A company linked to Beny Steinmetz, Israel’s richest person, has handed over documents to authorities in Switzerland amid a U.S. probe into a man with ties to Steinmetz’s BSG Resources Ltd.
Onyx Financial “provided the Swiss authorities with information following a request to Switzerland by the Government of Guinea,” according to an e-mailed statement from Onyx provided by an external communications firm working for BSGR. The West African nation is reviewing mining licenses including the Simandou deposit, once described as the world’s largest untapped deposit of iron ore, owned in a joint venture by BSGR and Brazil’s Vale SA.
Frederic Cilins, 50, a French citizen with ties to BSGR, has said he’s innocent of charges he interfered with a U.S. grand jury probe into alleged bribes paid for mining rights in Guinea. He said he was arrested after trying to stop an extortion attempt by the government’s main witness.
Onyx Financial is based in London and has offices in Geneva, Amsterdam, Johannesburg and Rome, according to its website. Dag Cramer is chief executive officer of Onyx Financial Advisers U.K. and also a director of BSGR, according to its website.
BSGR said in March that Guinea was preparing to remove mining rights from its joint venture with Vale SA, which planned a $10 billion operation.
Eric Grandjean, a spokesman for the Geneva police, said he couldn’t comment on the matter and wouldn’t confirm whether police raided the offices.
Henri Della Casa, a spokesman for the Geneva prosecutor’s office, wouldn’t comment and said he had no information on the case.
A man named Kevin Metcalf, who answered the phone at the Onyx Financial Advisors’ office in Geneva, wouldn’t confirm the raid or make any comment.