The purpose of this site is for information and a record of Gerry McCann's Blog Archives. As most people will appreciate GM deleted all past blogs from the official website. Hopefully this Archive will be helpful to anyone who is interested in Justice for Madeleine Beth McCann. Many Thanks, Pamalam

Note: This site does not belong to the McCanns. It belongs to Pamalam. If you wish to contact the McCanns directly, please use the contact/email details campaign@findmadeleine.com    

Kevin Halligen & The Fund - 2013*

MCCANN FILES HOME BACK TO GERRY MCCANNS BLOGS HOME PAGE PHOTOGRAPHS
NEWS REPORTS INDEX MCCANN PJ FILES NEWS MAY 2007
 

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly
U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly

 

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly sentences Halligen to 41 months in prison, but due to the 43 months he has already spent in custody, he is ordered to be deported from the USA immediately.

The Daily Mirror reports that Kate and Gerry McCann are now considering suing Halligen for allegedly fleecing their fund but this is not supported by any direct, or even indirect, quotes.

No reports have been forthcoming since.

Former CEO of London-Based Company Pleads Guilty to Federal Charge in $2.1 Million Fraud Scheme, 17 May 2013
Former CEO of London-Based Company Pleads Guilty to Federal Charge in $2.1 Million Fraud Scheme FBI Press Release

Former CEO of London-Based Company Pleads Guilty
to Federal Charge in $2.1 Million Fraud Scheme


Defendant Used Nearly $1.7 Million of Proceeds to Buy
Home in Great Falls, Virginia

-----------------

U.S. Attorney's Office
May 17, 2013
District of Columbia
(202) 514-7566

WASHINGTON—Kevin Richard Halligen, 51, an Irish citizen, pled guilty today to wire fraud, a federal charge stemming from a scheme in which he defrauded $2.1 million from a Netherlands-based commodities trading company, announced U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. and Valerie Parlave, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI's Washington Field Office.

Halligen pled guilty to one count of wire fraud, the first of two counts of an indictment that was returned against him in 2009 in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. As part of the plea agreement, the government agreed to dismiss the second count of the indictment, which was a money laundering charge stemming from the same scheme. The charge of wire fraud carries a statutory maximum of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000. Under federal sentencing guidelines, the parties agreed that Halligen's likely range would be a prison term of 33 to 41 months and a fine between $7,500 and $75,000.

Under the plea agreement, Halligen also must pay $2.1 million in restitution to the company that was the victim of his scheme.

The Honorable Colleen Kollar-Kotelly scheduled sentencing for June 27, 2013.

The wire fraud charge stems from actions taken by Halligen in 2006 and 2007, when he was the Chief Executive Officer of Red Defence International (RDI), a London-based security consulting and crisis management firm, which was hired by Trafigura Beheer BV (Trafigura), a Netherlands-based international commodities trading company, and its London-based law firm, Waterson Hicks. Trafigura hired RDI as a consultant in crisis management after two Trafigura executives were captured and imprisoned in the Ivory Coast while visiting there for the purpose of determining the company's next steps to address an environmental issue caused by the leakage of toxic waste material from Trafigura vessels in an Ivory Coast port.

While employed by Trafigura, Halligen claimed to have incurred $2.1 million in expenses related to pursuing a strategy in the United States aimed at convincing the United States to assist in securing the release of the Trafigura executives; in reality, Halligen spent the money on a home in Great Falls, Virginia, which was to be his personal residence, as well as other personal expenses, according to the government's evidence.

"This CEO exploited a company desperate to secure the release of its executives from a foreign prison," said U.S. Attorney Machen. "He conned the company out of $2 million he claimed would be used to support his efforts to rescue them, but instead used the money to buy a six-bedroom mansion. The extradition and imprisonment of this CEO demonstrates the strength of our resolve to prosecute corporate fraud."

