Dutch articles about EBRD Latvia fraud

Hurray for the Dutch media!  Maybe in the future Latvia can have a free media like this.

Articles about the 26 August 2014 letter from MP Pieter Omtzigt to Eurostat:




Dutch journalist David Bremmer published an article in both Algemeen Dagblad (15 August 2014) and Het Parool (16 August 2014).


Dutch journalist Jean Wanningen published an article about the Latvia/EBRD/Parex fraud.


Dagelijkse Standaard 15 Aug 2014

Dagelijkse Standaard 15 Aug 2014 Eng


Previously, Dutch journalist Arno Wellens published a series of articles about the Latvia/EBRD/Parex fraud.


925 article 15 Jul 2014











Dutch Parliament investigation!

The Netherlands Parliament will have a formal investigation of the Parex/EBRD/Latvia “put option” fraud.  This investigation is different from the European Commission investigation, which is about how Latvia violated state aid rules to extend the Parex bailout loans.  The apparent purpose of both frauds was to cover-up the truth about Parex at taxpayer expense.



Adriatic Institute and Global Financial Integrity

Global Financial Integrity and the Adriatic Institute for Public Policy have posted about the apparently fraudulent EBRD bailout of Russian/Ukrainian offshore specialist Parex Bank of Latvia in 2009.  The bailout empowered corrupt Oligarchs and devastated the Latvian economy.  When will the EBRD explain its actions to taxpayers?


United States Senate briefing

Here are photos from the 4 June 2014 United States Senate briefing.  Senator Jeff Sessions gave a talk about the need for rule of law in Eastern Europe.  John Christmas explained the Parex/EBRD/Latvia fraud cover-up, which has been going on since 2009 with no action from prosecutors.  Four anti-corruption NGOs were involved in the event, which will hopefully lead to more media coverage of the problem and a Senate hearing later this year.

me at podium 2

sessions at podium

This is the slide show from Christmas’ presenatation:

slide show

This is the approximate text of Christmas’ presentation:

(slide 1 – dirty money flowing through Latvia)

Good morning, my name is John Christmas and I am here to talk about the offshore banks in Latvia and the disconnect between the mission and the actions of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development – the EBRD.

I would like to thank the Adriatic Institute for Public Policy, International Leaders Summit, and Global Financial Integrity for organizing this event. Also, I would like to thank all attendees here at the Capitol, and thank Senator Jeff Sessions for his remarks.

(slide 2 – President Berzins and President Putin)

Latvia has an image in the media as a country with Western values which is on the side of NATO and opposed to the Kremlin.

Latvia is a member of NATO and most Latvian people share the values of NATO. But is the government of President Berzins really on the side of NATO?

The economy of Latvia is similar to the model in Russia. Oligarchs with connections to the Russian security services are rich from receiving state assets. Almost everyone else is poor.

Additionally, in the early 1990’s, Latvia became an offshore banking center under the guidance of KGB man Grigori Loutchansky who had a close relationship with Russian Prime Minister Viktor Chernomyrdin.

This early cooperation between the Latvian government and the KGB kicked off a racket for Latvian politicians that is still continuing.

Today, from the seventeen banks licensed in Latvia, fourteen specialize in offshore accounts for clients from Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

This racket has played no small part in the destruction of democracy and capitalism in the region, as national treasuries have been looted by tyrants and their cronies. Already violent revolutions in Kyrgyzstan and Ukraine were closely linked to Latvian banks.

(slide 3 – May 2007 KGB quote)

The largest offshore bank in Latvia for many years was Parex Bank. Here is a quote linking Parex to the Russian security services.

Parex served thousands of non-resident deposit accounts and sister company

International Overseas Services registered account holder companies for other Latvian banks as well, including those used for money laundering in the horrifying Sergei Magnitsky case, which of course you are familiar with because the U.S. Senate passed the Magnitsky Act in 2012.

Parex recruited me in 2002 to be their Western spokesperson to dispel what they called rumors that Parex was the Russian Mafia.

