Readers who have heard and seen the public statements of the Prime Minister of Antigua & Barbuda, Gaston Browne, stating that his country's Citizenship by Investment (CIP/CBI) Program receives Enhanced Due Diligence reports on all its applicants from the United States Government Embassy in Barbados, we made inquiries with the individuals who would have received such queries, and we have learned that no such requests for information have never been made by Antigua's CIU. Browne's assurances, which the global banking community has relied upon when dealing with CBI passport holders, have turned out to be without a basis in fact.
When you add this information to our previous article*, which confirmed that INTERPOL is not being used to supply information to Antigua, through its members, one must regretfully conclude that there is little to no due diligence being initiated on CBI applicants, notwithstanding the hefty fees being charged. An audit, if conducted at the CIU, will quickly determine where those fees were diverted to, and who the recipient was.
The problem is that, in the rush to process CBI applicants for the programs being administered by the five East Caribbean states, shortcuts have been taken by government officials, to reduce processing time, and proper Enhanced Due Diligence investigations appear to be the first items cut out. That is why the programs require effective and qualified experts in the EDD field, from outside government, to administer the investigations. Anything else is pure folly, what we call governmental malpractice.
*India says Antigua CBI Agency did not perform necessary Due Diligence Inquiry on Indian Fraudster
Chronicle of Monte Friesner - Financial Crime Analyst
Contributed by Kenneth Rijock - Financial Crime Consultant