1. Africa loses US $50 billion a year from illicit financial flows, according to Thabo Mbeki former South African President and current Chairman of the International High Level Panel on Illicit Financial Flows.
     
  2. In 2013, Lebanon returns US $28.8 million from the Beirut account of the wife of the deposed former President of Tunisia after StAR facilitated specific contacts between Lebanese and Tunisian authorities.
     
  3.  At the founding of the Stolen Asset Recovery Initiative e in 2007, World Bank President Robert Zoellick states, that “there should be no safe haven for those who steal from the poor.”
     
  4. StAR has trained over 1,500  policy makers and practitioners around the world in asset recovery, strategies, tools and practices.
     
  5. US$58 million worth of physical assets in France, Italy, Spain and Switzerland returned to Tunisia due to StAR assistance. 
     
  6. According to a 2009 StAR report, ‘The cross-border flow of the global proceeds from criminal activities, corruption, and tax evasion is estimated to be between US $1 trillion and $1.6 trillion per year. 
     
  7. France appoints a magistrate (taking office December 2013) to be based in Tunisia to provide local assistance and to enhance coordination and improve cooperation on asset recovery. 
     
  8. By the beginning of 2013, StAR has grown and is providing technical assistance in 23 countries and one regional organisation representing 5 countries. In 10 of these countries it provides case specific assistance.
     
  9. Following StAR  assistance and advice a prosecutor in Uganda who had argued that national legislation did not allow for asset recovery efforts changes her position and freezes US$62 million pending the outcome of a major corruption trial. 
     
  10. In October 2011 StAR’s Puppet Master’s report is released, documenting and analyzing approximately 150 corruption cases over a 30 year period showing how phantom companies are misused to conceal the proceeds of grand corruption.
     
  11. In June 2013, the leaders of the G8 countries explicitly highlight asset recovery at their summit stating, ‘We reiterate our high level of commitment to return stolen assets to countries in transition, including through participation in the Arab Forum on Asset Recovery.’
     
  12. In October 2013 UK PM David Cameron states that, “recovering stolen assets is hugely challenging but it is a challenge worth conquering. No country should have to pay the price for the corruption of its former governments and no one in the future should think they will get away with plundering their country’s assets.”
     
  13. By the end of 2013, 170 States parties are signatories to the UN Convention Against Corruption, Chapter V of which says that, ‘the return of assets….is a fundamental principle …and States Parties shall afford one another.
     
  14. To date, US$700 million of money stolen by former Nigerian ruler Sani Abacha, has been frozen and forfeited by Swiss authorities and has been returned to Nigeria.
     
  15. By 2007, Peru had recovers over US$174 million, from jurisdictions such as Switzerland, Cayman Islands and the United States, stolen by Vladimiro Montesinos.
     
  16. A StAR/OECD report estimates that US$5 billion has been recovered in the period 1995 to 2010.
     
  17. In June 2013, leaders of the G8 countries agree to a set of principles regarding ‘beneficial ownership and to establish action plans to address the issue.  
     
  18. From 2011 - 2013 over US$100 million in financial and physical assets related to Egypt, Libya and Tunisia are returned or frozen, thanks in part to the activities of the Arab Forum on Asset Recovery.
     
  19. October 2013, The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) issues a guidance paper on anti-money laundering and counter terrorism financing best practices to combat corruption –aiding efforts to recover stolen assets.  
     
  20. In 2011, the French National Police seize 11 supercars – (including Bugattis, Ferraris and Bentleys) - with value of $5 million belonging to Teodoro Obiang, the Vice President and Forestry Minister of Equatorial Guinea. 
     
  21. StAR Asset Recovery Watch Database is released in 2012, containing over 200 entries on completed and ongoing asset recovery cases. It also contains over 1,000 primary and secondary documents to aid researchers. 
     
  22. In November 2013 the El Salvadorian Parliament approved landmark legislation to allow for the non-conviction based seizure of illicit assets.
     
  23. In 2010 the U.S. Department of Justice launches the Kleptocracy Asset Recovery Initiative, at the African Union Summit in Uganda.
     
  24. In the past 21 years, the Philippines has recovered more than US$1 billion of money, mostly from Switzerland, stolen by Ferdinand Marcos.
     
  25. In March 2011Canada passes the Freezing Assets of Corrupt Foreign Officials Act following requests from countries in the Arab World to freeze assets suspected to have been illicitly obtained by corrupt foreign officials, their associates or their family members.
     
  26. According to StAR’s report ‘Left Out of the Bargain’, of the US $6 billion resulting from settlements in cases of foreign bribery only about US $197 million, or 3 percent, has been returned or ordered returned to the countries whose officials were accused of accepting bribes.
     
  27. In February 2012 Italy establishes the Asset Recovery Working Group for domestic coordination, involving the Ministries of Foreign Affairs, Justice, Financial Police, Customs, Treasury and other arms of government.
     
  28. In September 2012 the UK Government establishes the Arab Spring Asset Recovery Task Force, comprising of staff from the, National Crime Agency, Metropolitan Police and Crown Prosecution Service. 
     
