Thursday, 12 May 2016
Anti-Corruption Summit and Kent: Fantastically Corrupt
David Cameron’s Anti-Corruption Summit kicks off tomorrow. And already he’s cited – not unreasonably - Afghanistan and Nigeria as some of the world’s most corrupt nations.
“Fantastically corrupt” he says. One in the Commonwealth, and one propped up by UK and NATO troops, and their lives, for the last decade or so.
And the Summit is something of a knee-jerk reaction given the tsunami of information from the Panama Papers rampant corruption and fraud cases.
Initial reports of the Summit are of a watered down register of information – for police review only not a public register as originally raised.
But it should be interesting on not just flagging up Mickey Mouse regimes like Cayman Islands or Gibraltar or Nigeria or even Delaware and South Dakota in USA.
But it’s the UK network of banks and accountants and lawyers that make the tax havens happen – HSBC is just one of the main banks that has repeatedly been fined for drug money through its BVI and Bahamas and Florida subsidiaries. So have the main accountancy firms (Private Eye this week cites the Luxembourg LuxLeaks with Price Waterhouse Cooper arranging 1% tax deals and offshore tax havens) and even crooked UK Judges sacked from Caribbean courts.
So if Nigeria and Afghanistan are “fantastically corrupt” as they are – then that’s largely because of the UK and City institutions and waves of bankers and accountants and lawyers helping them to shift money into London or BVI or Jersey etc.
Indeed Private Eye has repeatedly pointed out that various Government HMRC tax office buildings(!) are registered offshore – in effect the taxman reducing tax from the taxman by shifting your tax offshore.
While on barristers and lawyers we have silence from One Essex Court of Hollingworth and Glick QC and Lord Grabiner QC on their frauds – but again systemic of a crooked High Court and legal system of fake invoices and dodgy rulings. All the more crooked as involving several of their colleagues and clerks to seek rulings etc.
The sort of fraudulent behaviour exposed in the Clement Review – but condoned by the Law Society and SRA and Bar Standards Board even the barrister Inns of Court – and a rather strange character there- that like any regulator are there to ensure high standards not whitewash. Even the Crying Judge nearly in tears at refusing to accept their testimony although the Teacups Judge was keen to whitewash for Glick.
How can any UK court take instructions from Hollingworth or Grabiner or Glick – the latter not just Judges(!) and one a Lord(!) but actually advising parliament on…tax fraud. Grabiner even being hired by the Bank of England to investigate LIBOR fraud – and being described in Private Eye as a boiled old sausage talking bullocks.
Nigerian and Afghan courts have nothing to worry about in comparison.
While the Deepcut and Hillsborough inquiries have taken a turn for the worse as it seems John Beggs QC represented respectively Surrey Police and South Yorks Police at both. Although Deepcut isn’t actually a trial just a coroner inquest. And Beggs represented Chief Inspector David Duckenfield who was then exposed as lying about drunk Scousers etc. Bizarrely, Beggs QC has now hired lawyers(!) – the notorious Carter-Fuck – to hassle Private Eye. Can’t he defend himself? That’s what QC’s do isn’t it?
Let’s hope more of this is detailed in advance of the other Deepcut inquiries. 4 bullets is a suicide?
And the Corruption Summit is something of a damp squib with British Virgin Islands refusing to attend (a UK and Commonwealth territory) cited as being responsible for over 50%(!) of the Panama Papers corruption – and count ‘em - not one but 16 UK colonies tax havens. All of them under UK Parliament law so could have been cancelled years ago – certainly at the Lough Neath Summit. It’s absurd Ruritania as if the Isle of Sheppey claimed to be a tax haven beyond UK jurisdiction.
Maybe it was Hollingworth advice, signed off by Glick and ruled on by Grabiner? Maybe one of their mates. Cosy.
Thank goodness the UK doesn’t have the death penalty with these legal beagles – but concerning if they’re ruling on the Commonwealth death penalties that still exist.
