Open-Door Policy for World’s Economic Offenders, Political Outcasts
The sun may have long set on the once formidable British empire. But it continues to draw big investments from the world’s high and mighty for whom it appears to have an open-door policy. Those flush with cash enjoy easy residency there, no matter what their criminal background is!
Swedish pop group Abba couldn’t have gone wrong with its hit number, Money, Money, Money, Always Sunny in the rich man’s world.
Indian PM’s Friends: Indian businessman Lalit Modi, who has enjoyed the patronage of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and other senior BJP ministers (including External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj), is facing money laundering charges in his home country.
British and Indian governments colluded to get Lalit Modi travel documents for his fun escapades. The fugitive has been living in London since 2010, partying and swimming in copious wealth.
Liquor baron Vijay Mallya, facing massive debts, also scooted India recently, with Modi’s government doing little to stop him. Both Mr Modi and Mr Mallya lead opulent lives in England while facing criminal charges in India.
Fugitive Lalit Modi with India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj
They and other fugitives, including Russian banksters, wanted for commercial frauds have found in London a safe haven. It is not as if the U.K. administration is unaware of it. The head of its National Crime Agency had acknowledged last year that London is “a global haven for criminal financial activity.”
Bollywood music director Nadeem Saifi also found refuge in London despite facing a murder charge in India – that of being behind the killing of a top music label founder, Gulshan Kumar.
Lalit Modi with Indian PM Narendra Modi and BJP President Amit Shah
Panama Trouble for Pak. PM: It can be beyond money for England as Al-Qaeda and LTTE sympathisers had found refuge in England. I will not be surprised if the U.K. is a safe hideout for even rich ISIS elements.
Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is currently in London along with two other top opposition leaders from the country, Pakistan People’s Party (PPP)co-chairperson Asif Ali Zardari and Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) chairman Imran Khan.
Mr Sharif had been in exile previously in the U.K. and is reported to own several properties there through shell companies set up by his children, as the Panama Papers have revealed. Given the disclosures, speculation is rife that Mr Sharif may not return to Pakistan, spending his time between London and Saudi Arabia where he has a home.
Since British Prime Minister David Cameron has also found himself in Panama trouble, Mr Sharif is in good company there.
Former President of Pakistan, Gen. Musharraf, had also been accommodated by Britain in the past.
Thaksin Shinawatra’s Frozen Assets in U.K.: Another leader who has enjoyed the hospitality of England is former Prime Minister of Thailand, billionaire Thaksin Shinawatra. He had lived in London in exile for a while before moving out to friendlier countries.
He reportedly has Montenegro citizenship and has been travelling using six passports. He also once had a residency permit in Germany.
The U.K. is also said to have frozen $4.2 billion of his assets there. Unlike his Pakistani counterparts, Mr Shinawatra did not have to rely on political power for his billions. He made them even before he became PM as a top businessman in Thailand.
Thaksin Shinawatra’s Frozen Assets in U.K.: Former Prime Minister of Thailand, billionaire Thaksin Shinawatra, has lived in London in exile though he moved out, reportedly Montenegro citizenship and travelling using six passports. The U.K. is said to have frozen $4.2 billion of his assets there. He also once had a residency permit in Germany.
From terror groups to economic offenders and political outcasts who flee to London, the common bond is massive wealth. England appears happy to remain a haven for the well-heeled, escaping from the law in their home countries who are not serious enough to bring them to task!
Extradition is hardly sought and any pronouncements against the criminals safely ensconced in the lap of luxury are merely to fool the gullible!
G Joslin Vethakumar