Obama Fundraiser Charged in $290 Million Fraud

Hassan Nemazee defrauded Bank of America, Citigroup, HSBC

Monday, Sep 21, 2009  |  Updated 8:20 PM EDT
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Hassan Nemazee has been charged with engineering a $290 million fraud scheme.

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Top Democratic fund-raiser Hassan Nemazee was charged Monday with engineering a $290 million fraud scheme that swindled money from finance juggernauts Bank of America, HSBC and Citigroup, U.S. officials said.

Nemazee was arrested Aug. 23 in New Jersey for the charges relating to the Citigroup fraud. The new charges -- and affiliations to the Bank of America and HSBC schemes -- mean that Nemazee, 59, could face 30 years in prison and millions of dollars in fines.

"For more than 10 years, Hassan Nemazee projected the illusion of wealth, stealing more than $290 million so that he could lead a lavish lifestyle and play the part of heavyweight political fundraiser," U.S. Attorney Prett Bharara said in a statement.

Nemazee, the head of a private equity firm, donates over $100,000 annually to Democratic political candidates, Reuters reported. He was one of Obama's biggest campaign contributors.

Read more: Reuters

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