(To get the most from this post, please read this first: Money Laundering: Are accountants and lawyers potentially just as guilty as the criminals themselves?)
PricewaterhouseCoopers are the external auditors for several large businesses in Barbados including FirstCaribbean Bank International. It is my understanding that PwC is also the external auditor of FCIB (Belize).
The FirstCaribbean International Bank (FCIB) in
Belize is facing more than 100 charges of failing to report suspicious money transactions between 2001 and 2005.
Both FirstCaribbean International Bank (FCIB) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (East Caribbean Firm) are defendants in the Canadian Action. This action relates to Kingsland Estates Ltd., Barbados. (See list of defendants and lawyers.)
It is high time for the role of the auditors to be
discussed.
My next thought was that if PwC had failed in Belize, and if they had failed in Barbados, then they might have failed in other places as well. I did not have to look too hard. Here is a report dated yesterday on a current probe.
 
PwC face probe into failure to detect €21m fraud
From The Irish Independent - Sunday, 27th July, 2008

TOP dollar accountants PricewaterhouseCoopers are facing an embarrassing probe into their failure to spot a €21m fraud at Greencore.
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ireland (ICAI) will ask how PwC audited Greencore’s Scottish mineral water subsidiary for two years without finding the fraud.
But the probe will be held behind closed doors. Neither press nor public will be allowed to monitor the investigation. Nor will the findings necessarily be made public.
“Greencore Group plc was established by the Irish Government in 1991 to take over Irish Sugar, the nationalised sugar production company.” - Wiki
This must be a frustrating exercise for those who have been defrauded. Forget about checks and balances and just have complete blind faith in ICAI!

Above: Ireland, England and Scotland

Greencore hit by EUR 21m fraud
FindArticles - Greencore hit by EUR 21m fraud at Scottish mineral water unit
Independent, The (London), Jun 26, 2008, by James Thompson

Greencore said its investigations were ongoing, but it warned that the “deliberate concealment of costs at its mineral water business” could slash its operating profit for the current year by €9m. It estimates that the investigation could lead to a restatement of its group operating profit by €4m in 2006 and €8m in 2007.
 
The Sandy Lane Barbados Connection
Irish investors have extensive property interests in Barbados. The “Coolmore mafia” (Coolmore is where they stable their horses in Ireland) is associated with Sandy Lane. It includes J.P. McManus, the legendary gambler, John Magnier, the racehorse trainer, and Dermot Desmond, the legendary Irish businessman. (See Telegraph: The saga of Sandy Lane)
Dermot Desmond appears to have built up a considerable stake in Greencore from 2000 to 2006.
In July 2006, Desmond sold his stake in Greencore but on April 27, 2008, the TimesOnline wrote:

Even in a downturn Desmond, 57, has shown good timing. The sale of his London City airport and stake in Greencore, an Irish food company, before prices slumped, left him with an £848m cash pile.
 
Independent slams PwC
In an article Ghosts Haunt Greencore, the Independent took PwC to task:

The auditors were none other than global giants PricewaterhouseCoopers.
They deserve far greater plaudits than the three underperforming members of the audit committee. PwC were the guys who gave the accounts the all-clear and were reappointed, year after year.
… Yet the Greencore fraud leaves plenty of the reddest faces smiling all the way to the bank.
 

Related:

  • 2004 - Dermot Desmond - Mr. Midas
  • 2004 - Green Monkey Golf Course - Fazio is confident it will be one of the finest courses in the world, reflected by the fact that the owners, J P McManus, Dermot Desmond and John Magnier, are said to have approached Tiger Woods to strike the first ball at the official opening, in exchange for a rumoured $2 million home plus a hefty appearance fee. Telegraph
  • 2006 - Limerick gambler JP McManus has snapped up a lavish €31m Caribbean villa located near his luxury five-star hotel in Barbados.
  • “Despite regulations and increased efforts to implement good internal controls, fraud remains a major threat to companies worldwide, a recent study by Price-water house Coopers found.” FindArticles.com