"Instead of assisting in the release of two executives imprisoned in the Ivory Coast, Mr. Halligen utilized the money paid to him to support his own lavish lifestyle," said Assistant Director in Charge Parlave. "Together with prosecutors, the FBI will continue to pursue individuals who devise schemes to defraud companies of money for services never provided to them."

According to a statement of offense signed by the defendant as well as the government, at the request of Trafigura, Waterson Hicks hired RDI in October 2006 to help secure the release of two Trafigura executives who were arrested and detained in Abidjan, Ivory Coast. The arrests followed an environmental spill off the coast of Abidjan. Under a contract that took effect in October 2006, RDI was to provide security intelligence and public relations services related to Trafigura's presence in the Ivory Coast and to assist with facilitating the release of the Trafigura executives. Under the contract with RDI, Waterson Hicks paid RDI and then, in turn, the law firm was reimbursed by Trafigura.

During November 2006, after other efforts to secure the executives' release proved unsuccessful, Halligen suggested that the U.S. government should be involved with facilitating negotiations with the Ivory Coast. His stated strategy was to utilize his contacts in the United States to encourage Ivory Coast officials to release the executives. Halligen said the "American Strategy" would cost an additional $2.1 million, on top of the money RDI already was receiving.

The $2.1 million supposedly was to be used to pay expenses incurred by Halligen in the United States to hire consultants and lobbyists to influence officials in the United States on Trafigura's behalf. In December 2006, Halligen was informed that the law firm had received the $2.1 million from Trafigura. Then, in January 2007, Halligen told the law firm to wire $2.1 million from their bank account in London to his personal bank account in the United States.

Between November 2006 and January 2007, Halligen traveled to the United States on numerous occasions, claiming to have met with U.S. officials in Washington, D.C., allegedly in furtherance of the "American Strategy." While in Washington, D.C., he began dating a woman who resided in the area and subsequently became engaged to her.

Halligen gave his fianceé a $2 million budget to find a suitable house in which they would live after their marriage. Shortly thereafter, she found a six-bedroom, four-and-a-half-bathroom residence in Great Falls, Virginia. On January 11, 2007—the day after $2.1 million was wired to Halligen's personal bank account for the American strategy—Halligen wired nearly $1.7 million from his account to complete the purchase of the Great Falls residence.

None of the proceeds from the $2.1 million payment from Waterson Hicks to RDI were ever directed toward reimbursement of expenses related to the "American Strategy." In addition to spending nearly $1.7 million on the purchase of the Great Falls residence, the rest of the money was spent on other personal expenses.

The Trafigura executives ultimately were released in February 2007.

At the time of his indictment in November 2009, Halligen was no longer residing in the United States. On November 25, 2009, he was arrested at a hotel in Oxford, the United Kingdom, so that he could be extradited to the United States. At the time of his arrest, Halligen was using an alias. Subsequent to his arrest in the United Kingdom, Halligen litigated issues surrounding his extradition to the United States. He ultimately was extradited in December 2012.

Halligen was incarcerated in the United Kingdom from the date of his arrest in November 2009 until his extradition in December 2012. When he was presented for his initial appearance in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia, in December 2012, he was ordered to be held without bond and he has been incarcerated since that time. Halligen will continue to be incarcerated while he awaits his sentencing date.

In announcing the plea, U.S. Attorney Machen and Assistant Director in Charge Parlave commended the work of the special agents from the FBI's Washington Field Office who handled the case. They also expressed appreciation to those who worked on the case for the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including paralegals Donna Galindo, Tasha Harris, and Krishawn Graham. Finally, they commended the efforts of Assistant U.S. Attorneys Maia L. Miller and Matt Graves, who are prosecuting the case, and former Assistant U.S. Attorney Vasu Muthyala who investigated the matter.

