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Thursday, January 30, 2014

Who is Rıza Sarraf ...

AKA Reza Zarrab

The 29-year-old is accused of running a shady gold smuggling ring, bribing Turkish cabinet members and laundering money. AKA Reza Zarrab (he changed his name recently after becoming a Turkish citizen).

Sarraf reportedly ordered a 101-foot yacht to be built in his shipyards. Then allegedly came a $150,000, 
7-carat diamond ring and a $70,000 Rolex. 

The couple reportedly drove a BMW 7.60 ($360,000) and an Aston Martin ($489,000), along with a custom-made Rolls Royce ($1.3 million).Sarraf acquired two waterfront mansions on the Bosporous in Istanbul, an iconic location home to some of the country’s most expensive real estate. 

Sarraf’s two neighboring properties, built in Ottoman and Baroque styles, are connected via an underground tunnel. The mansions are worth between $26 million and $40 million.

He allegedly traded a ton of gold—literally—every day, and in 2012 his business allegedly traded $20 billion worth of gold. One of his main jobs was allegedly the transfer of 87 billion euros from Iran to Turkey through his companies. Because of international sanctions, when Turkey bought oil and natural gas from Iran, the money couldn’t be wired.

Sarraf allegedly handed out bribes to government officials on silver platters and in expensive suitcases. He allegedly bought Turkey’s former minister of economy, Zafer Çağlayan, a Patek Philippe 5010P tourbillon watch costing around $300,000.
Sarraf is behind bars, and the government has seized all of his assets (except those under Gündeş’ (wifes) name), even one of the racehorses.

Part 1- To be continued...

By - Joe Levin

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