Key Figures Indicted in BCCI Case With AM-BCCI-Clifford, Bjt
NEW YORK (AP) _ State and federal prosecutors have indicted 18 people on a variety of criminal and civil charges arising from the Bank of Credit and Commerce International scandal.
Clark Clifford, a former Defense Secretary, and his law associate Robert Altman were indicted Wednesday on charges of deceiving bank regulators on BCCI’s ownership of a Washington, D.C., bank and receiving bribes.
Here are other key figures in the BCCI saga and the charges they face:
AGHA HASAN ABEDI: Founded BCCI in 1972 and retired as president of BCCI because of health reasons in 1989. Abedi was named in a July 1991, indictment by a state grand jury in Manhattan, alleging his involvement in a scheme to defaud depositors and launder drug money.
Abedi was also named in a November 1991, federal indictment in Washington accusing him and former BCCI executive Swaleh Naqvi of orchestrating the secret takeover of a Independence Bank of Encino, Calif., in 1985. The two were charged with racketeering along with Saudi Arabian investor Ghaith Pharaon. Abedi also was charged in Wednesday’s state indictment with misleading regulators, bribery and grand larceny.
Abedi is ailing in his Karachi, Pakistan home and prospects for his extradition to the U.S. for trial are uncertain.
SWALEH NAQVI: A former chief executive of BCCI, he has been identified by the Bank of England as the key man overseeing the operation at the heart of the BCCI fraud. Naqvi was indicted on similar charges as Abedi in two state indictments in New York.
He was also charged in an August 1991 federal indictment in Tampa, Fla., accused of using BCCI as a racketeering enterprise to launder money, and conspiracy to launder money. Naqvi is being held under house arrest in Abu Dhabi while he’s questioned by BCCI investigators in that country.
GHAITH PHARAON: A key stockholder in BCCI, Pharaon has been described by the Federal Reserve and others as BCCI’s front man in the United States. Pharaon was named in a November 1991 federal indictment charging him with fronting for BCCI in the purchase of Independence Bank in Encino, Calif.
He’s also named in a February 1992 federal indictment in Miami charging conspiracy and fraud in connection with $25 million sham purchase of securities by BCCI. Also named in the case was former CenTrust Savings Bank Chairman David Paul. Pharaon also faces charges of falsifying business records and corruption in the latest New York state indictment. Pharaon’s whereabouts are unknown.
SEYED ZIAUDDIN ALI AKBAR: Formerly headed BCCI’s treasury department in London and was linked with rolling up massive trading losses during his tenure, which he denies. Convicted in 1990 to a six-month sentence for laundering drug money and was released in April on appeal. Charged in the 1991 Tampa indictment with using BCCI as a racketeering enterprise to launder money. Akbar is being held in a French prison pending the resolution of an extradition dispute.
SHEIK KHALID BIN MAHFOUZ: A former BCCI director and former chief executive of National Commercial Bank of Saudi Arabia, the country’s largest bank with close ties to the royal family. A New York grand jury indicted Sheik Khalid in early July on charges he and an associate defrauded BCCI customers of $300 million. His whereabouts couldn’t be immediately determined.