Allen Stanford stands accused of running an $8bn ponzi scheme involving fraudulent certificates of deposit, but the financier came out with all guns blazing in a recent interview at the office of his criminal defense lawyer.
Although the SEC has described his operation as a “massive, ongoing fraud” Stanford feels fundamentally misunderstood.
“The SEC far overreached and basically ruined a
multibillion-dollar company..Everybody got paid and everybody got made whole
until the SEC came in and shut everything down,” he said in the interview.
“The SEC came in and gestapo-ed my business, and I watched
$5 billion of my net worth disappear.”
“If the SEC had not come in and taken the actions they did,
and had the ripple effect they did around the world,
unequivocally yes, we would’ve survived,” Stanford said. “Now,
I don’t know. I don’t know where the business stands because
I’ve been locked out of my businesses, too.”
Stanford claims that his bank had liquidity problems like other financial institutions during the crisis..
“But Stanford International Bank didn’t have a fed-funds
window to go to for a bailout,” he said. “We were extra
liquid, with more than $2 billion on hand, but it turned out not
to be enough.”
Stanford has not been charged with criminal wrongdoing, however Stanford’s Antiguan receiver Nigel Hamilton-Smith expressed “little doubt” that the Antiguan branch was run as a ponzi scheme.
“I used to be one of the richest men in the world, who has
done nothing but work his butt off, and I’ve been turned into a
pariah,” Stanford said. “But I don’t feel sorry for myself.