George Soros Enmeshed in Bribery Scandal

Billionaire financier George Soros has enmeshed himself in a growing bribery scandal in the West African country of Guinea. A government committee backed by Soros is investigating Beny Steinmetz Group Resources (BSGR), the mining component of Israeli billionaire Beny Steinmetz’s business empire. The government is probing how BSRG won rights to develop iron ore mining blocks in the Simandou region of the nation. In turn, the company has accused the government of Guinea of seeking to “illegally seize” its assets.

The blocks in question had been taken by Lansana Conté, whose 24-year dictatorship ended with his death in late 2008, from Anglo-Australian miner Rio Tinto. Rio Tinto was stripped of half its rights to Simandou after the government claims it missed development deadlines. Those licenses were passed to BSGR in 2008. In 2010, BSGR sold a 51 percent stake of its mining interests in Guinea to Vale of Brazil, the world’s biggest iron ore miner, for a large profit. The companies formed a joint venture to exploit Simandou, a hilly and forested tract located in the southeast part of the nation, estimated to hold what could be the world’s largest unexploited iron ore reserves. Yet because of that location, over 400 miles from the coast of Guinea, it will take a $10 billion investment to exploit those assets.

A government spokesman, who confirmed that BSGR’s contract was being reviewed, insisted the company was not being singled out, but was part of a broader review of all resource agreements. “Our role is to protect the interests of the Guinean people,” said Damantang Albert Camara. “BSGR should react by answering our questions. We have no intention of seizing the licenses of a company that has acquired them legally.”

Perhaps not, but relations between all mining companies and the country have been rocky since the government decided to begin review of its mining code, aimed at boosting the nation’s share of projects. According to the Financial Times, that review is being characterized as “a chance for Guinea to break with decades of oppression and alleged corruption. It is a test for Alpha Condé, the veteran opposition leader elected president in December 2010, and his two highest-profile advisers, Mr Soros and Tony Blair, the former UK prime minister.”

Condé, who won the nation’s first democratic election in 2010,  enlisted Soros’ aid in re-writing the nation’s mining code in March 2011. After meeting with Soros, Condé told a press conference the new mining code will punish companies caught bribing officials, including retroactive punishment of current license holders if it was established that they were involved in any bribery (italic mine): “There will be a clause in the new code which would prohibit any company from giving bribes. Any company caught giving bribes would lose its license or be penalized, Condé  promised. “This also means that for companies that have already signed, we will check if they signed against bribes. If this was the case, then we would either cancel the contract or inflict a penalty,” he added.

The new code gives Guinea as much as a 35 percent stake in mining projects, up from 15 percent. Furthermore, import duties were increased from 5.6 percent to 6-8 percent, and mining firms now need to secure investment financing of about $1 billion, up from $50 million previously, in order to obtain a mining concession. Guinea’s National Transitional Council (CNT) approved  the new code in September 2011.

It hasn’t worked out as envisioned. “As of today, our whole territory is covered by licenses and permits. But unfortunately, not even 20 licenses or permits are effectively exploited on the ground,” mines minister Lamine Fofana told a conference in September. That is an understatement. Despite almost $20 billion of investments that were announced for various projects over the last few years, only about $300 million has been realized. Furthermore, a senior official at the mines ministry who wished to remain anonymous told Reuters that as many as 1,200 of the roughly 1,500 mining permits granted in recent years will be cancelled after the audit engendered by the new code, including some held by major mining players.

The weakening of iron ore prices in emerging nations, fueled by a cooling of Chinese desire for steel-making ingredients, will also exacerbate that contraction–as will the corruption probe of BSGR. Vale, with whom BSGR had partnered to develop the Guinea blocks, recently announced it would put the project on hold, and work on developments closer to home. That hold has put thousands of people out of work. “The politics–it was too much for Vale at this stage in the cycle,” one unidentified source involved in the situation revealed.

Despite this daunting reality, the current government insists on investigating bribe allegations against BSGR that consist of offering then-president Conté a gold watch adorned with diamonds, giving a diamond-encrusted, gold miniature Formula One car to a government minister, and claims the company agreed to pay Conté’s fourth wife a $2.5 million commission for helping the group secure mining rights in Guinea. BSGR countered that they were unaware of any gold watch, any payment made to Conté’s wife, and that the miniature car in question was given to the mining ministry, not any individual, and was only worth $1000-2000.

BSGR remains defiant in the face of the probe. “This is the fifth and most clumsy attempt by an already discredited Government of Guinea in an ongoing campaign to illegally seize BSGR’s assets,” said Asher Avidan, President of BSGR Guinea. “Over the past four years we have invested $160 million of our own money to assess and demonstrate the value of the project; our success in doing so has now attracted rival groups that wish to usurp us by whatever means they can.”

