Talk:Liberty Reserve

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The 2013 seizure section quotes only one party, directly or indirectly, Preet Bharara's office. We don't even have a notion where the CEO is being held, whether his defense has made a statement, or if he even has a defense. --- Every single statement and quote in the May 2013 section of the article issues directly from the prosecutor, Preet Bharara. The $45 million dollar scheme is attributed to two Dutchmen arrested by German authorities--we have only Bharara' allegation that Liberty's involvement with that scheme was criminal as opposed to incidental, not any other source's. This entire section amounts to "Preet Bharara" says. That is the essence of POV.

We need independent statements, down even to a statement as to where the suspects are, and who is representing them. μηδείς (talk) 00:12, 30 May 2013 (UTC)

Note that every single quote in this section regarding Liberty and Budovsky is attributed to Federal prosecutor US Attorney Preet Bharara or his office, directly, or as a source in the references. Note that the two claims not going directly to him, that the website has been taken down, and that two Dutchmen were arrested in Germany earlier this month are not evidence of crime on the company's part.
In May 2013 U.S. prosecutors filed a case against Liberty Reserve, alleging it had handled $6 billion of criminal proceeds.[1]
Arthur Budovsky was arrested by police[which?] in Spain and the site was taken offline and replaced with a notice saying the domain had been "seized by the United States Global Illicit Financial Team."[2]
Liberty Reserve itself was accused by U.S. prosecutors of moving tens of millions of dollars through shell accounts.[1]
Forty-five bank accounts were seized or restricted by United States federal prosecutors under the Patriot Act as a result of the investigation.[3]
The United States attorney in Manhattan, Preet Bharara, stated the case "may be the largest international money laundering case ever brought by the United States."[1] "The global enforcement action we announce today is an important step towards reining in the 'Wild West' of illicit Internet banking." Bharara said. "As crime goes increasingly global, the long arm of the law has to get even longer, and in this case, it encircled the earth."[1]
One specific allegation of the prosecutors is that the site played a role in laundering the $45 million stolen from the Bank of Muscat and the National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah in May 2013.[4][5]
μηδείς (talk) 00:23, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
You are mistaken. Some of the info comes from Costa Rican authorities (for example: "In 2011, Liberty Reserve was denied a business license in Costa Rica" and "The business formally disbanded at that time, but company founder Arthur Budovsky continued to operate the business by funneling it through five other Costa Rican businesses, according to authorities") and 3rd parties (Brian Krebs). Also I don't know why you insist on tagging "Arthur Budovsky was arrested by police in Spain" with [by whom?]. Do you wnat the name of the arresting officer or something? --ThaddeusB (talk) 01:11, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
He's not being arrested by Costa Rican authorities on Costa Rican charges, but on behalf of America. It's entirely relevant by whom he was arrested in Spain, and on what charges. Local police? Interpol? US authorities in Spain? μηδείς (talk) 04:24, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
Which would mean their "testimony" is independent of the US government and thus a third party source, which is exactly what you seem to want... Why does it matter who did the physical arresting? It was obviously done on the authority of the US indictment, and the charges are already in the article. --ThaddeusB (talk) 04:41, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
First, let me say that the arresting party is important, but not problematic as far as the NPOV status of the article goes--it's simply a separate matter that needs addressing. Who has arrested him physically and on what actual charge is highly important in American law. He has the right to legal counsel, to be advised in court of the charges brought against him, and of habeas corpus meant to force authorities to reveal where he's being held. If he's been arrested by Spanish or Interpol or other authorities that's an entirely different story. Are we to presume, for example, that he has the right to contest extradition? Or was a deal made ahead of time infringing on that right? We wouldn't accept it if authorities reported in the passive voice that he was shot during an investigation. Legally, knowing who arrested him and under what circumstances is as vital as knowing who shot him would be. μηδείς (talk) 05:13, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
He was arrested by ordinary Spanish police. I have edited the article accordingly. --ThaddeusB (talk)
As for third party sources and NPOV, any journalist reporting where he is being held, and that he has talked with Budovsky, a statement from Budovsky himself, or his lawyer, or from a third party governmental authority reporting he's being held somewhere by someone on what charges would be helpful. Obviously I can't say ahead of time what would be balancing. But at this point we might as well have Tony Soprano telling us, "He broke da rules and we got him and we gonna punish him for his crimes, trust us"? The last thing we need to do is collude in presenting only one side about this person accused of a crime and protected by WP:BLP. μηδείς (talk) 05:13, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
You know as well as I do that such information does not (yet) exist. Once it does, we certainly should include it but that does not mean the article is not neutral (by Wikipedia's definition as is. From WP:N: "Editing from a neutral point of view (NPOV) means representing fairly, proportionately, and, as far as possible, without bias, all of the significant views that have been published by reliable sources." That is what the article does - it presents "all" the RS published views. At this time, there is only one such view. The fact that RS have presented only one side of the story means we can only present that one side. To do otherwise would, in fact, violate NPOV. --ThaddeusB (talk) 05:45, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
The question here is the perp walk. When the cops seize their suspects at six in the morning, undressed, chain them all together in orange jumpers and parade them openly before the press in a prearranged production. Does facilitating that amount to NPOV and BLP? Is the fact we're in a rush to get something--our equivalent of profit--a good reason to compromise such principles? A lot of news outlets gave up the perp walk in the 90's as prejudicial in the us, and as a way the state corrupted the press and the truth. What we have now is a ll perp walk, with the perps hidden incommunicado off stage, and the state speaking on their behalf. We're not junkies looking for a fix. We don't need to compromise our NPOV and BLP safeguards to make a quick buck. WE can wait til the other side of the story comes out, the defense, the plea, the as of now hidden details. Wikipedia won't break. It'll be better. μηδείς (talk) 06:28, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
The problem with the tag, from my point of view, is that it is a call to fix things but there is not actually anything wrong by policy here. What you want to happen is reasonable, but currently impossible. The article should not be tagged as needing fixed when what you want added can't be added - the info simply does not exist. What you or I think about the US government's actions and/or the reporting of the story is not relevant. All we can do is say the accusations are accusations. I suppose we could add a sentence that Budovsky and the other accused have declined to comment, but I doubt that will allay your concerns. --ThaddeusB (talk) 06:54, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
This seems to be an issue you believe the world is POV, not Wikipedia. I reiterate ThaddeusB's point that we can't tag an article for not including information that doesn't yet exist. Tags are for issues that are possible to be resolved - this seems to be a tag of protest at non-Wikipedia circumstances. --LukeSurl t c 10:07, 30 May 2013 (UTC)
  • With further details of his arrest coming from Spanish and Costa Rican authorities, my concern that the only source we had for his circumstances was the US prosecutor has been addressed. μηδείς (talk) 17:58, 30 May 2013 (UTC)

