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Old 07-21-2006, 12:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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NatWest 3 granted US bail

For those of you that either have no idea of, or have not been following, the NatWest 3 are a group of bankers from the UK who have been charged with fraud against a UK bank, in the UK, to do with gaining money (which they paid income tax on) from Enron before its collapse.

The big furore has come from the extradition treaty between the US and the UK. Created after the 9/11 bombings its aim was to allow easier extradition of terrorists between the countries.

However, only the UK holds it in full, the US has yet to ratify it (due to the strong irish lobby not wanting IRA terrorists to be deported, in a nutshell). This means that to extradite from the UK all the US need present is evidence that would allow an arrest warrent to be issued, whereas the UK need present evidence enough for a trial.

Also, this act has so far been aimed towards white collar crime, not the terrorists originally intended. These 3 people have been in legal wrangling for veritable eons, at one point they were very likely to spend the years between their extradition and trial languishing in a texas maximum security jail.

The British government, in its usual complete uselessness and absoloute ineptness has continued to allow the extradition and trial despite the entire country going up in arms against it.

As the article states, they have been granted bail in the Housten area for a sizeable chunk of change until the trial.

All i can say is i'm waiting for the elections so this government can have its ass handed down, or a fraking revolution.


http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/business/5204030.stm

Quote:
NatWest Three cannot return to UK

A US judge has refused to let three bankers return to the UK while awaiting trial, calling them "a flight risk".
The ex-NatWest bankers, extradited to the US on fraud charges arising from Enron's collapse, must put up cash or guarantees by 31 July or face jail.

The trio must post $1m in cash or guarantees to secure full bail and have to live in the Houston area of Texas.

The trial of the so-called NatWest Three is slated to begin in September although it could well be delayed.

Restrictions

US prosecutors have indicted David Bermingham, Giles Darby and Gary Mulgrew on fraud charges but the three maintain their innocence.

In a hearing in a Houston court, US magistrate Stephen Smith said they would not be allowed to return to England pending a trial.


"The problems posed by allowing the defendants to return to the UK are very substantial," he said.

He expressed concern about lack of US jurisdiction if they left, so they "will be restricted to the US".

The three will not be allowed to live together and must remain within the court's jurisdiction, effectively confining them to an area stretching from Houston to the Mexican border.

Mr Bermingham and Mr Darby have to deposit $250,000 each in cash, or credit guarantees, with the authorities by the end of the month and a further $250,000 by October.

The three men must live within the Houston area

Mr Mulgrew must stump up a total of $200,000 over the same period.

It is not known whether the three men have sufficient assets to meet these requirements or whether they will be able to work in the US during the period.

Mr Bermingham said the bail conditions were tough.

"We are tough people bit I am not underestimating the difficulties we face," he said. "It might be regarded as a form of psychological torture if you wish.

"We went into the courtroom this morning hoping and praying we would be able to go back and see our families and that was the first thing denied us."

The three had been free on temporary bail since their initial 14 July hearing, wearing electronic monitoring devices allowing federal officials to track their movements.

Fast-track extradition

Prosecutors say that in 2000, the three men advised their former employer NatWest to sell part of a company owned by collapsed US energy giant Enron for less than it was worth.

They then left the bank and bought a stake in the company before selling it on at a significantly higher price, and making a huge profit, it is claimed.
They were extradited under a new fast-track system agreed by the British government, and face up to 35 years in prison.

During the hearing, US prosecutors pointed out that the three did not surrender willingly to American authorities, and claimed they might not return to court if they returned to the UK.

The men's lawyers said in court papers filed on Thursday that if granted bail allowing them to live in London, they would waive extradition and continue to wear electronic monitoring devices.

They also said they would remain under the supervision of UK authorities and post a combined $4m (2.15m) in bail payments signed by friends and family members.
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Old 07-21-2006, 04:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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What exactly is their crime? Why are they being extradited?

From what I gather:
3 men defraud Natwest by selling off a partly/fully owned company for less than market worth. They then sell it on for full market value.
result: Natwest 3 make lots of money, defraud Natwest.

Where does Enron fit into this at all, it seems like a UK crime committed against a UK institution by a UK criminal?
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Old 07-21-2006, 06:03 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Gee how did you feel about the Mark Rich pardon then? You musta been kitten eating mad if this has you calling for a revolution.
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Old 07-22-2006, 09:14 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Location: Angloland
Quote:
Originally Posted by AngelicVampire
What exactly is their crime? Why are they being extradited?

From what I gather:
3 men defraud Natwest by selling off a partly/fully owned company for less than market worth. They then sell it on for full market value.
result: Natwest 3 make lots of money, defraud Natwest.

Where does Enron fit into this at all, it seems like a UK crime committed against a UK institution by a UK criminal?
Thats about it, you can see why we're getting slightly angsty over the whole matter, the US really is just throwing weight around. They are being charged in relation to the enron collapse, not exactly sure why, since no charges have been brought over here.

Its just another thing in a long line of stupidy vomited by this government. Never heard of mark rich until i just gave him a google, so can't really comment.
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Last edited by stevie667; 07-22-2006 at 09:18 AM..
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Old 07-22-2006, 12:42 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Location: In the land of ice and snow.
I'll reserve judgement until i have all the details aside from the fact that i have little sympathy for white collar criminals.
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