Obviously questions will be asked over Kent’s Pleasurama and its BVI ownership through several political parties and now UKIP. Especially when the BVI ownership register is made public – maybe just Steve Keegan will be carrying the can. Questions must be asked of Messrs Painter and Keegan who actually owns or operates SFP (Site of the Former Pleasurama), and indeed even now TDC with say explanations from Bob Bayford as a senior councillor through the Ezekiel and Gang of Four years.
What did they know and when?
For the largest seafront development in Kent (ever?) to be stalled for a decade is incompetent and now can only realistically be described as blatant fraud along with the BVI Connection. Or is it perfectly normal for TDC? It may well be. Was it really just a big payday for the senior civil servants and councillors of the Gang of Four – all now jailed or sacked and resigned off?
More importantly what are the current TDC senior management doing? Every statement so far has been that nothing is wrong. Even supposedly commencing construction this month. And possibly funnelling money offshore to BVI. Even the strange rejig of the contracts after February 2015 when they could have been cancelled – although Edwina Crowley the previous Planning Director subsequently also became cancelled.
What development is purchased by the builder – to build a hotel without a hotel company?
It’s as blatant as Amanda Berry, Amanda Button and Sproates removing the Infratil/Manston monitors and pretending they were still monitoring, causing over 4x safe levels of pollution – and still clinging onto their jobs rather than sewing mail bags in jail.
Silence too on the Manston and Thor pollution coverup after a year from the new CE Madeline Homer and senior councillor Lin Fairbrass and Mayor Shonk.
In Flint, Michigan similar civil servants and pollution has resulted in arrests for corporate manslaughter.
And certainly that’s relevant here and certainly for the Infratil Directors now down to their last Airport: Wellington – and presumably doing the same monitor fines fraud and cancers there.
I wouldn’t even want to fly into that airport with Fitzgerald and Clarke and Bogoievski et al in charge. Would you? Radar beacons removed to save costs? TDC saying how wonderful they were at Manston?
Just as Charles Buchanan still at Lydd airport and not jail stinks.
And TDC has form on dodgy deals to say the least.
And yet again in Private Eye Rotten Boroughs this week we have Chris Wells and his tax woes – along with laughter at the Local Government Association peer review cobblers describing TDC as much improved etc. The LGA like its offshoot the Local Government Ombudsman is a council trade union – funded by your tax – to either say councils need more money or to whitewash failure with a tame group of councillors and civil servants from other councils.
I can find no explanation as yet for how Sands Hotel ended up owning Dreamland – from TDC ie you. And for what price. And why they sued TDC and won – as they went bankrupt within 6 months. Anyone know?
Not TDC’s finest hour to say the least. Chris Wells abacus would be working overtime to explain that financial arrangement – but let’s hear from him.
Silence on Thor mercury – a massive contamination problem helped by Environment Agency and TDC silence and refusal to show the contamination statistics.
Silence on the asbestos register for buildings in Thanet and Kent.
And UKIP in Thanet seem to have imploded to nothing much at all.
The 100 SE RD garden grabbing in breach of all the TDC Local plans has resulted in bizarre statements by Lin Fairbrass that she’s responded to the November minutes (see below) although when I’ve accused her of being a liar, unless she provides details, she remains silent.
She must be a liar. I can’t think of any other explanation. Let’s hear from her though. It’s a bit of a drab council trick to say they’ve replied to the concerns when they either haven’t or their explanations are laughable. And I’m not sure we should have a liar in public office sanctioning such dodgy deals.
Increasingly I think we need a Public Sector Magnitsky List: it’s too easy for officials to deny and delay and lie. And then use public funds to take Court action again the public that fund them. And whether the public win or not the Court cost simply result in higher tax. And a resigned-off with a pay-off at most to then pop up in another public sector job.
It should be far simpler to withold salaries and pensions and publicly-funded court cases for blatant and serious wrongdoing.