Former D.C. security consultant Halligen pleads guilty in $2.1 million fraud case, 17 May 2013
Former D.C. security consultant Halligen pleads guilty in $2.1 million fraud case The Washington Post

By Kevin Sullivan, Friday, May 17, 7:44 PM

Kevin Richard Halligen, who persuaded lawyers, lobbyists and others in Washington's elite intelligence community that he was a former British spy and allegedly conned them out of millions, pleaded guilty Friday in D.C. federal court of defrauding former business associates out of $2.1 million.

"Was it your intent to defraud?" U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly asked Halligen.

"It was," replied Halligen, a former high-roller who once lived for months at a time in a suite at the Willard Hotel, but is now being held in a D.C. jail pending sentencing on June 27.

Halligen, 51, lived in Washington and worked as a "security consultant" from 2005 to November 2008, until he drained his bank accounts and fled, leaving behind a string of creditors from lawyers to limo drivers to housekeepers. He was arrested in Oxford, England, after a year on the run, and he was extradited to the U.S. in December to stand trial.

Halligen pleaded guilty Friday to defrauding Trafigura, an international company based in the Netherlands, that had hired him to help free two executives who had been arrested in Ivory Coast in 2006. The company paid Halligen about $12 million to provide "security, intelligence and public relations."

Court documents show that Trafigura gave Halligen an additional $2.1 million in January 2007 to "hire lobbyists and influence officials in the United States on Trafigura's behalf." The next day, Halligen used nearly $1.7 million of that money to buy a large home with a swimming pool in Great Falls.

Halligen "exploited a company desperate to secure the release of its executives from a foreign prison," said U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. in a statement. "He conned the company out of $2 million he claimed would be used to support his efforts to rescue them, but instead used the money to buy a six-bedroom mansion."

Kollar-Kotelly told Halligen that the fraud conviction carries a maximum of 20 years in prison, but that under federal sentencing guidelines he would likely serve no more than 41 months. She also said he could be fined up to $75,000.

Halligen has already been in jail for 42 months, since his November 2009 arrest in England. The U.S. Attorney's office said Halligen would be credited with time already served, which could satisfy his prison sentence.

Halligen, wearing a blue blazer, yellow tie and baggy brown pants, also agreed to pay restitution of $2.1 million to Trafigura. Federal public defender David Bos said Halligen had no assets, so he was not sure how or when Halligen could pay.

"He's clearly done the honorable thing by pleading guilty," said John Holmes, a retired British army general and former head of the British military's special forces who said Halligen conned him out of thousands of dollars. "However, there is still the outstanding question of where all his money has gone."

Halligen will also likely be deported, but it was unclear to where. The U.S. Attorney's office said Halligen is an Irish citizen, but in court Friday Halligen said he was born in Ireland but is a British citizen. Halligen told the judge he would leave the U.S. voluntarily.

The specific charges to which Halligen pleaded guilty are a small sliver of a wide array of civil lawsuits and allegations against him made by former friends and associates in more than 40 interviews with The Washington Post last year in Washington and London.

Owners of Washington restaurants remember him spending thousands on long, boozy days and evenings. He traveled everywhere in a chauffeured Lincoln Town Car.

His bank statements, obtained by The Post, show that clients were paying him hundreds of thousands of dollars, but he was spending the money just as fast. One restaurant owner said he and his staff called Halligen "James Bond," because of his stories of spy derring-do and his habit of tossing around huge amounts of cash. There is no evidence that Halligen ever worked as an intelligence agent.

Of all Halligen's excesses and deceptions, his former friends said, the most outrageous was his fake wedding. In April 2009, Halligen "married" his fiance, Maria Dybczak, a Commerce Department lawyer, at a showy ceremony at Georgetown's grand Evermay Estate before an elite crowd of more than 100 people.

What no one knew at the time is that the minister who pronounced Halligen and his bride man and wife was actually a professional actor from Arlington's Signature Theatre.

Friends said that shortly before the ceremony, Halligen told Dybczak that because he was an undercover agent, he couldn't sign any public documents, including a marriage license. So rather than cancel, they hired an actor and went ahead with the sham wedding.

