corruption and money laundering.
Sherpa and the Collective of Victims of Fraudulent and Criminal Practices in Lebanon have filed an ill-gotten gains lawsuit in relation to Lebanon’s suspected money laundering and corruption. The National Financial Prosecutor’s Office in France has been notified of the lawsuit.
The suspected money laundering involves “the outsourcing of significant resources from the autumn 2019 crisis onwards” and Lebanese officials purchasing French property under “suspicious circumstances.” Sherpa also says that since the mid-1990s, “corruption has been deeply entrenched in the functioning of the Lebanese state.” It pointed to Lebanon being ranked 149th in a list of 180 countries on Transparency International‘s 2020 corruption index.
Banking and financial intermediaries who promote the “systematic use of tax havens” should be kept accountable for their activities, which are “directly related to the humanitarian crisis that the Lebanese people are currently experiencing,” according to the group. Lebanon is known as a tax haven for its tax exemptions and high financial secrecy. It is ranked 26th out of 133 countries on the 2020 Financial Secrecy Index.
Between October of 2019 and 2021, the Lebanese Pound dropped in value by 80 per cent. The citizenry’s economic well-being was also significantly impacted by COVID-19.
The government resigned in August of last year, only months after taking office, following demonstrations over the explosion at Beirut’s shipping port, which killed hundreds of people, as well as allegations of corruption.
Sherpa has successfully filed grievances in the past. After Sherpa lodged a lawsuit against him, Rifaat al-Assad, Syria’s President’s uncle, was sentenced to four years in jail by the Paris Correctional Court. Syria’s funds were embezzled by Al-Assad, who used them to purchase land in France and other countries.