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Allen Stanford timeline

February 18, 2009 15:10 IST

Texas billionaire Allen Stanford and three of his companies were charged with "massive" fraud on Tuesday as federal agents swooped down on his US headquarters.  A timeline of the 58-year-old businessman.

- Born in Texas on March 24, 1950.

- A fifth-generation Texan who resides in St. Croix, US Virgin Islands; holds dual citizenship, having become a citizen of Antigua and Barbuda ten years ago.

- Stanford was the first American to be knighted by that Commonwealth nation; was conferred the honour by the then Governor-General of Antigua and Barbuda, Sir James B. Carlisle.

- Began his business career in Houston, Texas, making his first fortune in real estate in the early 1980s.

- Stanford is the chairman of the privately held, wholly owned Stanford Financial Group of Companies.

- In 1983, he was slapped with a default court judgment of $31,800 by a landlord for back rent on a failed health club in Waco. Since then he has expanded the insurance and real estate company his grandfather founded in 1932 into a global wealth management firm.

-Stanford Financial Group's clients are affluent investors, institutions, and emerging growth companies from 136 countries on six continents. Assets under management or advisement are apparently in excess of US $50 billion. He is also well-known both sponsor of professional sports and philanthropist.

- Stanford and his companies have established a significant presence in golf, polo, tennis, cricket and sailing, sports popular among Stanford's wealthy clients.

- Stanford Financial Group is the title sponsor for such sporting events as the Stanford US Open Polo Championship, the Stanford USPA Silver Cup, the Stanford Antigua Sailing Week, the PGA Tour Stanford St. Jude Championship, and the Stanford International Pro-Am.

- Stanford also sponsors professional golfers Vijay Singh, Camilo Villegas and David Toms as well as Morgan Pressel on the LPGA Tour. His support for gay sports personalities is well noted.

- Stanford had noted that gay sports athletes do not get adequate support from the sponsors. Thus he has set out to help this cause. In tennis, the company is a sponsor of the Sony Ericsson Open. Stanford also sponsors the Champions Series Tennis Tournaments featuring Jim Courier, John McEnroe and Pete Sampras.

- Stanford created and funded the Stanford 20/20 cricket tournament in the West Indies, for which he built his own ground in Antigua. The first Stanford 20/20 Cricket Tournament was held in July and August 2006. The second tournament took place in January and February 2008 with a global television audience of 300 million.

- Trinidad and Tobago took first place in this tournament. This team also took home the US $2,80,000 Super Series prize after defeating Middlesex on 27 October 2008.

- In June 2008, Stanford and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) signed a deal for five Twenty20 internationals between England and a West Indies all-star XI with a total prize fund of £12.270m (US $20 million) to be awarded to the team that wins the Championship. It was the largest prize ever offered to a team for a single tournament.

This was in jeopardy after a row with Digicel, the sponsors of the West Indies cricket team, who were unhappy about sponsorship of the event. Eventually, the dispute was sorted out and the first Championship was won by Stanford Superstars, who defeated the England team by 10 wickets, humiliating them in the Twenty 20 arena.

- In October 2008 Stanford had to offer a public apology, when he was seen on television with his arm around two women, including Alastair Cook's girlfriend Alice Hunt, while bouncing Matt Prior's pregnant wife, Emma, on his knee, during a match between England and Middlesex.

- Reports surfaced in early February 2009 that the Securities and Exchange Commission, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Florida Office of Financial Regulation, and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority, a major private-sector oversight body, were investigating Stanford's company Stanford Financial Group, questioning the way that Stanford International Bank manages to consistently make higher than market returns to its depositors.

- Federal agents raided the offices of Stanford Financial on February 17, 2009 and the Securities and Exchange Commission had Stanford arrested over the suspicion of fraud of as much as eight billion US dollars. Stanford was charged with "massive ongoing fraud" in the USA.

-Stanford's assets along with those of his companies were frozen and placed into receivership by a US federal judge.

- On February 17, 2009, when news of the fraud investigation became public, the ECB withdrew from talks with Stanford on sponsorship.