Thanks to my readers for the heads up on this one: Stanford Financial—sponsor of the PGA Tour’s St. Jude Championship—has been shut down by the US government. From the New York Times:
In Texas, Robert Allen Stanford was just another wealthy financier. But in the breezy money haven of Antigua, he was lord of an influential financial fief, decorated with a knighthood, courted by government officials and basking in the spotlight of sports and charity events on which he generously showered his fortune. On Tuesday, his reign was thrown into turmoil as a caravan of cars and trucks with dark tinted windows carrying federal authorities pulled up to the Houston headquarters of his company, the Stanford Group, to shut down what the regulators described as a “massive ongoing fraud” stretching from the Caribbean to Texas, and around the world.
Unknown is the status of investments in as much as $8 billion in high-yielding certificates of deposit held in the firm’s bank in Antigua, which the Securities and Exchange Commission, in a civil suit, said Mr. Stanford and two colleagues fraudulently peddled to scores of investors.
Also unknown Tuesday were the whereabouts of Mr. Stanford — or Sir Allen, as he became known after the Antiguan prime minister knighted him — whose financial activities on the tiny island had raised eyebrows among American authorities as far back as a decade ago.
If I were the PGA Tour, I’d be looking for another sponsor for the June tournament. It doesn’t seem likely that a firm that’s under siege by the feds will be able to provide the cash for a golf tournament.