UPC First Wind bought by SunEdison business history is a great indicator of their SUNE future performance

UPC First Wind (bought by SunEdison) business history is a great indicator of their future performance. 

First Wind was formerly UPC founded by Brian Caffyn. 

Brian Caffyn

Mr. Caffyn has a strong personal interest in developing environmentally friendly renewable energy, which has resulted in a dedication to uncovering new technologies, business models and financing that rapidly expand the deployment of renewable energy. To that end, Mr. Caffyn is the Chairman of UPC Solar, Solar Integrated Technologies, Wind City Oil and Gas and was the founder and inaugural Chairman of UPC Wind (now firstwindSM). In addition, Mr. Caffyn is also Managing Partner of UPC Capital Partners and UPC Energy Partners. He spent the first part of his career in project financing for wind, cogeneration, hydro, solar, geothermal, waste-to-energy and biomass energy projects with GE Capital, Heller Financial, Inc., and several private companies. Mr. Caffyn personally oversaw the establishment and construction of the largest wind energy company in Italy — Italian Vento Power Corporation. Mr. Caffyn received a BA in Finance and Quantitative Methods from Babson College in 1981.


Caffyn and Oreste Vigorito were partners in the wind business and neighbors in Italy for approximately seven years.  During 2005,  Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) News Summer 2005 featured (UPC) First Wind President and CEO Paul Gaynor (alum) in a article about wind energy and Gaynor: 

"...As president and CEO of UPC Wind Management, located in Newton, Mass., Gaynor was tapped to bring the success of the parent company, UPC Group, to North America. In Europe and North Africa, UPC affiliates—including Italian Vento Power Corporation—have raised over $900 million in financing and installed some 900 utility-scale wind turbine generators (WTGs), with a total capacity of more than 635 megawatts. UPC subsidiary companies, positioned across the United States and in Toronto, are currently pursing some 2,000 megawatts in projects from Maine to Maui..."


Public Record SEC:

March 15, 2000

Southern California Edison:

Resolution E-3539 specified that the following information be provided upon the creation of a new affiliate:

New Affiliate Name: Italian Vento Power Corporation 4 S.r.l.

Date this affiliate was created: March 15, 2000

Headquarters: via Circumcallazione

83100 Avellino, Italy Primary Officers (Directors): Marco Ferrando, Clive Warden (EME representatives)

James Houston, (partners representative)

Brain Caffyn, (partners representative)

Oreste Vigorito (partners representative)

Contact for CPUC: James A. Kelly, (626) 302-2284

Intended Function: To build, own and operate wind power plants in Italy for the purpose of selling electricity at a profit…”

Reports of wind energy fraud in Italy are below. UPC associate and partner in the
wind industry, Oreste Vigorito head of IVPC, is arrested for wind energy fraud:

Financial Times Guy Dinsmore November 12, 2009:

"Police said yesterday they had sent requests for documentation to five foreign companies – two in the Netherlands and three in Spain – that were linked to IVPC. Other companies in Ireland and the UK, said to be Italian affiliates of IVPC, have been asked by Italian authorities to provide information."


Footnote: Project Finance, February 2004, "IVPC 2000: certificated success":

"The driver behind IVPC is US wind developer UPC through its UPC International Partnership CV II ..."

a href="http://www.projectfinancemagazine.com/default.asp?page=7&PubID=4&ISS=10883&SID=432546">http://www.projectfinancemagazine.com/default.asp?page=7&PubID=...> (subscription required for more)

Mafia Tied to Wind Fraud in Italy

Posted By Environmental Leader On November 17, 2009 @ 8:11 am

In Carbon Finance & Offsets, Clean Energy, Feature, Financial, Funding & Incentives, Policy & Law, Wind Energy | No Comments

Italian finance police have arrested two prominent businessmen — including one with ties to a former investor in the Cape Wind project in Nantucket — in the wind energy sector on charges of fraud, reports the Financial Times [1]. Arrested were Oreste Vigorito, head of the IVPC energy company and president of Italy ’s National Association of Wind Energy, and Vito Nicastri, a Sicilian business associate, according to the article.

