Middle-east Arab News Opinion | Asharq Al-awsat

Panama Detains Lebanese Man over Money Laundering and Drug Trafficking for Hezbollah | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
Select Page
Media ID: 55347635
Panama Detains Lebanese Man over Money Laundering and Drug Trafficking for Hezbollah

Panama Detains Lebanese Man over Money Laundering and Drug Trafficking for Hezbollah

London- The search after suspects, affiliated to financial activities for the benefit of Hezbollah around the world, is ongoing; thus effecting US resolutions, which were issued lately by the Congress.

The resolutions aim at targeting members and leading companies that facilitate Hezbollah’s activities globally.

Most recently, and following the Congress resolution, a suspect was arrested for involvement in drug trafficking and money laundering operations for Hezbollah in Latin America.

Highly informed sources told Asharq Al-Awsat that authorities in Panama have arrested Aa. Khalife, a Lebanese descendent holding a Ghanaian passport and on his way to Colombia.

The sources pointed out that he was arrested in Bogota airport in Panama City on his way to Colombia possessing 500 thousand dollars.

According to information provided, the suspect runs drug and money laundering operations for Hezbollah and was involved in several activities in Ghana’s capital city, Accra.

Arresting Khalife is the latest case in the international tracking of members and companies affiliated with Hezbollah. Hitherto, France detained four Lebanese nationals based on an arrest warrant issued by the United States, accusing them of providing financial services to Hezbollah through networks known as Colombian “Peso Black System”.

The system got its name from the Colombian Currency “Peso”, CNN website reported. It was developed by drug traffickers in Colombia during the past few years following increasing security and banking obstacles, which prevented them from receiving the money from selling drugs in USA and Europe.

The system also uses legal bank operations in laundering money and transfers them legally. The agencies concerned with monitoring these processes estimated the amount of money running in this system to exceed five billion dollars annually for smugglers in Colombia only.

The information came after the U.S. House of Representatives issued a law imposing tough new sanctions on banks that knowingly do business with the Lebanon-based movement Hezbollah, and it also targeted Hezbollah’s television channel Al-Manar trying to cut the broadcast of satellite operators that air the channel’s programming.