20.1.13

Gerard Depardieu sets shop in St Kitts & Nevis?

London 20.01.2013 | This morning I was reading about how the Cayman Islands will become more transparent with regards to dodgy companies registered under its jurisdiction. A while ago I was doing some due diligence stuff, which took my online fact-finding mission to another opaque place (St Kitts & Nevis). I recall my amazement at the time, when I realised that anyone could register to access St Kitts & Nevis e-Register database of companies and, literally, modify entries, add information, add / change directors, change addresses, etc., to already registered companies.

I thought it was a momentary loophole in the database that would get fixed, but it hasn't, as I noticed today. In any case, I ran a few searches and found some interesting things, the first one is that Asdrubal Chavez, Hugo Chavez's cousin and Refining Vice President at PDVSA,  is director of something called PDV St. Kitts-Nevis Limited, a joint venture between Chavez and St Kitts under the Petro-Caribe Agreement.

But imagine my surprise when I came across the name of Gerard Depardieu, the French actor who's been in the news lately for his tax-dodging stance. It turns out Monsieur Depardieu, or someone pretending to be him, registered a few companies, such as Rabler Limited, a for profit venture for the "growing of tropical and subtropical fruits"; a second one called Mozart Corporation, for the purpose of "growing vegetables and melons, roots and tubers." Then there's Orly Limited, for "growing of cereals (except rice)..."; AeroGraphy Ltd, dedicated to "remediation activities and other waste management services"...

Who would've known? Mr Depardieu about to become a farmer in the Caribbean? The records are a good example of the prevalent opacity of tax havens. In Rabler Limited, the registered office contact details are:

36 Sullivan Court, AREEGRA VIC 3480, Basseterre, SAINT KITTS AND NEVIS,
email: victoria@alfa-xp.com,
phone: +544454555

In Mozart Corporation, registered office contact details are:

36 Sullivan Court, AREEGRA VIC 3480, Basseterre, SAINT KITTS AND NEVIS,
email: victoria@alfa-xp.com,
phone: +9996666

The other companies pretty much share the details above, the only difference being phone numbers. That email address belongs to domain http://www.alfa-xp.com, a "privately held software development company, with offices in Ashburn, VA (USA) and in Moldova (Eastern Europe). The core of the company's technical team has been working together as a software development outsourcing unit serving local and international clients for the last five years. The company employs over twenty software programmers and IT professionals. All of them hold advanced degrees in software engineering, computer programming and management."


The managers of Alfa-Xp are Sergey S. Chapkey, Yury Coroban, and G. Martin Lively. Make of those names whatever you will.

The phone numbers are equally bogus.

Mr Depardieu, known around the world as a successful actor, is meant to be in the aerospace business, according to records (see screenshot).

Now that he has been given Russian citizenship by none other than thug-in-chief Vladimir Putin though, it is quite clear that "Mr Depardieu" won't have to worry about his fruit plantations in St Kitts & Nevis.


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