According to the European Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow [2], Oreste Vigorito has ties to Brian Caffyn, a former investor in the Cape Wind project [3], which has been criticized as a poor investment for taxpayers, reports Dakota Voice [4].

Vigorito once owned IVPC with Brian Caffyn, founder of Cape Wind and First Wind, according to the Boston Herald [5]. Caffyn sold his interest in Cape Wind in 2002 and sold his interest in IVPC in 2005. Vigorito has never had any involvement in Cape Wind , according to Mark Rodgers, Communications Director for the Cape Wind project.

The Herald reports that Caffyn was surprised to learn of Vigorito’s arrest:

I read about it in the papers, and I was very surprised,” Brian Caffyn said from Hong Kong, where he is now building wind-energy farms in China and the Philipines.

I know of no fraud with (former partners) Oreste (Vigorito) and IVPC,” said Caffyn, a Cape Cod native and Babson College graduate.

The “Gone with the Wind” sting operation, started in 2007, netted 11 others who were charged but were not arrested. Italian police told Financial Times that the fraud charges are related to obtaining millions of dollars in public subsidies to construct wind farms that never worked. Police confiscated seven wind farms with 185 turbines in Sicily linked to IVPC, according to the article.

The anti-fraud team also is investigating IVPC’s sales of wind farms to foreign companies, and already has sent requests for documentation to five companies located in the Netherlands and Spain , as well as IVPC’s Italian affiliates in Ireland and the UK , according to the article.

Anti-mafia prosecutors in Sicily also have launched a parallel investigation, reports the Financial Times.

Fraud appears to be an emerging problem in the nascent clean energy sector. Most recently, two clean energy auditors — SGS UK and DNV — wereaccused [6] of not properly auditing projects in carbon trading markets.

Meanwhile, the UK is dealing [7] with carbon trading credit scams that could cost millions of dollars. In Australia , to prevent bogus carbon offset schemes, federal police agents can now enter [8] company premises and request paperwork to monitor their emissions.


Article printed from Environmental Leader: http://www.environmentalleader.com

URL to article: http://www.environmentalleader.com/2009/11/17/mafia-tied-to-wind-fr...

URLs in this post:

[1] Financial Times: http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/59fe9474-cf2b-11de-8a4b-00144feabdc0.html...

[2] European Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow: http://cfact.eu/2009/11/15/gone-with-the-wind-arrests-for-massive-f...

[3] Cape Wind project: http://www.environmentalleader.com/2009/08/03/cape-cod-wind-farm-cl...

[4] Dakota Voice: http://www.dakotavoice.com/2009/11/trouble-in-green-paradise-wind-f...

[5] Boston Herald: http://bostonherald.com/business/general/view/20091115ex-partner_of...

[6] accused: http://www.environmentalleader.com/2009/09/11/more-carbon-market-fr...


[7] dealing: http://www.environmentalleader.com/2009/08/31/unwitting-businesses-...

[8] enter: http://www.environmentalleader.com/2009/06/12/australias-carbon-pol...

“The Windfather” – Another report finds wind and renewable energy projects controlled by organized crime to launder money

Cut, clips next from anti-money laundering specialist Christine Duhaime's link below-

By Christine Duhaime | July 12th, 2013

Europol report ties mafia to renewable energy

By Christine Duhaime, B.A., J.D.

This week, Europol released yet another report tying the financing, development and operation of renewable energy projects, particularly wind energy infrastructure projects, to organized crime in Europe.

The involvement of organized crime in wind energy and renewable energy generally, poses significant legal, reputational and financial risks. The latter arises from, among other things, the potential forfeiture of assets acquired in whole or in part from suspected proceeds of crime, whether directly or indirectly.