Abigail Raymond is the new Edwina Crowley as Planning Director and responsible for all the above at the moment. Not impressive for the salary. A P45 seems best.
And now we have the Wetherspoons/Pavilion with both the YCMIUP – You Couldn’t Make It Up and OITDC – Only In TDC awards of Britain’s biggest pub derelict for 8 years by TDC suddenly transferred to Wetherspoons – without any approval by councillors. As illegal as you’d expect.
And since when did a company organising its own –feeble – consultation become a rubber stamp for planning?
Philip Bensted and Rob Kenyon at TDC have clammed up for the moment.
Here’s the email format (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you want to contact them or phone 01843 577000 to find what they’ve been doing on your tax-salaries and pensions.
Astonishing this week with Empty Parliament and now Uturn Parliament. I can’t think of anything quite like it.
About 2 years before the 2105 election it was described as the Empty Parliament as they just weren’t doing anything. Then there been a year of no longer the Coalition but no huge changes. But every policy (if they were even in a manifesto which is a separate issue) has become a UTurn: disabled benefits, steel nationalisation, NHS and now Academies. And with that we’re back to the Empty Parliament again after barely 12 months – certainly there’s no major policy after the inane EU Referendum.
The disabled benefits reforms were disgusting, steel a car crash for minor reforms, NHS weekend reforms not unreasonable but woolly and I couldn’t work out what the Academy or SATS policies were.
The 589 Ajax-Scimitar armoured cars have bene purchased but I don’t know how much for – and with Swedish steel which seems absurd for UK defence procurement. And I can’t work out where or why or how you could actually use 589 armoured cars? Where would you park them for a start? What ships would you use to transport them? You could only transport half a dozen at a go? Then why build 589? And you’d need tanks to protect them? And personnel carriers for troops? And weren’t the expensive Apache gunship helicopters supposed to be used as flying armoured cars – and we already have at least 400 of them. Although they couldn’t be used where it was dusty like Afghanistan or Somalia. It seems daft to me.
Good though to see UK Peacekeepers deployed at long last to the basketcase nations of Sudan and Somalia. Why have so many troops and planes etc to not ensure peace in such conflicts? Where are the UN Police too? Private Eye details the UK secret war in Yemen etc with drones – although it seems the UK’s multimillion drones don’t fly when it’s cold or icy. Like in mountains or at night…YCMIUP
I had a nice email from Bill Browder, the corruption and human rights crusader, over Magnitsky murder and the largest ever Russian tax fraud of $230M (see earlier blog article and #rednotice book), on his giving testimony in UK Parliament last week and producing both several UK invoices from the various fraudsters for yachts etc, and news that UK SFO, CPS, Met Police had passed him from pillar to post doing nothing.
Perhaps more idleness than conspiracy, but feeble given USA and France and Canada are introducing a Magnitsky Act that goes beyond specific national sanctions to target human rights abusers.
And, oh no it’s Surrey Police again, as it’s reported at the Alexander Perepilichnyy inquest (he was the whistleblower on the Magnitsky fraud who died outside his home in Surrey) that despite Surrey Police saying there were no suspicious circumstances he had a rare assassination poison in his stomach. And the suspected Chechen hitman was Valid Lurakhmaev AKA Alexander Smirnov (perhaps slightly better than Barry Vodka as an alias) is already wanted by Interpol and held in Turkey.
While Surrey Police have hired a another QC for a coroner inquiry to cast doubt on questioning the hitman – or lawyer Andrey Pavlov who flew out of UK the day after Perepilichnyy’s death and has been brokering talks between Perepilichnyy and Russian tax authorities over the crime.
The sooner Kent Police take a firm grasp of this mess and Surrey Police the better.
Margate, long-twinned with Crimea (perhaps now both the Russian and Ukrainian bits), should have a Magnitsky Plaza when Arlington House is finally demolished and seafront and Dreamland properly developed. Kent University and CCU should take up the batons as with Mandela in previous years for a Magnitsky Room etc.
