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Mohamed Tajideen

Mohamed Tajideen is the son of Kassim Tajideen, a Lebanese-Belgian citizen the United States has called an “important financial contributor to Hezbollah.”

Kassim Tajideen allegedly gave the organization tens of millions of dollars while operating a network of businesses in Lebanon and Africa, according to a 2017 grand jury indictment in U.S. District Court in the District of Columbia. The United States designated Hezbollah as a terrorist organization in 1997.

Kassim and his brothers, Ali and Husayn Tajideen, built a family business empire on poultry, rice, real estate, and construction. Ali is a former Hezbollah commander, according to the U.S. Treasury, while Hussayn is identified as a primary Hezbollah fundraiser.

After the brothers were accused of funding terrorism in 2010, they restructured their multi-billion-dollar commodity distribution network to conceal Kassim’s role, skirt sanctions, and illegally conduct business with U.S. companies, according to the 2017 indictment. Prosecutors accused Kassim Tajideen of conspiracy, fraud, money laundering and violating terrorism regulations.

Moroccan authorities arrested Kassim on an Interpol warrant at Casablanca airport in Morocco five days after the indictment was issued and extradited him to the U.S. He pled not guilty on 11 criminal counts. A judge denied his pretrial release, citing his wealth and multiple foreign citizenships.

The 2017 indictment was far from a first run-in with law enforcement for the Tajideen family.

According to Belgian media, the Belgian State Security Service has investigated Kassim’s Antwerp-based company, Soafrimex, for allegedly raising funds for the Arab European League, a Belgian-Dutch political movement with an Islamist agenda. A subsequent investigation led to the arrests of both Kassim and his wife Huda Saad in 2003.

An Antwerp judge sentenced the couple in 2008 to two years in prison for fraud and tax evasion of over 20 million euros ($29.4 million), though they were acquitted of funding terrorism, being part of a criminal organization, and diamond smuggling.

The couple’s son, Mohamed Tajideen — the man whose name appears in a leaked database of property and residency data compiled by real estate professionals obtained by C4ADS and shared with the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project — is not himself accused of any Hezbollah connections.

According to his LinkedIn profile, he worked in Angola, where his father moved the family in the early 1990s. The profile also lists Mohamed as founder and chief executive officer of Dubai-based Murex Real Estate, and shows property holdings in Africa and Beirut as well as Dubai.

The Dubai properties linked to him have an estimated value of about $4 million.

One building, in the “affordable” International City China Cluster, is worth about $3 million.

A second unit worth about $800,000 in the Burj Dubaj downtown area.

Residences there are described as providing the luxury of a five-star hotel with the convenience and pivacy of a home “ in one of the most exclusive square kilometres in the world.

When the Organized Crime and Corruption Reporting Project asked Mohamed about the properties linked to his name and his father’s alleged Hezbollah ties, he said, “I dispute all the information but I will not give you all information. I reject any allegations of terrorism against my family.”

This story is part of the Global Anti-Corruption Consortium, a collaboration started by OCCRP and Transparency International. For more information, click here.