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Wednesday, April 23 2014 @ 04:43 PM EDT

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The 'secret' deal to buy Anne Darwin's flat...

Expat Tales The Daily Mail - The 'secret' deal to buy Anne Darwin's flat, questions over a £700,000 windfall and why she might have gone to Panama. Anne Darwin's luxury apartment in Panama City was bought by a "shell" company – a common practice for those wishing to conceal their identities. The well-appointed two-bedroom flat has a pretty terrace balcony with views across the city, air-conditioning and a 24-hour concierge. But the unusual manner of its purchase will raise eyebrows with investigators. It was bought for a knock-down price of £30,000 ($60,000) on June 11, last year, by a company called Jaguar Properties Corporation, which was formed on August 12, 2005. Documents filed in the public records office do not reveal any names associated with the company, and a legal firm called Gray and Company – which specialises in arranging visa and property purchases for ex-pats, mostly American – is listed as carrying out the purchase. (more)
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The Darwin Awards Take On A Whole New Meaning in Panama

Expat Tales

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Anne Darwin, the wife of the supposedly deceased John Darwin, has apparently departed Panama. Sources say she flew out last night and should be arriving in London any time now. If she actually does return to the UK then she's probably going to be arrested on the spot when she lands. It's now been confirmed that she and her husband John have been living in apartment 4B in the P.H. Riazol building in the Los Angeles neighborhood of Panama City since at least July of 2007. Any pretense of not knowing what was going on is now blown out of the water. (more)

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No one has been extradited from Panama yet

Expat Tales By Nick Allen for the Telegraph.co.uk - Britain has an extradition treaty with Panama dating back to 1907 but it appears never to have been used successfully. A Home Office spokesman said: "Our records do not show any extraditions under this treaty." Legal experts in Panama also claim that if the UK did try to extradite Anne Darwin, who denies any wrongdoing, the process would probably drag on for months and could be blocked by the country's Supreme Court. A senior lawyer in Panama said: "The case would be decided by nine magistrates on the Supreme Court and would have to be approved by a majority. (more)
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John Darwin disappearance: the facts so far

Expat Tales Telegraph.co.uk - Why did John Darwin disappear? Mr Darwin says he cannot remember anything since 2000. Detectives are investigating whether he was running away from debt and are examining accounts and details of his property portfolio in the UK. They are also investigating reports that suggested he had been in contact with a number of people in the United States and may have had an "internet lover". Cleveland Police sources have said they uncovered emails in Mr Darwin's computer, when he disappeared in 2002, to and from women in the US. How could he have 'faked his death'? Coastguards said they were suspicious of the circumstances of his disappearance on a day when the sea was still. (more)
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Neighbour 'met Darwin in Panama'

Expat Tales BBC News - Neighbour's claims "Missing" canoeist John Darwin arrived in Panama in July, a neighbour who says she met him has told the BBC. Patricia Centella de Lopez said he told her that he and his wife Anne planned to live in her apartment block for a year while they looked for a farm. Mr Darwin is being held on suspicion of fraud following his reappearance after apparently dying at sea in 2002. Press agency reports say Anne Darwin flew out of Panama on Wednesday night, but her destination is not yet known. (more)
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Darwin sons' 'want no contact'

Expat Tales The Guardian - The devastated sons of back-from-the-dead canoeist John Darwin said they wanted "no further contact" with their parents, after it emerged they could have kept them in the dark about their father's bogus disappearance five years ago. John Darwin was reported missing in 2002 after he was feared drowned at sea in his canoe, and was later certified dead at an inquest. But just days ago he walked into a police station saying he was suffering from amnesia and could not recall anything since he was reported missing in the sea close to his home. He is being questioned by North East detectives on suspicion of fraud in his home area of Cleveland. (more)
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John Darwin's sons say they were 'victims of a scam'

Expat Tales Sophie Tedmanson - The Times Online - The children of ‘back from the dead' canoeist John Darwin have expressed their anger and confusion at finding out they may have been duped by their parents, who were photographed together in Panama last year when their father was thought to be dead. Anthony and Mark Darwin said they were shocked at the revelation, after their mother, Anne, confessed to reporters she had known that John, declared dead after disappearing on a canoeing trip in 2002, was alive. “In the short space of time following our Dad’s appearance in London on Saturday, we have gone through a rollercoaster of emotion,” Anthony 29, and Mark, 31, said in a statement. (more)
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Canoeist probe 'began months ago'

