Source Pravda.Ru

Chiquita Brands International pleads guilty in terrorism probe

Banana company Chiquita Brands International admitted in federal court Monday that, for years, it paid terrorists to protect its Colombian banana-growing operations.

The company pleaded guilty to one count of doing business with a terrorist organization. The plea is part of a deal with prosecutors that calls for a $25 million (EUR18.7 million) fine.

The agreement ends a lengthy Justice Department investigation into the company's financial dealings with right-wing paramilitaries and leftist rebels the U.S. government deems terrorist groups.

Prosecutors say the Cincinnati-based company and several unnamed high-ranking corporate officers agreed to pay about $1.7 million (EUR1.2 million) between 1997 and 2004 to the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia, known as AUC for its Spanish initials.

The AUC has been responsible for some of the worst massacres in Colombia's civil conflict and for a sizable percentage of the country's cocaine exports. The U.S. government designated the right-wing militia a terrorist organization in September 2001.

Prosecutors said the company made the payments in exchange for protection for its workers. In addition to paying the AUC, prosecutors said, Chiquita made payments to the National Liberation Army, or ELN, and the leftist Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC, as control of the company's banana-growing area shifted.

Chiquita stock has risen sharply since the deal was announced last week. Company shares were trading down 6 cents at $13.46 (EUR10.1) in early trading on the New York Stock Exchange.

The Basmanny Court of Moscow arrested Michael Calvey, the founder of Baring Vostok investment fund, on allegations of embezzling 2.5 billion rubles from Vostochny Bank. Calvey will be held in custody until April 13

Putin informed about arrest of US investor Michael Calvey
Comments
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
UK wants Sergei Skripal dead
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
International Opposition to Attempted Trump Regime Coup in Venezuela
Homosexuality and the Decline in American Values
Russia's S-400 missiles lost in storm during transportation to China
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
Putin addresses social issues, threatens USA with Russia's new missiles in his 15th Federal Assembly speech
Putin addresses social issues, threatens USA with Russia's new missiles in his 15th Federal Assembly speech
Putin addresses social issues, threatens USA with Russia's new missiles in his 15th Federal Assembly speech
New 'bill from hell' against Russia to bring hell to USA
New 'bill from hell' against Russia to bring hell to USA
Putin addresses social issues, threatens USA with Russia's new missiles in his 15th Federal Assembly speech
Smartphones and social networks not allowed in the Russian Army
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
In Haiti, protesters ask Putin to help
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show
The Hypocrisy of the Chinese World Dog Show