Predators in Paradise?

The inside story of how lenders at Citibank allegedly played loan shark, charging the island nations of the Caribbean excess fees and interest payments

In a rambling two-story house hidden by mango and chicle trees on the industrious island of Trinidad lives an unlikely watchdog against corporate greed. Ved Seereeram, a financial consultant and former banker, has been working for years to expose what he describes as a prestigious U.S. lender aggressively marketing financial instruments to governments that didn't really understand them. Tens of millions of dollars in excessive fees and interest, he says, have been diverted from poor Caribbean countries into the coffers of Citibank, now a unit of Citigroup. Until recently, no one really listened.

But with the unraveling of Enron and WorldCom...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!