Pre-paid card firm CEO fears for safety after Mossad hit

Pre-paid card firm CEO fears for safety after Mossad hit

The CEO of pre-paid card firm Payoneer has voiced concerns over his personal safety after Dubai police linked cards supplied by his company to the January assassination of Hamas official Mahmoud al-Mabhouh.

Officials in Dubai have implicated Israel's intelligence agency, the Mossad, to Mahmoud al-Mabhouh's murder and say suspects used fake passports from other countries, including the UK and Ireland to enter the country.

According to the Wall Street Journal, authorities also believe that New York-based Payoneer distributed pre-paid cards that have been linked to accounts used by 14 of the 26 suspects.

It is not known what exactly the cards were used for, or whether they came directly from Payoneer or one of its customers.

The firm's CEO, Yuval Ta, who has previously described himself as a former Israeli special-forces soldier, now "has legitimate personal safety concerns for himself and his family," a spokeswoman, Mary Kae Marinac, has told the New York Post.

Launched in 2005, Payoneer acts a middleman, selling MasterCard pre-paid cards issued by MetaBank and Choice Bank, to firms for paying staff, often those overseas.

On its Web site, the firm insists it is "committed to meeting the highest standards in integrity, security, and privacy" and complies with all applicable US online payments regulations, including KYC and AML rules.

However, Meta told the WSJ that the individual cardholders were not on suspected terrorist lists and that it had no way of determining that identity theft "had been perpetrated on valid governments and their citizens".

The affair will prompt further scrutiny of the US pre-paid card industry, which has in the past been subject to regulatory probing over its potential abuse by money launderers.

Hamas Killing Shines Light on Payoneer, Prepaid Cards - WSJ

Terrorists on my trail, NYC bizman fears - New York Post

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