jueves, 1 de junio de 2017

Calamar Vampiro, Goldman, Ayuda a Déspota Maduro

Dos Nombres Horribles, Un Negocio Redondo: Goldman Ayuda a Maduro
El Calamar Vampiro rescata al infame déspota

Goldman Sachs supuestamente compró $2.800 millones de los bonos emitidos por la empresa nacional Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA). Richard Drew/AP


(Artículo traducido del inglés al español por COViSAL - covisal.blogspot.com)

31 de mayo, 2017

¿Quién diría que dos instituciones amorales y corruptas con ideologías diametralmente opuestas, no pueden colaborar para undirse aún más?

RELACIONADO
Después de contender en contra de Goldman como candidato, Donald Trump le lame las botas al banco de inversión más grande del mundo

Goldman Sachs, un infame banco de inversión y símbolo internacional del capitalismo predador ha hecho un trato diabólico con Nicolás Maduro, el infame dictador izquierdista de Venezuela quien proclama despreciar a empresas como Goldman. De acuerdo al escrito de Forbes:

“Lo que ocurrió es que la Tesorería Nacional de Venezuela tenía algunos bonos emitidos por PDVSA, la empresa nacional de petróleos, y ellos vendieron estos bonos a Goldman Sachs con un enorme descuento de su valor nominal”.  

El gobierno autoritario de Maduro ha sido sacudido por protestas esta primavera a consecuencia de una devastación económica y política. (Maduro dice que los problemas de su país se derivan de una “guerra económica” entablada por Washington). La estadística más impresionante es que el 75 por ciento de los venezolanos dicen haber perdido por lo menos 8,6 kilos por la escasez de comida.

El negocio con Goldman Sachs es un acuerdo de mutua ganancia tanto para el banco como para el dictador. Goldman compró $2,800 millones de los bonos petroleros por 0,32 centavos por cada dolar, de acuerdo al Times of London. El régimen de Maduro, en retorno,  llenará sus cofres inmediatamente con unos $865 millones de dólares.

Julio Borges, Presidente de la Asamblea Nacional y figura líder de la oposición, denunció a Goldman por “asistir e instigar” al trol de socialismo Bolivariano: “La ayuda financiera de Goldman Sachs al régimen”, Borges escribió en una carta a Lloyd Blankfein, “servirá para fortalecer la brutal represión desatada en contra de cientos de venezolanos que protestan pacíficamente pidiendo un cambio político para el país”. Borges, agregó que él cree que Goldman “decidió hacer dinero fácil a costillas del sufrimiento de los venezolanos”.

De una forma característica, Goldman insistió que no hizo nada inapropiado porque compró los bonos de un intermediario en mercados secundarios, y que no hizo trato directo con el gobierno de Maduro. (Goldman solo identificó al intermediario como “Europeo”). También, el banco insistió que compró los bonos por una tercera parte de su valor ¡para ayudar a los venezolanos!

“Nosotros reconocemos que la situación es compleja y cambiante y que Venezuela esta en crisis. Estamos de acuerdo que la vida allí tiene que mejorar; hicimos la inversión en parte porque creemos que así será”, la empresa dijo en una declaración por email.

Más de 50 personas han muerto en protestas durante los últimos dos meses, con muchos más heridos y encarcelados. Henrique Capriles, el gobernador opositor del estado Miranda, le dijo a reporteros que él y su equipo fueron brutalmente golpeados por fuerzas de seguridad en una marcha que se llevó a cabo la semana pasada. El dijo que la inversión de Goldman Sachs “empeorará la situación”, como lo reportó el Miami Herald. 

“¿Por qué necesitan ese dinero?” Capriles se preguntó. “¿Para comprar bombas y armamento de guerra que se les están agotando? ¿Para financiar una campaña electoral fraudulenta?

Menos mal que Karl Marx está muerto, porque de otra manera este noticia de cadenas mentales metafísicas haría que su cabeza explotara. ¿Es esto la corrupción del capitalismo, la corrupción del socialismo, ambas, o ninguna? Maduro probablemente diría que esta transacción es un ejemplo perfecto del “capitalismo salvaje” él dice, él desprecia.

