This week the events in Kyrgyzstan have alarmed the whole world. The only democratic military forces in the Central Asia were storming the residence of President Almazbek Atambayev for two days.
The violent conflict caused more than 50 injured people and eventually Atambayev defeated. He has been charged on five counts, including corruption, abuse of power and illicit enrichment.
Bringing the current event into consideration, we have prepared a list of former presidents accused of corruption.
Mohammed Suharto, the President of Indonesia
He ruled the country for 30 years – from 1968 to 1998. When he retired, his prosperity amounted to $15 billion: about 9 billion on the Austrian account, including real estate, works of art and jewelry. According to Transparency International the total amount of money appropriated by the Indonesian President during his post amounts to USD15 to 32 billion.
Ferdinand Marcos, the President of the Philippines
During his time in office, Marcos and his wife Imelda were daring enough to use money from the state treasury. The couple transferred several billion dollars to the accounts in Switzerland and the United States, and the first lady of the Philippines was accused of misuse of funds, extortion and theft. After the escape to the United States 3,000 pairs of shoes were found in Ms. Marcos’ closets. According to a lawyer assigned by the Philippines government with finding the money stolen, Ferdinand Marcos was unlikely to know exactly how much money he had, owning more than $10 billion at the moment of escape.
Viktor Yanukovych, the President of Ukraine
The fourth president of Ukraine has also become a legendary figure in the history of world corruption. Yanukovych lived in the Mezhyhiria villa worth hundreds of millions of dollars while having official salary of less than $700 a month in 2005 and $5,000 a month in 2006. At one time, the Transparency International report mentioned such interior elements as a residence chandelier worth $100,000 and decorative woodcarving which cost Yanukovych $2 million.
Experts estimate that the total amount of the loot reaches $12 billion. However, it has not been possible to find and return all these assets to Ukraine yet.
Ricardo Martinelli, the President of Panama
Together with his closest associates, he stole about $100 million from the citizens of the country, which he spent on buying villas and yachts. Over the five years of Martinelli’s term of office, from 2009 to 2014, more than 200 investigations were launched against the former president. They include trade of sensitive data, abuse of power, theft of state bills, bribery and wiretapping.
Several former ministers and civil servants of the Martinelli era have already been imprisoned, but the main accused is likely to be hiding in Miami.
Luis Inacio Lula da Silva, President of Brazil
In 2017, Lulu was recognized guilty of obtaining a luxurious apartment as a bribe from a construction company in the process of an investigation of a broader case known as the Car Wash. The case began with the disclosure of small money laundering, but eventually encompassed dozens of high-ranking politicians and the country’s wealthiest entrepreneurs. In January 2018, the Appeal Court of Brazil upheld the charges and extended the term from the original 9 and a half years to 12 years and 1 month. Now Lula da Silva is serving a sentence.
According to a lawyer assigned by the Philippines government with finding the money stolen, Ferdinand Marcos was unlikely to know exactly how much money he had, owning more than $10 billion at the moment of escape.