Two of the guests that day later sued Halligen.

Mark Aspinall, a London lawyer who had been Halligen's connection to Trafigura, filed suit in federal court in Washington to recover money he had invested in Halligen's company, and a judge ordered Halligen to pay back $871,000.

Halligen was also sued in Fairfax County Circuit Court by a man who gave a toast at the Evermay ceremony: Andre Hollis, a former deputy assistant secretary of defense for counter-narcotics who once worked as legal counsel to the House of Representatives.

Hollis said in court papers that Halligen hired him as chief executive of his U.S. company, Oakley International, and that Hollis bought an ownership stake in the company that turned out to be worthless, because Halligen had drained the company's accounts. A judge ordered Halligen to pay Hollis more than $5.7 million in damages.

Halligen came to Washington from London, where a similar string of associates have accused him of conning them.

Kevin Halligen: Madeleine McCann parents may sue fraudster accused of £300,000 fund con, 18 May 2013
Kevin Halligen: Madeleine McCann parents may sue fraudster accused of £300,000 fund con Daily Mirror

By Chris Bucktin | 18 May 2013 00:00

It is understood that Kate and Gerry McCann are now considering suing Halligen for allegedly fleecing their fund

Fraudster: Kevin Halligen

A dodgy "detective" accused of conning £300,000 from the Madeleine McCann fund is being kicked out of the US – and could now face justice in Britain.

Kevin Halligen was extradited to America five months ago over claims he cheated former business partners out of £1.3million.

Yesterday the 51-year-old admitted wire fraud in a deal with prosecutors in Washington DC.

He will be freed from jail next month, due to time he has already served, then deported.

It is understood that Kate and Gerry McCann are now considering suing Halligen for allegedly fleecing their fund.

He could also be arrested if the couple make a formal complaint.

In 2008, Halligen's company Oakley International signed a £500,000 deal to help find missing Madeleine.

But the Surrey-based Irishman's contract was terminated early without full payment after fund organisers decided he had failed to fulfil the agreement.

He was then arrested in Oxford in November 2009 after fleeing Washington when the US government began seeking an indictment over the wire fraud.

A source said: "Halligen would con his own grandmother he is that ruthless.

"The fact he gave the McCanns false hope and took so much money is unforgivable."

In Washington federal court yesterday Halligen admitted persuading the Dutch company Trafigura to send £1.3million to his personal account in 2006.

Halligen told the court he bought a luxury six-bedroom house with some of the money.

It was supposed to be used to help free two of the company's executives who were being held in the Ivory Coast on charges of dumping toxic waste.

Halligen will be sentenced on June 27 and, under the deal, freed and deported.

Sleazy secrets and the American Dream of Dublin born spy Kevin Richard Halligen, 25 May 2013
Sleazy secrets and the American Dream of Dublin born spy Kevin Richard Halligen Irish Central (US)

By Tom Deignan
Posted on Saturday, May 25, 2013 at 08:16 AM

Kevin Richard Halligen
Kevin Richard Halligen

The dapper British spy living a life of luxury in the Washington, D.C. area had a secret.

That's no surprise. Such a worldly fellow would surely have built up a few secrets while trotting the globe.

His name was Kevin Richard Halligen and, among other projects, he was offered $500,000 to help the family of Madeleine McCann, the English girl who went missing in Portugal a few years back.

Halligen "stayed in a Willard Hotel suite for months at a time and drank the days away at pricey Georgetown restaurants," a 2011 Washington Post article noted. "He traveled everywhere in a chauffeur-driven Lincoln Town Car."

Ah, but there was still that secret. Kevin Richard Halligen, the fellow with (as the Post put it) "amazing ease and a perfect British accent" was actually born in Dublin in 1961.

For all of the lies Halligen told – including to his own wife as well as to the distraught McCann family – if anyone had simply looked at his passport they'd have seen he was a Dubliner.