Sea lo que sea, esta historia de perros y gatos viviendo juntos en el mercado secundario de bonos, representa el escepticismo extremo, y uno que muy probable genere consecuencias desastrosas para un país que está al borde del abismo.

miércoles, 31 de mayo de 2017

Vampire Squid Goldman Sachs rescues infamous autocrat Maduro of Venezuela

Two Vile Names, One Sweetheart Deal: Goldman Bails Out Maduro


May 31, 2017

The Vampire Squid rescues an infamous autocrat



Who says two amoral and corrupt institutions with diametrically opposing ideologies can't collaborate to sink even lower together?


Goldman Sachs, infamous investment bank and symbol of international predatory capitalism, has made a devil's bargain with Nicolás Maduro, the infamous left-wing dictator of Venezuela who claims to despise companies just like Goldman. As Forbes writes:
"What happened is that the Venezuelan Treasury owned some bonds issued by PDVSA, the national oil company. They sold those bonds to Goldman Sachs at a serious discount to face value."
Maduro's authoritarian government has been rocked by protests this spring thanks to widespread economic and political devastation. (Maduro blames his country's problems on an "economic war" waged by Washington.) The most shocking statistic is that 75 percent of Venezuelans are said to have lost at least 19 pounds from food shortages.
The Goldman deal was a win-win for the bank and the dictator. Goldman bought $2.8 billion worth of oil bonds for 32 cents on the dollar, according to the Times of London. Maduro's regime, in return, immediately gets to stock its coffers with about $865 million.
Julio Borges, president of the National Assembly and a leading opposition figure, denounced Goldman for "aiding and abetting" the goblin of Bolivarian socialism:
"Goldman Sachs' financial lifeline to the regime," Borges wrote in a letter to Lloyd Blankfein, "will serve to strengthen the brutal repression unleashed against the hundreds of thousands of Venezuelans peacefully protesting for political change in the country."
Borges added that he believed Goldman "decided to make a quick buck off the suffering of the Venezuelan people."
In characteristic form, Goldman insisted it didn't do anything untoward because it bought the bonds from an intermediary on the secondary market, and didn't deal with Maduro's government directly. (Goldman would only identify the intermediary as "European.") Also, the bank insisted, it bought the bonds for a third of their value to help the Venezuelan people!
"We recognize that the situation is complex and evolving and that Venezuela is in crisis. We agree that life there has to get better, and we made the investment in part because we believe it will," the firm said in an email statement.
More than 50 people have died in protests over the past two months, with many more injured and arrested.
Henrique Capriles, the opposition governor of the state of Miranda, told reporters that he and his team were beaten by security forces in a march this past weekend. He said he believed Goldman's investment would "only make things worse," as the Miami Herald put it.
"Why do they need this money?" Capriles wondered. "To buy bombs and war supplies that are running out? To finance a fraudulent electoral campaign?"
It's a good thing Karl Marx is dead, because otherwise this metaphysical mind-loop of a news story would make his head explode. Is this a corruption of capitalism, a corruption of socialism, both, or neither? Maduro himself would probably say this transaction is a perfect example of the "savage capitalism" he says he despises.
Whatever it is, this tale of dogs and cats living together on the secondary bond market represents the ultimate in cynicism, and one likely to have dire consequences for a country already on the brink. 

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/features/taibbi-on-goldman-sachs-bailing-out-nicolas-maduro-w484824


martes, 27 de septiembre de 2016

Pennies for innocent families, millions for lawyers, in Stanford settlements



Pennies for innocent families, millions for lawyers, in Stanford settlements

September 26, 2016
Pennies for innocent families, millions for lawyers, in Stanford settlements
Jaime Escalona with family in Venezuela
Austin, Texas (rushPRnews) 09/26/16 — COViSAL, a coalition of affected families in Latin America and around the world write an objection letter to the latest agreements in Stanford's case.
September 23, 2016
Honorable David Godbey, U.S. District Court in Dallas; Civil action: 3:09-CV-0298-N
We respectfully write to you in order to express our objection to the recent agreement reached by the U.S. Receiver and his attorneys, the Official Stanford Investors Committee, and the underwriters at Lloyd's of London. The continued delay in distribution from previous agreements has further frayed any trust the victims have in the Receiver and his attorneys. The saga drags on for thousands of families as they are forced to wait for money from the first agreements reached...


