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 Treasury Designates Mugabe Regime Cronies


11/25/2008

HP-1295

Washington, DC--The U.S. Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) today designated four Mugabe regime cronies and a number of entities owned or controlled by two of them.   The financial and logistical support they have provided to the regime has enabled Robert Mugabe to pursue policies that seriously undermine democratic processes and institutions in Zimbabwe.  

"The Mugabe regime continues to resist the call of the Zimbabwean people to loosen its corrupt and violent hold on power," said OFAC Director Adam J. Szubin.  "The United States supports the people of Zimbabwe in their struggle to achieve a political and economic system built on fairness and transparency rather than patronage and self-dealing." 

Today's designations include John Bredenkamp, a well-known Mugabe insider involved in various business activities, including tobacco trading, gray-market arms trading and trafficking, equity investments, oil distribution, tourism, sports management, and diamond extraction.   Through a sophisticated web of companies, Bredenkamp has financially propped up the regime and provided other support to a number of its high-ranking officials.   He also has financed and provided logistical support to a number of Zimbabwean parastatal entities.

The following entities owned or controlled by John Bredenkamp also are designated: Alpha International (Private) Ltd., Breco (Asia Pacific) Ltd., Breco (Eastern Europe) Ltd., Breco (South Africa) Ltd.,   Breco (U.K.) Ltd., Breco Group, Breco International, Breco Nominees Ltd., Breco Services Ltd., Corybantes Ltd., Echo Delta Holdings Ltd., Kababankola Mining Company, Masters International Ltd., Masters International, Inc., Piedmont (UK) Limited, Raceview Enterprises, Scottlee Holdings (Pvt) Ltd., Scottlee Resorts, Timpani Ltd., and Tremalt Ltd.

Also designated today is Muller Conrad Rautenbach (a.k.a. Billy Rautenbach).   Billy Rautenbach is a Zimbabwean businessman who has maintained close relations with the Mugabe regime.   He has provided support to senior regime officials during Zimbabwe's intervention in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and also provided logistical support for large-scale mining projects in Zimbabwe that benefit a small number of corrupt senior officials there.   Today's designations include an entity owned and controlled by Billy Rautenbach, Ridgepoint Overseas Developments Limited.

In addition, OFAC is designating Nalinee Joy Taveesin, a Thai businesswoman who has facilitated a number of financial, real-estate, and gem-related transactions on behalf of Grace Mugabe, Gideon Gono, and a number of other Zimbabwean Specially Designated Nationals (SDNs).   Ironically, Nalinee Taveesin has participated in a number of initiatives on corruption and growth challenges in Africa and Southeast Asia while secretly supporting the kleptocratic practices of one of Africa's most corrupt regimes.

Finally, OFAC is designating Mahmood Awang Kechik, a Malaysian urologist and one of Robert Mugabe's physicians and business advisors.   Kechik has used his medical practice to conceal the ultimate destination of medical equipment shipped to Zimbabwe, and he has transacted secretly with a number of SDNs, including Gideon Gono and Constantine Chiwenga, to generate wealth for these regime officials and the Government of Zimbabwe.

Today's action was taken pursuant to Executive Order 13469, which targets, among others, individuals and entities who provide financial and other support to the Government of Zimbabwe and Zimbabwean SDNs.   As a result of Treasury's action, any assets of the individuals and entities designated today that are within U.S. jurisdiction must be frozen. Additionally, U.S. persons are prohibited from conducting financial or commercial transactions with these individuals or entities.

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