It turns out Halligen had actually never really served as a spy and had very few contacts in the global intelligence community. But there was one thing he was very good at --spending other people's money.

Last week, it all finally caught up with Halligen. In a Washington, D.C. courtroom, U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly asked Halligen if it was his intent, all along, to defraud his victims.

Halligen said, "It was."

Halligen pled guilty to conning one London-based business out of over $2 million, though the actual amount of money he swindled over the years is much higher. Halligen is expected to be sentenced on June 27.

Halligen turned out to be a striver who concealed key facts about his past – in fact, invented a new persona for himself – so that he could live a lavish lifestyle, even if that lifestyle was funded through devious means. In the end, it all came crashing down.

If that sounds familiar, you may have seen the same story unfold this past week in a movie theater. That pretty much sums up the life of Jay Gatsby, the doomed main character in the new 3D movie of F. Scott Fitzgerald's American literary classic.

At least Gatsby did it for love. Halligen, on the other hand, seems to have had no such emotions.

How else do you explain taking nearly $500,000 from the McCann family? Halligen was supposed to use his vast international contacts to help track down the little girl. He never got around to it.

If there is any good news here, at least the McCann family is considering additional charges against Halligen, who is not expected to spend any more time in a U.S. jail since he's already served a number of years while awaiting trial. He will be sent back to England next month, where more troubles await him.

"It is understood that Kate and Gerry McCann are now considering suing Halligen for allegedly fleecing their fund. He could also be arrested if the couple make a formal complaint," the Mirror newspaper reported this week.

Halligen may represent a sleazy version of the Gatsby-esque American Dream/Nightmare. But he also represents a sad reality about America and its open borders.

"That's what we get for letting all these damn foreigners in," many say, when yet another crime is committed in the U.S. by those born abroad, whether that crime is financial theft or murder and mayhem at a big city marathon.

As Ayaan Hirsi Ali asked soberly in The Wall Street Journal this week, "It is reasonable to ask yourself: How many more young men like Tamerlan and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev are already living a double life in America, ready to take up arms for the cause of political Islam?"

It is reasonable to ask this. So long as we realize that Irishmen with posh British accents also commit rather disgusting crimes.

And so long as we acknowledge the vast contributions that millions of anonymous, law-abiding immigrants and their children make each day, in their own humble pursuit of the American Dream.

Fake British spy scheduled for Thursday sentencing, 27 June 2013
Fake British spy scheduled for Thursday sentencing The Washington Post

By Julie Zauzmer, Updated: Thursday, June 27, 11:00 AM

Kevin Richard Halligen, who made millions by fraudulently claiming to be a British spy, is scheduled to be sentenced Thursday morning in D.C. federal court.

From 2005 to 2008, Halligen lived a lavish lifestyle in Washington, where he offered high-priced services as a security consultant by falsely claiming a background in intelligence. His life of luxury and boasts of involvement in international intrigue crumbled when many of the prominent Washington personalities who had trusted him started charging him with misusing their money. Halligen fled to the United Kingdom but eventually was apprehended and extradited. He pleaded guilty to a fraud charge in May.

Halligen, 51, has spent 43 months behind bars in England and the U.S. — while awaiting extradition and then again while awaiting sentencing — longer than the 33 to 41 months that federal sentencing guidelines recommend for his crime. Already, public defender David Bos wrote for the defendant, "Mr. Halligen has been punished far beyond what is just."

Prosecutors agreed in their own sentencing memo that Halligen should not be sentenced to additional time above the guidelines. The prosecution and the defense asked U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly in their sentencing memos to order Halligen to be deported immediately rather than sentencing him to additional prison time.

The case stems from Halligen's contract with Trafigura, a company based in the Netherlands that paid him nearly $12 million in less than a year to help free two of its executives who had been arrested in Ivory Coast. Rather than use the money to influence American power players to help Trafigura's cause as promised, prosecutors said, Halligen took a $2.1 million payment and bought a $1.6 million house in cash the next day.