(slide 4 – photo of Mitterrand, EBRD facts)

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development was established in the early 1990’s and was intended to heal the post-Communist countries of Eastern Europe and Central Asia. It was the brainchild of the president of France, Francois Mitterrand. The 2,150 EBRD employees responsible for $67 billion of public assets have a modern office tower in London, and as taxpayers you are paying their generous compensation and premium rent.

The EBRD was supposed to be a modern-day Marshall Plan. The Marshall Plan succeeded in healing the economies of Western Europe after World War II. However the EBRD has failed at healing the economies of Eastern Europe and Central Asia after the collapse of the USSR.

Although the EBRD has failed, this hasn’t stopped the EBRD propagandists from congratulating themselves for success, and the mainstream media is repeating these false claims. As a result, the EBRD is expanding into the “Arab Spring” countries.

(slide 5 – the USA and the EBRD)

The EBRD is funded by 65 countries.  The United States government owns 10% of EBRD shares, making it the single largest contributor.

(slide 6 – “vitality” comment from annual report and “put option” comment from Nomura)

Now for the specific case which exposes what the Latvian government and EBRD are doing.

In 2004, I blew the whistle on Parex. Latvian authorities refused to investigate. I left Latvia after receiving threats.

Parex grew much larger, always reporting profits. Then suddenly at the end of 2008, the bank was bailed out and mostly nationalized, even though the government had no obligation to do this.

The government turned to the European Union, International Monetary Fund, and World Bank to fund the bailout and inflicted a brutal austerity program on the population.

The government maintained that the Parex was worth book value, however could not find any private-sector investor who would buy it.

That’s when the government turned to the EBRD. In 2009, the EBRD announced the purchase of 25% of Parex stock in a 144-million-dollar deal citing the “vitality” of Parex. Why did the EBRD think Parex was valuable when none of the other potential investors did?

In 2010, a website leaked a report from Nomura indicating that the EBRD had a secret “put option” to sell the shares back to the government. In other words, the stock sale was reversible and therefore fake with the likely objective of falsifying national accounts thus defrauding all creditors of the government.

(slide 7: London Stock Exchange filing)

This is a London Stock Exchange filing from 2010. The filing indicates that all Parex shareholders were equal, which should have included the EBRD plus the other minority shareholders.

In 2010, a new “good bank” called Citadele was spun off from Parex.

The government capitalized Citadele with taxpayer money and gave 25% of Citadele stock to the EBRD.  The other minority shareholders from Parex got nothing and therefore lost their entire investments.  This mysterious transaction could have represented compensation to the EBRD for conducting a false purchase of Parex stock a year earlier, thus backing up the Nomura report.

(slide 8 – Italian and Dutch headlines)

Since 2010, I have encouraged anti-corruption websites to publicize the EBRD fraud evidence since all Latvian newspapers refuse.

My “LatviavEBRD” videos have a quarter-million views on Youtube. 

Also, European journalists Mauro Caterina and Arno Wellens published the allegations

The EBRD refuses to respond and therefore we have concluded that the EBRD must be guilty.

Other journalists have been slow to pick up the story, however they will eventually. Latvia and the EBRD are apparently doing the same thing Enron did in the 1990’s: fooling investors with fake reversible deals.

(slide 9 – Parex and government blame USA)

For now, the mainstream media is repeating pronouncements from Latvian politicians that they have heroically rescued Latvia by bailing out Parex which they say collapsed because of the United States.  Here is language about that from a Parex annual report.

How can the United States be responsible for Parex overstating the value of its assets?  And why should the United States put up with this slander?

The mainstream media is describing Latvia’s austerity program as a success story.  But how can this make sense?  The oligarchs are still in control.  The national debt has doubled. And almost 20% of the population left.  Latvia hasn’t seen an outflow of refugees like this since World War II

(Slide 10 – EBRD fostering)

The EBRD is spreading disinformation as well. For example, it is issuing press releases about fighting corruption in Ukraine while at the same time Citadele Bank is wooing Ukrainian clients offshore.

