_ERVA 3rd January 2019
Landsbanki fails to transfer Equity Release cases to Luxembourg
It has been a while since our last post, but things have been fairly quiet in the litigation front, save for Landsbanki’s cases.
Undeterred by recent rotund judicial response against Equity Release contracts, liquidators for the Icelandic defunct financial predator remain undeterred and a still trying to collect their investments or, if needed, steal pensioners’ properties from under their feet.
For Landsbanki, cunning has become a second nature and consequently, their very latest devious strategy is to contest the jurisdiction of Spanish Courts in favour of the bank-friendly tribunals of Luxembourg, invoking EU-bankruptcy laws.
So far though, ERVA lawyers have managed to throw out no less than 8 motions filed by Landsbankito have the cases relocated to Luxembourg Courts. The Courts involved are in the Malaga, Almeria and Alicante provinces.
2 further motions were accepted by the Courts but are likely to be reversed on appeal.
On finding in favour of the victims of the equity release fraud, the Courts upheld existing case law on the matter (two rulings of the Court of Appeal of Malaga of 2013 and 2015) as well as legal precepts invoked by the counsel of the victims.
Specifically, the Courts have convened that:
- EU-bankruptcy laws do not apply to contracts signed by consumers, who still have the right to choose to litigate where they live.
- EU-bankruptcy laws do not apply to legal agreements or contracts that were entered with the company prior to it becoming insolvent.
- Spanish laws grant exclusive jurisdiction to national Courts where dispute over property registered rights is concerned.
Paperjam November 2014
Benjamin Bodig, l’avocat luxembourgeois du collectif des victimes de la banque Landsbanki a claqué la porte du tribunal de commerce le 4 novembre, alors qu’il devait plaider le retrait d’Yvette Hamilius de la liquidation.
FROM LONDON HIGH COURT: HAMILIUS – WITNESS TRANSCRIPTS
ENGLISH ORIGINAL TRANSCRIPTS of Luxembourg’s lawyer, HAMILIUS as witness excerpt taken from hours of questioning- Stanford/Hamilius
Mme Hamilius’s response to questions in The High Court, LONDON October 8th 2014
IN RESPONSE TO QUESTIONS ABOUT JUGE VAN RUYMBEKE AND her position as TEMOIN ASSISTÉ in Landsbanki Criminal proceedings in France and in response to the demand by hundreds of victims of the Hamilius regime of bankruptcy administration for her removal from her post as we consider her position is untenable as a European bankruptcy administrator.
3 Q. Let me ask you something completely different,
4 Madame HAMILIUS, and then I think you will be able to
5 conclude your evidence, subject to any further questions
6 your counsel have.
7 Are you aware that a letter was delivered to the
8 Court which supervises you in Luxembourg yesterday,
9 signed by four advocates, a Spanish advocate,
10 a Luxembourg advocate and I think two French
11 advocates — or possibly one French advocate and another
12 Spanish advocate —
13 Answer Hamilius. One Belgian.
14 Q. — applying to the court to remove you as liquidator?
15 Are you aware of that?
16 Answer HAMILIUS.- I have read the news on my laptop this morning because
17 apparently these four lawyers have given some
18 information to the press, but I have not seen the
20 Q. The French advocate is the advocate acting in the
21 investigation by a juge d’instruction in Paris who has
22 declared you a TÉMOIN ASSISTÉ ; is that right?
HAMILIUS: A. NO, Mr Van Ruymbeke has finished his investigation.
He did so in September 2000 and — this year and some
people had been heard by Mr Van Ruymbeke as TEMOIN ASSISTÉ , but once the investigation is closed, the témoin assisté CANNOT BE INDICTED, and that is not what is written in the newspapers, because in the
newspapers — I do not know who feeds the newspapers —
it is said that I would be a témoin assisté, but when
the investigation is closed, THIS IS OF NO VALUE.
7 MR ALLISON: My Lady, I’m not quite sure of the relevance to
8 the issues here. I’m just going to make that point
9 clear because it’s not explained how things in France,
10 Spain or elsewhere can relate to two mortgage loans
11 taken by Mr Stanford from Landsbanki Luxembourg.
12 MRS JUSTICE ASPLIN: Thank you, Mr Allison.
13 MR McDONNELL: The letter that has been delivered to the
14 court by these advocates refers to proceedings in Spain
15 and in France and in Luxembourg, in which creditors of
16 Landsbanki Luxembourg are complaining of your conduct of
17 the liquidation. Is that not so?
18 A HAMILIUS. Maybe. I have not read the application.
19 MR ALLISON: My Lady, I thought the evidence was clear that
20 the witness has not seen the letter, has only seen
21 a newspaper. It’s quite hard to have questions put to
22 you about a document you’ve never seen.
