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Jón Ásgeir’s amazing disappearing act!

As I wrote about a few days ago, a London judge has expressed doubts that old Jón Ásgeir Jóhannesson [ex-oligarch] has made a full disclosure of his assets, as he was ordered to do by the court.

The Glitnir resolution committee, which has brought charges against Jón Ásgeir in New York, claims it has evidence that JÁJ has transferred a large share of his assets to his wife, Ingibjörg Pálmadóttir.

The committee has requested that JÁJ provide them with a list of all the assets that were put in her name over the last three years; however, he has refused on the grounds that “he is not obliged to disclose that information,” according to a committee report.

The committee, however, presents evidence that seems to indicate that JÁJ is not being entirely upfront. It lists a bunch of examples, such as his claim that a Rolls Royce in his name was actually a birthday present to his wife and belongs to her [though his name is clearly on the papers], and that the Hotel 101, for which they are both listed, is actually hers exclusively and that their joint listing was a “mistake”.

[Clearly Jón Ásgeir is just as incompetent in keeping track of his assets as he was in running a bank.]

And speaking of assets — DV revealed a couple of days ago that JÁJ is actually on the payroll of 365 Media [publisher of Fréttablaðið] as a “consultant” and pockets a cool ISK 800,000 a month — about four times what a regular labourer makes working full time. Which might not be so bad if he himself his wife wasn’t the primary owner and chairman of the board of 365 Media.

Meanwhile, I have to say to Fréttablaðið’s credit that they are doing a pretty good job reporting on JÁJ’s, er, troubles, even at times leaning towards mild ridicule. However, just so everyone is clear, they almost always end their reports with this little clause:

Ingibjörg Pálmadóttir is Chairman of the Board of 365, which publishes Fréttablaðið.

Kind of like, wink wink, we’d like to tell you more … but we can’t.

Meanwhile, this is Halldór today:

Jón Ásgeir: “Hocus pocus, and the Courchevel ski chalet disappears into the magic hat…”
Onlookers: “Amazing.” “How does he do that?”

Finally, props to Halldór: I don’t recall him lampooning Davíð Oddsson once while he [Halldór] worked under him on Morgunblaðið, but he seems to have no qualms about doing just that with JÁJ. Which may or may not say something about Doddsson’s tyranny, or Fréttablaðið’s autonomy, or maybe something else entirely that we just don’t know about here at the IWR.

UPDATE!! Someone has just pointed out that Halldór did draw at least one cartoon of Davíd Oddsson while working at Morgunblaðið. This one was drawn three days after Doddsson took over as editor. I’m not sure if there were many more, though — it seemed to me that he was conspicuously absent from Halldór’s drawings after that.

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  • Simon Brooke July 14, 2010, 9:21 pm

    Is it just me, or…

    If JÁJ transferred assets to which he had dubious title to Ingibjörg Pálmadóttir in order to defraud the creditors of Glitnir, and she knew that he had done so (it’s hard to believe under those circumstances that she could be ignorant – unless she is a very foolish woman), isn’t she a party to the fraud?

    The more this goes on the more it becomes apparent that the Best Party’s policy of building a new prison is a necessary one – although whether there will be any room in it for foreigners after you’ve incarcerated the Icelandic mafia is another question.

    How are they getting on, by the way?

  • Alex July 14, 2010, 9:49 pm

    Considering that they are married, from a legal perspective, does it really matter who owns what? I am not a lawyer, but I was under the impression that the spouses have joint ownership..

    It would be good to know these things, *wink wink*..

  • The Fred from the forums July 15, 2010, 12:31 am

    In France and ten US states, yes: not necessarily elsewhere. I have no clue what the Icelandic law is.

  • andy July 15, 2010, 9:11 am

    Transfer of matrimonial assets and then deivorce (in the UK) is usually the way to hide an asset. Your only issue would be money laundering and proceeds of crime (UK) but you have to show intent…which might be difficult.

    Any overseas assets are at the mercy of UK / US courts. Iclandic assets are probably safe…until / unless JAJ incurs US / UK criminal penalties. Mind yu …like the big K, it will be hard to prove criminal intent unless they turn one of the Exec team.

  • tomas July 15, 2010, 11:30 am

    There’s this one from Halldor (don’t know if it counts as he’s leaving when he draws it) http://mbl.is/mm/img/tn/466/data/halldor/2010/04/01/01-04-10.jpg