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Guyanese Businessman Edul Ahmad in a Plea Deal with US Prosecutors

Federal Prosecutors and lawyers for Guyanese businessman, Edul Ahmad, who has been indicted in a $50 million dollar mortgage fraud scheme, have apparently reached a plea arrangement that will be made public next month.

Last year, Ahmad was arrested and removed from a Guyana-bound airplane on the tarmac at JFK Airport by the FBI and was indicted in connection with the massive fraud scheme.

A letter filed yesterday by Assistant U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, stated that “the parties have reached tentative agreement to a proposed pre-trial resolution” and requested a plea date for some time during the week of October 8th, 2012.

The embattled US-based Guyanese, Ed Ahmad, could lose a great deal of his assets if and when he pleads guilty.

The US prosecutors had applied for forfeiture orders, that could see the popular Guyanese Businessman give up a substantial financial sum, as against him serving jail time. Ahmad is hoping in the plea agreement, that the US takes the money and he gets to walk under supervised release. However, in the US system, the plea deal is not a guarantee of what the judge can or will impose. The Businessman had valuable real estate in the United States that was disposed of, including the West Indian Banquet Hall, known as the Chateau Royale. The Hall has been used for several PPP and Guyana Government events in New York.

The criminal forfeiture orders could have an effect on properties Ahmad may have acquired from the Jagdeo/PPP administration in Guyana too, if those are in the plea deal. Ahmad is unlikely to admit to his substantial holding in Guyana, including the property that once served as the headquarters for the ruling party newspaper, the Mirror. The US regards any property constituting or deriving from the proceeds of criminal offences to be subject to forfeiture. The properties do not have to be within the United States. In the infamous Tom Carroll visa scam, the US announced forfeiture orders against property on the West Demerara, but never moved to acquire the property.

The 43-year-old real estate dealer pointed out in court documents, and the Guyanese President at the time, acknowledged, that he and President Jagdeo are close friends. Ahmad sent 29 tons of material in containers to Jagdeo for the construction of the President’s seaside châteaux, in what is popularly known as Pradoville two.

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