Monday, February 25, 2008

How Real Investigative Reporting is Done

While The New York Times was wasting four reporters for six months investigating a non-story about John McCain that ultimately cast only the New York paper itself in a negative light, The TIMES OF LONDON was doing real work investigating and now revealing a stunning connection between British~Iraqi billionaire Nadhmi Auchiand and Democrat Presidential Candidate Barrack Obama.

The highly detailed and fact rich TIMES OF LONDON article, complete with time lines and charts, raises serious questions about "loans" of millions of dollars to Obama's campaign and Obama's already questionable purchase of a Chicago Mansion.

The headline story was just released moments ago on the TIMES OF LONDON website. It remains to be seen if the American media, which seems lovestruck with Obama jumps on the story. It will be equally fascinating to see how Hillary Clinton and John McCain react.

Here are some key portions of the story. Please be certain to
read the entire story. And, if you have contacts at the New York Times, suggest they study how real reporting is actually done.

A British-Iraqi billionaire lent millions of dollars to Barack Obama's fundraiser just weeks before an imprudent land deal that has returned to haunt the presidential contender, an investigation by The Times discloses.

The money transfer raises the question of whether funds from Nadhmi Auchi, one of Britain’s wealthiest men, helped Mr Obama buy his mock Georgian mansion in Chicago.

A company related to Mr Auchi, who has a conviction for corruption in France, registered the loan to Mr Obama's bagman Antoin "Tony" Rezko on May 23 2005. Mr Auchi says the loan, through the Panamanian company Fintrade Services SA, was for $3.5 million.

Three weeks later, Mr Obama bought a house on the city's South Side while Mr Rezko's wife bought the garden plot next door from the same seller on the same day, June 15.

Mr Obama says he never used Mrs Rezko's still-empty lot, which could only be accessed through his property. But he admits he paid his gardener to mow the lawn.

Mrs Rezko, whose husband was widely known to be under investigation at the time, went on to sell a 10-foot strip of her property to Mr Obama seven months later so he could enjoy a bigger garden.

Mr Obama now admits his involvement in this land deal was a “boneheaded mistake”.

Mrs Rezko’s purchase and sale of the land to Mr Obama raises many unanswered questions.

It is unclear how Mrs Rezko could have afforded the downpayment of $125,000 and a $500,000 mortgage for the original $625,000 purchase of the garden plot at 5050 South Greenwood Ave.

In a sworn statement a year later, Mrs Rezko said she got by on a salary of $37,000 and had $35,000 assets. Mr Rezko told a court he had "no income, negative cash flow, no liquid assets, no unencumbered assets [and] is significantly in arrears on many of his obligations."

The house-and-garden deal raised questions about whether Mr Rezko, a property developer and fast-food restauranteur, made it possible for the Obamas to purchase a mansion they could otherwise not afford.

Mrs Rezko paid the asking price for the garden but the Obamas bought the house for $1.65 million, - $300,000 less than the asking price. The sellers deny they offered the Obamas a discount on the house because the garden had fetched full price from Mrs Rezko.

The spotlight fell on Mr Rezko's ties to Mr Auchi last month when the Chicago businessman was thrown in jail for violating his bail terms by failing to declare a different $3.5 million loan from the British billionaire, made in April 2007. Prosecutors feared Mr Rezko, who travels widely in the Middle East, might flee to a country without an extradition treaty such as his birthplace of Syria.

Mr Auchi was convicted of corruption, given a suspended sentence and fined £1.4 million in France in 2003 for his part in the Elf affair, described as the biggest political and corporate scandal in post-war Europe. He, in a statement from his media lawyers, claims he is appealing against the sentence.

1 comment:

PM said...

It only proves, that he is more efficent then Jimmy carter in laying his legacy...

don't know what Obama will mark ? a new World order, or a new World war or something else...

What ever, he is highly efficent candidte for nobel peace prize... which had nominated hitler, then provided it to carter... and then to Arrafat.. and recently to algore