Disguising The Debt

With the help of former Parmalat executives, magistrates and forensic accountants have mapped out the system of double billing they say was at the heart of the firm's alleged fraud. They claim Parmalat secretly controlled 33 of the 104 distributors it employed in Italy through shell companies in the Netherlands Antilles. The company issued duplicate invoices and used the fictitious revenues as collateral for bank credits. It then shunted the debts into offshore, off-the-books companies. As a result, investigators say Parmalat was able to both...

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