domingo, 25 de septiembre de 2016

Objeción de COViSAL al acuerdo con Lloyd's of London y otros

COViSAL
For Justice & Restitution
_______________________________________________________________


23 de septiembre, 2016

Clerk of the Court
United States District Court
Northern District of Texas
1100 Commerce Street
Dallas, Texas 75242

ATN: Chambers of the
Honorable David Godbey

Civil actions: 3:09-CV-0298-N/3:09-CV-01736-N/3:13-CV-2226-N/ 3:15-CV-1997-N/ 3:14-CV-3731-N

Respetuosamente le escribimos para expresar nuestra objeción al reciente acuerdo entre el Síndico de los Estados Unidos, sus abogados, el Comité Oficial de Inversionistas y, la aseguradora Lloyd’s of London. Los continuos atrasos de la distribución de previos acuerdos han desmoronado la poca confianza que tenían las víctimas en el Síndico y sus abogados. La saga se extiende para miles de familias a medida que se ven obligadas a esperar dinero de estos primeros acuerdos que se llevaron a cabo hace más de seis meses.

Cuando el Stanford Financial Group fue intervenido por las autoridades estadounidenses en el 2009, el mundo cambió dramáticamente para miles de latino americanos que habían invertido todos los ahorros de una vida en una promesa de seguridad bajo la sombrilla protectora de los Estados Unidos. Parecía una decisión sabia al considerar la naturaleza volátil de sus propios gobiernos, y fue bajo este principio que les fueron vendidos sus certificados de depósito. Ellos confiaron sus ahorros a una empresa que pertenecía a un conglomerado norteamericano, regulado y supervisados por las Agencias Reguladoras de los Estados Unidos. Sin embargo, su confianza fue compensada con una traición que resultó en pérdidas desastrosas. Familias que tenían esperanzas para el futuro, ahora viven de la caridad de vecinos, gente está enferma sin poder pagar por tratamientos médicos, vidas se están perdiendo por no poder pagar por operaciones que salvarían sus vidas. Las víctimas de América Latina son el grupo más grande de defraudados; 15.270 familias que representan el 70.24% de los depositantes con más de $4 mil millones de dólares en pérdidas.

Desafortunadamente, la triste realidad es que la injusticia no termina para la gente afectada por el fraude de Stanford, a medida que la administración judicial continua generando honorarios y gastos para sí mismos, sus abogados y otros profesionales, mientras llegan a acuerdos extrajudiciales por míseros montos para los depositantes. Hasta el momento, ellos son los principales beneficiarios, cobrando millones de dólares y alargando el proceso para su propio beneficio. Hay 75 demandas que esperan en el tribunal la moción del juez, de acuerdo al sexto reporte conjunto presentado al tribunal por el Síndico y el Examinador, sobre demandas presentadas por el Síndico o el Comité Oficial de Inversionistas de Stanford (“OSIC”). De acuerdo al Sindico Ralph Janvey, en su carta abierta sobre los litigios para la recuperación de activos, de fecha 14 de marzo, 2014, “…Estas demandas buscan recuperar más de $680 millones en total. …estas demandas son la fuente principal de fondos que pudieran ser recuperados para el beneficio de todos los reclamantes elegibles…” Sin embargo, a pesar del enorme potencial de recuperación, Janvey no ha tenido éxito en recuperar este dinero. Si el Síndico y los abogados del Comité Oficial de Inversionistas continúan negociando estos acuerdos por menos de la mitad del uno por ciento de los montos originales buscados, ¿qué esperanza tenemos de recibir cualquier recuperación significativa?

