U.N. names oil companies in Iraq kickback scheme




 
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U.N. names oil companies in Iraq kickback scheme
 
October 27th, 2005  
phoenix80
 
 

Topic: U.N. names oil companies in Iraq kickback scheme


U.N. names oil companies in Iraq kickback scheme
Quote:
U.N. names oil companies in Iraq kickback scheme

Reuters
27-10-05

Oil companies, including one that employed an Iraq weapons supplier, paid hundreds of millions of dollars in illegal kickbacks to Saddam Hussein during the U.N. oil-for-food program, a U.N. report said on Thursday.

Saddam Hussein's government took in $228.8 million (128.3 million pounds) from surcharges in connection with oil contracts, the report said. That was nearly 13 percent of the $1.8 billion in surcharges Iraq received from more than 2,200 foreign companies during the oil-for-food humanitarian program of 1996 to 2003, the report charged.

Intricate webs of companies, individuals, and governments stretching from Europe to Asia took part in paying illicit surcharges to Saddam's government. Russia and France were the countries with the most companies involved in the oil-for-food program.

The bulk of the illicit oil contract payments began when Iraq began levelling surcharges at the end of 2000. The surcharges, which lasted until the end of 2002, caused Iraq's regular customers to balk, the report said.

As a result, a group of four trading companies financed and lifted more than 60 percent of Iraqi crude oil in the market from December 2000 to mid-2001, Phase IX of the oil-for-food program.

Those trading companies were U.S. and Bahamas-based Bayoil, and three Swiss companies: Taurus, Vitol, and Glencore, according to the report.

All of the oil traders, executives and companies have denied knowingly making surcharge payments to Iraq.

Bayoil President David Chalmers and his former business associate, Augusto Giangrandi, used a front company, Italtech, to solicit oil allocations in Iraq, the report said.

Chalmers met Giangrandi, who was involved in selling weapons to Iraq, in the late 1980s. Giangrandi secured cluster bombs for Iraq.

Bayoil eventually paid more than $6 million in surcharges to the Iraqi regime through Al Wasel & Babel General Trading and Al-Hoda International Trading Co.

Jordanian businessman Talal Hussein Abu-Reyaleh, a Glencore agent, paid the surcharges, and Glencore paid him, the report said.

Vitol used Malaysian company Mastek to finance many of its oil deals with Iraq. The report said Iraq's oil marketing company, SOMO, received nearly $10 million of the charges it levied on Mastek in an account at Jordan National Bank in 31 separate payments.

Other companies, Dutch-based Trafigura and French oil services firm Ibex Energy, bribed U.N.-hired inspectors to buy more oil than was authorised under the oil-for-food program, the report from a U.N.-established Independent Inquiry Committee said.

Trafigura on Thursday denied it was knowingly involved in payment of bribes to purchase Iraqi oil.

The oil-for-food program was introduced in 1996 as a way to ease sanctions levied in 1990 against Iraq after it invaded Kuwait. It was designed to allow Baghdad to sell oil to pay for food and medicine for the Iraqi people.

The 500-page report is the final one from the panel, led by former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker, which has investigated the now-defunct program for the past 19 months. The report aims to put into context the manipulation of the program by companies around the world as well as individuals, groups and governments.

Also named was U.S.-based Coastal. French bank BNP-Paribas (BNPP.PA: Quote, Profile, Research) which held the escrow for the program, failed to act against corruption in the program.

"While some elements of the bank's relations to the U.N. remain in dispute, BNP was clearly inhibited from disclosing fully the first-hand knowledge it acquired of the true nature of financial relationships that fostered the payment of illicit surcharges," said the report.

Under the program, Iraq sold a total of $64.2 billion of oil to 248 companies, of which 139 paid illicit surcharges, the report said.

http://today.reuters.co.uk/news/news...-COMPANIES.xml
Quote:
Russia and France were the countries with the most companies involved in the oil-for-food program
Now the answer to the question of why French and Russian govts opposed the war against Saddam is clear!

