US Treasury Freezes Assets Of Top Gangsters From Around The World

japan tattoo yakuza gangsters

Photo: Ari Helminen / Flickr

Earlier today, the Department of the Treasury announced sanctions against the members of three international crime syndicates in an effort to crack down on organised crime.President Obama had previously named the Camorra, Yakuza, and Brothers’ Circle as TCOs, or transnational criminal organisations, in July 2011, and instructed the Treasury to follow up with sanctions.

The release is that it actually identifies and provides brief background information on eight gangsters from the Yakuza, Camorra, and Brothers’ Circle, as well as an overview of each syndicate.

The Treasury has frozen these gangsters’ assets and prohibited any U.S. citizen from engaging in business with them.

Read the full release from the Treasury Department below. The gangsters are listed at the bottom:

Treasury Targets Leading Figures of Transnational Criminal organisations

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of the Treasury today took action against three transnational criminal organisations (TCO), the Camorra, the Yakuza, and the Brothers’ Circle. Today’s designations include four members of the Camorra, one of Europe’s largest criminal organisations; the Inagawa-kai, the third-largest clan within the Japanese Yakuza criminal network; and an individual providing support to a key member of the Brothers’ Circle, a large multi-ethnic Eurasian criminal network. These designations were imposed under Treasury’s authority targeting transnational organised crime.

President Obama identified the Camorra, the Yakuza, and the Brothers’ Circle along with the Zetas, as significant TCOs in the Annex to Executive Order 13581 (Blocking Property of Transnational Criminal organisations) on July 24, 2011, and charged the Treasury Department with pursuing additional sanctions against its members and supporters to undermine and interdict their global criminal operations.

Today’s action freezes any assets these persons may have within the jurisdiction of the United States and generally prohibits any transactions with them by U.S. persons.

“The individuals designated today are key members of criminal organisations who engage in serious crimes around the world,” said David S. Cohen, Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. “Treasury will continue to target additional members and supporters of these groups, as well as other significant TCOs, as we systematically expose their criminal operations and protect the U.S. financial system from their illicit activity.

The Camorra

The Camorra operates internationally and is involved in serious criminal activity, such as money laundering, extortion, alien smuggling, robbery, blackmail, kidnapping, political corruption, and counterfeiting. In 2012 Italian law enforcement conducted multiple operations to seize Camorra assets, including 800 million euro seized from the Casalesi clan in July. To date, Treasury has identified five individuals affiliated with the Camorra under E.O. 13581, including their most prominent leaders Michele Zagaria and Antonio Iovine.

In August 2012 the Treasury Department designated Michele Zagaria, a leader of the Camorra Casalesi clan, who is serving a life sentence for conspiracy, murder, extortion, and robbery. The Camorra members designated today are all members of the immediate family of Michele Zagaria: his brothers Pasquale Zagaria, Carmine Zagaria, Antonio Zagaria, and his father Nicola Zagaria. Each of these four individuals is designated for acting for or on behalf of, or providing support to, Michele Zagaria and/or the Camorra. All the brothers have led the Caselasi clan at one point while other siblings were serving jail sentences. All are involved in the family’s criminal enterprises. This network has been involved in extortion, kidnapping, money laundering, and bribery.

The Yakuza

The Yakuza, reputedly the world’s largest criminal organisation with over 70,000 members, is involved in serious criminal activities, including weapons trafficking, prostitution, human trafficking, drug trafficking, fraud, and money laundering. The Treasury Department designated the Yamaguchi-gumi and the Sumiyoshi-kai, in February and September 2012, respectively. The Inagawa-kai, designated today, is the third-largest of the Yakuza organisations, and the Department of the Treasury is targeting it today for acting for or on behalf of the Yakuza. The top three clans account for approximately 72.4 per cent of the Yakuza membership. To date, Treasury has identified four individuals and two entities affiliated with the Yakuza under E.O. 13581, including their most prominent leaders Kenichi Shinoda and Shigeo Nishiguchi.

Today’s action also imposes sanctions on Jiro Kiyota, the top Inagawa-kai leader, as well as the Inagawa-kai’s second-in-command, Kazuo Uchibori, for acting for or on behalf of the Inagawa-kai. As leaders of Inagawa-kai, Kiyota and Uchibori play key roles in directing the syndicate’s policies and settling disputes with other Yakuza syndicates. Under the leadership of Kiyota and Uchibori, the Inagawa-kai has become increasingly aligned with the Yamaguchi-gumi.

The Brothers’ Circle

The Brothers’ Circle is a multi-ethnic criminal group composed of leaders and senior members of several Eurasian criminal groups largely based in countries of the former Soviet Union but extending to Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Latin America. To date, Treasury has identified 15 individuals affiliated with the Brothers’ Circle and their associates under E.O. 13581, including their most prominent members Gafur Rakhimov and Zakhariy Kalashov. The Brothers’ Circle serves as a coordinating body for several national level criminal networks, mediating disputes between the individual criminal networks and directing global criminal activity.

On December 20, 2012, the Treasury Department designated Zakhariy Kalashov, a key member of the Brothers’ Circle and a prominent Eurasian organised crime figure with extensive connections to criminal groups in Russia and countries throughout Eurasia. His criminal activities include money laundering, extortion, criminal protection, and drug trafficking. He is currently incarcerated, serving a nine year sentence for money laundering in Spain. Marina Kalashova, who has been designated today, is a key part of Zakhariy Kalashov’s network. Kalashov communicates with Kalashova to pass messages on his behalf to his organisation.

Identifying Information:

Name: Zagaria, Carmine

DOB: 27 May 1968

POB: San Cipriano D’Aversa, Italy

Name: Zagaria, Antonio

DOB: 29 June 1962

POB: San Cipriano D’Aversa, Italy

Name: Zagaria, Pasquale

DOB: 5 January 1960

POB: San Cipriano D’Aversa, Italy

Name: Zagaria, Nicola

DOB: 10 October 1927

POB: San Cipriano D’Aversa, Italy

Entity: Inagawa-kai

Address: 7-8-4 Roppongi, Minato-ku, Tokyo, Japan           

Name: Kiyota, Jiro

AKA: Sin, Byon-Gyu

DOB: 1940               

POB: Japan

Name: Uchibori, Kazuo

AKA: Uchibori, Kazuya

DOB: 1952   

POB: Kawasaki, Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan

Name: Goldberg, Marina Samuilovna

AKA: Kalashov, Marina

AKA: Kalashova, Marina

Address: Burj Khalifa, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

DOB: 15 September 1979

ID: Passport 514763020 (Russia)


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