COViSAL regularmente recibe email y llamadas telefónicas de familias desesperadas pidiendo ayuda mientras esperan una distribución relevante. A continuación comparto una carta muy dolorosa:

“A mi hijo menor Luis, le diagnosticaron un problema congénito, Estenosis Aortica Valvular. Desde que él nació se la tratábamos en el Texas Children’s Hospital en Houston. Siempre teníamos la confianza que cuando nos tocara realizar la operación de nuestro querido hijo, la podríamos realizar en el Texas Children´s Hospital y la pagaríamos con nuestros haberes en la cuentas del Stanford. Luis había cumplido 18 años y acababa de graduarse de bachiller. Él se preparaba para iniciar su carrera universitaria en veterinaria. Ahora, era necesario operarlo para corregirle su insuficiencia cardiaca, ya que se cansaba mucho. Le solicitamos un presupuesto al Texas Children’s Hospital para su operación; estaba por el orden de los $250.000 dólares. En vista de esto, el 25 de agosto de 2011, les escribí una comunicación a los Liquidadores Conjuntos de Grant Thornton, Marcus Wide y Hugh Dickson, explicando nuestra situación. Les anexe copias de todos los estudios de mi hijo y de los presupuestos para su operación. La única respuesta que recibí fue: ‘Estimado Cliente, Lo sentimos mucho saber que usted se enfrenta con esta situación tan difícil. Lamentablemente, en esta etapa de la liquidación, no es posible estimar en que tiempo ni qué cantidad de fondos estarían disponible para su distribución a los acreedores”.

En vista de esta respuesta y que era necesario realizar la operación de mi querido hijo, tomé la decisión de operarlo en Caracas, Venezuela. El 27 de septiembre del 2011, mi hijo fue operado. Parecía que la operación fue exitosa. La pagamos con los pocos fondos que teníamos, con nuestras tarjetas de crédito y la ayuda de nuestra familia.

Mi familia y yo estábamos muy felices de ver a nuestro hijo sano. El mundo lo llenamos de júbilo. Luis estaba muy emocionado y optimista en iniciar su carrera de veterinaria en la universidad.  Sin embargo, el 23 de febrero, 2012, a las 6:30pm, él y su hermano mayor fueron a su práctica rutinaria de natación, supervisada por un entrenador. Lamentablemente, nuestro hijo Luis murió durante la práctica. Parece ser que él sufrió un ataque al corazón. No sabemos exactamente que le ocurrió. Decidimos en contra de una autopsia, ya que para qué, si no me iban a revivir a mi querido hijo

A veces me pregunto, si hubiéramos tenido disponible el dinero que ahorramos en el Stanford International Bank y le hubiéramos realizado esta operación en el Texas Children´s Hospital con sus cardiólogos que lo trataron toda su vida desde pequeño; posiblemente, hoy mi hijo estaría vivo. Pero, debido al robo que realizó Allen Stanford con toda su directiva, nuestro querido hijo Luis no está con nosotros. Por estas razones hago responsables a R. Allen Stanford, a toda su directiva, a sus cómplices y también a los Liquidadores Conjuntos”.

Hay muchas historias desgarradoras de familias en América Latina y en otros países que están sufriendo inmensamente como resultado de esta horrenda experiencia. Y sólo vemos una gran falta de consideración y una completa indiferencia por el dolor y sufrimiento de miles de familias.

El octavo aniversario de la debacle de Stanford es en seis meses. Hasta el momento, los profesionales de la administración judicial son los principales beneficiarios recibiendo millones de los acuerdos extrajudiciales – mientras las victimas esperan por centavos de alivio económico y un proceso de distribución que toma meses y años.

Familias inocentes han esperado siete años y medio por una distribución apreciable que pudiera aliviar sus necesidades inmediatas. Sólo vemos la prolongación de los procedimientos judiciales, que simplemente benefician a los abogados de la administración judicial. El Sr. Janvey recibe un pago generoso de $400 la hora del patrimonio robado de las víctimas, y está viviendo cómodamente en Dallas. Es obvio que no existe ningún sentido de urgencia; su familia no se enfrenta a este dilema. Las víctimas son extraños en una tierra foránea, muy lejos; un hecho que explica su indiferencia. Las víctimas se convierten en horas cobrables sin el factor humano que afecte sus conciencias. ¿Por qué apresurarse a ayudar familias desesperadas y con necesidades cuando tienes garantizado un pago mensual mientras los procedimientos continúan?