23 MR McDONNELL: Yes, well, I haven’t seen the letter either,
my Lady, but according to the newspapers it was delivered to the court in Luxembourg by these lawyers yesterday.
2 Never mind.
(NOTE HERE EVERYONE!)
3 Hamilius Answer: But I WAS INFORMED — may I add, I was informed that
your client is in CONSTANT EXCHANGE OF EMAILS WITH DEBTORS —
“EQUITY RELEASE DEBTORS ” WE call them — so you should know more than I do.
Q. Well, I can certainly tell my Lady some quite useful things about that if you would like me to, but I’m not sure that she wants to hear that.
MRS JUSTICE ASPLIN: I don’t, thank you, and I’m not sure
where this line of questioning is leading which would be of assistance either. Is there anything else?
13 MR McDONNELL: Nothing else.
Landsbanki Misleading Advertising Case Due to be Filed
FROM THE ERVA.ES WEB SITE 19th June 2014
Lawyers acting for Landsbanki victims are due to file a misleading publicity case against Landsbanki Luxembourg S.A., Lex Life and Pensions S.A. and Offshore Money Managers Correduría de Seguros S.L.
The case is based on the extensive fraudulent publicity that all three entities issued when offering the product known as ‘SITRA’ (Spanish Inheritance Tax Reduction Scheme), ‘Capital Insurance’ or ‘Equity Release‘.
According to the documentation that lawyers hold, the following has been established:
- The product was devised as a means to reduce, or eliminate completetely, Spanish IHT. We now know this is not only untrue, as it proposes customers to defraud the Spanish Tax Office.
- The product was also designed to potentially produce an income, it being the difference between the return on the invested asset, minus charges and expenses, and the cost of servicing the loan. This was just one possibility, the other more likely one being total loss.
- The advertising stresses prominently the benefits of the product but omits the risks involved -or if at all features these in small print- namely the loss of the property and further.
Landsbanki was extremely successful in attracting new customers by using its main feature: reduction of Spanish Inheritance Tax. Lex Life & Pensions did too.
And Lex Life & Pensions used the name top Spanish firm Cuatrecasas to push sales, by admitting the following:
this product has been ellaborated in conjunction with top law firm Cuatrecasas
Lawyers are awaiting a formal response to a letter sent to Cuatrecasas but we can anticipate the response: “we deny any involvement and do not want to know anything about this product”
The case is to be filed with Courts in Malaga and will focus on the defendants’ advertising.
As for the role of OMM, its responsibility is two-fold:
- Active participation in the promotion and marketing of the product, generously remunerated with an introduction commission and further, by receiving regular trail commissions (as is the case with Jyske bank too).
- Attribution of joint responsibility to any media outlet used to promote and market a particular product or service (rulings by Madrid Appeal Court rulings 17/6/2008 and 30/9/2009).
A case for misleading publicity narrows down the scope of the dispute as it confines the Judge to rule on whether the advertising is/isn’t misleading, without giving any room for further interpretation (i.e. namely misselling: whether customers could and should have sought further advice, whether they were savvy investors or suitable for the product, whether it was a high risk speculative product known to the public etc.).
OMM has declined to come forward to assist claimants, ignoring letters from lawyers inviting them to participate in this case as witnesses, and yet their fraudulent advertising is still today available to the public.
WHILST LUXEMBOURG REFUSES TO INVESTIGATE,
In Madrid, the Spanish appeal Court Condemns Bank for malpractice and mis-selling to clients who were sold toxic products from LANDSBANKI, KAUPTHING and Lehman Bros.
The Spanish court rules that Deutsche Bank breached it’s contractual obligations, failed in it’s diligence and failed to show loyalty to clients and give proper information about financial products and were sentenced to return 3 million to 49 victims.
The bank is ordered to pay damages, compensation and interest payments with deduction of actual sums received by customers.
The appeal judges said the customers were RETAIL customers who had been led to believe they were investing in “profitable and safe financial products”.
The judges said the bank had failed to do a proper profiling of these RETAIL investors.
Deutsche Bank failed to provide “sufficient information for clients to be able to give full consent” to the procurement of these products, so the Court concluded that the customers ended up giving their approval for something else or something partially unknown and not understood.
This bank, like so many others and like LANDSBANKI Luxembourg, was accused of malpractice, abusive marketing and mis-selling, so the clients had not acted like greedy irresponsible people seeking to play roulette and betting blindly, as they had been accused of by the Bank’s lawyers, but had sought to invest money they had been working all their lives for, in products they had been told were ‘SAFE” and which they thought were properly regulated.