The rest of the money went to buy two purebred dogs and help pay for an over-the-top wedding that was perhaps the most outrageous chapter of Halligen's tale.

After wooing an American attorney, Halligen invited about 100 guests to their wedding at the Evermay estate in Georgetown, where the happy couple treated their guests to lamb, lobster and a fireworks show.

But the minister was actually an actor — and Halligen already had a wife in England. He told his would-be bride a few days before the ceremony that he could not sign public documents because of his role as a spy; all of the guests were left in the dark.

In addition to the Trafigura case in criminal court, several former associates have sued Halligen for similar alleged frauds in civil courts in the United States and the United Kingdom.

"The defendant's theft was an act of unmitigated greed," prosecutors wrote. "This theft was committed by a man who had earned more in a year's time than most will earn in a lifetime. Despite this windfall, the defendant decided to steal. There is no excuse or context for his decision: Defendant saw a criminal opportunity, and greed, not need, drove him to take advantage of the opportunity."

----------------
 

Update 1:

Fake British spy ordered to leave country "expeditiously" The Washington Post

By Julie Zauzmer, Updated: Thursday, June 27, 4:04 PM

Kevin Richard Halligen, who made millions by fraudulently claiming to be a British spy, was ordered to leave the U.S. "expeditiously" by a federal judge Thursday morning.

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly sentenced Halligen to 41 months of prison time, but because he will get credit for the 43 months he has already spent behind bars, he is likely to be deported immediately.

From 2005 to 2008, Halligen lived a lavish lifestyle in Washington, where he offered high-priced services as a security consultant by falsely claiming a background in intelligence. His life of luxury and boasts of involvement in international intrigue crumbled when many of the prominent Washington personalities who had trusted him started charging him with misusing their money. Halligen fled to the United Kingdom but eventually was apprehended and extradited. He pleaded guilty to a fraud charge in May.

Halligen, 51, has spent 43 months behind bars in England and the U.S. — while awaiting extradition and then again while awaiting sentencing. Kollar-Kotelly sentenced him to the maximum recommended under federal sentencing guidelines.

The case stems from Halligen's contract with Trafigura, a company based in the Netherlands that paid him nearly $12 million in less than a year to help free two of its executives who had been arrested in Ivory Coast. Rather than use the money to influence American power players to help Trafigura's cause as promised, prosecutors said, Halligen took a $2.1 million payment and bought a $1.6 million house in cash the next day.

The rest of the money went to buy two purebred dogs and help pay for an over-the-top wedding that was perhaps the most outrageous chapter of Halligen's tale.

After wooing an American attorney, Halligen invited about 100 guests to their wedding at the Evermay estate in Georgetown, where the happy couple treated their guests to lamb, lobster and a fireworks show.

But the minister was actually an actor — and Halligen already had a wife in England. He told his would-be bride a few days before the ceremony that he could not sign public documents because of his role as a spy; all of the guests were left in the dark.

In addition to the Trafigura case in criminal court, several former associates have sued Halligen for similar alleged frauds in civil courts in the United States and the United Kingdom.

"The defendant's theft was an act of unmitigated greed," prosecutors wrote. "This theft was committed by a man who had earned more in a year's time than most will earn in a lifetime. Despite this windfall, the defendant decided to steal. There is no excuse or context for his decision: Defendant saw a criminal opportunity, and greed, not need, drove him to take advantage of the opportunity."

--------------------

Update 2:

Fake British spy ordered to leave country "expeditiously" The Washington Post

By Julie Zauzmer, Updated: Thursday, June 27, 5:17 PM

Kevin Richard Halligen, who made millions by fraudulently claiming to be a British spy, was ordered to leave the U.S. "expeditiously" by a federal judge Thursday morning.

