"What is clear is that the president and his allies are desperately trying to smear Fusion GPS..."Statement from Fusion GPS, which produced the Steele dossier, re: accusations it was hired by Russians: pic.twitter.com/8UKoz7l21s— Natasha Bertrand (@NatashaBertrand) 27 July 2017
So these thugs are the victims now, aren't they?
How curious, isn't it, that Fusion GPS would basically resort to the same strategy (victimhood) of its utterly corrupt Venezuelan client (Derwick Associates) when their inexcusable business practises come to light?
When I started reporting about Derwick Associates' corruption nearly five years ago, Donald Trump was a mere American citizen spewing bile about Barack Obama, and Derwick was a totally obscure and unknown shell company.
Between 2012 and Trump's election in 2016, I wrote a great deal about Derwick. In August 2014, I exposed Fusion GPS connections to Derwick. Fusion GPS' involvement with the worst scum of chavista Venezuela happened exactly along the lines of their involvement with the Trump dossier. In their words "it is a matter of public record that Fusion GPS worked for and under the supervision of an American law firm providing support for civil litigation in New York."
Indeed, Fusion GPS' founder Peter Fritsch flew to Caracas in July 2014 with Adam Kaufmann, former New York's District Attorney Chief Prosecutor, also in Derwick's employ. The civil litigation Fusion GPS and Kaufmann were involved in was a lawsuit against Derwick initiated by Otto Reich, former Assistant Secretary of State for Western Hemisphere Affairs. Derwick, lawyered up to their eyeballs, managed to have the case thrown out for lack of jurisdiction, despite having subcontracted all the work to an American company, despite having used American stream of commerce, banks and currency to carry out their corrupt enterprise, despite having used American courts to falsely prosecute perceived critics, and despite having assets worth millions of dollars in America.
Derwick, and its American employees "pulled out all the stops, including... false allegation[s]" to derail Reich's RICO case against Derwick.
The false allegations fabricated by Derwick / Fusion GPS had nothing to do with Russia, or Trump. It was about me. It was about my family. Given that most of the stuff posted in the public domain about their corruption was done by me, it was about their belief that I was instrumental in "bringing disrepute" to their otherwise very kosher company. It was about their sheer conviction, that I was a "hired pen", in the employ of a Venezuelan banker, to tarnish their "hard earned" reputation.
Derwick / Fusion GPS' strategy was to completely destroy my credibility. Derwick / Fusion GPS tried to do so by producing fake warrants, in which I was accused of committing a crime that's not even part of Venezuela's Penal Code ("Tráfico de Estufepacientes"). So inept, not even the spelling was right.
Derwick / Fusion GPS then resurrected my mother: having died of cancer, in 1983, in a Basque town, she was placed "in charge" of a drug trafficking ring in 2006 with operations in Venezuela, the USA and Spain. Fake ID numbers, migration logs and pictures were posted online linking me to my mother's alleged cartel.
Derwick / Fusion GPS "accused" me of being a homosexual, irresponsibly spreading AIDS in Caracas.
Derwick / Fusion GPS then invented that I was a partner of a Colombian narco terrorist organization (FARC). One of FARC top commanders even "complained" about me, for an alleged theft of some "500 kilos of cocaine".
Allegedly I am also a "car thief" and an "extortionist".
My sister's Spanish passport details were posted online during this smearing campaign. My sister's "love affair with Hugo Chavez" was "exposed" on one of the websites.
I was "accused" of being a pedophile. A fake Spanish Police report was posted online as "evidence". My father's second wife was also accused of being a pedophile.
Derwick / Fusion GPS creativity did not stop there: as part of my alleged "drug trafficking operation" I was involved in "submarine constructions", to carry the cocaine to international markets. I was "presented" as an associate of known drug traffickers (some of them killed) from Colombia and Venezuela.
And then, three thugs broke into my flat, in London.
Pictures of my daughters, obtained through illegal surveillance ops that lasted months in the city of London, were posted online. Some of them were modified -with photoshop- carried out in Caracas and in India.