Conflicting information[edit]

In the lede it says, "Liberty Reserve was used to transfer an estimated $6 billion during its history.". Later, in the body of the article, it says, "U.S. prosecutors filed a case against Liberty Reserve, alleging it had handled $6 billion of criminal proceeds.". This would infer that all proceeds—one hundred percent—were criminal proceeds. If that's the case, it should be spelled out in the article. If not, then it should be changed. (talk) 02:32, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

I noticed the same thing. The indictment says "Because virtually all of LIBERTY RESERVE's business derived from suspected criminal activity..." and then later says "LIBERTY RESERVE processed an estimated 55 million separate financial transactions and is believed to have laundered more than $6 billion in criminal proceeds." — RockMFR 13:59, 2 June 2013 (UTC)
Fixed. — RockMFR 14:04, 2 June 2013 (UTC)

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  1. ^ a b c d Cite error: The named reference ABC was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  2. ^ "Liberty Reserve founder arrested in Spain". Guardian. 2013-05-28. Retrieved 2013-05-29. 
  3. ^ Cite error: The named reference NYTimes was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  4. ^ Cite error: The named reference AP was invoked but never defined (see the help page).
  5. ^ The sum of $45 million was reported stolen from the Bank of Muscat and the National Bank of Ras Al Khaimah earlier in the month - "Germany Arrests Two for $45 Million Cyber Bank Heist". CNBC. 2013-05-10. Retrieved 2013-05-30.