Asset Recovery Watch

ARW-122
Manuel Antonio Noriega
Panama
Commander, Panama Defense Forces (1983-1989)
France
Undertaking Recovery Effort, Location of Recovery Effort, Asset Location / Alleged Asset Location
1999
Ongoing
Art.16, Art.18, Art.19, Art.23
Yes
Criminal Prosecution and Forfeiture
Unknown
Unspecified, but Panama was Partie Civile in the French prosecution
Ongoing Case
Ongoing
Judgment by Court of First Instance
$2,800,000 (secondary source)
N/A

On July 7, 2010, Mr. Noriega was convicted in Paris of money laundering of criminal drug proceeds received while he was commander of the Panama Defense Forces. He was ordered to forfeit 2.2 million Euros (U.S.$2.8 million) that had been frozen in his French bank accounts. Reuters reported that the court also ordered EUR 1 million (approx. U.S. $1,026,000) to be paid in damages to Panama. Mr. Noriega had originally been convicted in absentia in 1999 in France, but retried after completion of his sentence in U.S. and extradition to France. Mr. Noriega had unsuccessfully contested his extradition from the United States. Panama had been a "partie civile" (civil party) in the criminal case. (Source: Administration des Douanes et Droits Indirects c/ NORIEGA, Republique francaise, Au nom du Peuple francais, Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris, 11eme chambre/1, No d'affaire : 8935669013 Jugement du : 7 juillet 2010 no : 14.)

According to the July 7, 2010 decision by a Paris trial court, Mr. Noriega was convicted money laundering of criminal drug proceeds received while he was commander of the Panama Defense Forces. (Source: Administration des Douanes et Droits Indirects c/ NORIEGA, Republique francaise, Au nom du Peuple francais, Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris, 11eme chambre/1, No d'affaire : 8935669013 Jugement du : 7 juillet 2010 no : 14.) According to the U.S. 11th Circuit Court of Appeals, Mr. Noriega was also convicted in the U.S. on eight drug-related counts. (Source: US v. Noriega, Nos. 92-4687, 96-4471 (11th Cir.), Judgment dated July 7, 1997.)

Unspecified
Unspecified
Unspecified
Unspecified
Public Prosecutor
Tribunal de Grande Instance de Paris, 11th Chamber