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Neteller Cleans Slate With DoJ

By: Joe Valentino, Monday August 31st 2009
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Neteller has now met all pending requirements and has received the Notice of Dismissal from the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) that brings a difficult period in its history to a complete end. Neteller was founded as a financial services provider to the online gaming industry in 1999 and is based in the Isle of Man and regulated by the United Kingdom's Financial Services Authority. It has recently been renamed Neovia Financial PLC.

In 2007 the DoJ started prosecutions of several companies related with the online gambling industry, of which Neteller was one. This led to Neteller withdrawing from the United States online gambling market. Also Neteller chose to arrive at a negotiated settlement with the DoJ so as to avoid further prosecutions. As a part of the settlement Neteller had to forgo an amount of $136 million and had to accept charges of conducting an "unlicensed money transmitting business" and facilitating "unlawful transactions" between online gambling operators and players in the United States. Neteller in turn gained a deferred prosecution order for a period of two years. During these two years Neteller was being monitored by the DoJ to see if it resumed illegal activities in America. The two year period has now expired. The US Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York has given Neteller a copy of the Notice of Dismissal of the Complaint filed against it. The Notice of Dismissal states that Neteller has fulfilled every requirement of the Deferred Prosecution Agreement and will now not be monitored by the DoJ. Thus the threat of any prosecution to Neteller is over.

Neteller first came under the DoJ fire when two of its founders John Lefebvre and Steve Lawrence were arrested in January 2007. Both were Canadian citizens and both were no longer involved with Neteller in any executive position. However they were arrested while they were in the United States on charges of money laundering in the years that they controlled the affairs of Neteller. Lawrence pleaded guilty to the charges and cooperated with the DoJ in its investigations.

In order to take Neovia ahead, now that a major stumbling block has been removed, the company has announced that Mark Mayhew will take over as President and Chief Executive of Neovia from September 1, 2009. Mayhew has considerable experience in the consumer financial services industry with corporations like NatWest and Morgan Stanley. Mayhew said, "I am delighted to have been appointed President and CEO of Neovia. The Company has a strong track record and also an eventful history but I am excited by the opportunity to drive Neovia's next phase of growth, building on the Group's vision to deliver bold payment solutions to selected e-commerce communities."

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