Revisiting the Northern Bank robbery – the biggest heist in British history
Steven Moore, 04 May 2021
The BBC is taking a fresh look at the biggest heist in British history – the Northern Bank Robbery.
Broadcast on BBC One NI on Monday (May 3) at 9pm, it tells the story of how the multi-million pound robbery played out in the days before Christmas 2004. In a sophisticated operation, the gang took two families hostage for 24 hours, forcing two bank employees to rob £26.5 million from the Belfast cash centre.
With exclusive access to new source material – including police 999 calls along with internal bank CCTV and court documents – they piece together what could have happened.
Through interviews with key players – in politics, policing and financial crime – they uncover what happened to the main suspects in the cross-border police investigation and ask whether the robbery may, inadvertently, have helped the peace process.
The film includes interviews with Bertie Ahern, former Taoiseach; Michael McDowell, former Irish Minister for Justice, Equality and Law Reform; Sir Hugh Orde, former Chief Constable PSNI; Dr Mitchell Reiss, US Special Envoy to Northern Ireland under the Bush administration; Tom Kelly, Prime Minister Tony Blair’s official spokesperson between 2001-7); and Peter Robinson, former leader of DUP and First Minister of NI.
Read Full Article
Huge Winter Storm Gas Bills Push Cities to the Brink
Alex Brown, 23 March 2021
The tiny city of Denison, Kansas, came to the brink of insolvency so fast last month that its leaders hadn’t figured out how to begin the bankruptcy process.
“We don’t even know how to go under,” said Vickie Wold, the city council president. “How the city fails, what happens here—we’re just hoping and praying.”
Denison has fewer than 200 residents, and in a typical February, the city pays about $4,000 to provide them with natural gas to heat their homes. Last month, the bill came to $242,498.
“We can’t write that check,” Wold said. “There’s no way we can pay that, and we can’t pass it on to these people, some of whom are struggling to keep their utilities paid as it is.”
Many cities in the Midwest are facing a similar crisis. A variety of towns large and small operate their own municipal utilities, providing services such as gas, electricity and water to residents. Some small towns exist as political entities primarily to provide those services. Continue reading “Article: Huge Winter Storm Gas Bills Push Cities to the Brink”
Texas power consumers to pay the price of winter storm
Scott DiSavino, Stephanie Kelly, 18 February 2021
(Reuters) – Texas residents suffering a winter storm that has left millions without power are set to face a future challenge in higher utility bills, after the days-long cold snap put an unprecedented strain on the state’s power network.
Some 2.7 million households in Texas, the largest electricity consuming state in the United States, were without heat on Wednesday as freezing temperatures in a normally temperate part of the country overwhelmed demand, causing blackouts and widespread anger.
Wholesale power prices soared more than 300-fold, stirring memories of the price spikes that accompanied California’s energy crisis of 2000-2001, when Enron and others artificially increased prices. Continue reading “Article: Texas power consumers to pay the price of winter storm”
The Securities And Exchange Commission May Look Into Possible Market Manipulation Made By Reddit Day Traders Instead Of The Short-Selling Hedge Funds
Jack Kelly, 29 January 2021
It’s telling that regulators aren’t asking why high-end hedge funds were allowed to target vulnerable corporations, such as GameStop, in an alleged short-selling scheme to drive their victims into bankruptcy. As the stock price of their prey goes to nearly zero, the hedge fund honchos could earn multimillions—or billions of dollars–in profits off of the companies closing their doors and laying off thousands of employees into the worst job market in modern history.
Instead, according to the Wall Street Journal, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is looking into the young, goofy, fun-loving, scrappy and foul-mouthed novice investors on the r/wallstreetbets subreddit of Reddit. There is the feel of an institutional knee-jerk reaction to accept activities from established Wall Street professionals (no matter how odious it seems), while shining a harsh light on new—mostly naive—entrants into the financial community. Continue reading “Article: The Securities And Exchange Commission May Look Into Possible Market Manipulation Made By Reddit Day Traders Instead Of The Short-Selling Hedge Funds”
Wirecard’s Former Billionaire CEO Markus Braun Arrested Over Allegations Of Fraud
Jack Kelly, 23 July 2020
On Monday, I reported that Markus Braun, the billionaire CEO of online payments company Wirecard, faced serious allegations over the company’s rapid growth and questionable business practices. Specifically, regulators and investors were concerned over claims that the FinTech company purported to have $2 billion dollars in a couple of Philippine banks. Investigations conducted by an outside auditor revealed that the money wasn’t there and possibly never existed. Continue reading “Article: Wirecard’s Former Billionaire CEO Markus Braun Arrested Over Allegations Of Fraud”
Sage Kelly is a Senior Managing Director and Head of Investment Banking at Cantor Fitzgerald. Mr. Kelly has over 20 years of experience in investment banking, most recently serving as the Head of Healthcare Investment Banking at Jefferies from 2009 to 2015. Prior to Jefferies, Mr. Kelly served as a Managing Director at UBS where he worked from 1999-2009, and at Salomon Smith Barney in the Healthcare Investment Banking Group from 1994-1999. Mr. Kelly graduated from Boston College with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry, finance, and economics.
Continue reading “Subject: Sage Kelly”
Russian Nationals Charged With Series of Hacking and Bank Fraud Offenses
Security Magazine, 05 December 2019
The US, through its Departments of Justice and State, and the UK, through its National Crime Agency (NCA), announced the unsealing of criminal charges in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Lincoln, Nebraska, against Maksim V. Yakubets, aka online moniker, “aqua,” 32, of Moscow, Russia, related to two separate international computer hacking and bank fraud schemes spanning from May 2009 to the present. A second individual, Igor Turashev, 38, from Yoshkar-Ola, Russia, was also indicted in Pittsburgh for his role related to the “Bugat” malware conspiracy. Continue reading “Article: Russian Nationals Charged With Series of Hacking and Bank Fraud Offenses”
World’s largest pension fund halts stock lending to short sellers
Reuters, 3 December 2019
TOKYO (Reuters) – Japan’s Government Pension Investment Fund (GPIF), the world’s largest pension fund, has suspended stock lending for short selling, calling the practice inconsistent with its responsibilities as a long-term investor.