in Panama

Post Views: 45

ONCE THE CHAINS linking Panama’s 139 years old Felix B Maduro department store  to Abdul Waked are broken, it may be able  leave the Clinton List of activities linked to money laundering and drug trafficking.

That’s the hope of John Feeley US ambassador to  Panama,expressed  Friday, June 3 in an interview with radio station La Exitosa.

“There is a transparent process that those involved in the list may take action to rectify the situation,” On Wednesday, the United States Department of the Treasury, through its Bureau of Foreign Assets (OFAC), endorsed a series of actions that will allow Felix B. Maduro to “break the ownership and control links” with Waked said Feeley

“It’s the first time in the history of the OFAC we have established and accepted a Trust to make the transfer,” said the ambassador.

“As the minister [Dulcidio De La Guardia] aid, the decision is in the hands of Mr. Abdul Waked. I wish him to take actions so  their employees or former employees can  continue working in the  future with dignity in Panama,” he said.

He was also satisfied because Mawa Enterprises Corp., a company with operations in the Colon Free Zone (CFZ), was withdrawn from the Clinton List on Friay , “because they have removed the links they had with the group Waked and th  , United States acknowledges that they have no problem to access the US financial banking system. ”

Feeley also lamented the “uncertainty” that  Waked workers are currently enduring.

“There are  always employees who pay the piper of heads. I cannot tell you how many times I have spoken with President [Juan Carlos Varela], with ministers who are on the committee, to try to find the formula to protect most of theworkers. I’m not going to cover the sun with my finger and say it will be possible to preserve all jobs, “he said.

Feeley  stressed that the actions undertaken by OFAC are not the product of a “whim”.

“We do not take these actions because we are imperialist gringos with fangs in a distant country. We take those actions simply to protect our families in the United States, who do not want their banking system exposed to money from drug money laundering”.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/us-ambassador-holds-hope-felix-maduro

0

Share this post


Link to post

Interesting quote from the U.S. Ambassador..

“We do not take these actions because we are imperialist gringos with fangs in a distant country."

Wherever did he get the idea that folks might think that?

0

Share this post


Link to post

I don't think there is anything of importance that happens in this Country that the U.S. Doesn't know about 10 minutes after it happens.  I'll bet dollars to donuts that the invasion plan is well tuned....

0

Share this post


Link to post
3 hours ago, Keith Woolford said:

Interesting quote from the U.S. Ambassador..

“We do not take these actions because we are imperialist gringos with fangs in a distant country."

Wherever did he get the idea that folks might think that?

I find a lot of his rhetoric very peculiar and unstatesmanlike.

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Cabinet defines Waked strategy

Posted on June 4, 2016 in Panama

Guardia-Varela-Departamento-Tesoro-Unido
President Varela meets with Waked commission
Post Views: 44

THE FUNCTIONS of Panama’s  ministerial commission formed nearly a month ago to address the actions taken by the U.S. government against the Waked Group, were defined by at a special meeting of  the Cabinet Council on Friday, June 3.

The meeting came shortly after the news of a successful agreement with the US Treasury Department, the first of its kind ever negotiated, that will  enable the Felix B. Maduro department stores to keep operating and save the jobs of over 1,000 employees.

Meanwhile an announcement was issued about a-ix months extension of the license of La Estrella De Panama and El Siglo newspapers while negotiations are underway for the possible acquisition of the papers by a non-US company.

One company that has severed all links with the Waked Group has been removed from the Clinton List and the  commission may be able to negotiate more

The U.S. government placed 68 companies linked to the Waked Family conglomerate on the Clinton list for activities related to money laundering and drug trafficking and the action has led to the government take-over  of the Riviera chain in Colombia.

Members of the commission are Economy and Finance Minister Dulcidio De La Guardia, Luis Ernesto Carles and Augusto Arosemena. The three must analyze the cases and submit periodic reports to President Juan Carlos Varela on possible actions to take to deal with the impact of the actions on the economic system.

“For these purposes, the ministerial committee may fix consultations with economic agents and professional associations, as well as conducting the necessary studies, according to the public procurement regulations in force, in order to make the best decisions,” said a statement from the Secretariat of State Communication.

De La Guardia, as chairman of the committee, was authorized to sign agreements with US authorities with the approval of the other members of the commission.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/cabinet-defines-waked-strategy

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Move to protect Panama financial system

Posted on June 4, 2016 in Panama

Balboa-Securities-Clinton-Unidos_LPRIMA2
Post Views: 69

WHILE THE TREASURER of Balboa Securities sits behind bars in Colombia awaiting extradition to the United States Panama’s  Superintendency of Securities has extended its intervention for an additional 30 days to protect the country’s financial system.

