: 14-11-2002
Constantine Poroh: Seize Kuchmas Fraudulent Financial Accounts!

// // // URL: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1037225984.html

Foreign governments, including U.S. authorities, can do a great favor to Ukraine seize money laundering accounts of Leonid Kuchma and his fraudulent family.

The arrest of Ukraines grand smuggler, the former prime minister Lazarenko, gave a clear evidence that something is wrong with Ukraines high executive office. The hire of president Leonid Kuchma of Ukraine, Mr. Lazarenko amassed several hundred million U.S. dollars stolen from Ukraines taxpayers to his offshore and U.S. financial accounts. At the zenith of his fame, Mr. Lazarenko openly bought multimillion real estate properties in California. U.S. authorities rightfully persecuted Mr. Lazarenko and arrested him on money laundering charges. Moreover, a Swiss court had sentenced Mr. Lazarenko to a term in prison.

This was a story with a seemingly good ending, but it was not. The main alleged accomplice of Lazarenko, the president of Ukraine Leonid Kuchma, is well and in power. As a result, many more Lazarenkos are currently operating under protection of Kuchmas family. One of the alleged accomplice of Kuchma, the arms trader Valery Malev, is already dead. Another, Oleh Bakai, the former manager of a government gas trading company, is well and healthy. Key solicitators of corruption money for Kuchma, Oleksandr Volkov and Valery Pustovoitenko, are members of parliament.

Corruption is not the only sin of Mr. Kuchma. His administration is reportedly engaged in hundreds of killings, direct stealing of government property, and abuse of taxpayers money. The low morale at the presidential administration -- and those under its protection -- corrupts the whole Ukrainian society. People feel abused, betrayed, and frightened.

The U.S. authorities have had information on Mr. Kuchmas wrongdoings a long time ago. Radio Libertys Corruption Watch has written even since 1996 about Kuchmas Kharkiv Initiative transforming Kharkiv into a major center of illegal drugs and arms trade. Kharkivs government owned Khartron Corporation had reportedly sold missile technology to Iraq. About that time, Kushmas government approved a private ambassador of Iraq to Ukraine, who was located in Kharkiv. In 1999, U.S. authorities warned Kuchma about Oleksandr Volkovs money laundering operations in Europe and offshore constituencies. In the year 2000, Major Melnychenkos tapes with Kuchmas illegal arms trade negotiations.

It doesnt take to be a CIA agent to find out that a large portion of Ukraines arms exports is being conducted illegally on private accounts of cronies of Mr. Kuchma. A starting salary of a junior account manager at one of Kyiv based arms trading firm exceeds $100,000. Other types of illegal trades include smuggling government funds, financing international killers, and illegal drugs trafficking. The money obtained from these operations usually do not stay in Ukraine: they go to offshore locations, including the U.S.

It is a high time for U.S., European, and other governments, to realize that a part of responsibility for a grave criminal situation in Ukraine lies on them, as well as on Ukrainian law enforcement. It is in the interest of everyone to step up, and in one front with Ukrainian people, to stop operations of international gangsters of the like of Kuchma, Volkov, Bakai, Pinchuk, Medvedchuk, Pustovoitenko, Lytvyn, and Khoroshkovsky. If Ukrainians cannot easily arrest them, one measure can definitely help us Ukrainians get rid of perverts: FOREIGN GOVERNMENTS SHOULD SEIZE AS MANY MONEY LAUNDERING ACCOUNTS OF SUSPECT INDIVIDUALS AS THEY CAN.

Help us, help yourselves! Help us get rid of corrupt Kuchmas family.

// // // URL: http://maidan.org.ua/static/mai/1037225984.html

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