Hand written threats of sexual abuse against my daughters were sent to me via recorded delivery from Tbilisi.
Details of my home address and telephone number were posted online.
Notorious member of Venezuela's "democratic opposition" Henry Ramos Allup, was enlisted in the smearing campaign.
My blogs and websites were censored in Venezuela, despite the fact that I publish nearly everything in English.
The above was spread online in English, Spanish, French and Italian, through dozens of anonymous blogs, social media profiles, and websites operated in jurisdictions where the rule of law is non existent. To their eternal shame, some American based platforms, like Wordpress, Ripoff Report, Tumblr, and Blogger refused to remove fake information / illegaly obtained photographs about me and my family.
While the above was taking place in the public domain, Fusion GPS was busy "briefing" reputed news outlets / journalists against considering any of my documented investigations into Derwick Associates rampant corruption. I used to collaborate -for free- with Spain's El País, whose America editor Hector Schamis refused publication of news of break into my apartment, and decided right after it to sever any further collaborations. Schamis participates in panel talks with Fusion GPS' Tom Catan's wife, just a coincidence I'm sure.
Derwick, as Fusion GPS claims for itself now, was a "victim" of a "family feud". All of Derwick's procurement contracts -which netted them nearly one billion dollars- were done "legitimately, above board, and were the product of open bidding processes".
Derwick / Fusion GPS promised the WSJ official evidence to prove legitimate origin of their contracts, which they have failed to do to this day.
Derwick is being probed by the Southern District of New York and several federal agencies. Crucially, criminal actors involved in exactly the same modus operandi employed by Derwick, with the same Venezuelan institutions and corrupt officials and at the same time, have been found guilty of FCPA violations and charged. Is this a case of some criminals being more equal than others?Here's evidence #Derwick @BetancAlejandro procurement contracts were not obtained thru open competitive bidding #CORRUPTION in #Venezuela pic.twitter.com/lVzhtFrgBE— Aʟᴇᴋ Bᴏʏᴅ (@alekboyd) 26 July 2017
Derwick is being investigated in Spain.
Derwick is being investigated in Andorra, whose prosecutors have sent legal assistance requests to French counterparts.
Derwick's lawyers are fighting a request for information and legal assistance sent by the Justice Department to Switzerland, which will reveal money movements in dozens of Swiss banks.
The mother of one of Derwick's top execs (Francisco Convit) has had nearly a million dollars seized in Italy, upon beliefs of involvement in money laundering.
Francisco Convit claims to have a personal net worth of over $200 million (2013).
Alejandro Betancourt claims to have a personal net worth of over $600 million (2013).
Officials behind granting of contracts to Derwick are under investigation in Spain and Andorra.
Any rational person would conclude that a freelance, independent blogger with a very limited audience, does not have the capacity to trigger all those criminal investigations in mentioned jurisdictions.
But what of Fusion GPS' client relations? Their Venezuelan clients happen to also be in business with Gazprom, a sanctioned Russian State-owned entity that has -as all others- a Putin stench. Just who goes into business with Putin these days? Just who goes into business with Venezuelan 'entrepreneurs' these days?
Considering the state of chavista Venezuela, how could anyone believe that shells like Derwick have made billions legitimately? More to the point, how can anyone service and profit from the likes of Derwick, in view of the near absolute destitution they've left behind?
Considering that before 2009 Derwick did not even exist, who makes that kind of money in little over three years in a place like Venezuela?
None of these questions were ever part of Fusion GPS considerations. They were employed to smear, to seed sufficient doubt among journalists, politicians interested in Venezuela, to completely annihilate any form of genuine criticism toward public expenditure. Their faithful association with the likes of Derwick speaks volumes about the kind of outfit they run, basically, apologists and spin doctors for criminals.
And this has nothing to do with Trump. Or with the Democrats. Fusion GPS' amorality predates Trump by many years. They are -as all others- swamp creatures. In their extremely deluded worldview, they claim victimhood now, not realising that extreme political antagonism between Republicans and Democrats is fueled in large part by their own actions.