These are some more of the Magnitsky monstrous judges etc: Red Notice book – page 333 refusals of medical treatment in jail for Sergei Magnitsky:
# Major Oleg Silchenko: “I deny in full the request for a medical examination”
# Tverskoi District Court Judge, Aleksey Krivoruchko: “Your request to review complaints about withholding of medical care and cruel treatment is denied”
# Andrei Pechegin from the Prosecutors Office: “There’s no reason for the prosecutor to intervene”
# Judge Yelena Stashina, one of the judges who ordered Sergei’s continued detention said: “I rule that your request to review the medical records and conditions of detention is irrelevant”
Worth remembering if you’re going to Russia. Or even Latvia and Lithuania with journalists being murdered and arrested and even dragged over the border(!) by the KGB-FSB.
Putin’s regime will eventually end and these scoundrels will be carrying the can.
Important given the above farce – but also given the ICC Court convicting but failing to as yet prosecute Bashir of Sudan, and chemical weapons use by Assad of Syria. You could certainly add monsters like Obiang of Equatorial Guinea or Mugabe of Zimbabwe both in power for 30 years by fiddling the constitution and cannibalism(!).
Silence too on Margate’s Joshua French rotting on Death Row in the Congo. His friend already dead form malaria and a multi-million fine on his head too.
Not one statement from any of our councillors or MP’s.
Perhaps the best we can expect from Fantastically Corrupt Kent.
Time for Change
Garbutt for KCC Leader May 2017
•Kent Oriental Restaurant Association underway: thank you for the enquiries but please be patient
•I might start a regular advertising feature in duff ads as there’s a few that are appalling at the moment – the BBC IPlayer and the 5p pieces/bicycle spanner thingy – incoherent twaddle. Supposedly profound utterly incoherent. And BBC programme advertising is usually awful anyway: a popsong lyrics illustrating the programme etc. And Admiral insurance. 2 shockers in row with the new female Admiral clunking through two inane scripts.
•Kent Police rightly tightening up illegal parking along the seafront and town centre pedestrian zone – it’s a pedestrian zone as in most seaside towns where parking is rigorously enforced even without lots of free parking available. Certainly clamping and towing away should follow on from tickets and repeat fines. Bizarre that Loomis and G4S cashvans think they can drive onto the High St when they feel like it rather than before 10am. Parking on pavements is especially bad forcing people into the road to be knocked down. Many people say should they flip the car onto its roof or kick its wing mirrors off but I say no that’s a bit silly but understandable, If you have a reg no or a photo then by all means email it to me or Kent Police (half day closing Wednesday in most stations remember). And certainly the Port and Marina needs 90% of parking removed and pedestrianisation of the Arches/Road and seafront
•Good to see LocalCraig MP introducing a ban on the repulsive live animal exports and certainly horrifying out Cllr Driver still lives under the shadow of the appalling multi-thousands TDC whistleblower fine – TDC even under the 1847 Act nonsense can designate a Special Constable ie the Harbourmaster, and close the port as per the council’s own ruling and certainly withhold the licence for the SS Joline Soviet tank carrier(!) trundling though the world’s busiest shipping lanes
•Kent knife crime: rather idle policing on issues such as Trade Station stocking machetes and samurai swords and jagged daggers – for £250M budget why haven’t KP just bought them from the good folks there, on expenses and asked them to stock other products in our seaside towns. Indeed I would urge every corner shop and newsagent and SME to think of the resurgence in East Kent seaside tourism – what postcards will be needed, what suncream, what buckets and spades, picnic and beach snacks and so on. What will the good folks at Waitrose or Argos or Thomas Cook or Wilkinsons and Thomsons want to be promoting to the public and our tourist and student guests? Why are the good folks at Boots still advertising Winter medicine in their window? Don’t they know the Summer Season starts 1st March through to 30th September? And it’s meant to rain on the Bank Holiday. Time for AmbreSolaire not Benylin. And will there be a favourable Euros rate for example with the banks and shops for our friends from Ostend or Dunkirk or Boulogne?
