A Dubai-based businessman Ricardo Badoer who has taken over the stewardship of Wazito FC as the club’s president and owner is rumoured to be involved in money laundering, human trafficking, arms and other illicit international drugs business.
Of great concern is the fact that RB as he is known in the underworld deals has registered most of his companies in Panama. Kenya much feared investigative agencies have Philip Kameru as National Intelligence Security director and George Kinoti based at Directorate of Criminal Investigations.
Investigators in Kenya are closely monitoring his multimillion investments and his conduits. Of great concern is if he has any links with Elly Kalewa of Sofapaka FC. Kalewa who has links in Congo has been sponsoring Sofapaka just as a public relations gimmick while engaging in dubious business of international concern including illegal gold trade.
Intelligence sources reveal that for years Kalewa, has been in constant communication with Badoer.
According to highly placed sources, Ricardo, who one year ago bought Wazito FC, which was then relegated from the Kenya Premier League, giving it a new lease of life, is also allegedly involved in money laundering and child trafficking, activities he carries out under the guise of his business.
Sources confided that the businessman has been splashing cash to promote sports activities as one way of allegedly introducing the illicit money into the economy.
He is said to be on the radar of Interpol and other investigative bodies, which link him to the underworld across the world.
The businessman caught the attention of Kenyans spy agencies when he bought Wazito FC and pumped funds into the club, whose debut in the top-flight Kenya Premier League in the 2018 season floundered after it was relegated back to the National Super League at the end of the season.
Wazito FC is now owned by Badoer Investments Ltd, the global investment conglomerate run by Ricardo, a flamboyant football fanatic.
The Swedish national’s entry into Kenyan football came as he spreads his business empire and interests into the East Africa region, with claims that he is laundering illicit money. He has pitched tent in Dubai avoiding Sweden for unknown reasons.
In Kenya, the businessman recently acquired interests in Sumac Microfinance. Ricardo took his place in the Sumac Microfinance Bank as a director and board member after acquiring shares.
He joined board members John Kibatha Njoroge (chairman), Duncan Mwaniki, Mbugua Muiruri, Rufus Maina Kanyogo, Stephen Chege and John Mucai.
Sumac currently has two branches in Nairobi, one in Githunguri in Kiambu county and another in Nakuru county.
The microfinance is looking to expand to Eldoret, Kisumu and Meru targeting agribusinesses and has a clientele base of 10,000 and loan book of Sh1 billion.
Sumac which began as an investment club in 2002, received a Central Bank of Kenya deposit-taking license in 2012.
At the end of 2016, it was ranked fifth in the microfinance banking sector with a market share of 1.3pc. There is concern he wants to use Sumac, swindle depositors and take off.
An insider within CBK told Weekly Citizen undercover team, a move to enjoin Badoer to Sumac board is being investigated by various Kenyan anti-economic crime units.
Badoer investments in the region according to our source, is suspect and must be eyeing minerals dirty business in the great Lake region.
When he took over Wazito FC, Ricardo announced big plans for Kenyan football, which included establishing a youth football academy to offer European standards training for children from age of six as well as a UEFA category four stadiums.
Investigations reveal that Ricardo pretends to love football so much but for other hidden reasons. Wazito FC was formed in 2011 by among others Solomon Alubala who dreamt of playing professional football and owning a football club.
Alubala teamed up with University of Nairobi alumni to provide football mentorship to university students and graduates.
But Alubala is also under probe over Sh1 billion fraud at the National Bank perpetrated when he was the head of treasury. Of late, Kenya security system have raised concern over multi million drug business and illicit arms found among public university students and even in hostels. International drug dealers have found haven in universities where they easily hide them while on transit.
Is Wazito being used to penetrate university family by suspicious faces all in the name of sponsoring football as stepping stone, investigators in the case pose?
Already, a court has frozen Alubala’s assets as part of ongoing investigations into the Sh1 billion fraud at the bank.
The Capital Market Authority has also banned Alubala from holding office in any public listed company.
According to sources, Ricardo, as an investment banker, is well grounded in banking, international finance with over 16 years’ experience and knows all the tricks in the book in money laundering.
He is also well connected across Africa as evidenced by the clearance he got from the Central Bank of Tanzania to allow him make a 23pc ownership in Hakika Microfinance Bank.
He is the founder of a cryptocurrency firm Aidos Kuneen, which is looking to list in different stock exchanges in Africa. The two firms operations have been at centre of discussion and probe in a number of capital cities they operate.
Ricardo is also suspected to abuse drugs and also known for his vulgar language. For instance when Wazito lost a match, he tweeted: “I had two neck surgeries in 24 hours!!!! I could do better than you!!!! how you guys keep letting yourself down I do not know. You do not have heart or balls!!!! You are lucky I am stuck in Dubai… As soon as I am cleared, I will be in Nairobi.
Wazito FC had lost a match to Talanta, a match played while Ricardo was in Dubai.
Two days later after the match, the club announced the sacking of head coach Ahmed Mchulla and his assistant Hussein Mohammed.
A few days before his controversial tweet, Ricardo had threatened to fire some of his players for not winning a league match.
Ricardo is the founder and owner of a global cryptocurrency firm Aidos Kuneen and Badoer Investments Ltd that deals in real estate, equity and banking. The two firms help him allegedly launder money across the world.
Insiders say Ricardo is now on a buying spree of budding banks, which he says are “cheaper and easier to take over and can be turned into full financial bank later”.
With a background in offshore banking, Ricardo’s idea is to attract international investors into his emerging banking network and thereby help conceal his dirty business.
He has of been channeling huge investments into East Africa in various sectors including sports, manufacturing, media, trade and banking.
He is on record of buying a brand new luxurious Mercedes Benz bus for Wazito FC valued at Sh15million direct from DT Dobie.
The Wazito FC tycoon also invested in a local industry that was set to unveil his team’s locally made jerseys soon.
The super classy Mercedes bus was another Ricardo successful investment after his online streaming services under a brand name of Madgoat TV were allowed by Sportpesa and certified by the government.
Madgoat TV which is only available online has been streaming Wazito matches.
Ricardo also recently signed a Sh100 million sponsorship of local basketball teams.
His firm Badoer Investments Ltd is sponsoring the KBF league for the next five years.
Under the Sh100 million deal, Badoer Investments will also own broadcast rights through his newly launched digital television station, Madgoat TV as well as an upcoming free-to-air TV station.
The deal was signed at Nyayo Stadium, where basketball friendlies were taking place between teams from Kenya and Ghana.
The sponsorship also includes providing kits for national, senior and junior teams for both men and ladies.
According to sources, Ricardo is part of the Dubai big mafia with ties either through business or directly with the royal families or big business groups that are based in the city.
Kenya has fallen prey to international conmen among them Dick Berg of the infamous Fourth All African Games at Kasarani in 1987, the Artur brothers, the Lonhro group, arms dealer Adnan Khassoggi and Safaricom that ploughs all the billions it makes here to other countries. Safaricom does this by ensuring its CEOs are from outside Kenya.