QUESTION: Dear Mr Amstrong,
Following up on the Magnitsky Affair, you might be in a position to answer a question which has always puzzled me : Has Edmond Safra been murdered by the Russians instead of having died accidentally in his burning flat in Monaco?
What is you opinion?
ANSWER: I knew Dominick Dunne who wrote the story Death in Monaco for Vanity Fair. He told me he was in a restaurant in Paris and someone came up to him and said – be careful the questions you are asking. They tried to blame Safra’s male nurse for setting the fire. After a fake trial, he was sentenced to prison. He was later released by the high court stating that the prosecutor and judge conspired to deny him a fair trial and he was just released and send home to the States. That was the end of the case. Nobody else was ever charged and Dominick told me that bullets were found in Safra’s body. So do I “think” that Safra was murder? ABSOLUTELY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He was killed on December 3rd and they began the contempt on me to stop any trial and take all the lawyers away within 3 days.
Yeltsin had previously announced that he would not run in 2000 during March 1998. His heir apparent at that was expected to be Prime Minister Viktor S. Chernomyrdin. Then he shocked the world on March 23rd, 1998 firing Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin, and the entire government. It was then a major shift as Yeltsin changed his mind and announced on March 29th, 1998 that he WOULD run for office in 2000. I was solicited to invest $10 billion into Hermitage Capital at Republic National Bank. I refused. I was flat outright told that Boris Yeltsin would step down as President and they would have an inside track to the resources of Russia. I was not told of his successor, just that the fix was in so invest $10 billion. I even sent emails concerning this solicitation which took place in April/May 1999.
The Bank of New York money-laundering case begins in August 1999. It was Edmond Safra’s Republic National Bank that ran to the Department of Justice and reported its rival Bank of New York was engaged in a money-laundering case of $7 billion. This is when everything begins to go crazy. The letter from the FSA claiming to be verifying I had $10 billion on deposit at Republic is dated August 18th, 1999. It was corrected on August 31st, 1999 to $1 billion, but Republic had already stolen the money.
On August 27th, that is when I was told that the head of the bank in New York, George Wendler, was “just the messenger” and that to me meant this theft I believed was directed from Edmond. I told them to tell Edmond I would be on a plane in the morning to Geneva the next day, which was a Saturday. I was then told that Edmond left Geneva and went to Monaco “for security reasons” which they did not explain.
There was $7 billion that was wired through Bank of New York which involved money stolen from the IMF loans to Russia. The attempt to takeover Russia by blackmail was set in motion. As soon as that wire was done, that is when Republic National Bank ran to the Department of Justice to say it was money-laundering. I believe this started the crisis and Yeltsin was blackmailed to step down and appoint Boris A. Berezovsky as the head of Russia.
Clearly, Republic National Bank was involved with the US government for they were sending also skids of $100 bills to Russia. It was written up and called the Money Plane. Yeltsin then turned to Putin realizing that he had been set up. This is how Putin became the First Deputy Prime Minister of Russia on August 9th, 1999 until August 16th, 1999 when he became the 33rd Prime Minister and heir apparent of Yeltsin. Yeltsin resigned on January 1st, 2000. By the end of September 1999, Russian prosecutors began their own criminal investigation into the allegations of money-laundering through the Bank of New York and Lucy Edwards:
Here is what CNN Money wrote on September 1st, 1999 12 days before my case began:
The saga that’s brought money laundering issues to the fore this summer allegedly began back in 1994, when Russia’s International Monetary Fund representative, Konstantin Kagalovsky, left the organization to join Menatep Bank in Moscow.
Over the next three years, it’s alleged, Kagalovsky arranged to funnel billions of IMF money meant to help transfer Russia’s communist economy into a capitalist one through a private company called Benex Worldwide Ltd. Eventually, the money went into and back out of Bank of New York (BK) and Republic National Bank, a unit of Republic Bancorp (RBNC), as well as several institutions in Europe, including the Union Bank of Switzerland AG and Deutsche Bank AG and its Bankers Trust Unit.
The very person that I suspected would become the head of Russia was Boris A. Berezovsky, who I knew was a friend of Safa. Interestingly, Berezovsky was tied into the Bank of New York case when the money-laundering climbed to the highest levels. Interestingly enough, Bill Browder actually got his start under the patronage of Robert Maxwell who mysteriously died falling off his yacht on November 5th, 1991. The pension funds of his company were being used in schemes it was alleged to manipulate markets and Russia. I believe that Maxwell was killed to protect the “club” which was involved in manipulating a lot of markets.
After Maxwell’s death, Browder then joined with Safra. Edmond Safra provided Browder with working capital for his investment fund Hermitage Capital. HSBC, which bought Safa’s Republic National Bank, ended up as the claimed independent manager and custodian of Hermitage Capital.
The Hermitage Fund became an HSBC-backed vehicle that invested in Russia and became embroiled in a diplomatic war with the Kremlin. It was once the largest portfolio investor in Russia with $4bn of assets under management at its peak in 2005. Browder’s visa was revoked by Russia in 2005. The Financial Times reported that “insiders” said that the fund collapsed to at best having at most $60m in assets. They reported in 2013 that HSBC Holdings, which is both manager and trustee of the fund, has been locked in a dispute with investors. The investors wanted to withdraw their money but said that they could because they say that HSBC would not tell them how much a share is worth. Then in 2015, an insider exposed that HSBC was deeply engaged in money-laundering helping “warlords, arms traffickers, drug dealers, dictators and a host of politicians past and present.”
There have been films produced which tie Browder, Safra, Magnitsky, and Berezovksy all together and there have been critics of as well. Keep in mind that the Magnitsky Act is outrageous. It condemns people, denies them the right to any hearing, and they cannot come to the United States to even defend themselves. So why would John McCain and Congress defend Bill Browder who resigned his American citizenship or care about an accountant who is Russian and dies in a Russian prison? To me, it seems that the Magnitsky Act was not to protect Browder or get his money back when he was NOT even a citizen anymore but to protect something much deeper.