  29. In 2012 the UK posts an asset recovery specialist from the Crown Prosecution Service to serve as the Regional Asset Recovery Adviser in the MENA region, based in Cairo.
     
  30. In 2013, the Government of the United States develops and delivers tailored courses for countries in the Arab World seeking the return of stolen assets, with further instruction set to continue into 2014.
     
  31. If just 1% of the $20 - $40 billion estimated to be stolen every year from developing countries were recovered, funds would be enough to provide full immunization for at least eight million infants; or connect half a million households to running water each year; or finance first-line treatment for 1.2 million HIV-positive individuals.
     
  32. StAR-INTERPOL Global Focal Point Initiative’ is established in January 2009 to promote and increase the exchange of corruption data among law enforcement agencies and national anti-corruption entities across the world.
     
  33. In 1964, as a result of amendments to existing legislation, Argentina and India become the first countries to criminalize illicit enrichment.
     
  34. 28 countries and territories meet along with international organizations (including StAR) in Qatar in September 2012 to establish the Arab Forum on Asset Recovery.
     
  35. According to the StAR/OECD report’ Tracking Anti-Corruption and Asset Recovery Commitments Report, between 2006 – 2009  Australia, Switzerland, UK the US –repatriate a total of US $227 million, with another two countries – France and Luxembourg – freezing assets worth US $1.2 billion pending a court decision.
     
  36. Australia says it will press for stricter rules and enforcement of ‘beneficial ownership’ during its Presidency of the G20 which began in December 2013, following up on the issue from the earlier G20 Leader’s Declaration in St Petersburg.  
     
  37. May 2012 the G8 under the Presidency of the United States along with the Deauville Partnership of countries committed to supporting Arab Countries in political transition launched an action plan on asset recovery.   
     
  38. In January 2009, StAR releases, ‘A Good Practice Guide for Non-conviction-based Asset Forfeiture, to assist legal practitioners in recovering the proceeds of corruption, particularly in cases where the proceeds are transferred abroad.
     
  39. A StAR study in 2012 shows that while 44 jurisdictions – mostly in the developing world - have criminalized ‘illicit enrichment’, only a limited number of these regularly investigate or prosecute the offense.
     
  40. According to the StAR report, ‘Politically Exposed Persons (PEPs) May 2012, of 124 countries assessed by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) or equivalent regional bodies 61% are not compliant with its regulations on required disclosures by PEP’s, and 23% partially compliant.
     
  41. In November 2013 following the meeting of signatories to the UN Convention Against Corruption in Panama, a Coalition of NGO’s called for stronger action on asset recovery and also gave strong backing to StAR’s report on settlements in foreign bribery cases.    
     
  42. In December 2010 of the International Corruption Hunters Alliance meets for the first time, bringing together over 200 representatives with the aim of creating an international enforcement regime to track and resolve bribery and fraud cases that reach beyond borders to affect more than one country.
     
  43. In November 2010 the G20 Anti-Corruption Working Group (ACWG) is established in Seoul. Among its goals it sets out ‘to support the recovery of proceeds of corruption stowed abroad.’
     
  44. In 2006 and 2007, British and South African authorities help Nigeria recover US$17.7 million of the illicit gains obtained by Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, governor of the oil-rich Bayelsa State.
     
  45. In July 2013 a new on-line tool is unveiled to improve international cooperation in asset recovery at the StAR-INTERPOL Global Focal Point Conference in Thailand before representatives of 67 countries.
     
  46. In 2013, three Special Sessions of the Arab Forum on Asset Recovery take place in Qatar, Sharm El Sheikh, and London, to help overcome the technical challenges of domestic cooperation, financial investigations and the involvement of civil society organizations in the recovery process.   
     
  47. The Egmont Group of Financial Intelligence Units (FIU’s) from around the world, releases a paper in November 2012 setting out practical steps in the fight against corruption and ways to assist in asset recovery.
     
  48. In September 2012, US President Barak Obama addresses the issue of recovering stolen assets in the Arab World saying, “this money – potentially billions of dollars – does not belong to those who wielded power, it belongs to the people.”
     
  49. In February 2012, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) issues new recommendations on international standards for combating money laundering and the financing of terrorism that go further in tacking the proceeds of corruption (as per the UN Convention), including more stringent requirements on politically exposed persons, confiscation and other matters.
     
  50. In December 2010, StAR releases a landmark report, ‘The Asset Recovery Handbook’  providing a ‘how-to’ guide for recovering stolen assets. The process is complex, requiring coordination between differing public agencies in multiple jurisdictions.
     
  51. In the Philippines in February 2004 the government decides that all the proceeds recovered by a Presidential Commission on looted assets, including US $624 million from the deposed former President Ferdinand Marcos’s Swiss deposits are to go to an Agrarian Reform Fund.
     
  52. UK Attorney General, Dominic Grieve at the Second Arab Forum on Asset Recovery in Morocco, October 2013, reveals that his government has, “shared over 28 detailed intelligence reports containing valuable sensitive financial information to support Egyptian asset recovery efforts.”