The move will give intervenor Rosaura González Marcos until July 4 to continue the assessment of the firm.

The intervention was ordered May 5, the same day the US Treasury Department announced the inclusion of the securities firm on the Clinton lLst for activities related to money laundering and drug trafficking. The decision was part of the investigation into the Waked Money Laundering Organization.

RINGLEADERS

The treasurer of the firm,  Nidal Waked, was identified by the Department of the Treasury as one of the ringleaders the money laundering operation, along with his uncle Abdul Waked.

If convicted, Nidal Waked, 44,  could be facing  a lengthy  prison term. A Florida prosecutor is calling for a  50 years sentence.

The extension was granted at the request of González Marcos, who said it was needed “to protect the stability of the market and the financial system itself.”

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/move-protect-panama-financial-system

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Department store survives laundering crisis

Posted on June 4, 2016 in Panama, Panama

felix-maduroIMA20160603_0171_35.jpg
Post Views: 98

THE JOBS of over 1,000 employees of the 139 year-old Panama department store Felix B. Maduro, have been saved after Waked family  shareholders, accepted the terms and conditions offered in a deal between  the Government   and the US  Treasury Department to  ensure the continuity of the company.

Following the agreement reached Friday, June 3,  President Juan Carlos Varela  said that the commission to facilitate discussions between the shareholders of Felix B. Maduro and US Treasury Department have managed to make possible the continuity of  operations of the department store and the protection of more than 1,000 jobs. “our goal from day one.”

The US Bureau of Foreign Assets (OFAC) , had imposed a series of measures to facilitate the termination of the business relationship of Abdul Waked and Wisa Group with Felix B. Maduro, Importadora Maduro Maduro and International (Felix Maduro Group).

The solution involves the creation of a trust and the transfer to the trust  the properties of the Felix Maduro Group of companies

NEWSPAPER LIFELINE

OFAC also extended on Friday  an operating license to the newspapers El Siglo and La Estrella de Panama until 6 January 2017.

The license was due to expire July 6.

(OFAC, had  identified  Abdul and Nidal Waked as the ringleaders of The Waked Money Laundering Organization, on suspicion of money laundering and drug trafficking.

On Friday the US ambassador in Panama, John Feeley, reported that Mawa Enterprises Corp., a company with operations in the Colon Free Zone, had been  removed  from the Clinton List Mawa Enterprises Corp. and 67 other companies, as well as seven Waked were included on the list.

Feeley said: “They have totally and legally separated links they had with the  Waked, family, therefore, US officials acknowledge that they have no problem in having access to financial banking system of the United States,”.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/department-store-survives-laundering-crisis

0

Share this post


Link to post

U.S. grants license to Felix B. Maduro

It is valid until December.

Twelve days after Abdul Waked, owner of Felix B. Maduro, authorized the transfer of all the store's assets to a trust, the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the U.S. Treasury Department approved an extended license for these stores so that they have access to the US financial system.

The license is valid until Dec. 14, 2016 and will allow it to process credit card transactions and engage in business with U.S. suppliers, among other provisions.

Tuesday, President Juan Carlos Varela visited the Felix B. Maduro store on Vía España to give employees the news personally.

"I want to share with you the joy that I have that we have saved Felix B. Maduro," the president said.

Varela first made the announcement during a tour of the Amador Convention Center site. He cited the hard work of Economy Minister Dulcidio De La Guardia, Labor Minister Luis Ernesto Carles and Trade Minister Augusto Arosemena.

"They have worked 30 days on this topic, and have saved the jobs of 1,200 Panamanians," said the president.

The license allows the stores to be sold before December, though if the transaction involves U.S. citizens or companies, it must be authorized by the OFAC.

On May 5, the US Treasury Department included Abdul Waked, his nephew Nidal Waked, seven members of that family, and 68 companies, which included Felix B. Maduro, on the so-called Clinton List due to allegations that the entities were engaged in money laundering.

http://www.prensa.com/in_english/Felix_B-Maduro-_Abdul_Waked-_Estados_Unidos_21_4507259230.html

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Facilitation of Sale of Felix B. Maduro Companies 

The Office of Foreign Assets Control has granted a license, until December 14, 2016, to access the US financial system, and allow the sale of the companies to be managed.

The license granted by the Office of Foreign Assets Control and the US Treasury Department (OFAC) is valid until December 14 this year and authorizes the companies Importadora Maduro, Maduro Internacional and Lindo & Maduro to make arrangements for them to be bought.

If the transaction involves U.S. companies or citizens, it must be authorized by the OFAC, through another license.