Expat Tales BBC News - The wreckage of John Darwin's canoe was found in March 2002. Police conference - Detectives began reinvestigating the disappearance of canoeist John Darwin three months ago, it has been revealed. The 57-year-old went missing while canoeing off the coast of Hartlepool in March 2002 and was presumed to be dead. But he walked into a police station at the weekend, claiming to remember nothing since 2000. Cleveland Police, who have arrested Mr Darwin on suspicion of fraud, said new information caused them to reopen the case in September. He is now being driven from Basingstoke police station to be interviewed by detectives in Teesside. Det Supt Tony Hutchinson said: "There was some information which was reported to us three months ago to suggest that perhaps there was something suspicious with regards to his disappearance, and as a result of that information we then began to conduct some inquiries on a financial basis. (more)
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John Darwin in Panama - Now Under Arrest in England

Expat Tales

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Yeah, that's about what I figured. I learned this morning that the "Missing Canoeist" John Darwin has been arrested by authorities in London and charged with fraud. His wife, Anne Cathrine Darwin, is currently telling her story to print media journalists from England. They have her hidden away somewhere in Panama and are getting their "exclusive" story. So, as expected, this entire gig melts down to just another run-of-the-mill insurance fraud case, with the interesting twist of the guy who faked his death in a supposed boating accident. Meanwhile, there's still plenty for the rest of us journalists to do in ripping apart their apparently manufactured story. (more)

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Wilson? Is That You? I thought you were dead...

Expat Tales

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - Name that movie - "I always knew you were alive, I knew it. Everybody said that I had to let you go. I love you. You're the love of my life." That was Helen Hunt playing the part of Kelly Frears "Castaway." The response from Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks) - "I love you too, Kelly. More than you'll ever know." Here in Panama we now have a real life version of "Castaway," and playing the part of the wife who was left behind is Anne Darwin. Try to put yourself in her shoes for a just a minute. Her husband John Darwin was reported missing in March 2002 and eventually declared dead thirteen months later as the result of a boating accident. So, Anne did what any reasonable person would do - cash the life insurance check and move on. (more)

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FECE Checks Were Faked and Forged

Corruption Panama America - Those implicated in the embezzlement of public funds from the Fund for Fairness and Quality in Education (FECE) in San Miguelito could face new charges for the supposed falsification of more than 238 checks. So far authorities have only talked about the forging of the signatures of Betzy Guzmán and Yoira Perea, the ex-Director and Sub-Director of the FECE. But, in the declaration of the Ex-Director of the FECE Augusto Garcia, he indicates that the manager of the Banco Nacional in San Miguelito, Norman Vanegas, said that those checks were not printed by the bank. According to Vanegas, the number appearing on at least 14 of the checks do not correspond with checks printed by the organization. However, the Nations Comptroller Carlos Vallarino said that the stolen checks were kept on shelves since 2003, according to an audit. So far 16 days have gone by since this scandal broke but still nothing is known about the whereabouts of the primary suspect implicated in the case, Joaquina Gallardo, the ex-accountant of the FECE.
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Six Kilos of Heroin Seized

Crime & Punishment Critica - Units of the Police Directorate of Intelligence and Investigation (DIIP) seized six kilos of heroin, found in a residence located on Calle Primera of the El Crisol neighborhood. Officers found the drugs hidden in boots with false bottoms, and the boxes of shoes were hidden in the ceiling of the house. One person was arrested as a suspect in the case, who was taken to the police station in Ancon where he remains in custody while investigations continue. (Editor's Comment: Heroin is worth more than $100,000 per kilo on the street in the US, much more than cocaine.)
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So Far This Year 56 Tons of Cocaine Seized

Crime & Punishment By Elio Núñez for El Siglo - Drug traffickers fail to perceive income from the more than 56 tons of drugs which have been seized so far this year in Panama by the different police and security organizations. And it is that the narcotics traffickers usually receive in ticket suitcases full a money that she has to arrive at the supplier. Traffickers dream of getting paid in suitcases full of cash when they deliver the goods. The street value of a kilo of cocaine is as high as $41,000 in some cities in the United States. That is to say, if drug traffickers manage to deliver a shipment of 2,000 kilos then the total street value for that shipment (at that price) would be $82 million dollars. (more)
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Graciela Dixon Loses in Fourth Round

