Report: Milosevic Involved in Crime
BERLIN (AP) _ Ousted Yugoslav President Slobodan Milosevic funneled more than $100 million into foreign accounts and was involved in drug trafficking, Germany’s foreign intelligence agency charged Monday.
``Such a fortune cannot have been amassed by legal means,″ said Lydia Rauscher, spokeswoman for the Federal Intelligence Service.
``Numerous hints let us recognize Milosevic and his entourage as an organized crime structure, engaged in drug trade, money laundering and other crimes,″ the Bild newspaper quoted the report as saying.
The intelligence agency refused to release the report, but a spokeswoman broadly confirmed the newspaper’s account.
Milosevic, his family and associates have repeatedly been accused of corruption and enriching themselves through state-controlled companies during his 13-year rule of Yugoslavia, which collapsed in the face of protests in Belgrade this month.
The intelligence agency report, prepared for the German government, alleges the former Yugoslav president has stashed $100 million dollars in Switzerland alone, Rauscher said.
The intelligence agency believes Milosevic also controls accounts in Russia, China, Cyprus, Greece, South Africa and Lebanon.
Earlier this month the Swiss government said it had frozen 100 bank accounts linked to Milosevic and his associates.
Overall, the intelligence service believes Milosevic, with his son Marko, funneled a ``three-digit million amount″ abroad, Rauscher said.
``The near total occupation of key economic positions by Milosevic loyalists opened the possibility of illegal capital transfers for personal enrichment,″ Bild quoted the intelligence report as saying.
The report alleges that some 60 Milosevic associates controlled virtually all sectors of the Yugoslav economy. They reportedly include the speaker of the Serbian parliament, Dragan Tomic, Serbian Prime Minister Mirko Marjanovic and former energy minister Dragan Kostic.
Government institutions under the influence of Milosevic’s rule included the national bank, the customs service, the JAT airline, the Jugopetrol oil company, TV stations and a telecommunications company, the intelligence agency said.