Finally, there is some official reaction to the offer of alleged Diaspora Greeks to buy the Greek Debt with the mythical donation of 600 billion US-dollars. After several weeks with Greek-American Emmanuil Lambrakis going around, speaking to television channels and inviting journalists to press conferences, creating false hopes to debt-ridden and broke citizens and heralding to buy the Greek debt in exchange of Constitutional changes and new parliamentary elections, the Finance Ministry decided to take position.
In a statement issued on Thursday, Greek Finance Ministry describes as “a joke” the claims of “600 billion dollars to have been allegedly collected to be invested in Greece.
“Any information of ‘discovered treasures’ offered to pay off our debts can be treated as a joke. No proposal or offer has been submitted to the ministry and the government in general. It would be prudent that various gold miners demonstrate at least some basic seriousness” (via in.gr)
The ministry’s reaction comes a couple of days after Lambrakis & Co held a press conference in an Athens hotel and broke the red line of spreading the word about the alleged foundation he represents through tiny regional broadcasters and the internet. Suddenly his offer of alleged 600 billion dollars was even in main stream media. The public opinion started to ask how realistic was the offer, while no journalist bothered to thoroughly search the issue. Who is Lambrakis? Who is Sorras, the benefactor of the $600 billion loan and the E.N.D. Foundation, an acronym of End National Debt.
On Wednesday, Lambrakis showed to the media some papers claiming the E.N.D. fundation was a non-profit registered in Canada and that he was holding a letter of attorney confirmed by the Greek Consulate in Toronto. He also showed the press some banking copies.
The official news agency AMNA was forced to check the issue and asked Greek Consular authorities in Canada and Diaspora Greeks in the USA.
The Greek Consulate dismissed Lambrakis’ claims, while Diaspora Greeks of Montreal and Toronto said, they didn’t know these guys.
John Kassimatidis, one of the richest Diaspora Greeks in the USA, said ”that’s a fraud”.
Hoax, Fraud or Serious Offer?
I personally had checked the issue a couple of week ago. I think it was beginning or middle of September, when Lambrakis’ August interview started to circulate again on the internet. I was surprised that a foundation with alleged at least $600 billion in assets had no presence in the internet. What one could see, was a press released issued by E.N.D. and submitted to several websites, preferably in English and owned by Diaspora Greeks.
The Canadian Bureau of END (End National Debt) a Philanthropic NGO, on behalf of Mr Artemios Sorras, a founding member of END and benefactor of the loan, announces that the New York Head Quarters of END via its Chairman Dr. Emmanuel Lambrakis have officially offered a sovereign loan to the Republic of Cyprus in the sum of up to Euro 40 billion (USD$50 billion dollars) without interest, with a tenor of up to 100 years, and with partial repayment privileges in full or in part every 5th year anniversary of the loan to.
END via its chairman Dr Emmanuel Lambrakis and on behalf of Mr. Artemios Sorras benefector of the loan, further announces that, the sum of up to Euro 400 billion (USD500 billion dollars) shall be offered officially to Greece, by September 9th, 2012, with interest at 0,5% per annum, for up to 100 year tenor, with prepayment privileges in full or in part every 5th year. etc etc etc. (Press release via CanadaNewsWire)
I had spent almost three hours checking the internet to get a clue. No presence of the rich foundation on internet. I kept feeding google with key words and key words combinations in Greek and English. Nothing. The same press release all over the internet.
But finally I got the clue. The name of the benefactor of the loan was Artemios Sorras, a name involved in the case of the Bank of Anatolia shares.
Bank of Anatolia (Bank d’ Orient) established in 1904 by the National Bank of Greece. Twenty years later the bank was absorbed by the NBG. However the family of Sorras still has shares of the Bank of Anatolia apparently worth of more than 500 billion dollars in today’s value. (zougla.gr)
Odd enough while it was impossible to locate End National Debt on internet, it was possible to find Ellas Never Die, an organisation based in Greece, claiming to represent the rights of the share holders of the Bank of Anatolia. End of September, EllasNeverDie issued a statement saying it has absolutely no affiliation or connection with Lambrakis & Co.
Meanwhile more investigation is being done on the issue, and US-based Greek-American News Online writes that the whole deal may be woven through “International Bills of Exchange (ΙΒΟΕ)” placed in a custodian bank account so that one can receive statements for the nominal value. “And then you use them to cheat someone that you have money,” write the GANO.
Greek-American news Online has a thorough research on the issue presenting papers and names involved using all possibilities to crosscheck real and fake diamonds. What the newspaper says is that Lambrakis & Co have failed so far to submit documents proving their claims. And further, that they have received threats.
