Naturalised-Vincentian, Adrian Baron pleaded guilty and now faced up to five years in jail. (Internet photo)

Prime Minister Ralph Gonsalves has defended his decision to grant citizenship, more than a decade ago, to a Hungary-born man who has now been indicted in the United States as part of an alleged US$50 million fraud scheme.

Naturalised Vincentian Adrian Baron, 63, St. Vincent-born Linda Bullock, 57, along with Loyal Bank, an off-shore bank with offices in Budapest, Hungary and SVG; and Loyal Agency and Trust Corp. (“Loyal Agency”), an off-shore management company located in SVG have been indicted in New York.

Prosecutors say they are among six individuals and four corporate defendants that proposed that an undercover law enforcement agent purchase a Pablo Picasso painting to launder fraudulent profits from a stock manipulation scheme.

“Just by the way, Baron was granted citizenship after he was here eight or nine years,” Gonsalves, who has ministerial responsibilities for granting non-automatic citizenship, said when asked to comment about the indictment.

“I don’t want to — you know I never go into individual persons’ situation for citizenship, but you can rest assured that once citizenship is granted there would have been the requisite due diligence and everything, in the normal way.

“And as you are aware, under the law, if you are here for five years and you have made an important contribution, economic, social, plus you understand what the citizenship is, you can read and speak the English language with proficiency, that you don’t have any record.

“And then there is the alternative, the straight seven years naturalisation. So I put that information in the mix. In other words, dealt with in accordance with the law.”

Gonsalves said that Baron was taken into custody in Hungary on March 3.

Gonsalves said that his government understands that Baron would remain in custody for 60 days as he awaits the decision of the ministry of justice in Hungary regarding extradition to the United States.

The prime minister said his government does not know of any request for an extradition for anyone from SVG.

6 replies on “Hungarian indicted in NY has SVG citizenship”

  1. Thanks for posting Kenton!
    This information should create more questions than answers. Who is this guy? How did he get citizenship? Has he ever lived in Saint Vincent? Has he ever even been here? How and when did he get his citizenship?

    I suspect there is some sort of our “undercover Economic Citizenship” apparent here. How did this man and woman attain “the highest office in the land”? I wonder how many people have received the “not Economic Citizenship” since our PM has been in office. Was it the usual 30,000 USD, or something else? Where did that money, or whatever else go? If the opposition were awake, they should be broadcasting these questions to our PM and asking to see the evidence!

    We the people demand answers from our PM who publicly states he is against Economic Citizenship but has demonstrated something very different.

    1. Which part of the following don’t you understand? Or are you calling the PM is a liar?

      ““Just by the way, Baron was granted citizenship after he was here eight or nine years,” Gonsalves, who has ministerial responsibilities for granting non-automatic citizenship, said when asked to comment about the indictment.”

      Yes, the granting of such citizenship out of the PMO is highly improper. Citizenship should only be granted by a body independent of political interference, nepotism, patronage, quid pro quo etc.

      Dave Ames, who never lived here except for short periods of time was given citizenship on the basis of hs investment in our tourist industry, very much a case of the kind of economic citizenship the PM says he cannot support because our precious citizenship — one most of our people would renounce in a heartbeat to gain citizenship in the United States, Great Britain or Canada — is not for sale.

  2. I am totally against Economic citizenship but information like this really begs the question of WHAT IS/ARE THE DIFFERENCE/DIFFERENCES WITH NATURALIZATION (in this manner) and ECONOMIC CITIZENSHIP?

    The lines seem very blurred!!!!

  3. How come it’s always dodgy bankers, money launderers and ponzi scheme operators that Gonsalves gives citizenship to? Can there be any benefit to anyone?

    How about the SVG bank that was named as sending money to Spanish left wing politicians, sent by Maduro via one of our offshore banks?

    Why do we always have to have this solidarity with scum.

  4. Where is the transparency? It should be the responsibility of cabinet or the Senate if there is one to make a decision on citizenship. This is a recipe for skullduggery.

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