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In Panama Papers Case Von Der Goltz Gets 48 Months Off Guideline of 94 Cried Over Beer

By Matthew Russell Lee, Scope, Podcast

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Sept 21 – As the U.S. Panama Papers prosecution of accountant Richard Gaffey and tax expatriate Harald Joachim von der Goltz moved toward trial, back on May 29 disputes about suppressing files seized from the accountant's office and documents obtained from Panama, Germany and elsewhere overseas came to the fore. See here.

  On February 28, 2020 Gaffey showed up and pled guilty, thread here.

 In July, Harald Joachim von der Goltz  filed a more than 100 page sentencing submission, and the US Attorney's Office has asked for an additional week to respond. The memo has sections on "early business ventures in Germany and Guatemala" (including the brewery Cerveceria del Sur which was stopped when a competitor bribed an employee to over-pasteurize the brew) to "Rain Forest Adventures" and how home confinement would be enough.

  On September 21, this: Harald Joachim von der Goltz was sentenced to 48 months in prison for wire fraud, tax fraud, money laundering, false statements, and other charges.  VON DER GOLTZ, a former U.S. resident and taxpayer, was charged along with Ramses Owens, Dirk Brauer, and Richard Gaffey, a/k/a “Dick Gaffey,” in connection with a decades-long criminal scheme perpetrated by Mossack Fonseca & Co. (“Mossack Fonseca”), a Panamanian-based global law firm, and its related entities.  VON DER GOLTZ previously pleaded guilty to the charges, and was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Richard M. Berman." He faced 94 to 111 months.

 Watch this site.

   From February 28 on Gaffey: including with a forfeiture amount and order for notice despite the Assistant US Attorney saying that the only victim is the IRS: "CONSENT PRELIMINARY ORDER OF FORFEITURE AS TO SPECIFIC PROPERTY/MONEY JUDGMENT FOR Richard Gaffey. IT IS HEREBY STIPULATED AND AGREED, by and between theUnited States of America, by its attorney Geoffrey S. Berman,United States Attorney, Assistant United States Attorneys, THANE REHN and EUN YOUNG CHOI of counsel, and the defendant, and his counsel, WILLIAM LOVETT, Esq. and ROBERT BUEHLER, Esq., that As a result of the offenses charged in Counts Two and Three of the Indictment, to which the defendant pled guilty, a money judgment in the amount of $5,373, 609 in United States currency (the "Money Judgment "), representing the amount of proceeds traceable to the offense charged in Count Two of the Indictment that the defendant personally obtained and the amount of property involved in the offense charged in Count Three of the Indictment, shall be entered against the defendant. Pursuant to 32.2(b)(6) (A) of the Federal Rules of Criminal Procedure, the Government shall send notice to any person who reasonably appears to be a potential claimant with standing to contest the forfeiture in the ancillary proceeding."

  Periscope here, Podcast here. The plea agreement is for 94 to 111 months - how much less than that will Gaffey get? The sentencing is set for June 29 at 11 a.m.

Judge Richard M. Berman of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York asked whether the lawyer for initially lead defendant Ramses Owens, sitting on the side of his courtroom, even had the right to make arguments. Owens has not been arraigned or appeared in the case.

  From Panama, using J. Iandolo Law of 13th Avenue, Brooklyn, Owens is disputing the use of his mobile phone records obtained under the US - Panama Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Treaty.

   Assistant US Attorney Eun Young Choi argued that some of the US' request for information from other governments are covered by diplomatic privilege. She said, however, that information from and about Germany will be made available to the defendants on June 7.

  Judge Berman set a motion schedule running into August. The lawyer for von der Goltz said he may file a motion to dismiss the wire fraud and money laundering counts claiming that no money ever move through wires. The case is USA v. Owens, et al., 18-cr-00693 (Berman).

                        Pearl, not 40 Foley, photo by Inner City Press

Inner City Press readers may remember that Patrick Ho was found not guilty on only one of the eight UN bribery charges against him in December 2018, Chad money laundering - because the money moved in a gift box, in cash, and not through wires. Watch this site.


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