Algo tiene que hacerse en nombre de las familias inocentes. Los tribunales deben examinan de cerca la manera en la cual estas acciones colectivas han sido negociadas para determinar si el acuerdo resultó de un proceso en pie de igualdad. Las negociaciones de acuerdos deben involucrar a toda la gente apropiada. Si los miembros de la clase tienen intereses divergentes y los abogados demandantes, no pueden representar equitativamente los intereses de los miembros de la clase, entonces los abogados de los demandantes deben identificar subclases potenciales y representantes apropiados que puedan ser incluidos en las discusiones de un acuerdo.

Los abogados están cosechando enormes honorarios mientras les dan insignificantes beneficios a los depositantes inocentes.

Le pedimos al Tribunal que exija acuerdos con significado para las familias de este horrendo fraude, un fraude que no parece terminar nunca.

Sinceramente,

/s/ Jaime Escalona
Jaime R. Escalona
En nombre de COViSAL
jaenrodes@gmail.com

cc. Por email:

Daniel McNeel Lane, Jr. at nlane@akingump.com
Manuel Mungia at mmungia@akingump.com
Matthew Pepping at mpepping@akingump.com
Michael J. Kuckelman at mkuckelman@ktklattorneys.com
Stephen J. Torline at storline@ktklattorneys.com
Kathryn A. Lewis at klewis@ktklattorneys.com
John J. Little at jlittle@lpf-law.com
Ralph Janvey at rjanvey@kjllp.com
Kevin Sadler at kevin.sadler@bakerbotts.com

COViSAL's objection to agreement with Lloyd's of London and others

COViSAL
For Justice & Restitution
_______________________________________________________________

September 23, 2016

Clerk of the Court
United States District Court
Northern District of Texas
1100 Commerce Street
Dallas, Texas 75242

ATTN: Chambers of the
Honorable David Godbey

Civil actions: 3:09-CV-0298-N/3:09-CV-01736-N/3:13-CV-2226-N/ 3:15-CV-1997-N/ 3:14-CV-3731-N


We respectfully write to you in order to express our objection to the recent agreement reached by the U.S. Receiver and his attorneys, the Official Stanford Investors Committee, and the underwriters at Lloyd's of London. The continued delay in distribution from previous agreements has further frayed any trust the victims have in the Receiver and his attorneys. The saga drags on for thousands of families as they are forced to wait for money from the first agreements reached over six months ago.

When Stanford Financial Group was seized by the U.S. authorities in 2009, the world changed dramatically for the many Latin Americans that had invested their life savings in a promise of safety under the protective umbrella of the United States. It seemed a wise decision considering the volatile nature of many of their own governments, and it was on this principle that they were sold their certificates of deposit. They entrusted their savings to a company belonging to an American conglomerate regulated and supervised by U.S. Regulatory Agencies. However, their trust was rewarded with a betrayal that resulted in devastating loss. Families that had hope for the future are now living off charity from neighbors, people are ill and unable to pay for their medical treatments, lives are being lost because of an inability to pay for lifesaving operations. Latin American victims are the largest defrauded group; 15,270 families, representing 70.24% of depositors with more than $4 billion in losses.

Unfortunately, the sad reality is that injustice continues for people affected by Stanford’s fraud as the administration of the Receivership continues to generate fees for themselves, their attorneys, and other professionals, while negotiating paltry sums for the depositors. So far, they are the primary beneficiaries, charging millions of dollars, and dragging out the process to their own advantage. There are 75 lawsuits awaiting ruling by the court, listed in the Receiver’s and Examiner’s sixth joint advisory to the court, in cases filed by the Receiver or the Official Stanford Investors Committee (“OSIC”). According to the US Receiver Ralph Janvey, in his open letter concerning Asset Recovery Litigation dated February 14, 2014, “…These lawsuits seek to recover in excess of $680 million in total, …the claims are the single largest potential source of funds which may be recovered for the benefit of the eligible claimants…” However, despite the enormous potential for recovery, Janvey has been largely unsuccessful in retrieving this money. If the US Receiver and the Official Stanford Investors Committee’s attorneys continue to settle cases for less than half a percent of the original amounts sought, what hope do we have of receiving a meaningful recovery?

