Former head of the Financial Services Regulatory Commission (FSRC) Leroy King said his legal troubles in the Stanford matter are taking a heavy toll on his already failing health, but he’s hanging in there on the strength of his innocence.
The veteran banker, who once held the title of ambassador, spoke with OBSERVER for the first time since his indictment by the US Securities and Exchange Commission in June.
While declining to comment on his connection to the alleged Ponzi scheme run by Texan businessman R Allen Stanford, King spoke with this reporter about the impact the last six months have had on him.
He disclosed that he suffered from cancer of the oesophagus and severe gastro-oesophageal reflux disease, both of which required very exacting and demanding treatment regimens.
The US wants King extradited to answer charges that he failed to exercise the required oversight, choosing to look the other way in exchange for lucrative bribes and favours from Stanford.
While legal processing of the US extradition request is pending, King must report daily to a local police station, and it’s this that he finds physically draining, given his state of health.
Careful to point out that he wasn’t complaining, he said he saw no reason why the authorities could not modify the requirement to once a week, since everyone knows him, and for sure he’s not going anywhere.
In addition to his travel documents having been surrendered, two appointed sureties must be able to vouch for his whereabouts at any given time the authorities may enquire.
King, who maintains his innocence, said the restrictions on his movements, the impact that the daily trips to the police station were having on his health care regimen, and the unfamiliar experience of facing criminal charges, were undeniably stressful.
Prior to the ongoing episode, he said, he’d never been accused of or prosecuted for any crime.
The veteran banker, now in his early 60s, said he’d been strictly advised by his lawyer against speaking to the media about any aspects of the case or the specific legal complaints against him.
But he did express sadness about what he said were media reports and even official statements that effectively put him on trial or made him out to be culpable, since the case is yet to be heard in court.
Despite all this, Leroy King said, he was enabled to cope with the present trying circumstances by a combination of faith in God and the assurance of his own innocence in the Stanford matter.