The EBRD claims that it is “fostering transparency and accountability.” However, the only feedback journalists are getting is “no comment.”

(slide 11 – Poikans)

It is frustrating fighting the EBRD in order to fight corruption. However, I recently gained new motivation.

It is well known that Latvian prosecutors never prosecute large crimes in Latvia, even when foreign countries provide completed cases.

But now, it’s not just about criminals not being prosecuted. Now, it’s about another whistleblower who is getting prosecuted.

The man on the screen is Ilmars Poikans. In 2010, he became the second whistleblower against Parex.

Mr. Poikans is expected to receive an eight-year prison sentence for his “crime” of informing taxpayers about how their money is being spent.

The cruelty of the prosecution is beyond comprehension for me.  It is similar to Russia prosecuting whistleblower Magnitsky instead of the crooks he blew the whistle on.

If you hear a representative of the Latvian government saying how terrible it is that Russia chose to prosecute a whistleblower, please ask: why is Latvia doing the same thing?

If you hear an EBRD employee complaining about the human rights abuses in the Magnitsky case, please ask: why does evidence indicate that the EBRD is covering-up fraud at a bank connected with the case?

(slide 12 – Adriatic Institute logo)

Today begins a new chapter in the battle to expose the Latvian government and the EBRD. My intention is to work with the Adriatic Institute and its partners to publicly demand an explanation from the EBRD.  More information will be on the Adriatic Institute website soon. 

Of course we hope the United States government will support this effort.

(slide 13 – bar chart)

Finishing up, this chart shows the scale of the problem.

The first bar is $20 billion, the size of notorious bank BCCI at the time it was shut down in 1991, in part by Senator John Kerry and Jack Blum.

BCCI was similar to Parex. It specialized in offshore account services except it targeted Colombians rather than Russians and Ukrainians.

BCCI had a captive government, General Manuel Noriega’s Panama, just as Parex and other offshore banks have a captive government in Latvia.

The second bar is $66 billion, the size of Enron at the time it was shut down in 2001.  As mentioned, the Enron fraud was similar to what the EBRD appears to be doing today.

The third bar is $94 billion, which includes all non-resident deposits in Latvian banks today plus the assets of the EBRD today because insiders told me that the EBRD has done deals similar to Parex in other countries.

(slide 14, actor Clive Owen)

This is from the 2009 movie about BCCI called “The International” starring Clive Owen. From this photo, it sure looks difficult and dangerous to shut down a bank fraud.

But the EBRD/Latvia battle can be much easier.  All it takes to expose what is going on is for institutions with authority to demand an explanation.

Thank you.

ECB letter about EBRD fraud and PWC response

Exiled Parex Bank whistleblower John Christmas wrote a letter to the European Central Bank about the 2009 EBRD fraud in Latvia and 2013 EBRD fraud in Lithuania.  The letter was sent from Rome to approximately 650 people in December and January.  You must click this link twice to get to the pdf:

ECB letter scan

UPDATE:  PWC sent a reply that sums up the attitude of thousands of professionals who have known about the EBRD/Parex/Latvia fraud for years but are pretending they don’t know about it while it continues to grow.  PWC is claiming that the letter sent to them was “mis-posted” even though it was clearly marked with a note that they signed the false 2009 Parex Bank annual report.

Perhaps this is no surprise given PWC’s horrible history in the former USSR.  They signed annual reports for Gazprom for years will full knowledge that billions of dollars were being skimmed.  And, they signed annual reports for Yukos for years with full knowledge of massive frauds there.  PWC only canceled their endorsement of Yukos when Russian authorities threatened to arrest PWC employees.

Here is the PWC email about the ECB letter:

From: [email protected]

To: [email protected]

Subject: Letter

Dear John,

We have received a letter addressed to a Mr Draghi that seems to have been mis-posted. The subject is EBRD helping falsify financial statements. As this letter is of a sensitive nature we have destroyed it and taken no copies.

