A Chilean businessman wanted for an investigation into one of the biggest financial frauds in the South American country has been living in Malta for more than two years until a decision is taken whether to extradite him back home.
Alberto Chang Rajii, founder of Arcano Group, left Chile on 12 March, 2016 on a flight to the United States, although his presence in that country could never be proven. An anonymous complaint against the Arcano Group was sent to the Chilean office of the prosecutor in Las Condes in December 2015 and he has since been under investigation.
Chang Rajii is fighting extradition to Chile, where he is wanted to face charges of investment fraud running into millions through a Ponzi scheme run by his company. He was arrested in Malta in 2016 and released on bail against a €100,000 deposit.
According to a Chilean news report, an email believed to be written by Chang where he spoke of his intentions of committing suicide was spread. Company executives David Senerman and Paulo Brignardello traveled to London and Switzerland to look for their former boss.
A few days later, on 12 April, a Chilean camera crew found Alberto Chang at the reception of a hotel in Valletta. His first weeks in Malta were in the hotel, which he transformed into his centre of operations and met the first lawyers he contacted to follow his case, Carlos Castro and José Hinzpeter.
They had been contacted by Veronica Rajii, Chang’s mother, to help her son. In mid-April 2016, Chang’s bank accounts were frozen and the Chilean prosecutors delivered the search warrant that would later become an international arrest warrant.
Chang had applied for Maltese citizenship in 2015 through Henley & Partners. Since then, the process has been halted and put on hold. He had told the Maltese courts that a new Chilean presidency had introduced a 40 per cent tax on the worldwide income of Chilean investors which negatively affected Chang’s financial interests.