Lord of the wind

This despite the fact that the alleged mafia and kingpin of wind energy, the so-called “Lord of the Wind”, Vito Nicastri, is still effectively under house arrest in Italy and €1.7 billion in corporate assets that he controlled were recently permanently forfeited to the state. Mr. Nicastri hasn’t been convicted of an offence in connection with the forfeited assets, and he doesn’t have to be for the state to seize assets that are suspected of being proceeds of crime.

The assets forfeited included shares in 40 companies, 100 properties, including wind farms and the assets thereon, 66 bank accounts, life insurance policies, seven exotic sports cars and luxury yachts.

Former convictions

It is surprising that Mr. Nicastri’s companies, or companies in which he was affiliated, qualified to build wind farms involving EU subsidies. According to an EU fraud report, Mr. Nicastri has a criminal record. In 1996, he was convicted of wind farm fraud in connection with improper payments of €15 million and of bribing public officials to obtain contracts. That should have been a red flag in the transactional due diligence process and a bar to any EU or national procurements or approval of any government licenses. Mr. Nicastri is believed to be a member of the Cosa Nostra.

In 2009, the Boston Herald reported that Italian Vento Power Corp. (“IVPC“) one of the wind energy companies forfeited to the Italian state that was associated with the alleged boss of the Cosa Nostra, Oreste Vigorito (who was allegedly associated with Mr. Nicastri), was formerly connected with a shareholder and director of two Boston-based wind energy companies.

Generous subsidies are attractive to organized crime

Organized crime is attracted to wind energy for three reasons: (a) generous government subsidies and feed-in tariffs; (b) corporate tax credits; and (c) the ease with which they can launder proceeds of crime as a result of the lack of knowledge of the mafia, money laundering and forfeiture risks on the part of financing and governments participants in the wind and renewable energy sectors.

Other countries affected

The problem of organized crime infiltrating and controlling the wind energy sector, and generally, renewable energy, is not limited to Italy.

According to reports from ISA Intel, organized crime in Greece is actively engaged in laundering proceeds of crime through wind and other renewable energy projects.

And the Financial Intelligence Directorate for Bulgaria’s Agency for National Security reported a few days ago that according to its studies, renewable energy companies in Bulgaria act as a front for money laundering. In the Bulgarian cases, offshore companies (usually in tax havens) are used by organized crime to build and operate energy projects and finance related entities that bid on, and build energy infrastructure projects.

Mitigating the risks for governments and banks

The use of wind and renewable energy projects to launder proceeds of crime is a relatively new development in money laundering law. From a money laundering perspective, it may be appropriate to consider wind energy projects as high risk and therefore subject to enhanced and independent due diligence.

Know your customer procedures

Financial institutions and other participants should have sound know your customer (“KYC“) procedures in place. They help flush out money laundering and protect the reputation and integrity of the participants in a project by reducing the likelihood of any one of them becoming a vehicle for financial crime and suffering the consequential reputational damage.

Reputational and other risks

The inadequacy or absence of KYC standards can subject participants in a project to serious customer and counterparty risks, especially reputational, operational, legal and concentration risks. All these risks are interrelated. However, any one of them can result in significant financial cost to an organization.

In respect of banks, law firms, or government agencies, reputational risk poses a major threat, since by their nature, they each must maintain the confidence of, as the case may be, shareholders, rating agencies, creditors, the marketplace, tax payers or the public.

And there is also the risk to the investment itself, namely of civil or criminal forfeiture of the asset, an outcome that is entirely avoidable by the exercise of competent anti-money laundering due diligence.

Government agencies especially should be alive to the issue of being able to demonstrate to the public in the face of a potential money laundering scandal that the requisite precautions were taken to minimize taxpayer exposure. Money laundering through wind farms on the scale allegedly conducted by Mr. Nicastri is rarely limited within national borders and there are likely cases similar to his that will come to light in North America.

The Wind Father illustration is borrowed from The Global Warming Policy Foundation. 

