The Wild East (1994)

Film details

  • Featuring

    Gavin Hewitt

  • Country

    United Kingdom

  • Year

    1994

  • Type

    Television

Synopsis

The second of three `Panorama' specials on international financial crime. Looks at Russia's gangster capitalism, where business is settled by a gun. Suggests that two-thirds of all businesses in Moscow pay protection money to criminal gangs and some banks have their own private armies. Also reveals that, although the West had encouraged this capitalism, there were growing fears that rampant organised crime in Russia was threatening the entire international financial system. The commodity trader Marc Rich, known as "El Matador", who was wanted in America for tax fraud is also featured. At the time, he was running his financial empire from Switzerland with an estimated annual turnover of $30 billion. The programme suggests that senior US administration figures met secretly with the fugitive trader to discuss Russia's future. Shows not only how the global money market can be mastered but how it is possible to operate outside the regulatory control of any country.

Cast & Credits

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