In early June, Abdul Waked transferred the assets of Importadora Maduro, Maduro Internacional, and Lindo & Maduro and a trust controlled by a five creditor banks, to ensure the sustainability of Felix B.Maduro. 

See: "How to Keep Waked Businesses Running" and "Want to Buy La Riviera in Tocumen?"

Prensa.com reports that "... The new board, as trustees, will be receive the offers to purchase the assets. The proceeds of the sale will be used to pay employee benefits, bank loans with collateral and debts with suppliers, in that order of priority. If anything is leftover, the money will be deposited in a restricted account, which Abdul Waked will be able to access, if he is eventually taken off the Clinton List. "

http://www.centralamericadata.com/en/article/main/Facilitation_of_Sale_of_Felix_B_Maduro_Companies

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Panama Papers suspect held in Geneva

Posted on June 15, 2016 in Panama

Mossack-Fonseca_LPRIMA20160615_0127_26-6
Post Views: 226

AN EMPLOYEE  of the law firm Mossack Fonseca in Geneva, Switzerland,  is being investigated  over  the alleged leak of documents published by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) as the “Panama Papers.”” 

According to information disclosed by the Swiss newspaper Le Temps, Geneva’s prosecutor is temporarily holding the person on  “suspicion” of “letting e out” a large volume of confidential data.

The prosecutor told the Swiss newspaper that the proceedings are conducted following a complaint lodged by Mossack Fonseca.

The prosecutor refused to give more information to Le Temps about the research being done  but the suspect has been , in provisional detention for several days.

In addition, they were seized computer equipment has been seized to verify how  and what  information was obtained and its  fate.

Le Temps, says the employee is  reportedly accused of “data theft” of “unauthorized access to a computer system” and “breach of trust”. However, the detainee denies all charges.

On April 3, the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) brought to light millions of documents of the firm Mossack Fonseca, highlighting the use of offshore structures by individuals and companies to hide assets and avoid paying taxes.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/panama-papers-suspect-held-geneva

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Waked case draws US deputy AG to Panama

Posted on June 16, 2016 in Panama

Kenneth-Blanco-Kenia-Porcell_LPRIMA20160
Keneth White and Kenia Porcell
 Post Views: 114
 

THE US DEPARTMENT of Justice Deputy Attorney General, Kenneth White, is visiting Panama, sources  in  the US embassy  have confirmed.

 

White has  exchanged information with Panama’s attorney general Kenia Porcell in the case of  Nidal Waked, who was included in the Clinton List and has been held in Bogotá, Colombia, pending extradition since. May 4. reports La Prensa

 

Waked faces charges for alleged offenses of conspiracy to commit money laundering and bank fraud. He was named along with 68 other companies and individuals in the Waked family conglomerate headquartered in Colon and headed by Nidal’s uncle Abdul

 

In Panama, investigations into the Waked  case are in the hands of first drug prosecutor, Markel Mora, who has requested legal assistance from the US authorities.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/waked-case-draws-us-deputy-ag-panama

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Tocumen duty free area up for grabs

Posted on June 17, 2016 in Panama

duty-free-620x264.jpg
Post Views: 141

THE DUTY FREE  shopping area at Tocumen International Airport , which has been operated  since 2007  by Waked International, S.A. (Wisa) and Motta International will be up for tender between August and September.

The  concession expires on December 31, 2017, and the tender was  originally scheduled for the last quarter of the year. but is now planned for between August and September.

Joseph Fidanque III, manager of Tocumen SA, said the inclusion of the Waked group in the Clinton List changed the plans of the airport

Being included on this list, Wisa cannot perform transactions with US companies, a situation that has affected the operation of the company which can only receive cash transactions, and not accept credit cards.

Fidanque III said the airport  board  does not have the ability  to remove the Wisa concession after it  was included in the Clinton List but warns that if the company violates its contract by not paying royalties to Tocumen, the authority will have to  take a decision.

Nine years ago the Wisa and Motta groups together paid $ 173 million for the marketing of products at the airport

La Riviera, Burberry, Brooks Brothers and Columbia are some of the Wisa Group stores in Tocumen which together provide 7% of commercial revenues of the airport.

Fidanque III said  that the new tender will seek two operators, but exclude some brands and products and  make separate awards.

Unlike the 2007 tender, Tocumen will  increase the percentage of monthly royalties to be paid by new operators, and decrease payment for the key rights.

“We do not want to raise a lot of capital to avoid repeating what happened 9 years ago when the funds obtained from the bidding for the duty free were used for projects outside the airport,” said Fidanque III.

