Thursday, October 29, 2020

Money laundering suspicions hover around 5 Kuwait companies related to US Army tenders

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The relevant departments of the Ministry of Interior and the US Contract Investigation Department are investigating the involvement of five local companies in suspicious money laundering activities through logistics services contracts related to US Army tenders, in addition to obtaining an estimate of labor needs from the Public Authority for Manpower and exploiting it, reports Al-Qabas daily.

Sources told the daily, the five companies had recently won a tender worth $140 million to provide services vehicles to US camps and provide drivers inside and outside the country, while the commercial registration data available at the Ministry of Commerce and Industry show this was done in violation of the conditions which prevented them from doing so.

The sources added that awarding tenders to these companies took place through those companies to circumvent the Kuwaiti and US laws in exchange for obtaining tenders, but there is information confirming that a person (of Asian nationality) based outside the country is financing the companies to win the tender and spend on purchases, and there is a possibility the source of financing is illegal since the prices submitted by companies in the tender are 30% lower than normal.

The sources pointed out that the suspicion that these companies signed and called for the investigation of the security authorities in Kuwait and America is to reach a formal partnership relationship between four of these companies, as the partners and managers are linked to establishment contracts or registration in the Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

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According to the sources, it is remarkable that the companies around which the money laundering activity is suspected, is concerned that their commercial competencies licensed by the Ministry of Commerce are infringing; one of them works in the field of ready-made clothes, the other in sanitary installations, and the third in contracting, in addition to another in general trade.

The contract being investigated is for the provision of vehicles of various types. The sources surprised those companies to obtain tenders for the supply of cars, in addition to obtaining licenses to provide employment for the US military, and all these works fall outside the scope of their specialty and work, as well as in violation of official licenses.

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