Also Minister for Diaspora Greeks, Antonis Georgiadis presented some controversial documents provided by a lawyer of the donors’ group and threatened to go to prosecutor if Lambrakis and Sorras won’t reveal in which bank the 600 billion USD have been deposited.
Documents upload by Georgiadis: “Sovereign Democracy of Ellas”? Hellenic Republic/Ellas”?*
According to iefimerida.gr, the Bank of Montreal considers to take legal measures against Lambrakis & Co. The claim that they have deposit of $600 billionin US Treasury bonds there, apparently “create problems to the bank, one of the 5 biggest in Canada, that has deposits of $150 billion – one fourth of the alleged amount.”
The newspaper questions the validity of the document saying
“it is not the official document issued by any bank, but by a private company “Federal Stock Transfer & Custody Agent” – a company that allegedly manages billions of USDollars, but it has no official professional email registered in the company but on a chat service of aol.com.”
What are the motives of the benefactors, one can ask. I really do not know and have no time to speculate about.
END of story.
* remeblance to the language used by Nigerian spams must be a coincidence, right?
Oct 5/2012: Here is a well-written article explaining the connection of $600 billion wealth with the Bank of Anatolia shares.
As long as it’s not 100% proven that this mythical amount exists, questions will remain and cast serious doubts on the whole generous project.
As a Greek Canadian I find this very sad indeed! People playing with our deep wish to see motherland out of the woods! These are the people that should be bared from exciting Greece immediately, and taken to Syntagma, left to the mercy of all of the pensioners that have been crucified over the past 3-4 years! Ntropi!
Tom (Thanasis) Vachliotis
First the Greek Senate should be held accountable for their ebzelments and accountable for selling out of Greece to Germany. Then ban all previously elected officails from running and have a New Election with New faces and ideas. Otherwise what’s the point? Same old, same old??
Show me the money as Tom Cruz once said
Let’s just say for the argument’s sake that this guys (END) don’t have the money. They only ask for something that at least 90 % of Greeks will agree: changes in the Greek constitution so whoever got the country in this condition will be held accountable. AND THAT’S IT. They did not ask for money , they did not ask for political positions or anything else. Now that and the fact that all major Greek and not only news networks they did not even touch the subject it should tell anyone with half brain something. Christos Nioras Toronto- Canada
As a Greek Canadian i am disappointed when i read this story. I can imagine that the average Greek on the street would believe in such stories. My office is just around the corner, i think i’ll drop by and investigate and e-mail my findings.
It’s my understanding that everything boils down to answering three questions. First, did the NBG(National Bank of Greece) ever determine the net worth of the BOA(Bank Of Anatolia)? Second, what’s the present value of each BOA share? Last, does the END group own US government bonds worth $600 billion? According to the NBG, its merger with the BOA was completed in 1932, the shareholders were paid 200 drachmas per share and the net present value of each BOA share is zero. But, if the NBG claims are unsubstantiated, then a long protracted legal battle between the NBG and the BOA shareholders is all but certain to ensue. The value of each BOA share was 125 gold French francs and each share was guaranteed by the Bank of France. For more info about the BOA click on the following link
I would think that the real understanding of all of this is that dodgy banks are not something new… And the wrong people have always suffered because of them.
Many governments around the world are implementing a policy of crony capitalism and institutional welfare, by allowing large commercial and investment banks to privatize their profits and nationalize their losses. Some financial institutions are operating with the mentality heads we win tails you lose.
The NPO(Non Profit Organization) END(End National Debt)is involved in a public relations campaign orchestrated by a few shareholders of the Banque D’ Orient. They’re seeking to get media attention about their legal battle with the NBG(National Bank Of Greece). The probability that the END group has US bonds worth $600 billion is zip, zero zilch.
Exactly what I mean Nicholas, exactly what I mean. Dodgy banks and bondholders trying to get Joe Soap to cover their losses… What’s new?
Why can’t the Greek Gov. print 300 billion euros ? I assume they have decent printing machines. That’s what the US Reserve Bank does.
ask the EURO inventers
It would be nice, but… the printing of money regulated by the ECB, and National banks can’t just go and print as they feel like it… On top of that, the printing of money is done by a specialized company in the UK. Security and all that, you just don’t know who might be in need of a few Euro and gets funny ideas.
If I was in a position to print 300 billion euro’s then I would actually print 20 times a much and just blow the whole circus out of the water. It would be fun seeing all those guys now going around screwing Joe Soap panicking, because their so precious, ill-gotten gains are suddenly worthless, and they are now equals with Joe Soap… Ooh the thought!