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Irma Leaves 'Heart-Wrenching' Devastation in Caribbean

In Puerto Rico, the power could be out for 6 months

(Newser) - Hurricane Irma continued to sweep through the Caribbean with devastating force early Thursday, knocking out power to an estimated 1 million people in Puerto Rico. The storm didn't make landfall on the island, but the National Hurricane Center says it could still get up to 20 inches of rain,... More »

Monstrous Irma Batters Caribbean Islands

Devastating storm made landfall early Wednesday

(Newser) - Hurricane Irma slammed into islands in the northeast Caribbean with devastating force early Wednesday, damaging buildings and sending debris flying with winds estimated at 185mph. The National Weather Service says the eye of Irma, a Category 5 storm and the strongest Atlantic hurricane ever recorded, passed over the island of... More »

Ex-UN Head Took $1M in Bribes: Prosecutors

Ex-General Assembly chief John Ashe accused of cashing in on Chinese mogul

(Newser) - A former UN General Assembly president was arrested Tuesday and charged with accepting over $1 million in bribes and a trip to New Orleans from a billionaire Chinese real estate mogul and other businesspeople to pave the way for lucrative investments. John Ashe, the UN ambassador from Antigua and Barbuda... More »

Caribbean Resorts Battle Mysterious Seaweed Invasion

Mysterious hordes of algae shut down resorts

(Newser) - Gigantic piles of brown seaweed that reek of rotten eggs are piling up on beaches in the eastern Caribbean, forcing resorts to shut down and keeping swimmers from the ocean. The stinky, bug-infested algae—named Sargassum—has been creeping up shores in Antigua, St. Maarten, and other Caribbean hotspots since... More »

Stanford 'Fraud Scheme Sealed With Blood Oath'

Banker accused of giving bribes, Super Bowl tickets to Caribbean regulator

(Newser) - Alleged Ponzi schemer Allen Stanford cut his wrist and made a secret blood pact with the banking regulator of the island of Antigua, where his bank operated, according to court documents. Stanford and the official pressed their bloody wrists together in a "brotherhood ceremony," after which the... More »

Website Uses Slain Couple's Photo, Fake Testimonial

MyDishBiz run bogus testimonial with Mullanys photo

(Newser) - Classy: An Ohio company put up a photo of a smiling couple along with a testimonial in which they rave about how much money they're making through the business. Problem is, the two people pictured are Ben and Catherine Mullany, British honeymooners murdered in Antigua last July, notes BoingBoing. "... More »

Stanford Pleads Not Guilty in $7B Ponzi Scheme

Prosecutors call financier flight risk, ask he be held without bail

(Newser) - Financier Robert Allen Stanford and three former associates pleaded not guilty today to federal charges they operated a $7 billion Ponzi scheme out of Antigua, the Houston Chronicle reports. Prosecutors asked the judge not to release Stanford, 59, on bail, saying his wealth, international connections and prospect of a long... More »

Stanford Indicted for $7B Ponzi Scheme

(Newser) - Alleged billionaire fraudster Robert Allen Stanford and six of his associates were indicted today on charges that they ran a $7 billion Ponzi scheme, the AP reports. Stanford turned himself in to authorities yesterday. “A fair jury will find him not guilty of any criminal wrongdoing,” Stanford’s... More »

Stanford Bank in Antigua Missing $8B

'It appears to be a Ponzi scheme,' investigator says

(Newser) - Investigators rummaging around Allen Stanford's Antiguan bank have confirmed media reports that $8 billion is missing, the Times of London reports. “The $8 billion you hear about in the media isn’t there,” one official told customers outside the Stanford International Bank. "It appears to be a... More »

Stanford Loses Cozy Caribbean Domain

Mexican drug lord laundered money there

(Newser) - R. Allen Stanford is an institution in Antigua—so much so that some residents call the Caribbean island “Stanford Land”—and now the country is reeling from the SEC fraud case against him. The country has seized Stanford’s bank, but it’s still facing questions about its... More »

