Jamaica: FBI Called In To Assist In SSL Fraud Probe

(JAMAICA OBSERVER) – The United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation has been called in to assist local authorities in the investigation of the massive fraud at investment firm Stocks and Securities Limited (SSL).

Finance Minister Dr Nigel Clarke made the announcement Monday during a special policy address on regulation of the financial sector in response to the scandal that has rocked the nation.

“No stone will be left unturned,” Clarke said.

“The investigative authorities have full operational independence and will pursue the facts wherever they may lead,” he continued. “They will unearth exactly how funds were allegedly stolen, who benefited from such theft and who organised and collaborated in this.”

He said the probe will also seek to identify whether assets have been acquired locally or overseas with the proceeds of the alleged fraud.

“If and when such assets are identified, all legal steps will be taken to restrain these assets with the intention of full forfeiture,” Clarke said.

The police Fraud Squad and the Financial Investigations Division are leading the investigations into SSL. Clarke said the entities sought assistance last week from the FBI and other international partners.

At the press conference, Clarke also named Bank of Jamaica (BOJ) Governor Richard Byles as the new chairman of the Financial Services Commission (FSC).

He also announced that BOJ executives Wayne Robinson, senior deputy governor; George Roper, deputy governor; and Jide Lewis deputy governor will serve on the FSC board.

All appointments will be effective Monday.