Tag Archives: organized crime

THE MAFIA IS TEAMING UP WITH NIGERIA’S ‘VIKING’ GANGSTERS TO RUN SEX RINGS IN SICILY

Mafia members in Sicily are teaming up with a Nigerian gang that uses machetes on its enemies and only accepts degree-qualified members, to run sex rings on the Italian island.

Police sources told The Times that members of the Vikings—a gang that sprung out of Nigerian universities in the 1980s and demands that members have no criminal record—have collaborated with the local Cosa Nostra, or the Sicilian Mafia in Ballaro, a town in Sicily, and were threatening to expand into the capital Palermo.

The groups have worked together on vice rings involving Nigerian women who have been trafficked to Italy as sex workers. Nigerian women began traveling to Italy in the 1980s to work as fruit pickers but soon turned to sex work, and an estimated 30,000 have since been trafficked from the West African country to work as prostitutes in Italy and elsewhere in Europe, The Guardian reported.

Read Full – http://www.newsweek.com/mafia-nigeria-migration-sex-work-trafficking-629627

Fyre Festival founder arrested and charged with wire fraud

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Fyre Festival founder Billy McFarland was arrested and charged with one count of wire fraud Friday for allegedly defrauding investors with his disastrous music festival that left hundreds of well-heeled millennials stranded in the Bahamas and millions of dollars in investments and ticket sales unaccounted for.

McFarland, the 26-year-old CEO of Magnises, a concierge company, and Fyre Media, an app to book performing artists for private events, will spend the night in jail. He is expected to be arraigned before a judge on Saturday, Joon Kim, the Acting United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, said in a statement.

 “As alleged, William McFarland promised a ‘life changing’ music festival but in actuality delivered a disaster,” Joon said. “McFarland allegedly presented fake documents to induce investors to put over a million dollars into his company and the fiasco called the Fyre Festival. Thanks to the investigative efforts of the FBI, McFarland will now have to answer for his crimes.”

Prosecutors allege McFarland began the criminal scheme in late 2016, right around the time he announced the Fyre Festival through a well-orchestrated marketing campaign involving hundreds of so-called Instagram “influencers,” including Kendall Jenner, Bella Hadid and Hailey Baldwin.

According to the criminal complaint, filed in the Southern District of New York, McFarland lied to at least two investors about how much the company was worth, eventually inducing them to invest around $1.2 million in the festival based on assertions that Fyre was making millions of dollars in revenue. In fact, prosecutors say, the company had earned only $60,000 over the past year.

McFarland also allegedly doctored a stock ownership statement to convince one of those unnamed investors that he held more than $2.5 million in shares in an unnamed company to use as collateral in the deal.

Though the complaint doesn’t specifically list the stock or the investor, a brokerage statement purporting to show McFarland as the owner of $2,565,079.18 in Facebook stock is listed as an exhibit in a civil suit filed by investor Oleg Itkin, who gave McFarland a $700,000 loan. Prosecutors say McFarland did own shares of Facebook stock — but only about $1,400 worth.

It’s not clear who is representing McFarland, who was dropped by his legal team Hughes, Hubbard & Reed LLP, on Wednesday. Michael Levine, a Westchester attorney, is listed as McFarland’s incoming attorney in a signed affidavit in the Itkin case. But reached by phone Friday night, Levine denied any involvement in the criminal case and said he was merely involved in the civil case as local counsel for a California firm which he declined to name.

Here’s a promotional video for the ill-fated Fyre Festival, which was canceled soon after it began in April:

Cover: Billy McFarland and Carol Mac attend The 23rd Annual Watermill Center Summer Benefit & Auction at The Watermill Center on July 30, 2016 in Water Mill, NY. (Photo by Patrick McMullan/Patrick McMullan via G Images)

Sourced From – https://news.vice.com/story/fyre-festival-founder-arrested-and-charged-with-wire-fraud

No Italy ‘baby bonus’ for Mafia boss’s daughter Lucia Riina

Sicilian authorities have refused to pay Italy’s “baby bonus” to the youngest daughter of jailed Mafia boss Toto Riina, 36-year-old Lucia.

A painter, Lucia lives in Corleone and gave birth earlier this month.

Salvatore “Toto” Riina, former boss of the notorious Cosa Nostra, was jailed in 1993 and now has terminal cancer.

Italy’s top court ruled this month that he had a right to “die with dignity” under house arrest but there were protests and he may not be let out.

A parole board will have to decide in the northern city of Bologna, where 86-year-old Riina is in jail for his role in dozens of Cosa Nostra murders.

Two anti-Mafia judges – Giovanni Falcone and Paolo Borsellino – were killed in 1992, in Riina’s “war against the state”.

Read Full – http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-40326094

Atlanta pharmacy shut down amid ‘pill mill’ investigation

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

6:06 p.m Monday, May 1, 2017 Neighborhoods

A south Atlanta pharmacy that generated more than $5.1 million dollars from unlawful prescriptions was shut down Friday morning, according to the Georgia Drugs and Narcotics Agency.

Special agents served emergency suspensions that stripped Rosemary E. Ofume of her pharmacist license and put the pharmacy she owned, the Medicine Center, out of business.

Ofume was found guilty on March 24 of several charges including aiding and abetting in the distribution of hydrocodone and oxycodone, controlled substance conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy regarding customers of the “pill mill” pain clinic across the street. Her husband, Donatus Iriele, was convicted of concealment of money laundering and laundering more than $10,000 of criminally derived property.

The Georgia Board of Pharmacy ordered the suspensions April 12 after it found that Ofume and Medicine Center’s continued ability to operate posed a threat to others. It is not clear whether Iriele co-owned the pharmacy, located at 1634 Jonesboro Road SE, when it was shut down last week.

Full Read – http://www.ajc.com/news/local/atlanta-pharmacy-shut-down-amid-pill-mill-investigation/DRKSK4NL4nL6d8Y82lUYEP/

French gangster connected to mafia at centre of probe into alleged dodgy transfers involving Premier League clubs

Jean-Luc Barresi is linked to the moves of at least 15 Premier League stars

By Richard Moriarty and Jonathan Reilly

A FRENCH gangster with mafia connections is at the centre of a probe into alleged dodgy transfers involving Premier League clubs after last week’s tax raids, The Sun on Sunday can reveal.

Shadowy Jean-Luc Barresi is linked to the moves of at least 15 players including Chelsea star Cesar Azpilicueta, ex-Liverpool ace Fernando Morientes, French ace Loic Remy and former Manchester United player Gabriel Heinze.

The gangster had “the walk” of French giants Olympique Marseille, which is at the centre of tax probe that saw HMRC officers raid the offices of West Ham and Newcastle earlier this week.

Barresi is accused of illegally pocketing 440,000 euros (£371,000) from two players move to English clubs from scandal-hit French club Olympic Marseille.

An unnamed English agent is said to have been paid 550,000 euros (£464,000) when Morgan Amalfitano moved to West Brom on loan in 2013 before the midfielder signed for West Ham the following year.

Barresi – who was convicted of racketeering in 2012 and has an elder brother serving ten-year prison term for trying to hijack an armoured car – is alleged to have been given a 389,000 euro (£328,000) backhander by the agent.

Court papers in France also claim the same agent was paid 220,000 euros (£185,000) when Hatem Ben Arfa moved to Newcastle United in 2011.

Barresi is said to have received 50,000 euros (£42,000) from the agent as part of the deal.

Full Read – https://www.thesun.co.uk/sport/3447277/french-gangster-connected-to-mafia-at-centre-of-probe-into-alleged-dodgy-transfers-involving-premier-league-clubs/