Kind regards,

Gemma Morton

PwC PA to Kevin Burrowes & Symon Dawson

EBRD Fraud: Media Coverage

As more articles appear in the media about the EBRD/Latvia put-option fraud, it will be more difficult for EBRD employees, police, regulators, and auditors to pretend they don’t know about it.  Also, propaganda journalists who have been writing that the Latvian Crisis was caused by “Sweden” and has already be solved by “austerity” must get uncomfortable when the fraud evidence spreads.  Here are media links with the unpleasant truth:  the Latvian Crisis, which is still growing, is being caused by an illegal effort by the Latvian government and EBRD to cover-up fraud at KGB-linked Parex Bank.

“LSM.LV” 11 July 2014


LSM 11 July 2014

“Baltic Course” 26 June 2014 by John Christmas


Baltic Course 26 June 2014

“Pagina99.it” 5 May 2014 by Mauro Caterina


“Pagina99.it” 13 January 2014 by Mauro Caterina




“Typically Spanish” 19 November 2013 by Michael Walsh


Typically Spanish article

“Lettonia:  storia di una frode europea” documentary video 10 October 2013 by Mauro Caterina


“Rosvesty.ru” 9 September 2013 by Tom Peel


Rosvesty article

“Il Manifesto” 21 April 2013 by Mauro Caterina


Il Manifesto 21 April 2013

“Lithuania Tribune” 1 March 2013 by John Christmas


Lithuania Tribune Mar 2013

“Lithuania Tribune” 12 November 2012 by John Christmas


Lithuania Tribune Nov 2012

Deloitte joins EBRD in criminal attack against Eastern Europe

The criminal attack by the EBRD against the people of Eastern Europe has been going on for two decades with no end in sight.  In the 1990’s, the EBRD funded multiple criminal banks in Russia using our tax money.  In 2009, the EBRD covered-up fraud at Parex Bank of Latvia with a fraudulent share purchase.  And now, with help from Deloitte, the EBRD has launched a criminal attack against the people of Lithuania.

Perhaps this is surprising since the EBRD and Deloitte both blab on with rhetoric about how they are opposed to fraud and corruption and they love whistleblowers.  Perhaps this is also surprising because European officials are doing nothing even though they also blab on with the same rhetoric.  Nevertheless, this is what is happening.

Deloitte was notified of the EBRD’s fraudulent purchase of Parex stock, with a secret side agreement to sell the worthless stock back to the Latvian government.  The purpose of the fraud was to fool Latvians, Europeans, and creditors that Parex and Latvia were not frauds even though they were.  Sadly, the people at Deloitte refused to cancel their fake audit opinions of the EBRD.

The EBRD, knowing that they “got away with” the cover-up in Latvia, decided to strike again.  This time, the victims are the people of Lithuania.  The EBRD has fraudulently covered-up the truth about Ukio Bank at Lithuanian taxpayer expense.

The following is an email from a journalist to exiled Parex whistleblower John Christmas regarding the EBRD’s involvement in Siauliu Bank in 2011 and Ukio Bank in 2013.  The journalist interviewed Christmas by phone and said (1) the EBRD funding of Siauliu and Ukio was fraudulent and similar to Parex, (2) Siauliu and Ukio had criminal reputations similar to Parex, and (3) the funding was (again) intermediated by Bridge Capital and LAWIN of Latvia.  The journalist said he was using a fake name because he was afraid of being assassinated by the KGB.  He hints at that in the email.

Date: Wed, 4 Sep 2013 14:51:33 +0300
Subject: Re: ebrd in lithuania
From: [email protected]
To: [email protected]

Dear John,

Thank you for your reply. Maybe we can have a skype conversation tomorrow, and afterwards we can fill the information gaps via e-mail. I am a journalist covering finance sector, and since the first bank went broke in 2011 (second one – 2013 march) the main focus of my analyses and publications has been the practice of managing banking crises in Baltic states. Few months ago I’ve had interviews with high figures of certain Lithuanian institutions, and they confirmed me that the last EBRD deal with buying good assets of the failed Ukio bank via it’s controlled Siauliu bank was completely fraudulent and very similar to the EBRD/Parex deal Latvia. I’ve covered most of the public information about Parex and your enormous efforts trying to show that the taxpayers were tricked on a big scale.

