An ex-Goldman Sachs banker convicted of money laundering has been ordered to pay $9M
- An ex-Goldman Sachs investment banker who was convicted of money laundering in 2013 has been issued a confiscation order for £7.3 million, or $9 million.
- Ellias Nimoh Preko, who helped funnel millions of dollars for a former state governor in Nigeria, must make the payment within three months or serve a 10-year prison sentence.
- Preko dealt with West African clients at Goldman but left in 2001.
Ellias Nimoh Preko, a former Goldman Sachs investment banker convicted of money laundering, has been slapped with a confiscation order demanding that he pay £7.3 million, or $9 million.
Preko was sentenced to 4 1/2 years in prison in 2013 for helping James Ibori, the former governor of Nigeria's Delta state, funnel millions of dollars, the UK's National Crime Agency said. A Southwark Crown Court judge ruled this week that Preko must make the payment within three months or serve a 10-year prison sentence, the agency said.
The Ghanaian banker and Harvard graduate dealt with West African clients at Goldman. The bank severed ties with Ibori and other African clients in 2001 over suspicions about their activities, the NCA said. Preko subsequently left Goldman, signed up Ibori as a client, and established corporate vehicles for him that received $3.9 million in funds stolen from Delta, the NCA said.
Goldman is not accused of wrongdoing, as the crimes took place after Preko left the firm. Preko attempted to open accounts for Ibori while working there, but they weren't authorized, according to Reuters.
"The judge's findings concerning Ellias Preko relate to activities years after his departure from Goldman Sachs," the bank told Markets Insider in an email.
Tom Wainwright, a barrister who represented Preko as recently as 2017, told Markets Insider that he was unable to comment on this case as he had previously represented Mr Preko and was currently involved in related cases.
"Professional enablers such as Ellias Preko, who use their legitimate position within the finance industry to conceal the illicit funds of criminals and corrupt elites, are the lynchpin of the billions of dollars laundered through the UK each year," Kim Kitney, the head of financial investigations for the NCA, said in a statement.
"Pursuing, prosecuting, and making them pay is a priority for the NCA and we will continue to target these corrupt individuals to drive illicit finance out of the UK," she added.
Ibori is serving a 13-year jail sentence for fraud and money laundering, Reuters said.
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