COViSAL regularly receives emails and phone calls from desperate families asking for help as they await a relevant distribution. I am enclosing the following heart-breaking letter:

“My youngest son, Luis, was diagnosed with a congenital aortic stenosis. Since he was born, we treated him at the Texas Children Hospital in Houston. We were always confident that when the time came to operate on our beloved son, we could do it at the Texas Children’s Hospital, and would pay for it with our savings deposited at Stanford. Luis was 18 years-old, and just graduated from high school. He was getting ready to start college to study veterinary medicine. Now, the operation was necessary to correct his cardiac insufficiency because he was getting tired a lot. We requested a cost estimate from the Texas Children’s Hospital for his operation. It was in the order of $250,000. Because of this, on August 25, 2011, I wrote a letter to the Joint Liquidators explaining my situation. I enclosed my son's medical exams and the hospital's cost estimate for the operation. The only response that I received was: ‘Dear Customer, we are very sorry to know that you are confronting that difficult situation. Unfortunately, at this juncture of the Liquidation, it is not possible to estimate the time or what amount of the funds would be available to distribute to creditors.’

In view of this response, and because my beloved son needed the operation, I decided to have it in Caracas, Venezuela. On September 27, 2011, my son had his operation. It seemed he came out perfectly from the surgery. We paid for it with the scarce funds we had, our credit cards, and the help of our family. 

My family and me were so happy to see our son healthy. The world was filled with joy. Luis was very excited and optimistic about starting his college career in veterinary medicine. However, on February 23, 2012, at 6:30 p.m., Luis and his older brother went to a routine swimming practice, supervised by a trainer. Unfortunately, our son Luis died during the practice. It seems that he suffered a heart attack. We do not know exactly what happened to him. We decided against an autopsy; now for what, if they weren’t going to revive my beloved son.

I often ask myself, if we’d had our savings, deposited at Stanford International Bank, available, we could have had the operation at the Texas Children Hospital, with the cardiologists who had treated him since he was a child; maybe, my son would be alive today. However, because of the robbery committed by Allen Stanford and his directors, our beloved son Luis is no longer with us. For that reason, I hold, R. Allen Stanford, his directors and abettors, and the Joint Liquidators responsible.”

There are many more heart-breaking stories of families in Latin America and other countries suffering a great deal as a result of this horrendous ordeal. But we only see a total disregard and complete indifference to people’s pain and suffering.

The eight year anniversary of the Stanford debacle is in six months. So far, professionals managing the receivership are the sole beneficiaries receiving millions of dollars in out of court settlements – while the victims wait for pennies of economic relief in a long distribution process that takes months and even years.

Families have been waiting seven and a half years for any meaningful distribution that could alleviate their immediate needs. We only see the prolonging of the proceedings, which simply benefits the attorneys managing the receivership. Mr. Janvey is getting paid a generous $400 per hour from the victims' stolen patrimony, and living a very comfortable life in Dallas. It is obvious that there is not a sense of urgency; his family is not in this predicament. The victims are strangers in a foreign land, far away; a fact that explains his indifference. The victims just become billable hours without the human factor to affect his conscience. Why rush to help families in need and desperation when you are guaranteed a paycheck as long as the process continues?

Something must be done on behalf of the innocent. The courts must closely examine the manner in which these class actions are being negotiated to determine whether the deal was the result of an arm’s-length process. The settlement negotiations must also involve all the right people. If members of the class have divergent interests and plaintiffs’ counsel cannot fairly represent the interests of all class members, then plaintiffs’ counsel should identify potential subclasses and appropriate representatives who can be brought into settlement discussions.

The lawyers are reaping huge fees while handing out meager benefits to the innocent depositors.

We ask the Court to demand meaningful settlements and quicker distributions for the families of this terrible fraud - a fraud that never seems to end.

