Castro regime continues crackdown on unsanctioned corruption

In Cuba, the criminal Castro dictatorship does not tolerate corruption that cuts out the Castro Family crime syndicate. And as a second Canadian firm doing business with the Castro-led Cuban mafia has found, there is zero tolerance for unsanctioned corruption and betrayal of the crime bosses:

Cuba shuts down second Canadian trading company

HAVANA (Reuters) – Cuba has shut down one of the most important western trading companies in the country as an investigation into alleged corrupt import-export practices broadened to a second Canadian firm, foreign business sources said on Friday.

State security agents on Friday watched who entered the building in Havana’s Miramar Trade Center where Ontario-based Tokmakjian Group, one of the top Canadian companies doing business on the communist-run island, has its offices.

The company offices on the fourth floor were sealed with a notice that it had been closed by Cuban State Security.

“We received notice on Monday from the foreign ministry and the Council of State, which is the procedure in such cases, to stop all dealings with the Tokmakjian Group,” said an employee of a Cuban company that does business with the firm.

Like other people who spoke to Reuters about the clampdown on the company, she asked that her name not be used.

Tokmakjian Group is estimated to do around $80 million in business annually with the Caribbean island, mainly selling transportation, mining and construction equipment.

The company is the exclusive Cuba distributor of Hyundai, among other brands, and a partner in two joint ventures replacing the motors of Soviet-era transportation equipment.

Company officials were not immediately available for comment.

Cuban authorities shut down Canadian firm Tri-Star Caribbean on July 15 and arrested company president Sarkis Yacoubian. The company, considered a competitor of Tokmakjian Group, did around $30 million in business with Cuba.

“Apparently Tri-Star Caribbean was just the beginning. They brought in more than 50 state purchasers for questioning, arrested some of them and broadened the investigation from there,” a western businessman said.

“As far as I know up to now just Canadian firms are involved, but you can bet every state importer and foreign trading company in the country is on edge,” he said.

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