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Saturday, November 4, 2006

Duke Case: Merchant of Precious

Victor Bout Royalty Enterprises

It's a small world, but call it case of three degrees of Putin. Who would have guessed that "Precious," also known as Crystal Gail Mangum, the women who claims to be the victim of a gang rape by three Duke lacrosse players is being discussed in the same breath with infamous Russian arms smuggler, Victor "Merchant of Death" Bout.

But, that is the case. Just when you thought the Duke rape hoax couldn't get any stranger up pops one mysterious Dr. Victor O. Olatoye. Doctor 'O' is the owner of the Platinum Club in Hillsborough, N.C., where Ms. Mangum was working in March when the Duke incident occurred. Doctor O also has an investment in Africargo International, which is in the air cargo business in West Africa.

Victor Bout, "by most accounts the world's largest arms trafficker," is also in the air cargo business in West Africa. Perhaps there is a Chamber of Commerce organization that everyone in the African air cargo business belongs to, all working to keep the goats off those dusty dirt airstrips in the middle of nowhere.

Dr. O has been flip flopping on the issue of exactly when Ms. Mangum last worked at his Platinum Club. Duff Wilson of the NY Times reported:

Victor O. Olatoye, owner of the Platinum Club in Hillsborough, N.C., where the woman worked, had signed an affidavit for the Durham district attorney saying she had not performed at his club since February, and that the video had to have been taken before March 13.

But in the interview Thursday, Mr. Olatoye, 44, said that after filing his affidavit on Oct. 18 he found records showing that the woman had worked on March 23, March 24 and March 25. Mr. Olatoye also said he recognized her dancing on the video, even though her face was obscured.

“I saw the clip and I believe that was her, yes,” he said, adding that she has not worked at the club since March 25.

The fact, the Dr. O's records now indicate that Ms. Mangum was working at the Platinum club in March now confirms what her driver, Jarriel Johnson, told police in April.

LieStoppers pointed out that Johnson's statement, is a detail that John Stevenson of the Herald Sun forgot to mention in his article when he used the erroneous Dr. O statement to cast doubt on the 60 Minutes dance video and statements from club manager, H.P. “Fats” Thomas.

But don't sweat the details; you just have to love the names and characters that have inserted themselves into this tragedy. While it's certainly been fun wallowing in the Durham rape hoax cesspool, it's nice to take an occasional flight of fancy. This time aboard a mysterious K.G.B. flight into Angola in 1991. That is where Peter Landesman follows the trail of the mysterious Victor Bout.
Bout said he saw firsthand in Angola, Congo and elsewhere how Western donations to impoverished countries, often in the form of state-of-the-art industry, lead to the destruction of social and ecological balance, mutual resentment and eventually war. Philanthropy creates addiction, he said. ''Once countries give money, they control you.'' He admired the isolated Pygmy tribes he visited during his jungle runs, he said, because they lived in perfect harmony with their environment, immune from conflict and diseases like AIDS.

He also spoke glowingly of Congo's late president, Mobutu Sese Seko, and of Ahmed Shah Massoud, the Afghan Northern Alliance commander, both of whom he said he knew intimately. He was attracted to Mobutu's common sense and Massoud's integrity. Combined, they would have made the perfect leader. They also made fine customers.
The Peter Landesman article about Victor Bout was on the cover of the NY Times Sunday Magazine back in August of 2003. It included the only decent photo ever taken of Victor Bout, shown above. He apparently was very camera shy, but was on somewhat of a PR campaign back in 2003.

Victor OlatoyeVictor Olatoye is not camera shy. Victor Olatoye has now, intentionally or not, gotten involved in his own PR campaign. It will certainly not hurt the business at the Platinum Club. Dr. Victor Olatoye's mission statement:
Our mission is to provide the highest-qualty product and services possible in a timely manner to our customers through our core values: Excellence, Integrity, Customer Focus, Teamwork, Communication and Entrepreneurship by creating long-lasting prosperous relationships with our client partners in order to help them reach their goals and objectives by doing so we can alway increase our shareholders stock value and exceed our client's expectations.

We are proud to have an organization with strong focus on the fundamental values of commerce....
From the Platinum Club to gun-running in Africa? - TalkLeft
Royalty Enterprises, Vaporware at its best! - LieStoppers
The Ultimate in Micro Management - LieStoppers
Thank You Sir, May I Have Another? - LieStoppers
Arms and the man - Peter Landesman, NY Times, Aug. 17, 2003
Viktor Bout - wikipedia.org

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