Law & Lawyers By Julio Villalobos for La Estrella de Panama - Graciela Dixon, the President of Panama's Supreme Court of Justice, lost her bid to win a position on the International Criminal Court in the fourth and final round of voting. Dixon received just 21 votes compared to 74 for Ugandan Daniel David Nsereko, who won the election. The candidate from Trinidad and Tobago, Jean Angela Permanand, withdrew after the third round of voting, setting up a runoff between Dixon and Nsereko in a fourth round. Last Friday in the first round of voting Fumiko Saiga from Japan was elected with 82 votes, as was Frenchman Bruno Cotte with 79. The three judges were elected to fill vacancies on the court. The vote occurred in the Headquarters of the United Nations in New York.
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Negotiations Continue for New Minimum Wage

Panama NewsBy José Quintero De León for La Prensa - Bowing to pressures from the government in negotiations regarding a new minimum wage, the National Council of Organized Workers (CONATO) lowered their aspirations from $500 to $400 per month, and they hope that the National Council of Private Businesses (CoNEP) assumes the same position in the negotiations. The announcement was made yesterday by the Minister of Labor Edwin Salamín after a meeting of the Minimum Wage Commission. He added that at the request of CoNEP, they would take at least one week to consult on the offer and will return to meet on 10 December. CoNEP representatives maintain their proposal of an adjustment to the minimum wage in Panama to $320 for large companies and to $310 for small companies. This proposal has been rejected by CONATO, and they hope the offer will be improved shortly. Negotiating for business leaders are Jaime Penedo, August Simons, Antonio Fletcher and Gastón Regis, and for the workers Mariano Mena, Rafael Chavarría and José Pedroza are negotiating.
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Panama Woman Published In ‘Chicken Soup’ Book

Books & Reading By Nicholas L. Dean for the Post-Journal - Panama Native Clair Saeger’s original story ‘‘Happy With Nothing’’ is included in the recently-published book, ‘‘Chicken Soup For The Teen Soul.’’ Clair Saeger usually writes stories for her family, but it was a story about her mother which got the Panama native published. In her junior year of high school, the current college senior entered a contest being held by Teen Ink magazine. Now, some years after having had her essay printed in the magazine, Saeger’s story, ‘‘Happy With Nothing,’’ has been included in ‘‘Chicken Soup For The Teen Soul.’’ A new book in the ‘‘Chicken Soup For The Soul’’ series, the teen-themed compilation collects ‘‘real life stories by real life teens.’’ Tackling topics like change, challenge, loss and other issues facing teens, the book shows readers they are not alone through its friendly peer-to-peer style. (more)
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Panama newspapers highlight Chávez's defeat

Panama News El Universal.com - Panama major newspapers Monday highlighted the defeat of President Hugo Chávez's proposed constitutional reform in Sunday referendum. Daily newspaper La Prensa headline read "NO prevails" and "Chávez's government concedes vote is tight," adding that Chávez blamed his defeat on abstention and branded the opposition's victory as "pyrrhic." Also in Panama, daily newspaper Mi Diario headlines read "The Commander was stopped," and underscored that "Venezuela said no to Chávez and his intentions to remain in power forever."
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Official: Panama tainted medicine tragedy reflects "loophole" in import management

HealthcareBEIJING, Dec. 3 (Xinhua) -- The Panama medicine deaths have reflected managerial differences between different countries, a senior official with China's drug watchdog said here on Monday. "Management on imported drugs varies among different countries," said Wu Zhen, State Food and Drug Administration (SFDA) deputy director, at a press conference. "This will inevitably result in blank points in management that may enable some companies to take advantage of the loophole," he said. China has been strict with management on chemical medical materials, said Wu. (more)
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Panama Public Docs Deepen Strike

Protests & DemonstrationsPanama, Dec 3 (Prensa Latina) Leaders of the 28-day medical strike in public hospitals invited the government to renew talks, but announced a worsening of protests. Health Minister Rosario Turner stated that the government is ready to negotiate a solution to the conflict, as long as the physicians lift the strike and return to work. Doctors termed illegal the salary discount of the last fortnight, justifying they assisted emergencies, surgeries and in-hospital patients. Turner responded that partial payments for incomplete services have been approved, because outpatient services were suspended. Physicians demand so far a raise of 50 percent, as well as government commitment not to privatize public health and contributions to state funds to avoid a bankruptcy.
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Police Arrest Molester On The Run In Panama

