Jan 18 2007

Litvinenko Update

Not a lot of earth shattering news from the ‘news media’ (which is not a surprise), but Copydude, who graces this blog with his comments time to time, has really put together an excellent overview of how exiled these powerful exiled Russians and their shady connection (e.g., Scaramella) have had all their claims delunked. What is most amazing is the connection between Litvinenko’s blackmailing efforts and the conduit he was using to get the dirt he needed:

Julia ‘it was just a temp agency job’ actually worked as communications director at Russian Investors for Alexei Golubovich, a long serving board member of Yukos, now under house arrest in Italy at Russia’s request. Like Khordokhovsky, he’s charged with fraud and embezzlement of billions.

Prior to Julia’s appointment, a girl called Elena Collongues-Popova worked for Golubovich. And prior to Litvinenko’s meeting with Julia, he and Limarev had been pumping Elena for dirt on the former Yukos official.

Certainly, Elena knew all about Golubovich

French tax police had discovered large money transfers she was moving to and from offshore accounts owned by Golubovich. The authorities ordered her to pay back taxes and penalties amounting to $15 million – including $1 million from a criminal trial in Paris where she was sentenced to a year in prison, suspended provided she paid up.

When Golubovich refused to take responsibility for the taxes in deals detailed in cartons of documents police seized from her home, she sought to take control of a Swiss account she had run for him but which was listed in her name. This led to legal battles with her former boss and his wife.

Litvininenko and Limarev wanted big time dirt. They were pushing Elena for details of bribes and ‘offshore banking services’ rendered in Lithuania in respect of the Maziekiu Nafta (MN) oil refinery – formerly Yukos’ refinery in Lithuania – a potential scandal involving the former Lithuanian Prime Minister.

Copydude has the story peppered with links, so I suggest folks go read it. It is hard to believe Litvinenko would blackmail the hand the fed him, esecially since one of his last trips was to Israel to meet the former head of Yukos, Nevzlin. Maybe he was playing both sides, and maybe Nevzlin was trying to push out one of his old partners. But Copydude is right, the PR story is in tatters. Folks will also find interesting the fact that Anna Politkovskaya’s colleagues dismissed Litvinenko, as did Anna herself it seems:

Politkovskaya’s colleagues at the newspaper Novaya Gazeta laughed off those claims as ridiculous. ‘It’s nonsense that Litvinenko was investigating Anna Politkovskaya’s death before he was poisoned. How could he be doing it in London?’ said Roman Shleinov, Novaya Gazeta’s chief investigative reporter. ‘Litvinenko had nothing to do with Politkovskaya. She herself was very skeptical about his activities.’

It is hard to know what to make of Litvinenko. He is either a bungling fool are a dangerous, aggressive crook. I tend towards the former.

Another report out today claims the mystery man who flew with Kovtun from Hamburg to London is a supposed assassin using fake passports:

Gordievsky said that, already in the first days of the probe, Scotland Yard detected some illegal visitor, who arrived in London from Hamburg under the forged documents November 1.

The man is a professional killer. He arrived in Heathrow under the forged passport of the EU to pass unnoticed. The police were looking for him all over London, but no hotel registered him.

It means the killer changed the passport for another passport of the EU. He left the same night after Litvinenko’s poisoning (or perhaps, early next day), using the third passport, Gordievsky said, specifying the detectives have a photo of the possible killer taken by the airport’s surveillance cameras. His first passport was photographed as well.

a very plausible theory, that this whole matter has to do with some scheme cooked up by these ridiculously wealthy oligarchs in exile to topple Putin. I am still not buying Litvinenko was the target of an assassination – still too much Po-210 worth way too much money, which is unproven as a quick and silent killer and dangerous to use. But as this plot expands we do see the fallacy of the PR stunt by Berezovsky start to fall apart and expose a much more complex story of intrigue and power and money. Lots and lots of serious money. Enought to die for.

