$160 Million Venezuelan Money Laundering Scheme

The United States is investigating a money laundering scheme involving Venezuelan President, Nicolás Maduro, who allegedly laundered 160 million through a Maltese investment firm.  According to the criminal complaint filed by Homeland Security,  Maduro’s stepsons are also believed to have been involved in laundering a total of US $1.2 billion using fake investments including fraudulent bond issues and investment funds , between late 2014 and early 2015, that was stolen from Venezuela’s state oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDSVA).

The criminal complaint did not specifically mention Nicolás Maduro, but there are indicators that refer to him in the document as “Venezuelan Official 2” and the involvement of his three stepsons, Yosser Gavidia Flores, Walter Gavidia Flores and Yoswal Gavidia Flores, who are described as “los chamos” (‘the stepsons’).

The defendants are being accused of embezzling funds and exploiting the Venezuelan foreign currency exchange system to launder money in Europe and the US. The defendants used their political status as leverage to get a higher exchange rate on the funds than the regular market would have offered.

For the full article, click here.