U.S. District Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly sentenced Halligen to 41 months of prison time, but because he will get credit for the 43 months he has already spent behind bars, he is likely to be deported immediately.

(Courtesy) - Kevin Richard Halligen
(Courtesy) - Kevin Richard Halligen

Halligen must also pay $2.1 million in restitution to the firm he pleaded guilty to defrauding.

From 2005 to 2008, Halligen lived a lavish lifestyle in Washington, where he offered high-priced services as a security consultant by falsely claiming a background in intelligence. His life of luxury and boasts of involvement in international intrigue crumbled when many of the prominent Washington personalities who had trusted him started charging him with misusing their money.

Halligen fled to the United Kingdom but eventually was apprehended and extradited. He pleaded guilty to one count of wire fraud in May.

Halligen, 51, has been in prison since November 2009 in England and the U.S. — while awaiting extradition and then again while awaiting his guilty plea and sentencing. Kollar-Kotelly sentenced him to the maximum time recommended under federal sentencing guidelines.

The case stems from Halligen's contract with Trafigura, a company based in the Netherlands that paid him nearly $12 million in less than a year to help free two of its executives who had been arrested in Ivory Coast.

"The victim in this case was in­cred­ibly vulnerable, a fact that the defendant capitalized on," Assistant U.S. Attorney Maia Miller said at the sentencing hearing. "This company was in a highly vulnerable state and would have spent anything."

Rather than use the money to influence American power players to help Trafigura's cause as promised, Miller said, Halligen took a $2.1 million payment and bought a $1.6 million house in Great Falls in cash the next day.

The rest of the money went to buy two purebred dogs and help pay for an opulent wedding that was perhaps the most stunning chapter of Halligen's tale.

After wooing an American attorney, Halligen invited about 100 guests to their wedding at the Evermay estate in Georgetown, where the happy couple treated their guests to lamb, lobster and a fireworks show.

But the minister was actually an actor — and Halligen, a dual citizen of Ireland and the United Kingdom, already had a wife in England. He told his would-be bride a few days before the ceremony that he could not sign public documents because of his role as a spy; all of the guests were left in the dark.

Halligen said at his sentencing that he takes "full responsibility" for his actions but offered no words of remorse. He said that though he misused the $2.1 million payment, the rest of the money did fund more than 30 contractors whom he said he employed to work on Trafigura's case.

"I want to make it clear I was not sitting on a little fortune of my own $12 million," he said. His message to the judge was simply, "I'm in your hands."

He was represented by a public defender, and Kollar-Kotelly found that he has almost no financial assets to pay the mandatory restitution that he owes. He sold the Great Falls house in 2008.

In addition to the Trafigura case in criminal court, several former associates have sued Halligen for similar alleged frauds in civil courts in the United States and the United Kingdom.

Miller, the prosecutor, pointed out that Halligen had no financial need to motivate his theft. "The motivation behind this fraud is greed at an astonishing magnitude," she said.

Sham spy who paid for fake wedding with stolen millions is jailed, 27 June 2013
Sham spy who paid for fake wedding with stolen millions is jailed The Times
Kevin Halligen has also been accused of stealing from a fund set up to find Madeleine McCann - Madeleine Fund/PA
Kevin Halligen has also been accused of stealing from a fund set up to find Madeleine McCann Madeleine Fund/PA

David Taylor US Editor
Last updated at 6:45PM, June 27 2013

A British conman who made millions claiming to be a well-connected former intelligence officer and staged a sham society wedding in Washington DC presided over by a fake priest was finally brought to justice today.

Kevin Richard Halligen, who has also been accused of taking money from the fund set up to hunt for the abducted toddler Madeleine McCann, was sentenced to 41 months in jail after pleading guilty to a single count of wire fraud involving a payment of $1.2m, which he has been ordered to repay.

[Full article available on subscription]

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British spy claim conman jailed The Times (paper edition)

Friday June 28 2013

A British conman who claimed to be a well-connected former intelligence officer, staged a sham society wedding in Washington DC and made millions from a "pattern of fraud and deceit" has been jailed (David Taylor writes).

