Vcrisis, a website with a good track record covering Hugo Chavez of Venezuela — the proof is in the numerous attacks made on it by Venezuelan authorities — today charges that the dictator and his cronies are stashing millions of petrodollars overseas in banking havens. Presumably, the money could be used to fund covert ops or to feather the nests of the ruling elite if their hold on power slips away. Some highlights:
�— Ricardo Fernandez Barrueco, a known front for the Chavez family, has opened dozens of offshore accounts in the tax havens of the world, both in the Caribbean and in Europe. His business organization, the Proarepa Group, is in truth and in fact owned by Chavez and his immediate family.
— The Swiss private bank, Vontobel, which operates an unlicensed facility in Caracas, has seen senior Venezuelan military officers depositing large sums lately. When contacted by a prospective depositor using Fernandez Barrueco as a reference, the bank manager advised that Fernandez was a valued customer. Curiously enough, the bank does not list Venezuela as one of its branch locations. Vontobel is the designated recipient for 'commissions' diverted from lawful Venezuelan commerce by the Bolivarian elite for their own use.
— Miami—based expatriate Venezuelan financial planners are actively seeking to purchase a Swiss bank for Chavez. These individuals have close personal ties to the Swiss banking industry.
— There is an unconfirmed report that Chavez has already bought a bank in Lebanon. Whether this is further evidence of a relationship between the Chavez regime and Hezbollah, a designated terrorist organization, remains for further proof, but cash flows from Venezuela into Hezbollah's accounts in the Middle East. This cannot be occurring without governmental knowledge.
— The Chavez government has recruited former intelligence agents experienced in covert financial operations to assist in meeting its economic goals. These individuals, from Cuba, the US, the UK, Spain and Latin America, have sufficient skills to achieve the desired goals.
There's more; read the whole thing. Further details and documentation are essential, of course, and such matters are inherently secret, so that will be difficult. But sources are obviously already leaking.