What time would you prefer to have a Skype talk tomorrow?

Dear John, thank you one more time for the reply, because we don’t want our taxpayers (which I am a part of) to pay for corrupt deals and hopefully your input will fill in the information gaps that I still have.

P.S. If you don’t mind, I will be contacting you under this surname since the corruption here in Lithuania is as bad as in Latvia, so this would be a healthy precaution for me.

Best wishes and again – thank you!


On Wed, Sep 4, 2013 at 10:54 AM, John Christmas <[email protected]> wrote:

Dear Jacob,We can communicate with emails. Or, if you prefer, we can talk on Skype. I am in my office now for a few hours.

I assume you are writing to me because you saw the new Youtube video “Latvia EBRD Fraud 2013.”


Date: Mon, 2 Sep 2013 11:51:26 +0300
Subject: ebrd in lithuania
From: [email protected]com
To: [email protected]

Hello Dear Mr. John Christmas,

I am writing under a surname from Lithuania where we have experienced the dealings of EBRD as well since there has been a very mysterious acquisition of a failed bank Ukio bank by EBRD controlled Siauliu bank. We have been doing a journalistic investigation ever since March. I started covering Parex case in comparison and realized that there are too many common things in both acquisitions. I wanted to ask whether you will be willing to share your experience and insights into these corrupt dealings between post-soviet Baltic states and EBRD.
Best wishes,


New video: Latvia EBRD Fraud 2013, still getting larger!

The Latvia EBRD “put option” fraud, committed in 2009 for the purpose of covering up the truth about the collapse of Parex Bank, is still getting larger.  It was bad enough that the EBRD destroyed the Latvian economy to protect two KGB-linked Oligarchs.  But now the EBRD threatens to undermine the European economic recovery by helping Latvia to enter the euro currency with falsified financial statements.  EBRD and Parex employees have already informally confessed to the fraud.  When will the EBRD make a full public confession?  Please share to fight corruption!




2012 video about the EBRD/Parex fraud

Why is the Media ignoring this clearly-evidenced, multi-billion-euro fraud that threatens to bankrupt a European Union country?

                               Parex Bank



New evidence has emerged that the EBRD purchase of Parex Bank shares from the Latvian government was a fraud, probably committed for the dual purpose of covering-up Oligarch crimes and defrauding the IMF, EU, and World Bank.

Here are quotes from the Parex Bank 2009 annual report:

“Among Parex banka’s top priorities in 2009 was concluding the deal with the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development about its involvement in the shareholder structure, signalling about the vitality and development potential of the institution.”

“In January and February 2009, the EBRD performed a complete due diligence of Parex banka”

“On 7 April 2009, the EBRD Board of Directors approved a financial package for Parex banka, including the acquisition of 25 percent plus 1 of ordinary shares of Parex banka for LVL 59.5 million (EUR 84.2 million) and a subordinated loan of EUR 22 million.”

“On 16 April 2009, the Share Purchase Agreement was signed providing that following the increase of equity capital the EBRD will purchase 57,506,825 ordinary shares comprising 25 percent and one share of Parex banka’s equity capital.  On 23 July 2009, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development signed the subordinated loan agreement with Parex banka.”

“Finalising the deal, on 3 September 2009, 25 percent and one share of Parex banka were transferred from the Privatisation Agency to the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.  In this initial transaction, the EBRD acquired 51,444,325 ordinary shares with voting rights.  As part of a future capital increase at Parex banka, the EBRD plans to purchase a further 6,062,500 shares, thus maintaining its stake of 25 percent and one share.”