Avidan named names. “Despite repeated investigations by various third parties, financed and backed by George Soros, desperate to uncover a just reason for revoking BSGR’s licenses, all such efforts have merely reconfirmed that there is no case to do so and that the licenses were issued through due legal and transparent processes.”

BSGR and Vale, which declined to comment on the allegations but said it “conducts appropriate due diligence prior to its investments,” have 60 days to respond to the allegations. After that, the government’s mining committee will consider reclaiming their rights to Simandou. If that occurs, one is left to wonder whether George Soros, who helped re-write the mining code and is also backing the committee attempting to seize BSGR’s assets, will step into the ensuing vacuum. For the man whose fortune is due in part to billions made via currency manipulation in Asia and England, and who was convicted of insider trading in France, another well-orchestrated scam–especially one being portrayed as protecting the interests of the Guinean people–seems par for the course.

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  • Mary Sue

    Nice to know Soros is keeping busy now that the election is over [/sarcasm].

    • http://www.adinakutnicki.com adinakutnicki

      ANY way that Soros, the most vile anti-Zionist can stick it to Israel – via its own magnates- he will do so. While his greed knows no bounds, so too his hatred for all things Jewish/Israeli. He is one of the most dangerous creatures on planet earth…and that is saying a lot!
      Adina Kutnicki, Israel <a href="http:// -www.adinakutnicki.com” target=”_blank”> <a href="http://-www.adinakutnicki.com” target=”_blank”>-www.adinakutnicki.com

  • lone ranger

    nice to see, obamas mentor, is up to his old tricks again

  • kafir4life

    NY kapo, Chuckie Schumer, has aleady expressed interest in taking over his mentor's old job of confiscating condemned Jews property. He thinks he'd be pretty good at it. I agree.

    • Pip Power

      Why are they no regime changes with people like Soros?

  • Mark

    At one time Soros was more knowledgeable about financial/stock markets than the average person or stock trader & thus he made above average profits. Kudos. At that point I don't think it was insider trading.

    But when he became a large investor he has found it increasingly harder to make superlative profits. What he does affects the markets & it is hard to move or to complete moves in such a way to make superlative profits.

    And so he resorts to crony capitalism. He was convicted of insider trading in France. He was slightly smarter about trading, more focused & had a good plan, but he is not really more smarter overall than the next person.

    We need to mark whatever he does in order to bring him down. What he does affects us negatively & he often times plays dirty. So let's bring him down!

  • Amused

    " mining firms now need to secure investment financing of about $1 billion, up from $50 million previously,"
    Soros has 14 billion dollars in net worth

    Which means he can compete but many oif most other cannot. See how that works. He is clearing the field of competitors via regulation.

    Oh & he is con concerrrrrrrrned!

    • Jim_C

      The Capitalist They Love to Hate!

      • truebearing

        He is a crook, dim wit, and a totalitarianist. He is a megalomaniac, a pathological narcissist, and as evil as they come. He's most likely also your trollmaster, though obviously not directly. Which group that he funds do you troll for? And has the pay improved, or is it still a Big Mac and a bottle of Muscatel per day?

        • Jim_C

          truebearing, I don't get out of bed in the morning without my orders from Dark Lord Soros!

          "Teach the FPMers," he commands, "Show them the light! but don't squash them. Some of them will make good little worker bees for our Glorious Revolution!"

          • trickyblain

            ssssshhhh! They're on to us!

            But I guess it doesn't matter now that we've managed, through our highly paid postings and devious ACORN chicaneries, to "re-elect" our true Muslim Marxist Messiah!

        • trickyblain

          Actually, the going rate now is a fifth of puppy blood and five kitten hearts per day. If you exceed your daily quota for 30 straight days, the Master will fly you to his castle and personally carve a pentagram into your forehead.

          Interested? I can hook you up…

  • Amused

    Vale is a Brasilian company? Interesting! They are going to sit back while Soros tried to take the money they threw into mine development?

    They don't know somebody in Brasil that can do something about Soros's Brasilian investments.

    Tony Blair had better be squeaky clean. Soros is trying to eat other people's lunches & starve them. They won' take kindly to it & will reply in kind (?). Who would blame them? That is my take.

  • popseal

    What nefarious nest of SOBs these people must be.

  • Schlomotion

    Saliou Samb of Reuters Africa wrote in 2011 that Guinea "was turning to Soros because Guinea could not afford to pay international consultants." That seems straightforward enough. It was probably as a result of the aforementioned 15% stake that the Guinean government had in largely unrealized mining contracts.

    Mr. Ahlert seems to be flipping out because the government of Guinea, which retained Soros is now investigating Beny Steinmetz, the richest man in Israel, one of the diamond merchants that Mr. Ahlert likes to bring up when vilifying Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson as antisemites. Mr. Ahlert leaves out of his analysis that many, most, if not all of the mining magnates are enmeshed or embroiled in bribery and murder scandals over extracting mineral resources in Africa. Through some twists of language, Mr. Ahlert makes the scandal look like it belongs to Soros and not to Steinmetz, the buyer from De Beers of uncut blood diamonds and the financier of the Givati Brigade, e.g. the ground operation in Cast Lead.