They, again, didnt care about well being of Iraqis and they just wanted to suck the oil of the nation of Iraq. That is for sure.
October 27th, 2005  
Italian Guy
 
 
Exactly, and now go tell mmarsh under the Frenchman makes sense thread.
October 28th, 2005  
phoenix80
 
 
He either doesn't believe in the reality or his national pride doesn't let him understand the realities.
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U.N. names oil companies in Iraq kickback scheme
October 28th, 2005  
Missileer
 
 
America learned a lesson very early in our history, you can't change things if you can't face them.
October 28th, 2005  
mmarsh
 
 
Italian guy and Phoninx

It simply amazes me how you can misquote me so. Either you dont at all understand what I said, or you are destorting what I said deliberatly to prove your point. Which is really sad.

1. I NEVER DENIED FRANCE WAS INVOLVED. Not once. Point to one place where I said "France is not involved in the UN scam". On the contrary both Ted, MightyMcbeth I, and several others have said France WAS involved, deeply by the looks of it. I just said "so was 65 other countries, so who are you to judge?". Thats it, I can accept France's guilt, and I would wager that both Canadian and Italian companies were on that list as well.

2. Figuring that neither one of you are American citizens, and I am. The national pride arguement is totally ridiculous. The difference between myself and other Americans is that see faults on all sides, I am not norrow minded to think the fault is only on 1 country and nobody else.

Disagree if you wish, but don't destort things I said into things I didnt say.
October 28th, 2005  
Ted
 
 
Okay here we go again:

Quote:
Russia and France were the countries with the most companies involved in the oil-for-food program
We already stated that we are aware of this and we aren't denying this.
But how to fit this in then?

Quote:
The U.S. Treasury Department failed to adequately monitor U.S. companies that violated U.N. sanctions against Iraq, permitting a Houston-based oil company to avoid scrutiny as it paid Saddam Hussein's government more than $37 million in illegal kickbacks, according to a report released yesterday by Democrats investigating abuses in the U.N. oil-for-food program.

Bayoil, a Texas firm indicted by a federal grand jury last month for paying millions of dollars in illegal fees to Iraq, received "minimal attention" from Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) as it managed the import of more than 200 million barrels of Iraqi crude into the United States between 2000 and 2002, according to the report released by Sen. Carl M. Levin (Mich.), the ranking Democrat on the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.
To read the rest, see: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn...051601369.html

p.s. The firm Bayoil is also mentioned in your article,

Quote:
Bayoil President David Chalmers and his former business associate, Augusto Giangrandi, used a front company, Italtech, to solicit oil allocations in Iraq, the report said.
But I guess you figured that they were French. It is sometimes so easy to miss a fact like that, isn't it>
October 28th, 2005  
Ted
 
 
I forgot to mention that I find it quaint that one of the longest threads is how fed up the US is with the UN. But you quote them when it is convinient for your post. This eclectic use of information is..... well it is just somewhat ironic.
October 28th, 2005  
Italian Guy
 
 
Mmarsh, I just pointed out that you said

Quote:
Originally Posted by mmarsh
The real reason the French were against Iraq was because they were afraid about muslim extremists hitting back on western targets
While the truth is that France (along with Russia and China) was against the war because they had business with Saddam.

Did I distort anything?
October 28th, 2005  
mmarsh
 
 
Yes, actually you did (perhaps it was unintentional)

I never said it was the ONLY reason, nor did I actually deny or even suggest that France wasnt involved. I specifically more than once said it WAS involved. What I said above was that oil wasn't the real (meaning the "principal" reason), the 'Real' reason was that the French didnt have the stomach for another war.

You and Phoneix just twisted my words to suggest that I was denying the obvious. Even though I specifically stated that I thought France was dirty in this affair.
October 28th, 2005  
Italian Guy
 
 
Ok my apologizes then. I'm sorry. I keep begging to differ though: IMO the real (main) reason for France opposing the war was business, not fear.