The tender for the new Terminal 2 is scheduled for early next year.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/tocumen-duty-free-area-grabs

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Waked owned bank heading for sale

Posted on July 2, 2016 in Panama

balboa-620x264.jpg
Post Views: 76

THE WAKED group Balboa Bank & Trust is heading for the selling block after the Friday’ July 1 decision of The Superintendency of Banks to order its reorganization

The reorganization will be effective from July 4 at 2:30 p.m., said the entity.

“The reorganization of the bank seeks to fulfill three basic objectives: protect the best interests of depositors, minimize any loss of value of the bank that is to the detriment of depositors and reduce any adverse impact on the banking system,” said the agency.

According to the superintendency, the decision to reorganize the bank will allow alternatives to “seek to give greater security to depositors and creditors of Balboa Bank & Trust Corp.” It will also allow them quicker access to their funds.

“This can be done by selling to a new operator,” it added.

Ariel Antonio Sanmartin Mendez was appointed as the reorganizer, which includes developing a plan that will detail the different phases and stages that must be met with the best selected alternative.

“This will be a transparent process, so that depositors, creditors and other interested parties can be secure in how it is being handled,” the superintendency said.

Control of the bank’s administrative and operational functions were taken over by the superintendency in May, when the bank was placed on a sanctions list by the U.S. Treasury Department. That move was made because of its ties to the Waked family, who faced allegations that they laundered money for drug traffickers.

The actions by the Treasury Department meant the bank could not interact with any U.S. entities, which hampered its ability to continue to operate. If the bank is sold, it could resume normal operations.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/waked-owned-bank-heading-sale

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Waked loses Soho Mall

Posted on July 3, 2016 in Panama

soho.jpg
Post Views: 264

HOURS AFTER  tenants of Soho Mall were  given a temporary license to continue operating for six  months Abdul Waked  put pen to paper signing his  flagship jewel  into  a  trust with the management assigned to creditor banks and avoiding possible seizure.

Negotiations  ended at 11.30 pm on  Friday, July 1. The entity, which owes about $174 million, is now committed to the creation of a trust an  alternative proposed by a Panama ministerial commission to the United States Department of the Treasury.

On May 5, The Treasury, through its Office of Control of Foreign Assets to Abdul Waked, Soho Mall and 67 other companies in the Clinton list of companies with  activities linked to money laundering and drug trafficking.

OFAC prohibits US citizens and companies having  any relationship with companies on the Clinton List.

The  situation put  strong pressure on  Soho Mall, which has suppliers, stores and brands of American origin or with a strong trade links in that country. Given this scenario, and anticipating a deterioration of assets, creditor banks, with the mediation of the government formed a committee to find ways to restore viability to  Soho Mall and avoid possible seizures or bankruptcy proceedings.

The solution was the creation of a trust and the future shape of a governing body that will manage the shopping complex.

Untying Waked from Soho Mall allows the future sale of the shopping center, located in the banking area of the capital is given.

OFAC now should receive the translation of all negotiated documents to validate the effective ousting of  Waked and that a future sale does not benefit the merchant.

These are prerequisites so  Soho Mall could eventually leave the Clinton List and perform commercial and financial transactions with citizens and businesses without restriction.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/waked-loses-soho-mall

0

Share this post


Link to post
Quote

Waked family loses another jewel

Posted on July 6, 2016 in Panama

Balboa-Securities-Trust-S.jpg
Post Views: 133

ANOTHER JEWEL  has been removed from the fading crown of the Waked family  business conglomerate in Panama.

The Superintendency of Securities (SMV) has ordered the reorganization of Balboa Securities Corp., the subsidiary of Balboa Bank & Trust, an entity that is going through a similar process, reorts La Prensa.

The action was taken by acting Superintendent Loraine Chavarría de Sinclair, who appointed Ariel San Martín Méndez to reorganize the securities firm.

He is also handling the reorganization of Balboa Bank & Trust. During the intervention period, the institution was under the control of Rosaura González.

In a final report, González recommended the reorganization of Balboa Securities Corp. He  estimated the process would take six months.

Both the bank and securities firm were taken over by regulators in early May when they were placed on a sanctions list by the U.S. government. That action was taken due to their relationship with the Waked family, who are accused of laundering money for drug traffickers.

The action prevents any entity with ties to the United States from engaging in transactions with the bank or securities firm.

Nidal Waked is the treasurer of Balboa Bank & Trust, whom the U.S. government identified as one of the ringleaders of the money laundering scheme.

Waked is being held in Bogota, Colombia, waiting to be extradited to the United States to face criminal charges and a prosecutor who is calling for a 50-year jail  term.

http://www.newsroompanama.com/news/panama/waked-family-loses-another-jewel

0

Share this post


Link to post

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now