Search

Editors

Richard L. Cassin Publisher and Editor

Julie DiMauro Executive Editor

Andy Spalding Senior Editor

Jessica Tillipman Senior Editor

Elizabeth K. Spahn Contributing Editor

Eric Carlson Contributing Editor

Michael Kuria Contributing Editor

Thomas Fox Contributing Editor

Philip Fitzgerald Contributing Editor

Marc Alain Bohn Contributing Editor

Michael Scher Contributing Editor

Bill Waite Contributing Editor

Shruti J. Shah Contributing Editor

Russell A. Stamets Contributing Editor

Connect

Subscribe to receive the free FCPA Blog daily

Close
FCPA Blog Daily News

« Military Equipment Maker Pays $16 Million In Settlement | Main | Corruption And Chaos: A China Scenario No One Wants »
Wednesday
Jul132011

New Indictment In Old Haiti Bribe Case

The DOJ said today that a superseding indictment has charged six defendants, including four newly named defendants and two former Haitian government officials, in a bribery and money-laundering scheme that started ten years ago.

Cinergy Telecommunications Inc., Cinergy’s president and director, the president of Florida-based Telecom Consulting Services Corp. and two former Haitian government officials were charged with being part of a bribery and money-laundering scheme from 2001 through 2006.

The indictment alleges that Cinergy and its related company, Uniplex Telecommunications Inc., paid more than $1.4 million to shell companies to be used for bribes to foreign officials of the Republic of Haiti’s state-owned national telecommunications company, Telecommunications D’Haiti (Haiti Teleco).

To conceal the bribes, the defendants allegedly used shell companies to receive and forward the payments, including J.D. Locator Services, Fourcand Enterprises, and Telecom Consulting Services. 

The six defendants are:

  • Washington Vasconez Cruz, 63, of Miami, the president of Cinergy and Uniplex. He's charged with one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and to commit wire fraud, six counts of FCPA violations, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, and 19 counts of money laundering.
  • Amadeus Richers, 60, of Pembroke Pines, Fla., and Brazil, the then-director of Cinergy and Uniplex. He's charged with one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and to commit wire fraud, six counts of FCPA violations, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, and 19 counts of money laundering.
  • Cinergy Telecommunications Inc., a privately-held telecommunications company incorporated in Florida. It's charged with one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and to commit wire fraud, six counts of FCPA violations, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, and 19 counts of money laundering.
  • Patrick Joseph, 49, of Miami and Haiti, a former general director for telecommunications at Haiti Teleco. He's charged with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
  • Jean Rene Duperval, 44, of Miramar, Fla., and Haiti, a former director of international relations for telecommunications at Haiti Teleco, who's charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit money laundering and 19 counts of money laundering.
  • Marguerite Grandison, 42, of Miramar, the former president of Telecom Consulting Services Corp., and Duperval’s sister, is charged with two counts of conspiracy to commit money laundering and 19 counts of money laundering.

The superseding indictment also charged Duperval and Grandison with laundering corrupt payments authorized by Joel Esquenazi and Carlos Rodriguez on behalf of another Florida telecommunications company.

Duperval was first charged in 2009 with one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering and 12 counts of money laundering. Grandison was originally charged with one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and to commit wire fraud, seven counts of FCPA violations, one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering, and 12 counts of money laundering.

Esquenazi and Rodriguez were charged in the initial December 2009 indictment and aren't affected by the superseding indictment. Their trial is set to start in Miami on July 18.

In 2009, Juan Diaz, the president of J.D. Locator Services, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and money laundering. He admitted receiving more than $1 million in bribe money from telecommunications companies. In July last year, he was sentenced to 57 months in prison.

In 2010, Jean Fourcand, the president and director of Fourcand Enterprises Inc., pleaded guilty to one count of money laundering for receiving and transmitting bribe monies in the scheme.  In May last year, he was sentenced to six months in prison.

Also in 2010, Robert Antoine, the former director of international affairs for Haiti Telco, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit money laundering. He admitted to receiving more than $1 million in bribes from Miami-based telecommunications companies. He was sentenced in June last year to 48 months in prison.

Conspiracy to violate the FCPA and substantive FCPA counts carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison, as do wire-fraud counts. Money laundering counts each carry a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison. The DOJ also included a criminal forfeiture count in the superseding indictment.

As the DOJ says, an indictment is merely an accusation, and defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

View the DOJ's July 13, 2011 release here.

Reader Comments

There are no comments for this journal entry. To create a new comment, use the form below.

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.