George Soros is a convicted felon who's treated with pomp and ceremony as if he were a head of state.
Hungary Court confirms $2.5 million fine on Soros for his Oct. 2008 hit on already weakened Hungary at height of global financial crisis:
4/23/2010, "Hungary Court confirms $2.5 million fine on Soros fund," Reuters, Budapest
"New York-based Soros Fund Management LLC will have to pay a fine of 489 million forints ($2.5 million) for unlawful trades in shares of OTP Bank OTPB.BU, market regulator PSZAF said.
PSZAF said on Friday a Hungarian court rejected an appeal in a final ruling against the fine handed out in March 2009.
The fine related to a complicated series of deals just before the market closed on Oct. 9, 2008, which PSZAF said improperly influenced the market and led to a plunge in the price of the shares of the country’s biggest bank.
The deals were struck in a period when Hungary’s financial and capital markets were roiled by the global crisis, and affected a stock that heavily influences Hungary’s BUX .BUX equity index, PSZAF said last year.
In October 2008 Hungary became the first European Union member forced to turn for aid to the International Monetary Fund.
Soros Fund Management LLC was founded by Hungarian-born businessman George Soros."
Soros says he's "sincerely sorry:"
3/28/2009, "Soros fined in Hungary for stock manipulation," Bloomberg via Hurriyet.com, Budapest
"Billionaire investor George Soros’s Soros Fund Management was fined 489 million forint ($2.2 million) for attempting to manipulate the share price of OTP Bank, Hungary’s largest bank, the country’s financial regulator said.
The Soros fund attempted on Oct. 9  to "send out false or misleading signals about a security’s supply and demand or its share price" and short sold OTP shares, the regulator, known as PSZAF, said in a statement late Thursday. The short selling caused the shares to drop 14 percent in the final 30 minutes of trade, the regulator said.
Short-sellers sell borrowed securities, hoping to profit by repurchasing them later at a lower price and then returning them to the owner. Budapest-based OTP is Hungary’s largest lender.
The plunge in OTP shares was part of a "significant and strong attack" against Hungarian money and capital markets, [then] Prime Minister Ferenc Gyurcsany said on Oct. 10 . [Gyurcsany resigned on 3/21/2009]. The same month, the central bank raised the benchmark interest rate to the European Union’s highest to defend the forint and the country secured an International Monetary Fund-led loan to avert a default as investors sold local assets during the credit crunch.
Soros, chairman and founder of Soros Fund Management, said in a statement he was "sincerely sorry" his company made the trade.
The Soros fund has launched an internal investigation, he added."
Hungary's Socialist PM Gyurcsany in power at time of Soros attack resigns after it emerged that he admitted lying about the state of the economy to win elections:
3/21/2009, "Hungary's prime minister Gyurcsany resigns," UK Telegraph, Colin Freeman
"Hungary's prime minister resigned after facing mounting criticism over his government's handling of the country's economic crash."
"Ferenc Gyurcsany, of the ruling Socialists, made the unexpected announcement at his party's congress, keeping a pledge he made in January last year to step down if his party's popularity failed to recover.
It leaves him as one of the first major political casualties of the ongoing economic downturn, which has hit particularly hard in Eastern Europe. Last month Latvia’s centre-right government resigned after widespread street protests at alleged economic mismanagement.
Mr Gyurcsany's reputation was badly damaged when state radio in 2006 broadcast a speech he made at a party meeting in which he admitted lying about the state of the economy to win elections a few months earlier. The broadcast sparked weeks of protests and riots that left hundreds injured.
Hungary has been badly hit by the global financial crisis, and has suffered more than most other former Eastern bloc nations, despite having had one of the most dynamic socialist economies at the time of communism's collapse. The economy is expected to shrink by as much as 5 percent in 2009.
"I'm being told that I myself am the obstacle to the cooperation and stable government majority needed to implement changes," Mr Gyurcsany told party members. "If this is so, I will eliminate this obstacle."
Just hours after saying he was ready to resign as prime minister, however, he was re-elected chairman of his party. That will give him a say in choosing his possible successor.
Fidesz, the main centre-right opposition party, said it would propose holding early elections. "The Socialist government is the country's disgrace and early elections are in the country's interest," said the Fidesz party, led by former Prime Minister Viktor Orban.
A poll released by research firm Median showed that Gyurcsany's popularity stood at 18 percent - the lowest ever for a prime minister since Hungary's return to democracy in 1990."
6/14/2006, "Soros’ Insider-Trading Conviction Upheld," NY Times Dealbook
"France’s Court of Cassation ended its review of a March 2005 judgment that found that Mr. Soros knew that Societe Generale was a takeover target in 1988 when he purchased shares in the bank."...