Hassan Nemazee arrested and charged with bank fraud

August 26th, 2009 - 1:11 am ICT by BNO News  

NEW YORK CITY (BNO NEWS) — Hassan Nemazee, CEO of Nemazee Capital and former Finance Chairman to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, was arrested and charged with bank fraud on Tuesday, prosecutors said.

According to officials, Nemazee engaged in a fraudulent scheme to induce Citibank to lend him up to $74 million based on false representations that he owned millions of dollars in collateral. Nemazee submitted numerous documents that purported to establish the existence of accounts in his name at various financial institutions containing many hundreds of millions of dollars. In fact, those were fraudulent and forged documents, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in New York.

The documents that Nemazee submitted to Citi were for accounts that either never existed or had been closed years before. Further, on many of the documents he falsely provided addresses and telephone numbers of various financial institutions purportedly vouching for his financial strength which were in fact controlled by Nemazee.

As a result of the false information, in the event anyone at Citibank made an effort to confirm the existence of the assets reflected on the fraudulent documents submitted by Nemazee, they would in fact be contacting a telephone number assigned to Nemazee himself, and not any financial institution.

Last Sunday, federal agents interviewed Nemazee at Newark Liberty International Airport as he was in the process of checking in for a flight to Rome, Italy. On the afternoon of August 24, Nemazee repaid his outstanding loan to Citibank, an amount in excess of $74 million.

Nemazee, who is 59 years old, currently has homes in both Manhattan and Katonah, New York. He has been charged with one count of bank fraud, which carries a maximum prison term of 30 years and a maximum fine of $1,000,000 or twice the gain or loss resulting from the crime.

Nemazee is expected to be presented in Manhattan federal court before United States Magistrate Judge Ronald L. Ellis on Tuesday afternoon.

U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Preet Bharara, praised the investigative work of the FBI and said the investigation is continuing.

Besides being CEO at Nemazee Capital and being the former Finance Chairman for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign, he also donated the maximum amount of $50,000 to Barack Obama’s presidential inaugural committee.

Nemazee was also a major contributor to John Kerry’s presidential campaign in 2004 and served as his New York Finance Chair. He currently also serves as the national finance chairman of the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee.

In 1999, former President Clinton nominated Nemazee to be ambassador to Argentina but he withdrew his name amid questions in the U.S. Senate about his fund-raising and business record.

Assistant United States Attorneys John M. Hillebrecht and Daniel W. Levy are in charge of the prosecution.

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