•An interesting article on UK having less Bank Holidays than most nations. Interesting that Trafalgar Day drifted away a few years ago. And interesting the CofE calling for a regular Easter Day ie 2nd weekend in April which sounds ideal for tourism and pilgrimages etc. The calendars have all changed several times over the millennia anyway. A Spanish Armada Day in July would be terrific and why not a teachers day or Children’s Day if Britain’s short of holiday s and space them out sensibly? A 4 day week won’t be far away or tweaks to CET, even tweaks to the Victorian harvest school calendar now the leaving age is 18: why not even a Gap Year or a Gap Summer?
•Kent PCC electionssszzzzzzzzzzz more later, but it seems to be an election where 93% of the pubic didn’t vote for the winner(!). A 7% vote is hardly a Great British Election success.
•Tobacco article on Sincerity blog: http://sincerityagency.blogspot.co.uk/2016/05/ringing-of-bell-on-tobacco-with-plain.html and an interesting client list overview to follow – advice appreciated
•EKFOS my East Kent Film office and Studio underway: good to see the KFO Tudor Trail of Leeds Castle etc rather than just West Kent and Chatham Dockyard (Carters’ KCC seems to being and end in Maidstone and sees East Kent as for nothing but cancer victims) and good to hear that the Christopher Nolan (Inception etc) directed Dunkirk movie will feature Cillian Murphy of Peaky Blinders fame. With EKFOS I would ensure that Ramsgate shares in that movie tourism etc – just as the East Kent James Bond 007 route is rather ignored which seems spectacularly foolish
•ASEANRail: the first Cambodian rail link from the Thai border to Poipet (the Ashford rail junction of Cambodia) should be completed this year. The main bridge across the Mekong is completed - so the way to HCMC is clear and the first rail links. And last week the first passenger rail service opened Phnom Penh to Sihanoukville (Cambodia’s Margate) on the coast. The first service since the Khmer Rouge blew up the railway c.30 years ago. Why does that matter you say? Well, for the first time ever, the railway can link HCMC, PP, BKK and Yangon and onto India. And integrate with the vertical links upto Hanoi and China and down to Singapore and the wider Pacific.
Useful for tourism obviously. But also for the UK and high growth markets such as Thailand and Vietnam and Myanmar – the latter ideally joining the UK-Asian Commonwealth Group with the other Asian nations: Malaysia, Singapore, Brunei, Papua and Solomons. UK would want to have a Special Relationship with USA or Commonwealth so why not Asia and ASEAN in the Asian Century? Here in Kent we can certainly speak on the importance of rail links whether to London or through the Chunnel and onto Europe – and the success of the hispeed HS1 and 2012 Olympics for Kent. We can certainly speak of the importance of STEM, pharma and vaccines, even malaria nets, with Discovery Park and Sittingbourne Science Parks - and the jobs here. And we can certainly speak of the Education Economy whether the 4 universities or 400 schools and Erasmus etc exchange programmes or the English Language Learning Schools. And we can certainly speak of the importance of the Maritime Economy of RNLI and Coastguard and Fishing and Pegwell Bay UNESCO sites – with Canterbury Cathedral - the Angkor Wat or Bagan of Kent.