And make no mistake, the fact Marina and Goldfarb are making movie deals worth millions tells me my initial suspicion that Goldfarb got the Litvinenko deathbed claim only in return for his family’s long term financial well being was spot on. There is evidence someplace to hold Goldfarb and Berezovsky’s commitment to that deal. If I am correct of course.

6 responses so far

6 Responses to “Litvinenko Update”

  1. burtsev says:

    “Julia ‘it was just a temp agency job’ actually worked as communications director at Russian Investors for Alexei Golubovich, a long serving board member of Yukos, now under house arrest in Italy at Russia’s request.”

    Last week Golubovich returned to Russia and “actively cooperates” with the investigation. The Prosecutor General said that Golubovich received from Russian authorities guarantees of “personal safety” but not a waver of repsonsibility for committed crimes. Some unnamed former Yukos CEOs under criminal investigation have returned as well on the same conditions. Basically, Russian press reports that after Litvinenko’s death Golubovich felt he was in danger in Italy.

  2. burtsev says:

    In addition: Goilubovich claims that Nevzlin organized two attempts on his and his family’s lives while they lived in Italy. Chaika, the Prosecutor General, announced that Russia will demand stripping Nevzlin of his Israeli citizenship, “obtained illegally.”

  3. Carol_Herman says:

    Why the “Litvinenko was a blackmailer” meme doesn’t work.

    Unlike most assassinated people, he didn’t just keel over and die.

    He went out slowly. And, he had opportunities, given the high voltage wire Goldfarb was able to touch. That he could have made MORE MONEY just telling the truth, than by any other “deal.”

    In other words? Where’s Litvinenko’s “book deal?” Why isn’t it there? Book publishers pay well. And, they pay in “advance.”

    You could claim Litvinenko was so sick, he couldn’t telegraph anything at all. But that’s where Bob Woodward would come in. Showing up, just like he did at Casey’s death bed. And, there ya go. Such a book deal it would have sold copies beyond anything Woodward got out of Mark Felt. Or even out of his Bush “triologies.”

    Of course, you’re gonna believe what you want.

    Because there just aren’t enough facts to cover this whole story. Except that now Litvinenko’s been dead since the end of November, 2006, there are just so many new MacGuffin’s that can keep coming down the pike.

    Someting went wrong! Hallalujah for that! And, it could’a been something “simple.” Like Chernobyl having all these people around, making decisions, that obviously then caused a mishap. If not a meltdown.

    While we’re just stuck in traffic.

    As to the italians, at least Scaramella hasn’t been shot by Sgrena.

    But, ya know what? Even though so many of these smugglers, and assistants are still alive, I don’t think we’re gonna get at the truth.

    Because? You couldn’t stand it if you knew what put this particular stuff into motion.

    How many years were the arabs attending flight school before 9/11?

    No one noticed then, either, that teaching someone to “fly” wouldn’t work out well if they were uninterested in learning some landing skills.

    And, wouldn’t ya know it? The bad guys keep changing the rules! After our government types worked so hard coming up with “how to get along with hijackers, rules,” in the first place.

    Besides, if you want to know about wealth, you’d notice it usually only goes to a few. Be it George Soros. Or Pickens. Or any other dude who knows how to manipulate markets.

    Still, when you’re dead, you can’t take it with you!

    Though Ken Lay found a way of erasing his trial’s results. You do know that, don’t you? He had to kill himself BEFORE he entered jail. And, he used the technicality that by NOT entering jail, he still had room to appeal.

    The law remains crazy with defects.

    And, the media? From Dan Rather’s “fake but accurate” stuff, you weren’t impressed how many midgets are out there trying to take Bush down?

    Personally, I don’t want to teach them to learn how to aim better.

  4. copydude says:

    ‘Last week Golubovich returned to Russia and “actively cooperates” with the investigation. The Prosecutor General said that Golubovich received from Russian authorities guarantees of personal safety’

    You have a link to this story?

  5. AJStrata says:

    Here you go Copydude. I meant to blog on it earlier – ran out of time

  6. Barbara says:

    They are turning on each other. I wonder if the Russian government will live up to the agreement they made with this guy. Will they really let him keep all that money he stole?