    Here's a fun picture of Beny Steinmetz chilling out with Elie Wiesel:
    http://www.sunray22b.net/images/Benny_Steinmetz_a

  • Thank Me

    ……."Billionaire financier George Soros has enmeshed himself in a growing bribery scandal in the West African country of Guinea. "

    Should read:

    ……"Billionaire financier and drek, George Soros, has enmeshed himself in a growing bribery scandal that is connected with America's first Guinea Pig African American Community Organizer.

    • https://www.facebook.com/deb.marston Deb Marston

      Perfect!

  • truebearing

    George Soros' entire life is a scandal, but it hasn't stopped his evil, and neither will this article or the comments condemning him. He doesn't care if we think he's evil. Evil likes being evil …and gaining more power.

    The fate of this country, and planet, are out of our human hands. The world's hope, America, has fallen under folly and self indulgence, and is no longer One Nation under God. It is one nation under Satan, or whatever personification of evil you would prefer. Obama and his minions have extinguished America's beacon, and the fools who have helped him have unleashed tremendous evil.

    • Jim_C

      Did you know Soros dangled James Bond over a shark tank, once?

      (spoiler alert: Bond escaped)

      • Mary Sue

        I think you're confusing him with Ernst Blofeld.

      • truebearing

        Thank you for straining to comprehend my comment. I guess all you have for an education is popular culture, so your response doesn't surprise me in the least.

        • Jim_C

          Your absurd comment got the response it deserved.

          • truebearing

            There was nothing absurd about it. Fools like yourself have unleashed a Pandora's Box of nasty consequences by reelecting Obama. I don't expect someone as limited as you to understand. You're far too proud of far too little.

  • truebearing

    Do you think I'm wrong? A little unhinged? Maybe insane? Well, for those who do, keep doing whatever it takes to keep your denial shield working, but let me point out, with no pleasure whatsoever, that I have not been wrong once about Obama since 2007 when he began his quest for power. No, not once.

    Does that mean the insane are more accurate than the "sane?" Time will tell, and as always, I desperately hope I am wrong.

    BTW, when does anyone out there think Israel will attack Iran, or vice versa? And how soon will that escalate to a nuclear exchange?

    • becky

      truebearing you seem to be drowning in a sea of ignorance and stupidity here. Why do you bother to talk to these morons? Get out while you can. They will soon enough themselves drown in their own ignorance. Let them. I second everything you've said and WE know it's all true even if the koolaid drinkers haven't a clue.

      • trickyblain

        lol wow

        • truebearing

          With that reply you are at least in your intellectual wheelhouse. Monosyllabic grunts and three letter words fit you.

  • Ghostwriter

    Well,Jim_C,I don't think he does support Israel. I don't think he really cares about Israel at ALL.

    • Jim_C

      He doesn't make Israel a front and center p.r. issue. It appears he and Mr. Netanyahu have a chilly relationship, and the reasons for that go both ways, though Bibi has expressed "deep gratitude" for Mr. Obama's support on many occasions, such as the $3 billion in annual support Obama requests and Congress approves; and Obama's providing full financing and tech support for Israel's Iron Dome security system.

      Ehud Barak, Israeli defense minister, last year: “I can hardly remember a better period of American support and backing, and Israeli cooperation and similar strategic understanding of events around us than what we have right now.”

      Still sound like Obama doesn't care about Israel? Maybe you shouldn't believe everything you read, here.

  • Mary Sue

    The irony is that George Soros is a Leftist and one of the actual Rich people that starves poor people to actually make money…and the Left fetes and adores him, or at least, they take his money.

    • trickyblain

      He starves poor people? Where? When? How?

      He's given over $8 billion to charity over his life (apart for political activism). His support was a primary reason that Eastern Europe became capitalist following the USSR's collapse.

      He didn't like Bush and gave a bunch of money to defeat him, so folks here call him "Satan."

      Weirdos.

      • Frits

        What you don't mention is that most of those so called "Charities" are money laundering scams for political causes like the Tides Foundation which is notorious (in Canada at least) of renting out it's charitable tax number to any group that gives them a cut. But for a disinterested third party you seem awfully concerned about defending the reputation of a member of the 1% or 1%ers, and I don't mean biker gangs. But we all know that Media Matters employees troll this, and other, conservative websites, and unless you were on dear Georgie's payroll why would you care what what this site or any poster says about the old boy?