Kevin Halligen, who has also been accused of taking money from the fund set up to hunt for the abducted girl Madeleine McCann, was sentenced to 41 months in prison at the US District Court after pleading guilty to a single count of wire fraud involving a payment of $2.1m from the Dutch company Trafigura, which he has been ordered to repay. His deceit drew in some of the most influential people in the US capital's security world, the court heard.

Halligen, 51, has already served 43 months in jail in Britain and the US after an extradition fight since his arrest in 2009. He will be deported in the coming weeks.

Irish conman to be deported over $2m fraud, 01 July 2013
Irish conman to be deported over $2m fraud Irish Examiner

Monday, July 01, 2013

An Irish conman who penetrated the inner circles of Washington DC society is to be deported from the US immediately, after being sentenced to more than time served for a $2m fraud.

Dollars

By John Breslin

A judge has ordered Kevin Richard Halligen to be deported, likely to Ireland as US officials are working off an Irish passport, though the man himself insists he is an Englishman.

If sent to Britain, he could find himself being questioned over vast sums of money handed to him by a fund set up to search for Madeleine McCann and for which little work appeared to be done.

Halligen, from a working class south Dublin family who spoke with a high-class English accent and told people he was a spy, pleaded guilty last month to one count of fraud, stealing $2.1m (€1.6m) from a Dutch firm that hired him to help release two missing executives.

It was only a fraction of the $12m total Halligen's firm was paid to find the pair, employees of Trafigura, whose executives had been taken captive in the Ivory Coast after they travelled to the country in response to a tanker spill off the coast.

Instead of using the money to grease the wheels of the Capitol as promised, the 51-year-old within days bought a $1.6m house for himself and his fiancée in Crystal Falls, Virginia, outside Washington.

In court on Thursday, Halligen spoke publicly for the first time since his late-2009 arrest in Britain, where he landed ahead of being charged in a Washington DC federal court.

Appealing for leniency, Halligen said at his sentencing he takes "full responsibility" for his actions.

He said although he misused the $2.1m payment, the rest of the money did fund more than 30 contractors whom he said he hired to work on Trafigura's case.

"I want to make it clear I was not sitting on a little fortune of my own $12m," he said, telling Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly: "I'm in your hands."

While prosecutors wanted a stiffer sentence, partly because Halligen was found in a civil court of stiffing business associates of $7m, Judge Kollar-Kotelly sentenced him to the maximum 41 months under federal sentencing guidelines.

Because he has been in prison for a total 43 months in Britain fighting extradition and in the US ahead of sentencing, Halligen is essentially a free man.

But the judge made clear she wants Halligen out of the US immediately. Halligen did not disagree and asked to be deported as soon as possible.

Halligen has also been ordered to pay $2.1m in restitution but has pleaded poverty, claiming he has no assets or cash.

Halligen was known in the top restaurants — in one he spent many long days, from 11am to 4pm, drinking the most expensive wine and constantly smoking cigarettes. In another he was known as James Bond for constantly dropping hints of his clandestine life as a spy.

One friend, later a senior official in the Obama administration, who admits thoroughly enjoying many Martini-filled hours with Halligen, described how he mentioned his intelligence newsletter to the Irishman, warning it would cost him $15,000 for a subscription.

"He wrote a cheque right there at the table for $20,000," Noel Koch, a Washington insider since the Nixon era, told the Washington Post.

Supporters of the Madeleine McCann fund believe some of the £300,000 (€350,000) funnelled to Halligen after he was hired to help find the girl paid for those boozy days in DC.

Associates who worked on the McCann case cannot recall Halligen coming up with any idea of note, citing one in which he proposed hiring a man dressed as a priest to go angling for confessions on a pub crawl around the bars of the resort where she disappeared.

With thanks to Nigel at McCann Files

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