Respectfully,

/s/ Jaime Escalona
Jaime R. Escalona
On behalf of COViSAL


cc. by email:

Daniel McNeel Lane, Jr. at nlane@akingump.com
Manuel Mungia at mmungia@akingump.com
Matthew Pepping at mpepping@akingump.com
Michael J. Kuckelman at mkuckelman@ktklattorneys.com
Stephen J. Torline at storline@ktklattorneys.com
Kathryn A. Lewis at klewis@ktklattorneys.com
John J. Little at jlittle@lpf-law.com
Ralph Janvey at rjanvey@kjllp.com
Kevin Sadler at kevin.sadler@bakerbotts.com

miércoles, 18 de noviembre de 2015

For a fistful of dollars two gangs continue to fleece innocent families


COViSAL
For Justice & Restitution
_______________________________________


For a fistful of dollars two gangs continue to fleece innocent families



Wednesday, November 18, 2015

• Jaime Escalona speaking on behalf of COViSAL denounces millions of dollars in fees, and the fleecing of thousands of innocent families.

• What’s been recovered by the US Receiver and Joint Liquidators during almost 7 years, goes to pay exorbitant attorneys’ fees and expenses.

Until now, the only ones benefiting from the receivership and the liquidation of the Stanford Financial Group (“SFG”) and the Stanford International Bank Limited (“SIBL”), are the attorneys and their professionals. “It appears that they are purposely prolonging the legal process and litigation to continue generating millions of dollars in fees for themselves until the creditor’s patrimony is depleted," affirms Jaime Escalona, founder and leader of COViSAL, an international coalition of depositors who lost their life-savings with Stanford.

The US Receiver, Ralph Janvey, shows $75.1 million dollars spent in professional fees and expenses as of May 31, 2014 in his 8th application for fees and expenses registered before the US Federal Court in Dallas, Texas. The Joint Liquidators, Marcus Wide & Hugh Dickson of Grant Thornton (“JLs”), presented their 6th Report before the High Court of Antigua that shows $43.8 million dollars spent on professional fees and expenses.


Fistful of money

Escalona points out, that as of May 31, 2014, "the Receiver has recovered $263.7 million. However, he has collected $160.2 million in expenses and attorney's fees, not including the last 18 months - that’s over 60% of the total amount 'recovered' from Stanford’s bank accounts and fire sale of assets, leaving only meager sums for the victims.”


Recipients of the loot in the U.S.

$71.8 million
Received by the U. S. Receiver and his attorneys.

$2.5 million
Received by Stanford’s Examiner

$800,000 thousand
Charged by the Investor’s Committee.

$55.1 million
Charged for other expenses

“The Receivership’s attorneys and professionals have been very well compensated during the last six and a half years for the work they have performed. Unfortunately, they have not shown real accomplishments to deserve their $600 per hour fees.  They have received more money than the victims - many of them pocketing millions of dollars while the victims have barely received a penny on the dollar.” Mr. Escalona explains.

In Antigua

According to the record presented to the High Court of Justice of Antigua & Barbuda on November 11, 2014, the Joint Liquidators (JLs) reported a total receipt balance of $109.5 million dollars. However, from this total the JLs have already spent $43.8 million in fees for attorneys, consultants and other expenses. So far they have spent over 40% of the total, without taking into account their fees for the last 11 months.

SIBL’s JLs recovered $8.1 million from the sale of Stanford’s assets in Antigua, and received $95.6 million from the frozen funds in England, belonging to Stanford’s depositors.

Escalona affirms that “JLs are spending at least $1 million monthly; and now are going after innocent families to deny them of their 1 penny on the dollar distribution which was announced over a year ago, and keeping the $25 million withheld from depositors to possibly use for their fees and expenses.”


Fistful of money

“JLs Marcus Wide and Hugh Dickson have received more than $8.3 million, their Co-lead legal advisor $12 million, and other unnamed legal advisors $16 million,” says Escalona.

“We would like the unnamed law firms to be identified, and would like to see the detailed invoices of their work, as well as the invoices of all the payments issued,” Escalona adds.

Recipients of the loot in Antigua

$8.3 million
Payment received by the Joint Liquidators, Marcus Wide and Hugh Dickson of Grant Thornton.

$12.0 million
Payment received by co-lead attorney

$16.0 million
Payment for other legal advisers

$7.9 million
Payment for other expenses

$25.0 million
Withheld from innocent families accused of receiving preferential payments; most likely will be use by JLs to pay for their fees and expenses.

Rightful owner’s share

$0.01 cent on the dollar received by some depositors.