      • Dick

        He made a lot more with swindling poor people in poland, malaysia and other countries (hell wherever he is he take 3 and maybe gives back 0.25 to those who do his further bidding). let's not forget the best time of his life; plundering possession of fekllow jews with his ss-buddies… he is evil and a pervert.

  • truebearing

    Too bad you're a registered liar. Obama is coming for our guns. He just moved to ratify the UN's Small Arms Treaty, which will suoercede the 2nd Amendment. looks like We were right and you are wrong….big shock.

    He may not have been born in Kenya, but who knows? His birth certificate is highly suspicious and he spent huge amounts of money to prevent people from seeing it, along with his academic records.

    He not only shrugged at the deaths in Benghazi, he callously went to bed during the attack, then left for Vegas the next day. I'm amazed that even someone of your intellect and lack of morals would pretend he did nothing wrong. the same goes for your ridiculous attempt to claim he supports Israel.

    He didn't have a chance at re-election, at least not without election fraud of every kind. The evidence is already mounting.

    • trickyblain

      For never, ever being wrong before, you seem to have made up for it by being wrong in literally every sentence.

      Let's just take the first paragraph. Obama did not "move to ratify" the small arms treaty. He merely agreed that the US would debate resume our role in the debate about it. A treaty cannot supersede the Constitution. Nothing supersedes the Constitution under US law. And, of course, the treaty deals exclusively with exports of small arms to other nations. Nothing in it can remotely be interpreted to regulate internal arms policy.

      The rest of the post is wrong, though so out there it is impossible to logically argue (similar to me asking you to prove you are not Satan and are married to a goat). How do you know when the President goes to bed? How do you know election fraud occurred, when you admit that the evidence is just mounting? What evidence? School records? Can you name other presidents that voluntarily released theirs?

      • truebearing

        Not too surprisingly, you are wrong about the arms treaty. If the Senate ratifies it, we are bound by it. Why would Obama, a transnationalist, be bent on signing it if it had no impact here? Or was that unfair to burden you with such a direct and obvious question?

        Obama has been feverishly pushing the Soros Open Society Institute agenda from day one. Eliminating gun ownership is one of the goals. So is eliminating borders and allowing illegal immigration to give you commies a permanent majority. So is reducing the power, prestige, and wealth of the US…."the biggest impediment to a global government" according to Obama's boss, George Soros. You aren't tricking anyone but yourself.

        The evidence is already showing up for the voter fraud in Florida, PA, and Ohio, dim wit, just like I said it would, and you can find it right here on Frontpage.

      • truebearing

        Bush released his academic records. Why did Obama spend all of that money to hide his? Or was he trying to hide that he registered as a foreign student? Or was he trying to hide the fact that a rich Saudi Muslim payed for his Harvard education, and perhaps more importantly, helped him get into Harvard?

        And that brings up another issue. Why would a Saudi Muslim help an American Christian named Barack Obama get into Harvard? Why would Louis Farrakhan call the allegedly Christian Obama "the hope of the world" or "the messiah?" Obama is a Muslim apostate, which the Quran says is the worst sin and punishable by death, yet Farrakhan called Obama 'the messiah." Do you suppose Farrakhan knows Obama is lying about being a Christian, little Tricky? So many questions, so much trickery…eh Twicky.

  • jaurerrius

    what goes around comes around… but still no one knows how Soros got his money. It's anyone guess. Many people said that he got inheritance from all people that disappeared during and after 2nd world war – but who will look so far back. We are all trying to forget.

    • trickyblain

      No one knows where he got his money? Where do you people come from?

      Let's see, his Orthodox uncle put him through the London School of Economics. He took an entry-level job at a banking firm, working his way up to VP ( Arnhold and S. Bleichroderl). He began investing, testing his economic philosophy (reflexivity). And over the years became one of the richest men on the world. It's not like blockbuster global trades are secret. How he got his money is very public knowledge.

  • kent7

    Soros is and has been and always will be a JEW HATER. He can't think any other way. If he did he'd die.

  • Willy Rho

    Soros is a more dangerous enemy of the Western world than any single entity on Earth. How does he manage to not be "Eliminated" like all of those Persecutors of Jews that were selling out the Jews and demeaning and torturing and Murdering them for Hitler. Where is Simon Wiesenthal when you need him? He is an enemy of the Rule of Law, of Liberty and Justice and Peace and Truth. Truly Soros is a Prideful and Evil Son of Satan. He even thinks of himself as God.

  • becky

    If they manage to pull off this heist of BSGR, I hope BSGR pulls off a "John Galt". Plant a ton of dynamite and blow the whole area to smithereens – then let them take it.

  • FPF

    Obama should rewrite the US financial code to seize Soros' asset and help the poor in the world. Isn't that their agenda? Soros will happily comply because Obama did it legally.

  • Mary Pientka

    George Soros investigating bribery???? Now that a new one…. it is normal him behind the bribery. George Soros is not a man he is an evil vile monster.