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May 27, 2016

Bob Bandfield Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering in the U.S.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that US businessman, Robert Bandfield, has pleaded guilty to helping stock manipulators launder two hundred and fifty million dollars through Belize. The seventy-one year old pleaded guilty in a Brooklyn Federal Court to one count of money laundering and is facing as many as twenty years in prison. Bandfield took the guilty plea before his case went to trial this week. The U.S. prosecutors, according to the Wall Street Journal, consider the case a victory in their crack down on offshore activities. Bandfield was arrested in 2014 and charged as part probe into shell companies used by various penny-stock promoters to commit financial fraud. He was one of six persons named in an indictment preceding the raid of Titan Securities, whose stock valuation shot up to more than four billion dollars even though it had no assets.  At the time, Bandfield lived in Belize. He is the third defendant to plead guilty. U.S. Prosecutors claim Bandfield operated a group of companies in Belize, and was the architect of a scheme that allowed his clients to secretly manipulate U.S. stock prices, launder their illegal proceeds back to the U.S. and evade taxes. Bandfield created more than five thousand shell companies to hide profits. Banfield also agreed to forfeit one million dollars, as well as his rights and interests in three corporate entities that he founded in Belize. The U.S. government listened to his phone conversations through five wiretaps set up in his offices. But he was caught because of his interactions with an undercover law-enforcement agent, who pretended for two years to be a stock promoter who wanted to hide his money from the U.S. government.

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