Swiss District Attorneys Office opens proceedings against money laundering

MoneyLaunderJacqueline Bühlmann, mouthpiece of the State Prosecutor of the Swiss Confederation confirmed this Tuesday that the Swiss Attorney General will open formal proceedings for the accusation of money laundering against Lazaro Baez and others involved in suspicious money-laundering maneuvers, after an accusation the opposition’s Argentinean delegates, Graciela Ocaña (Public Trust) and Manuel Garrido, ex-attorney for the Anticorruption Office and legislator for the Union Civica Radical (Radical Civic Union).
Since last April 18, the Argentine delegates have asked that an account be blocked in the Lombard Odier bank – whose proxy is Martin Baez – with deposits amounting to 1.5 million dollars in the name of the Panamanian business, Teegan.
The Argentinean delegates have also requested blocking accounts in the name of the Swiss financial consultation business, Helvetic Service Group, created in 2005, that would have acquired SGI financial of the Madero Center – called “The Little Rose” – from whence the financier Federico Alaskar and Leonardo presumably set funds from tax havens. The delegates suspect that Baez’s accountant, Daniel Perez Gadin, is behind the Helvetic Services Group.
Nevertheless, Helvetic Services Group and the Lombard Odier bank affirm that “they acted within the law and are considering initiating legal actions.” Helvetic is not known in the Argentinean-Swiss chamber of commerce. Meanwhile, the Lombard Odier bank preferred to not specify the names, amounts and duration of the business activities with the alleged involved in this case of money-laundering, although it confirms that “yes, there was a short banking relation with our establishment; however, the Teegan account was closed last year.”
The delegate Ocaña affirmed this Tuesday that “we don’t know where the money could have gone when they closed the account with the Lombard Odier. Nor has it even been confirmed that they have closed the Teegan account.” As regards the Argentinean branch of the Helvetic Services Group, the home office located in Lugano informs us that it is “a properly constituted business”, which has always operated “according to all of the regulations imposed upon us by the law” and that they are evaluating “initiating a legal action” in order to protect their image.
The Argentinean delegates have also asked that any possible accounts be blocked for Lazaro Baez, Austral Construcciones, and Daniel Perez Gadin, Fariña and Elaskar, among others.
This type of proceeding continues, if proof is presented, with the precautionary block of the accounts, like what happened with the ex-president Carlos Menem in 2001, among others.
It should be remembered that all banks in Switzerland are regulated by the Swiss Financial Markets Authority (FINMA), which exercises its function by means of a series of federal laws. At present, it is estimated that a third of all funds deposited outside the country of origin are under guard in Switzerland, given its proverbial banking stability.

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