The Department of Justice has filed seven lawsuits seeking the forfeiture of more than $100 million allegedly embezzled by former high-level officials in Kuwait’s Ministry of Defense. The officials stole millions in Kuwaiti public funds from the National Bank of Kuwait between 2009 and 2016 and funneled it into unauthorized Californian accounts, according to the lawsuits filed Thursday in the U.S. District Court in Los Angeles. “In order to disguise the nature of these transfers, some of them were falsely described as being intended for military purposes,” a DOJ press release said. The Californian entities that received the money were connected to Victorino Noval, a 58-year-old man convicted in 2004 of mail fraud and tax evasion.
Once in the California bank account, the pilfered funds were allegedly used “to purchase or contribute to the improvement of a parcel of land in Beverly Hills known as ‘The Mountain,’ three homes in Beverly Hills, a penthouse and an apartment in Westwood, a private jet, a yacht, a Lamborghini sports car and approximately $40,000 worth of memorabilia of boxer Manny Pacquiao,” the DOJ said.