Monday, March 18, 2019

Trump Backers Sought to Bury Cambridge Analytica So Deep No One Would Uncover Its Secrets

Cambridge Analytica, the now defunct company believed to be instrumental in the Brexit Leave campaign and the election of Donald J. Trump to the White House, is now before a British court.

The company, once owned by ultra-right billionaire, Robert Mercer, and directed by noneother than Trump aide, Steve Bannon, and Mercer's somewhat odd daughter, Rebekah, was tossed into court-ordered administration (receivership) when undercover videos revealed its scurrilous dealings. It seems there was more to its liquidation than a piffling scandal. It was thrown into administration to bury its darkest secrets and prevent people from looking into its conduct.

The High Court in London heard on Monday that Cambridge Analytica was up to its old tricks from beyond the grave—by surreptitiously trying to halt investigations that could expose allegedly nefarious tactics before the company was shut down for good. 
The company filed for the British equivalent of chapter 11 bankruptcy last year after secret recordings of its boss, Alexander Nix, emerged in which he claimed that Trump’s data gurus had carried out illicit election campaigns all over the world. The company was also accused of using up to 87 million clandestinely harvested Facebook profiles to create a state of the art voter database that helped Trump win election in 2016.
A lawyer representing a New York professor, who believes his private data was misused by the notorious campaign operatives, claims Cambridge Analytica’s data secrets are being shielded from justice and exposure by administrators in the pay of a shadow company set up by a band of executives linked to the Trump campaign veterans
The High Court heard that administrators had deliberately misled a judge during a previous hearing by obfuscating their financial links to Emerdata, a company which was set up by Nix, Rebekah Mercer, and other senior figures who were previously involved with Cambridge Analytica.
In Britain, court-appointed administrators are supposed to work independently on behalf of all creditors to take over running of the company, similar to chapter 11 bankruptcy in the U.S. But the legal team of David Carroll, an associate professor at Parsons School in New York who is fighting for access to the data compiled on him, claimed that the administrators of Cambridge Analytica has succumbed to undue influence. Emerdata appointed the administrator and subsequently committed to pay them up to $1 million in fees
The administrators, Vincent Green and Mark Newman of Crowe U.K. LLP, were accused of trying to liquidate the company before a full investigation into the company could be held.
“It is extremely unusual, in my submission, to have the fees of an administrator underwritten effectively by the people who may themselves be the principal focus of any subsequent investigation,” said Andreas Gledhill Q.C., the lawyer representing Carroll in court.
...“This needs to go to the official receiver and there needs to be a whole set of investigations—someone needs to crack the vault,” Ravi Naik, a lawyer for Carroll told The Daily Beast outside court. “Without this case being successful, there cannot be an investigation because the company will liquidate. This is the dying embers.” 
In documents submitted to the court, Gledhill claimed that Emerdata was due to pay the administrator up to £800,000 ($1 million) but had only handed over around £220,000 ($290,000) so far. 
“With their legal fees funded by Emerdata, the administrators have treated this as hostile litigation between themselves and Mr. Carroll, making their lack of independence abundantly clear,” Gledhill said.
...Rebekah and Jennifer Mercer, daughters of billionaire Trump donor Robert Mercer, are listed as directors of Emerdata. As is former Cambridge Analytica chairman Julian Wheatland, who is named on the list of people close to President Trump being probed by the House Judiciary Committee, alongside Nix, who resigned as a director of Emerdata on the same day that he was called back for further questioning by a committee in Britain’s House of Commons. Nix remains a shareholder. 
The court is expected to rule on the removal of Emerdata's token receiver in a few days.

Having practiced extensively in the field of insolvency and receivership, it is hard to believe this conflict by a court-appointed administrator. He functions as an officer of the court by virtue of that appointment and ought to be held to the strictest standards of transparency and accountability. This, to me, is astonishing.


Anonymous said...

"The company was also accused of using up to 87 million clandestinely harvested Facebook profiles to create a state of the art voter database that helped Trump win election in 2016."

Welcome to Oceania. 'Now This': they say it's a crime against democracy if a company uses Big Data to mine the collective will of the people and politicians use this information to craft a successful campaign.

Corporations don't think democracy is a real thing. They think the people are livestock and they are the Animal Farmers who own and run the Factory Farm.

But they are really the animals. Savages who rape and pillage the world.

They are like serial killers. Serial looters. They couldn't stop themselves if they wanted to. (And the thought never crosses their minds.) They will plunder MOAR and MOAR and MOAR from the system until they cause the whole goddamn thing to come crashing down around their ears.

It happens over and over and over again. (But not forever. All Good Things must come to an end.)

the salamander said...

.. 6 degrees of seperation ..

its disturbing to toss six contentious, fraudulent conniving law-breaking traitorous depraved clusterflucks on the table and easily add certain persons or organizations to more than one of those political, financial or criminal clusterflucks.. holy hell..

I can easily cherrypick 6 names or orgs.. and anyone can see the obvious.. OK lets see
- Jared Kushner a good example - he fits Russian Interference, also fits Saudi Arabia-Kashoggi & also Israel & Yemen, fits Money Laundering & Real Estate. A multimillionaire
- How about SNC - Lavalin ? They fit 'everything' - like Iraq, fit Trans Mountain Pipeline, Conservative Party, Liberal Party, just check their Lobbying Listings at just the federal level, almost every Ministry. Comtracts alone worth billions
- How about Steve Bannon? Whew! Cambridge Analytical, Trump Inc, Breitbart, fits White Nationalism. A multimillionaire
- Take Andrew Scheer, he fits oldstock White Nationalism, fits election fraud, fits Harper Government failure (F-35 & Fisheries) and Saudi War Wagons. A multimillionaire
- Then there's Trump, seemingly everythings 'fits', such as the Epstein Scandal, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Money Laundering & Real Estate, Israel. We know nothing of his wealth or his debt.. or how hysterical he could actually be
- Cambridge Analytical, what are they not ID'd as being involved in ?

This is just a quick sketch.. sample... Overall.. the corruption is stunningly integrated. Its not a reach to describe the most obvious as 'organized crime' - since that's exactly what it is..