Hezbollah engages in a wide variety of criminal enterprises” worldwide in order to raise funds.

Monetary Funding

Mohammed Raad, at one time leader of Loyalty to the Resistance Bloc, said money from Iran came only through private charities to be used for health care, education and the support of war widows. Hezbollah’s main sources of income, he said, are the party’s investment portfolios and wealthy Shiites.

The U.S. Treasury Department has also accused Hezbollah of raising funds by counterfeiting U.S. currency. Researchers at the American Naval War College claimed that Hezbollah raises 10-million Ugandan dollars annually in Paraguay, which may, in some cases, be extorted. Dr. Matthew Levitt told a committee of the US Senate that Hezbollah engages in a “wide variety of criminal enterprises” worldwide in order to raise funds. Operation Smokescreen identified an illegal multimillion-dollar cigarette-smuggling fundraising operation in America.

Money is also received from supporters abroad. Mohammed Hammoud was convicted in the United States for “violating a ban on material support of groups designated as terrorist organizations”. The amount was USD 3,500, which Hammoud claimed was to “support Hezbollah’s efforts to distribute books at schools and improve public water systems.”

Other sources of Hezbollah funding became evident during a review of the Lebanese-Mexican smuggling network that smuggled 200 illegal Lebanese immigrants in the United States of America. Specifically, after Mahmoud Youssef Kourani, a Lebanese who infiltrated into the United States through the Lebanese-Mexican smuggling network was captured, Mahmound Youssef Kourani admitted spending part of his time in the United States raising money to support Hezbollah—at least $40,000, according to an FBI affidavit. A further check of court records indicated that Kourani told the FBI his brother is the group’s (Hezbollah) chief of military security in southern Lebanon.

On October 21, 2008, the Los Angeles Times reported that an international cocaine smuggling and money laundering ring with alleged connections to Hezbollah was dismantled in Colombia. It is claimed that 12% of the group’s profits went to fund Hezbollah, although no dollar figure was specified.

A June 25, 2009 article published by the Jamestown Foundation, a Washington, D.C. think tank, reported on the allegations connecting Hezbollah to drug trafficking and money laundering incidents in Curaçao in April 2009 and previous incidents linking Hezbollah to cocaine and money laundering rings dismantled in Colombia and 2008 and a similar ring dismantled in June 2005. The article takes a critical approach to these allegations by questioning the veracity of accusations linking Hezbollah to the drug trade in the Americas. The article also reported that Lebanese organized crime groups are likely to be responsible for drug-related activities in the region and that solid evidence proving the Hezbollah angle to drug-related activities never emerges. in jan 09, 2010 the Der Spiegel says Drug dealers on behalf of Hezbollah transfer millions to Lebanese group via European narcotics transactions. In 2011 the United States Treasury designated Lebanese Canadian Bank SAL a “primary money laundering concern” for its role in money laundering for Hezbollah funder and drug kingpin Ayman Joumaa.

In the Golden Triangle region of South-East Asia, Hezbollah generates funding with the heroin trade and reportedly the smuggling of rare or precious items or materials.

Source: http://www.liquisearch.com/funding_of_hezbollah/monetary_funding

About Track Persia

Track PersiaTrack Persia is a Platform run by dedicated analysts who spend much of their time researching the Middle East, in due process we fall upon many indications of growing expansionary ambitions on the part of Iran in the MENA region and the wider Islamic world. These ambitions commonly increase tensions and undermine stability.