Asset Recovery Watch

ARW-37
Charles Taylor / Viktor Bout / Richard Chichakli
Liberia
President (Taylor, 1997-2003) / Close Associate (Bout)
United States
Undertaking Recovery Effort, Location of Recovery Effort, Asset Location / Alleged Asset Location
2010
Ongoing
Art.16, Art.17, Art.23
Yes
Criminal Prosecution and Forfeiture
No
NA
Ongoing Case
Ongoing
Before Court of First Instance
Unspecified amount of assets frozen
Ongoing
NA
In February 2010, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York court unsealed a 9-count indictment against Mr. Bout and his chief financial manager Richard Ammar Chichakli.  The indictment included forfeiture allegations for more than $1.7 million alleged to have been laundered through New York banks to other banks in the U.S. and noted that the U.S. Department of Treasury had blocked the U.S. accounts of Bout-associated companies in violations of US sanctions against the former Taylore regime. Both men are on the UN Security Council Resolution 1521 asset freeze list. (Source: Indictment in U.S. v. Bout and Chichakli, Case No. 1:09-cr-1002 (S.D.N.Y.), unsealed February 17, 2010 and Press Release by U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York on same date; Superseding Indictment filed on October 25, 2013 against Richard Chichakli).  On November  16, Mr. Bout was extradited from Thailand to the U.S. (Source: Seth Mydans, "Thailand Extradites Russian Arms Suspect to the U.S.," New York Times, November 16, 2010.)  In April 2012, Mr. Bout was convicted and sentenced in another case against him in the U.S. District Court for the  Southern District of New York on terrorism-related charges; he appealed the conviction to the U.S. Court of Appeals, Second Circuit. (Source: U.S. v. Bout, Case No. 1:08-cr-00365 (S.D.N.Y.), Judgment in a Criminal Case filed April 9, 2012. US Appeals Court case no. 12-1487).  

In April 2012, Mr. Bout was sentenced on terrorism-related charges in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York; he has appealed the conviction to the US Court of Appeals.  (US v. Bout, Case No. 1:08-cr-00365 (S.D.N.Y.)  According to the U.S. Government's indictment, Mr. Bout (and Mr. Chichakli) also faces money laundering, wire fraud and conspiracy charges in a separate case pertaining to violations of US Sanctions against the former Taylor regime before the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. (US v. Bout and Chichakli, Case No. 1:09-cr-01002 (S.D.N.Y.), Indictment unsealed on February 17, 2010).

United Nations Special Court for Sierra Leone
United Nations Special Court for Sierra Leone
United Nations Special Court for Sierra Leone
Drug Enforcement Agency; Assistance provided by Department of Justice, Office of International Affairs and Department of State; INTERPOL
U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York