By Kenneth Rijock
MIAMI, USA -- Investigators at a North American regulatory and law enforcement agency are reportedly incensed that the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority (CIMA) has refused to supply any assistance in connection with an investigation into the theft of close to a half a billion US dollars in the Cayman Gang of Four case.
CIMA officials have declined to make any information available regarding banking transactions, claiming that such data is confidential, though some legal observers note that the Cayman agency has the authority to render the cooperation requested.
CIMA, which has known about the loss of funds for at least six months, has not interviewed any of the alleged perpetrators, all of whom are Cayman residents, though most have subsequently fled, and gone into hiding. It has not closed down B & C Capital Ltd, a shell company that held itself out as a "bank," and received the assets of as many as 60 Canadian and American retirees and pensioners. B & C's surviving managing director, Fernando Moto Mendes, remains on Grand Cayman, but CIMA has taken no action against him, notwithstanding his prior questionable record as a financial services agent.
Some whistleblowers have called for CIMA, which reportedly has at least a dozen unresolved fraud cases pending, to be taken over by the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) for misfeasance in office; others assert that CIMA should be dissolved, and replaced by a more effective agency; the fact that its large staff has failed to complete multiple investigations, which are incomplete after several years, is prima facie evidence that it is ineffective.
Reports that official US and Canadian investigations of the Gang of Four case are in progress continue to surface, which could further embarrass CIMA, should foreign agencies take action when the Cayman regulator does not.
Kenneth Rijock is a banking lawyer turned-career money launderer (10 years), turned-compliance officer specialising in enhanced due diligence, and a financial crime consultant who publishes a Financial Crime Blog. The Laundry Man, his autobiography, was published in the UK on 5 July 2012.