Easy prey, once again

On May 15, 2014 the High Court of Antigua issued an order appointing an Amicus Curiae due to the Joint Liquidator’s application to claw back alleged Net Winners and Preference Creditors. More than a year later, on August 5, 2015, Mr. Justice Gerhard Wallbank sided with the Joint Liquidators by issuing an order that allows the Joint Liquidators to pursue claims against depositors considered Preferential Payment Recipients. “The majority of depositors accused of receiving alleged preference payments withdrew some of their savings deposited at SIBL for living expenses, rightfully and in good will,” says Mr. Escalona.

“It is obvious that the Joint Liquidators are going to withhold the $25 million distribution from innocent families until they file suit against them and win the case. These families will not be able to defend themselves in court because they do not have money to hire an attorney, and most likely the JLs will win their cases. It is another tactic to prolong the suffering of depositors and keep this money for the continuation of self-enriching interests,” explains Mr. Escalona.


SFG and SIB administrators have secured their job for years

“The reality is that injustice continues for these victims as the U.S. Receiver and the Joint Liquidators insatiably persist in generating fees and expenses for themselves, their attorneys, and other professionals, the sole beneficiaries so far, charging millions of dollars during the past 7 years,” observes Mr. Escalona.

“We have not seen any meaningful efforts towards a real recovery for the victims and the accomplishments in the recollections of assets for the depositor’s distribution fund have been lacking. The Joint Liquidators and the US Receiver are just using the money confiscated in England and Canada to pay themselves and their colleagues, while forcing victims through a gauntlet for a pittance,” Mr. Escalona remarks.


Reality check

Mr. Escalona comments, “It seems that our never-ending saga is being prolonged by design, to generate fees and expenses for attorneys and professionals responsible for the Stanford Case. We find it deplorable that Courts in the United States and in Antigua have allowed the U.S. Receiver and the Joint Liquidators, who were named to prevent the waste and squandering of the creditors' patrimony, to continue consuming it at an alarming rate.”

Depositors’ Demands

According to the order appointing John Little as Stanford’s Examiner on April 20, 2009, he was appointed by the Court to convey information which the Examiner determines would be helpful to the Court in considering the interests of investors, and conduct such investigation as he deems necessary to provide such information to the Court. Also, on August 11, 2010 the Court approved the creation of a seven member Investor Committee, including the Examiner and six other members, representing a cross-section of the Stanford Investors, to provide additional opportunities for investors to participate in the activities of the Receivership.

Mr. Escalona says, “We exhort Stanford’s Examiner and the Official Stanford Investors Committee, which represents all Stanford investors’ interests worldwide, to voice our outcry and concerns expressed in this letter to the Courts and other authorities responsible for the Stanford Case. You have a fiduciary duty to the Stanford’s depositors and your decisions and actions must be carried out in consideration of the best interests of the creditor’s patrimony.”

The U.S. Receiver and the Joint Liquidators, were named to conserve, hold, manage, and prevent any waste of the creditors' patrimony, and return the money to the innocent families. The extended protraction of the recovery of assets and the very small settlements are generating high billable hours and expenses to the administrators and their attorney, to the detriment of Stanford’s depositors.

“We demand clarity, transparency, integrity and fairness, and an end to a self-serving economic interest that irrationally pursues control over the assets, wasting what is recovered of our patrimony. Control of the money cannot be the driving force to bring justice and equity to thousands of innocent families left in poverty and desperation,” comments Mr. Escalona.

Mr. Escalona concludes, “The $200 million left of our savings which were confiscated in Switzerland must be distributed directly to Stanford’s depositors, otherwise, the US Receiver and JLs will squander the money to pay themselves. They have not made any significant distributions as of yet, just a couple of pennies on the dollar.”

“What honest and transparent legal entity is providing oversight of the liquidation’s and receivership’s affairs? Where are the check and balances? Are our fundamental rights being considered?” asks Mr. Escalona.

“We insist that U.S. and Antiguan Courts show the world their commitment to honesty, equality and justice with concrete and immediate actions. Innocent families in the US, Latin America, and around the world, have the right to a full restitution of their savings.

In God we trust that the rights of the victims will prevail over judicial manipulations, and that good conscience will be the instrument to impart justice and to stop a never-ending fraud.”


# # #