Crime & Punishment By Carey Codd - MIAMI (CBS4) ― After years on the run Robert Sarduy is back in a Florida prison; police say his sexual crimes against children date back to the early 90's. "He abducted my daughter. He violated my daughter," said Ken, a South Florida Police. We are not divulging Ken's last name to protect his daughter's identity. 16 years ago Sarduy molested the officer's 4-year-old girl, after showing her a badge and telling her he was a cop. Reports show Sarduy was convicted and went to prison, but in 2004, while on probation, Sarduy showed up at West Palm Beach Elementary School. He told a staff member he was looking at the school for his son and then ran off. From there Sarduy's trail went cold for years., until September when the feds traced him to Panama. His arrest and deportation made news there. "The man needs to be brought to task for what he's done and the traumas that he's put families through and especially little innocent 4-year-old girls," said Ken. Sarduy's past shows allegations of taking advantage of little girls by pretending to be a cop. Back in 1990 there was a hotel along 17th Street in Ft. Lauderdale. According to a police report, Sarduy approached an 8-year-old girl, showed her a badge, and told her he needed to check her for drugs. Police say Sarduy took the girl to a hotel room and molested her. The girl was on vacation with her parents. Ken is pleased Sarduy no longer walks free, but wants him locked up for good. "Put him in prison for the rest of his life. That's where he belongs. There is no rehab. There is no counseling. There is no help. He belongs in prison." This father hopes to say those words to a Broward County judge when Sarduy goes to court for violating his probation.
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Now wife of canoeist has gone missing ... in Panama

Expat Tales By TANYA THOMPSON AND BRIAN FERGUSON for The Scotsman - THE wife of a canoeist who turned up in London at the weekend five years after vanishing without trace emigrated less than a month ago, it emerged last night. Anne Darwin is thought to have set up home and opened a bank account in Panama City, in Central America. Mrs Darwin is thought to have sold their house for £295,000. The Foreign Office has been in contact with the British Embassy in Panama to track Mrs Darwin down, but it has been unable to find her. Her husband, John Darwin, was declared legally dead in April 2003, 13 months after his red canoe was found smashed and washed up on a beach near his home in Seaton Carew, Hartlepool, in March 2002. Yesterday, his father, Ronald, 91, of Blackhall Colliery, Co Durham, said he always thought his son would turn up and suspected he may have been suffering from amnesia. (more)
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'Drowned' canoeist found alive after 5 years....but his wife left Britain four weeks ago

Expat Tales This Is London - A man who turned up in London five years after being presumed dead says he cannot remember anything about the missing time, police said today. The mystery of John Darwin, 57, deepened this evening when it emerged that his wife Anne, 55, sold the family home less than a month ago for £295,000. Mrs Darwin, a doctor's receptionist, is understood to be living in Panama City in central America after opening a bank account there. Mr Darwin, a science teacher for 18 years, was a serving prison officer when he was thought to have drowned in March 2002. The remains of his red canoe were washed up on a beach near the couple's home at Seaton Carew near Hartlepool. Officers said Mr Darwin could remember only his name when he walked into West End Central police station on Saturday saying: "I think I am a missing person." (more)
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Looking For Anne Darwin

Expat Tales

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - This afternoon a story broke about Anne Darwin and her husband who has been missing for five years. He was declared dead and his wife has supposedly moved to Panama. If she's here, I would like to talk to her. If anyone knows her or has a way to contact her, please pass on my contact information and ask her to email or call; don@panama-guide.com, cell 6614-0451, or office 399-4750. Thanks.

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The 'dead' canoeist, his wife and the Panama connection

Expat Tales[image1_right] By John Darwin, Andrew Norfolk, Rajeev Syal and Murad Ahmed for The Times On Line - The wife of a man who disappeared in an apparent canoeing tragedy five years ago had moved to Panama and opened a new bank account only weeks before he walked into a police station to declare that he was still alive, it emerged last night. Anne Darwin, 55, is understood to have emigrated to Panama City soon after the sale of two properties that she once jointly owned with her husband John Darwin, who had formally been declared dead by a coroner. Yesterday Mr Darwin, 57, a former teacher and prison officer, was preparing to be interviewed by detectives who want to know how he has survived in anononymity before he strolled into West End Central police station in Savile Row, Central London, last weekend. (more)
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Whirlpool blamed for Taiwan shipwreck

