Many call the biggest financial scandal of the 20th century the collapse of the whole banking empire of the BCCI (BBC). When in the 90s the true truth about the activity of this organization was revealed, the whole world financial community shuddered, as it was possible not only about the huge waste of clients’ funds, but in general, about the existence of the largest criminal organization in the history of mankind.
Investigators literally clutched their heads when they learned about the facts of illegal arms trade, bribery of officials, money laundering. After all, the BCCI operated on tens of billions of dollars. Back in 1991, the bank was considered one of the flagships of the world financial system, it employed 14,000 employees located in 400 offices in 73 countries of the world. The number of depositors exceeded one million, while the assets of the bank at the time of closing amounted to 23 billion, while they eventually disappeared without a trace.
The entire history of the BBC Sea is inseparable from the founder of the bank and its leader until 1988, the Pakistani Abedi, born in 1922. Starting his career in the bank, in 1947 a young man enters Pakistan, and in 1958 creates his own United Bank of Pakistan. Abedi realized that friendship with the powerful of this world would be the key to the prosperity of his cause, that’s why he tried as hard as possible to enlist the support of influential clans and politicians.
However, in 1972 all the banks of the country were nationalized, in the same year in Luxembourg Abedi registered the bank “BBC Sea-AI”. According to the creator’s intentions, this structure should acquire a new type, act around the world and not obey any government and laws.
The headquarters of the new bank was located in London, a number of offshore companies were established to support the work, and most of the employees were Pakistanis loyal to their chapter. The main shareholders were the Bank of America and Sheikh Zayed. This helped the bank create a legend that behind it are the rich Arab sheikhs. However, after some time, the controlling interest went quietly to a group of companies headed by Abedi himself.
The Pakistani did not need money from the sheikh, he needed a sign that provided the inflow of depositors. Due to this, Abedi became close with the world’s largest leaders, giving them gifts and paying their expenses. As a result, the bank began to keep the money of the richest families of the third world countries, as well as the central banks of other countries. The 1970s and 1980s became a period of large-scale growth of the BBC, but the bank was never able to obtain a full-fledged license to operate in the United States and Great Britain.
Abedi did not pay much attention to the legality of financial transactions and the origin of funds. That is why, thanks to a widespread network of branches, the BBC CWI soon became an instrument for financing terrorists, drug dealers and other elements of this kind. The bank helped dictators and militants, through it secretly funded the nuclear program of Pakistan. The activities of Abedi and his offspring were well known to the special services of the United States and Britain, but the report was “laid bare” there. And these organizations themselves actively used the services of the BBC CITI to commit their secret organizations.
The real gold mine for the bank was the war in Afghanistan with the participation of the USSR. It was through the “BBC World” that the West conducted powerful financial support for the Mujahideen. It is interesting that part of the funds allocated was plundered by Pakistani generals, who immediately at the bank and laundered them, plundered and supplied weapons, also with the participation of the BBC. In addition, the bank served the business of producing heroin in Afghanistan. However, for the whole world the institution remained solid, reporting showed brilliant results, the bank took first place in various ratings.
To deceive the whole world, the bank built a complex system of corporate structures, operations were broken up and carried to different legal entities. Often even top management had no idea about the full picture of the organization’s activities.If necessary, bank documents were forged, destroyed. The audit was conducted in such a way that the inspectors never received full information, and the most secretive offshore structures never underwent any verification at all.
Abedi created a financial machine that was subject to its sole control, it was an ideal mechanism for use by major criminals from around the world. The Pakistani man had a great influence on everyone who knew him, he even created the philosophical concept of BBC World, according to which the bank is a spiritual structure related to the cosmos.
The first peals of thunder erupted in 1988, when Abedi suffered a heart attack. About the donor heart for the banker personally solicited Jimmy Carter, and after the operation, the Pakistani man completely withdrew from business. At the same time, the bank paid a fine for laundering drug dollars, but presented the case as exceptional.
With the end of the Afghan war in 1989, the main flow of funds was exhausted, and there was no need for the special services to protect the bank’s activities. The bank was increasingly questioned by auditors, in 1990 the Abu Dhabi family formally took control of the BBC, the headquarters moved to Abu Dhabi, which made further investigations extremely difficult.
Already in 1991, the facts of fraud and fraud are becoming more evident, the scale of operations to “inflate” the bank since 1976 was measured in billions. Based on the report of the auditors in July 1991, the Bank of England closes the BBC, and its activities are terminated.
It is interesting that the massive conduct of illegal operations, which by logic were supposed to become super-profitable, the bank itself was not financially successful. It turned out that it was initially insolvent, being, in fact, a giant pyramid, where money was spent on new offices, bribes, bonuses to managers. Fragmentation of the bank allowed him for the time being to elude the inspections, in the end, the collapsed pyramid left debts amounting to $ 10 billion.
It was difficult to investigate fully all the mechanisms of the BBC’s activities, as the volumes of documentation were several million pages, and the information was extremely confusing and fragmentary, and the most important evidence left the borders of England and the States. Abedi himself said that, unlike Western culture, he pays much attention to the invisible fact that post factum is, in fact, his recognition.
In 1995, Agha Hasan Abadi died in Pakistan, and did not extradite the banker to law enforcement agencies. Judicial proceedings involving deceived depositors still last, they were even sued by the Bank of England for not paying proper attention to symptoms of the BBC’s behavior for a long time.
The collapse of this bank laid the beginning of the 80-90’s worldwide struggle led by the United States against financial crime. A special commission on money-laundering was set up, under its influence, in many countries legislation was accordingly amended and supervisory bodies appeared. Today, it will not be so easy to create such an organization, although a series of financial scandals in the US testifies that the fight against crimes of this kind is in full swing.