“The signed agreement indicates not only the stabilisation of the Latvian financial system and gives a positive signal about the investment environment in Latvia, but also evaluates Parex banka’s future development potential and increases the Bank’s value.”

On 29 October 2009, the Latvian government put more capital into Parex Bank.  The EBRD did not increase its “investment” and therefore the EBRD ended 2009 with 22% rather than 25% of the shares.

In 2010, Parex Bank was split into a New Bank (Citadele Bank) and a Resolution Bank (Reverta).

The 2011 Youtube video titled “Latvia versus EBRD” informed the public that the EBRD refused to communicate with the Parex Bank whistleblower (John Christmas) when supposedly conducting “complete due diligence” on the 2009 purchase of Parex Bank shares and that the EBRD already knew that Parex Bank was worthless and criminal prior to purchasing the shares.  The purchase was apparently carried out not because of “vitality and development potential” as stated in the Parex annual report, but rather because of a secret, and therefore illegal, put option revealed in the leaked Nomura document.

The 2012 Youtube video titled “Latvian Financial Crisis – the multi-billion-euro Parex/EBRD/Ernst&Young fraud” repeated the same information and received many more views because it was professionally produced.  As of today it has over 119,000 views, making it one of the most popular videos ever about Latvia.

Finally, a journalist has begun to ask questions to Reverta and the EBRD about the crimes.  This journalist wrote two emails addressed to the whistleblower evidencing more frauds.

26 October 2012:  “I’ve heard from sources that it was normal for the Kargins and Krasovitskis to take a personal cut / kickback from the loans the bank made, is this something you heard about when you worked there?  According to the Reverta lawyers, K and K also destroyed much of the documents pertaining to loans before nationalization.”

The EBRD apparently did not conduct “complete due diligence” or else it would be aware that Parex had transferred a huge amount of money to cronies, booked the transactions as “loans,” and then destroyed the documents so that the “loans” would not have to be repaid.  Or else, the EBRD did conduct “complete due diligence” and therefore already knew this but anyway co-conspired with the Latvian government to cover up the crimes.

4 December 2012:  “The EBRD say they cant comment on the specifics of the transaction (taking a stake in Parex) but say they sometimes use put options.  They also say that the 22% figure you mention refers to the stake in Parex bank they took, not the profit.”

Since, the EBRD refuses to deny that they have a put option on the Parex shares, we can conclude that they are guilty of fraud.  And, even worse, the EBRD claims to have committed the same fraud multiple times with different deals.

Regarding the 22%, they are referring to this quote from the leaked Nomura document, “Compensation of EBRD, 22%, Resolution Bank 2014E BV 38,164, Compensation for nominal investment 57,569.”  Now we know that the 22% number refers to the EBRD’s percentage stake.  The other numbers appear to be amounts in Latvian lats:  38,164,000 and 57,569,000.  What those numbers mean is still unclear.  The term “compensation” suggests that there is a “put option,” as stated earlier in the same report, because otherwise there would be no reason why the EBRD would receive “compensation” from the Latvian government.

The EBRD can be prosecuted in many jurisdictions for its crime.  Most obviously, prosecution could take place in London or Latvia.  But also, all of the 61 countries that fund the EBRD could commence prosecution.  The secret put option is a material fraud on (1) the EBRD financial statements, (2) the Republic of Latvia financial statements, and (3) the Parex Bank financial statements.  The scope of the crime in Latvia is already huge, and according to the EBRD the same fraud has been committed in other deals as well, thus indicating an absolutely enormous criminal racket affecting millions of people in multiple countries.

Let’s hope law enforcement somewhere will take action.  The EBRD has lost its “plausible deniability” excuse by sending an email in which they confess that they know about their fraud.  They have not been covering their eyes and plugging their ears carefully enough.  The Latvian people deserve large compensation from the EBRD and the Parex auditors.

EBRD fraud explained in 2011 video

This is a video that appeared on Youtube in October 2011.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) committed a multi-billion-euro fraud against the whole world by conducting a fake purchase of Parex Bank stock in 2009.