Bloomberg’s David Glovin reported this month that Viktor Kozeny’s Swiss lawyer who pleaded guilty in the U.S. to conspiracy to launder money was appointed to the board of “a Swiss bank that the government said he used in the criminal scheme.”
Hans Bodmer, 56, helped FCPA fugitive Kozeny move money that was used to bribe Azeri officials. He later provided key testimony against Kozeny’s co-defendant Frederic Bourke.
Seven years after pleading guilty to a money-laundering conspiracy, Bodmer is still waiting to be sentenced.
Kozeny is a fugitive living in the Bahamas. He won court decisions there blocking his extradition to the U.S. The Bahamas attorney general has appealed to the Privy Council in London, where Kozeny’s extradition is now pending.
According to Bloomberg’s Glovin, “Hyposwiss Private Bank Zurich announced Hans Bodmer’s appointment in a June 6 press release that didn’t mention his 2004 guilty plea in Manhattan federal court or his testimony at the 2009 bribery trial.”
“Mr. Bodmer’s case, dating back nearly 10 years, did not involve any violations of Swiss law,” Bodmer’s U.S. lawyer, Saul Pilchen, told Bloomberg. “The appointment by Hyposwiss shows the bank’s well-placed confidence in his integrity as well as his business judgment.”
A bio on the bank’s site says:
Hans Bodmer is a founding partner of Zurich-based law firm BodmerFischer Ltd. and his principal speciality is International Commercial Law. After studying at the University of St.Gallen as well as at the University of San Diego (Master of Law) he worked in various law firms at home and abroad. Apart from working as an attorney, he occupies various leadership roles in the field of sports. Since 2011 he has been a member of the Board of Directors of Hyposwiss Private Bank Geneva.
A New York federal grand jury indicted Bodmer in 2003 on single counts of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and to launder money. The court dismissed the FCPA charge, ruling that before being amended in 1998, the FCPA didn’t apply to Bodmer, who was “a non-U.S.-resident foreign national who served as an agent of a domestic concern.” After the judge dismissed the FCPA conspiracy charge, Bodmer pleaded guilty in October 2004 to conspiracy to launder money.
He was released on bail of $1.5 million and allowed to return to Switzerland.
Bodmer’s detailed testimony helped a jury convict Bourke in July 2009 of conspiracy to violate the FCPA and lying to FBI agents. Bourke was sentenced to a year and a day in prison. He’s free on bail while he appeals his conviction.
Bourke’s lawyers have charged that prosecutors knew some of Bodmer’s testimony would be false but put him on the stand anyway. In a filing asking for a new trial, Bourke’s attorneys said:
The recent oral argument in [Bourke’s appeal in the] Second Circuit revealed a startling fact, previously unknown to the defense: The prosecution knew before key government witness Hans Bodmer testified that flight records from Viktor Kozeny’s plane refuted Bodmer’s account of the February 6, 1998 “walk talk” with defendant Frederic A. Bourke, Jr. Despite this knowledge, the prosecution presented Bodmer’s false testimony, buttressed it with his time records and Rolf Schmid’s redacted memorandum, and built its theory of the case around a chronology it knew to be wrong.
The judge hasn’t ruled on Bourke’s request for a new trial.
Bodmer faces ten years in prison on the money-laundering conspiracy charge. Because of his guilty plea and cooperation with the DOJ in Bourke’s prosecution, his sentence will likely be much lighter. He’s expected to be a key witness if Kozeny is extradited and tried in the U.S.
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