And we can certainly speak of the importance of better Benelux links with our European friends and neighbours. And this 1st July we can certainly speak of the price paid in blood to have those links from the graves that stretch from the Somme to Yangon through Meiji Malta and onto Kwai and Long Tanh and Port Moresby and Leyte. A price in blood shared with the Chinese and Vietnamese labourers building the trenches and ports and railways in Flanders and France and Thai and USA and Irish and Aussie and Kiwi and Senegal and Canadian troops – the latter with the Canadian Red Cross – and probably the most Canucks outside of Canada based in Ramsgate
•How absurd if all those thousands and hundreds of thousands and millions of deaths came to nought, and CWG work, wasted in a Spratleys or Senkaku or Kuriles or Preah Vihar or Mindanao pointless conflict
•The Solomon Islands, UK protectorate and Commonwealth, detailed as the first nation suffering Climate Change with several islands disappearing: Kent needs to step forward
•How absurd for there not to be a commemoration for Guadalcanal or Truk or Savo – the last and worst USN defeat and turning points for peace in the Pacific – especially with the first US Presidential visit to Hiroshima although not the Agent Orange victims of DaNang and UK’s university
•How absurd for Sergeant Vouza of the Solomons to be as ignored in UK as are the Channel Dash heroes – Britain’s kamikaze pilots
•How absurd in Meiji Kent for HMS Kent not be the key point to fly the flag in the Pacific with our Japanese friends and Commonwealth Group and Allies and Haiyan work? Certainly it’s better for the RAF to selling cargo helicopters than cruise missiles and Saudi guns for bungs on the rates like Sangcom or AlYamamah and the RN arranging supply dumps rather than pointless Pina Colada tours
•Several people have asked me how the Vientiane-Vinh rail route through to DaNang and the UK university there would work; essentially Haiphong#2 given the typhoons and he population of the Red River Delta – and linking through to the main population centre of Laos and Isaan. Perfect for Pacific trade, whether Philippines or USA - and Haiyan safety.
•More on the Royal Road of temples and tourism from Siem Reap to Khon Kaen later.
•Silence so far from the good folks at Wellesley School, and the superb space project with 22 other Kent schools - perfect for UK niche industries in the Space and Climate Change Era whether weather satellites or space food or robotics.
•Robotics that would focus UK Smart Farms for much of the world – not just robotics why till the spoil why you can microanalyse it for yield, and why drive a tractor when you can sit in your farmhouse and drive it from your mobile phone - with the regearing of European food tastes (and Kent’s orchards) with less red meat or sugar surely economies in in Great British Cuba or Argentina or Chile would want to diversify their crops and industries. Pointless selling City Venture Capital to Communists amid a UK nationalised bank industry crash. Certainly Kent’s NHS economy would be more relevant for Cuba – we’d learn a lot from them with our dirty hospitals, abysmal Stillborn/cotdeaths, flu vaccine failure and OAP Winter/Summer deaths
•SDG2030 goals: 4 months on and counting from the launch: which UK public and private sector organisations have taken these on?
•Left is Life campaign underway, Kent Police dragging their heels on 112 campaign
•Silence from the dirty judges and barristers at One Essex Court on their Inns of Court case: Hollingworth, Glick QC and Lord Grabiner QC
•Superb result from Great British Thailand Leicester City footy – owned by King Power a sort of Dixons or Comet. I’m a huge footy fan so when it’s 15-30 and someone scores a touch-down in the onion net it’s very exciting. And surely there could never be a better time for Great British Football and ASEAN? Especially as this week China has announced its Football Plan of thousands of stadiums and teams etc before 2025. A footy market of 1.3BN. The UK has a massive sporting asset in the Football Economy whether Sports Tourism for my favourite team Liverpool at the Goodison Park Kop or the Toffeemen of Manchester City - or the various sports kit manufacturers or training schools or websites or training videos or events.
Certainly more could be done on organised exchanges not just the big-hitters of Thailand football such as the Siamese Foxes or Buriram United, but also Police United in the 2nd Division. And the various Cycling and Swim and Beach Volleyball or Polo teams that form the ASIAN games and Asian Beach Games and various demonstration matches. And that’s even without UK excellence in Golf or Ruby or Cricket or Horseracing or Yachting. How foolish of Kent though to gain the Tour De cycling and then lose it to both Tour De Yorkshire and Tour De Midlands women’s events. And I couldn’t tell you one beneficial point after 4 years of the Olympics on Kent’s doorstep and the various KCC organising committees etc etc – all funded by you. Not even a Tiddlywinks Tournament.
Time for Change