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Christine Duhaime, Corporate Money Laundering, Energy & Money Laundering, Environmental Crime, Europol, Money Laundering & Banks, Money Laundering Charges, Money Laundering Europe, Money Laundering News, Money Laundering Trends


Europol issues organized crime threat assessment focusing on cybercrime, hacking, money laundering and drugs

By Christine Duhaime ⋅ March 21, 2013

Filed Under  Bank Fraud, Camorra, Christine Duhaime, Cosa Nostra, cybercrime, Duhaime Law, EC3, European Union, Europol, hacktivism, Human Trafficking, immigration, mafia, MTIC fraud, renewable energy, SOCTA, Virtual Currency, wind energy, wind farms

Europol’s SOCTA Report on Organized Crime

by Christine J. Duhaime

Organized crime groups such as the Cosa Nostra, Camorra and Ndrangheta are reported in the SOCTA as being heavily involved in renewable energy (wind and solar) and waste management businesses all over the EU which are used to launder funds.

With respect to renewable energy, the involvement of organized crime commences at the financing of infrastructure and continues to operating wind farms and solar energy companies. The generous EU subsidies, tax credits and tariff fees are attractive to organized crime because it means ultimately that the government is funding organized criminal activities.


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Join Citizens' Task Force on Wind Power - Maine

Comment by Barbara Durkin on October 6, 2015 at 12:56pm
Comment by Barbara Durkin on October 6, 2015 at 12:55pm

Duhaime quoted above...priceless!

"government is funding organized criminal activities"

Comment by Pineo Girl on October 6, 2015 at 12:26pm

This is great information and detail regarding UPC Renewables  then First Wind then Sun Edison - Bad actors all around - The last I read Brian Cafflyn was hiding out in Hong Kong and denying everything - Personally I have been under the impression that  the production numbers are being fudged in Maine by Sun Edison - I am trying to obtain information from FERC - But why would the Rollins and Stetson projects int eh Lincoln lakes area be some of the highest retail purchase users of Bangor Hydro Electric?  Buying power to meet their power purchase agreements since production is so low? 


Maine as Third World Country:

CMP Transmission Rate Skyrockets 19.6% Due to Wind Power


Click here to read how the Maine ratepayer has been sold down the river by the Angus King cabal.

Maine Center For Public Interest Reporting – Three Part Series: A CRITICAL LOOK AT MAINE’S WIND ACT


(excerpts) From Part 1 – On Maine’s Wind Law “Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine if the law’s goals were met." . – Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting, August 2010 https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-power-bandwagon-hits-bumps-in-the-road-3/From Part 2 – On Wind and Oil Yet using wind energy doesn’t lower dependence on imported foreign oil. That’s because the majority of imported oil in Maine is used for heating and transportation. And switching our dependence from foreign oil to Maine-produced electricity isn’t likely to happen very soon, says Bartlett. “Right now, people can’t switch to electric cars and heating – if they did, we’d be in trouble.” So was one of the fundamental premises of the task force false, or at least misleading?" https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/wind-swept-task-force-set-the-rules/From Part 3 – On Wind-Required New Transmission Lines Finally, the building of enormous, high-voltage transmission lines that the regional electricity system operator says are required to move substantial amounts of wind power to markets south of Maine was never even discussed by the task force – an omission that Mills said will come to haunt the state.“If you try to put 2,500 or 3,000 megawatts in northern or eastern Maine – oh, my god, try to build the transmission!” said Mills. “It’s not just the towers, it’s the lines – that’s when I begin to think that the goal is a little farfetched.” https://www.pinetreewatchdog.org/flaws-in-bill-like-skating-with-dull-skates/

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Hannah Pingree on the Maine expedited wind law

Hannah Pingree - Director of Maine's Office of Innovation and the Future

"Once the committee passed the wind energy bill on to the full House and Senate, lawmakers there didn’t even debate it. They passed it unanimously and with no discussion. House Majority Leader Hannah Pingree, a Democrat from North Haven, says legislators probably didn’t know how many turbines would be constructed in Maine."


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