Stanford's Other Mess: Cricket

(Newser) - Before he was charged with massive fraud, Sir Allen Stanford was often charged with an equally grievous offense: subverting the game of cricket. The Texan was among the sport’s deepest-pocketed fans, but the fast-paced Twenty20 tournaments he favored annoy purists. When Stanford put up $20 million in prize money... More »

Antigua, Stanford's Banking Base, Braces

Account holders line up to withdraw money, despite assurances from PM

(Newser) - The SEC's allegations of fraud against R. Allen Stanford prompted concern on the tiny Caribbean island of Antigua, the base of the financier's bank. Despite reassurances from the prime minister, customers lined up at both branches of the Bank of Antigua to make withdrawals yesterday. Some seemed to emerge with... More »

Stanford Spent Millions to Lobby Congress

$8B scammer's island junkets helped push anti-tax agenda

(Newser) - Billionaire R. Allen Stanford has spent millions of dollars in attempting to enlist high-powered Washington officials in his anti-tax efforts, reports the Wall Street Journal. Stanford’s investment companies spent over $5 million on lobbying, $2 million on campaign contributions, and thousands more on flying members of Congress to the... More »

Lawyer Bolted From Stanford, Sparking $8B SEC Action

Attorney 'disaffirmed' earlier statements

(Newser) - A Washington attorney who represented R. Allen Stanford’s Antigua-based bank quit his post and recanted testimony to investigators last week, sparking the SEC’s public accusations of “massive, ongoing fraud,” Bloomberg reports. Stanford is suspected of misrepresenting the safety of $8 billion invested with his various financial... More »

Who Is Sir Allen Stanford (Other Than $8B Scammer)?

(Newser) - Alleged fraudster R. Allen Stanford may not have been a household name before the SEC accused him of skullduggery yesterday, but not because he’s been keeping a low profile. Calling himself “Sir” Allen Stanford ever since he was knighted in Antigua in 2006, the colorful financier is the... More »

Fugitive Financier Has $8B Headstart

SEC has slim chance of finding Stanford, missing stash

(Newser) - Financier Robert Allen Stanford is now a fugitive and SEC officials don't look any likelier to get their man than his investors do to get their money back, Felix Salmon writes in Portfolio. Regulators have been sniffing around his operations for long enough to ensure he's got a contingency plan... More »

SEC Accuses Texas Firm of 'Massive Fraud'

$8B missing, bank barring withdrawals from offshore accounts

(Newser) - The SEC today accused Robert Allen Stanford, head honcho of Stanford Financial group, of running a “massive, ongoing fraud,” and roughly 40 policemen and other law enforcement officials raided the group’s Houston headquarters. The group sold $8 billion in certificates of deposit with abnormally high rates of... More »

Two Busted in Honeymoon Murders

Antigua charges man and teen in robbery gone tragic

(Newser) - A 20-year-old man and a teenager in Antigua have been charged with murder and robbery in the shooting deaths of a honeymooning British couple last month, the Guardian reports. The two are expected to remain in custody until they face trial. The victims were buried last week at the Welsh... More »

Groom Dies of Injuries in Honeymoon Robbery Attack

Local pot dealer questioned by cops

(Newser) - A honeymooning groom wounded in what was apparently a botched robbery has died of his injuries, the Daily Telegraph reports. Ben Mullany, 31, was declared dead a week after his pediatrician bride died in the shooting in their honeymoon suite at a popular Antigua resort. The couple will be buried... More »

Bride Murdered on Honeymoon

6 held as husband fights for life after suspected botched robbery

(Newser) - Six people are being questioned in the murder of a British bride on the final day of her honeymoon on the Caribbean island of Antigua, reports the BBC. The 31-year-old pediatrician was shot dead and her husband critically wounded in what investigators say was a botched robbery at a cottage... More »

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