So the corruptions continues.
U.S. charges Obama fund-raiser in $290 million fraud Mon Sep 21, 2009 6:25pm EDT http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSTRE58K5A420090921
NEW YORK (Reuters) - Hassan Nemazee, a fund-raiser for Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton and other Democrats, has been indicted for defrauding Bank of America, HSBC and Citigroup Inc out of more than $290 million in loan proceeds, U.S. prosecutors said on Monday.
The announcement follows last month's indictment of Nemazee, head of a private equity firm and an Iranian American Political Action Committee board member, on one count of defrauding Citigroup's Citibank.
The new indictment adds allegations that he defrauded two other banks, Bank of America and HSBC Bank USA, in a similar fashion by falsifying documents and signatures to purportedly show he had hundreds of millions worth of collateral.
The office of the U.S. Attorney in Manhattan and the FBI said he used the proceeds of his scheme to make donations to election campaigns of federal, state and local candidates, donations to political action committees and charities.
He bought property in Italy and paid for maintenance on two properties in New York.
His lawyer could not immediately be reached for comment.
As of August 2009 Nemazee owed Bank of America about $142 million and owed Citibank about $74.9 million, the indictment said. He drew on a line of credit he fraudulently obtained from HSBC to pay the Citibank loan.
Nemazee, 59, typically donates more than $100,000 annually to Democratic political candidates. He is listed as one of the top "bundlers" of contributions to Obama's 2008 presidential campaign, according to OpenSecrets.org, a website run by the Center for Responsive Politics research group.
MEMBERS OF CONGRESS DO IT BETTER: While many lawmaker's personal fortunes have taken a hit due to the financial crisis, Georgia State University business professor Alan Ziobrowski says oftentimes lawmakers do have an inside advantage to investments. Ziobrowski has examined hundreds of personal financial disclosures filed by members of Congress and analyzed more than 6,000 stock transactions over the past 15 years. "Senators make significant abnormal returns, some place around 1 percent above the market, 12 percent a year," he recently told National Public Radio. "They do better down market, up market. They just outperform the average."
Blue Dog Democrat Mike Ross Benefits From Real Estate Deal With Drug Company
Using Center for Responsive Politics data, ProPublica and Politico put out a great report today about a 2007 real estate transaction between Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.) and an Arkansas-based pharmacy, USA Drug. The sale of the property and its assets, plus the negotiation of a noncompete agreement with Ross' wife, Holly, yielded the couple at least $1 million and as much as $1.67 million -- much more than a county assessment said the property was worth, according to the report.
REGULATORS, MOUNT UP?: Scott O'Malia, a Republican staffer on the Senate Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development and a former lobbyist for the Atlanta-based energy company Mirant Corp, has been nominated to be the country's newest member of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. David Corn and Daniel Schulman of Mother Jones detail O'Malia's lobbying work for the Enron-like firm that allegedly manipulated energy prices, and they ask, "Why has Obama named him to be a top regulator?" (The answer, apparently, is that Obama is "following a traditional practice and allowing the top Senate Republican -- in this case, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) -- to select candidates for certain seats on independent agencies," the left-leaning muckraking newsmagazine reports. A White House official told them this "is the sort of precedent that we defer to.")
WATCHDOG NAMES MOST CORRUPT LAWMAKERS: The nonprofit ethics watchdog Citizens for Ethics and Responsibility in Washington (CREW) has released their fifth annual report on members of Congress who they deem have engaged in unethical -- and sometimes illegal -- behavior. Sen. Roland Burris (D-Ill.) and Rep. Jesse Jackson, Jr. (D-Ill.) both make the list for issues stemming from former Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich's filling of the U.S. Senate seat vacated by President Barack Obama. Sen. John Ensign (R-Nev.) makes their list for an extramarital affair with a former staffer. The staffer and her husband, who also worked for Ensign, were both discharged and paid $96,000 by Ensign's parents as a "gift," according to Ensign's office. Furthermore, Reps. John Murtha (D-Penn.), Pete Visclosky (D-Ind.) and Don Young (R-Alaska) all make the list for directing earmarks to campaign contributors. As Capital Eye has previously noted, Murtha and Visclosky were the top two recipients of the now-defunct lobby shop PMA Group and its clients, which is under federal investigation, and Murtha was the top recipient of campaign cash from employees of Kuchera Industries, a defense contractor under federal investigation. Young is also under federal investigations for his role in steering a $10 million earmark for a bridge in Florida and his ties to lobbyists, including convicted lobbyist Jack Abramhoff.