Weather The Sydney Morning Herald - A Panama-registered freighter may have sunk in a whirlpool last week, dragging down as many as 27 crew members within five minutes after the ship was struck by a giant wave off Taiwan, the coast guard said. The eddy between currents about 35 nautical miles east of Taiwan's northern tip is suspected of sinking the ship, which was carrying iron ore and an Indonesian crew of 28. One crew member was found alive, clinging to his life vest, a day after the freighter went down last Tuesday. "A whirlpool effect is possible," said Taiwan Coast Guard spokesman Hsieh Ching-ching after hearing the survivor's account. "Some of the sailors couldn't put on their lifejackets in time, so there are some who didn't make it up." Typhoon Mitag generated stormy seas east of Taiwan last week after killing about 19 in the Philippines. Although the coast guard normally calls off searches within 72 hours, it has extended its hunt for the ship to a seventh day, using 12 boats and a helicopter.
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Venezuelans Reject Constitutional Reform Proposal in National Referendum

Politics

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - With a vote of 49% in favor and 51% against, the people of Venezuela narrowly rejected a package of 69 constitutional reforms yesterday that would have allowed Hugo Chavez to remain as the President of Venezuela virtually for life. Thanks to the defeat he will now be barred from running for reelection in 2012. My faith in democracy is renewed. The developing democracies of Latin America (including Panama) are still maturing and defining their particular brands of local democracy. Most of Latin America has really only been truly democratic since the end of the cold war and Panama is a perfect example. Noriega was ejected as soon as he was no longer needed as a hedge against communism, and the Panamanian people have only been electing their leaders since 1989. In the case of Venezuela and Hugo Chavez, there are plenty of other people in that country (population 27 million) who could probably run the country just as good or better than him. The last thing Latin America needs is a replacement for Fidel Castro.

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The Venezuelan Exodus

Expat Tales

By DON WINNER for Panama-Guide.com - As Hugo Chavez tightens his grip on Venezuela, those who see the country in a tailspin are fleeing in record numbers. There are about five flights from Venezuela to Panama every day, and all of them are completely sold out until 20 January 2008. That means that about 1,200 Venezuelans are coming to Panama every day. All hotels in Panama are full. The new Venezuelan arrival are buying apartments five, ten, or twenty at a time. Check out this youtube video...

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Venezuela Currency Controls Stoke Travel Boom, Universal Says

Panama NewsBy Steven Bodzin Dec. 2 (Bloomberg) -- Venezuelan currency controls, combined with a widespread demand for dollars, have created a boom in Venezuelan travel, El Universal reported. Because Venezuelans can get $5,000 at the official exchange rate of 2,150 to the dollar for travel abroad, they are traveling in large numbers, the Caracas daily said. Half the rooms in Hotel Roma in Panama are reserved by Venezuelans and air fares to that country have tripled, El Universal said. Air travel from Venezuela generated twice the revenue in October as a year earlier, El Universal reported. No tickets are available to Panama until Jan. 20, the newspaper said. A network has sprung up to buy people's ``cupos,'' the $5,000 in legal currency allotted by the government, the newspaper said. Brokers who buy these official dollars and resell them at black-market rates that are triple the official exchange rate charge a fee of 15 percent to 30 percent, the newspaper said. To contact the reporter on this story: Steven Bodzin in Caracas at sbodzin@bloomberg.net.
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Celestino Caballero Retains WBA Super Bantamweight Title

Sports Section
Celestino Caballero
Celestino Caballero
Second Scout.com - Celestino "Pelenchin" Caballero retained his WBA super bantamweight title with an eighth round tko win over former world champion Mauricio Pastrana at the Roberto Duran Gymnasium in Panama on Saturday night. Caballero,28-2-(19), who was nearly a foot taller Pastrana, controlled the bout throughout. Caballero’s heavy heavy punches proved too much for the challenger,leaving referee Roberto Ramirez to stop the contest at the 58-second mark. Pastrana,34-8-2, was attempting to become a three weight champion.
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Israel to Site Plane Repair Center in Panama

Panama News Panama, Dec 2 (Prensa Latina) The leading company of the Israeli military industrial complex will establish a plane repair center in Panama, and an aeronautical academy, La Prensa daily reported on Sunday. The Israeli Aerospace Industries (IAI) produces airplanes and missiles of different types, some of them in association with the US or European firms, and has 15,000 employees. IAI will begin investing in the construction of a storage center of parts and accessories at Tocumen airport in Panama city, which will start operations in June. Initially, IAI will replace damaged parts in the airplanes of its client airlines, while its headquarters in Israel repairs them, said the source. The company aims to take advantage of the geographical position of Panama to control the plane repair business of the airlines operating in the American continent.
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