The judges said the risks implicated in their investments were not explained correctly and following the EU rules on consumer protection.
The Spanish Court formed it’s decision in the context of 2006, when these products were issued, when the first signs of the crisis were seen and which exploded in 2008, with the collapse of Lehman Brothers and the 3 main Icelandic banks,LANDSBANKI, KAUPHTING & GLITNIR.
The court convicted the bank because it was considered guilty of malpractice & abusive marketing.
The lawyers Jordi Ruiz de Villa, Office Jausas and Fernando Zunzunegui of Zunzunegui Attorneys, who have defended the victims, are of the firm opinion that Deutsche Bank and the other banks, should have known very well of this crisis in 2006 and all the pitfalls and dangers for the Retail investors and should have warned the clients of the dangers of investing in such banks as LANDSBANKI, LEHMAN or KAUPHTING.
March 27th 2014
Great victory for French victims in Paris when Mme Hamilius gets her appeal rejected by The Court of Appeal, who uphold the decision of Judge Renaud van Ruymbeke to protect their properties.
This is a major setback for the Landsbanki administration and Mme Hamilius in their attempts to steal the properties from the victims of the Landsbanki Equity Release Scam that ensnared so many across Europe.
Follow these links to read the press articles, and we will publish the court findings soon, once the papers are made public.
Another slap in the face to Mme Yvette Hamilius, as she starts to reap the fruits of her disgraceful behavior in her role as administrator. This has actually happened, for the second time, in her own country, Luxembourg. Could it be they are starting to see what a liability she might be ?
THIS IS THE CASE THAT HAMILIUS LOST AGAINST THE LANDSBNKI
EMPLOYEES WHICH HAS SET A PRECEDENT IN EU LAW.
This is the case showing how Hamilius intended to deprive the empolyees of their lawful benefits and salaries
Insolvent companies remain responsible for social dialogue with employees
The European Court of Justice has issued a decision on the Luxembourg Landsbanki redundancy case, after being addressed in May 2010 by the Luxembourg Supreme Court. Indirectly, the European judges were asked to rule on the role of social dialogue once a company liquidation has been ordered by a court. This preliminary ruling will probably require the revision of provisions on the immediate termination of employment contracts in cases of company bankruptcy.
Fate of employment contracts in cases of court-ordered liquidation
In December 2008, the irremediable insolvency of Landsbanki Luxembourg SA led the District Court of Luxembourg to announce the dissolution of the bank and its winding up under the bankruptcy laws.
Some Landsbanki employees, including staff delegates, were told that, in accordance with article L. 125-1 of the Labour Code, their employment contracts had automatically come to an end. In fact, according to this article, the closure of the bank resulting from the bankruptcy order terminated their employment contracts with immediate effect.
Three staff delegates argued before the Labour Court, and later before the Court of Appeal, that the dissolution, liquidation and bankruptcy were strictly independent and distinct legal notions. Therefore, since article L. 125-1 of the Labour Code only provides for the immediate termination of employment contracts when the employer issues an order of bankruptcy, its provisions do not apply to the dissolution and winding-up ordered by a court.
The claimants therefore argued that the terminations should have been regarded as dismissals grounded on non-personal reasons within the framework of collective redundancy.
Initially, the Labour Court and the Court of Appeal both rejected this argument, saying that the dissolution and liquidation associated with a bankruptcy were comparable to the bankruptcy from a legal point of view.
The courts also stated that the termination of an employment contract under article L.125-1 LC corresponds to an automatic termination and cannot be regarded as a dismissal.
This is the crucial point, since it keeps the termination of an employment contract based on article L.125-1 LC away from the regime of collective redundancy. This means that when the termination of an employment contract coincides with the termination of activities ordered by a court, then there is no requirement for the information and consultation process and negotiation of a social plan that takes place in the case of collective redundancies.
Legal analysis of the termination of employment contracts
The judges of the Supreme Court (Cour de Cassation) began by confirming the link between the court-ordered dissolution and liquidation and the bankruptcy in order to justify the application of article L.125-1 LC. As for the second part of the claimants’ argument, the judges chose to suspend the proceedings to lodge a preliminary issue with the European Court of Justice (ECJ).
Article L.125-1 of the Labour Code does provide for the termination of employment contracts with immediate effect without further formalities when the business cessation results from the employer’s order of bankruptcy. On the other hand, the Labour Code (article L.166-1 and others following it) also requires the employer to engage in a prior information and consultation process and to start negotiations on a social plan with staff representatives whenever collective redundancy is contemplated. The code explicitly mentions that those provisions apply even though the contemplated collective redundancy results from a closing down ordered by a court.
Hence, the European judges were asked to determine whether the rules related to collective redundancies provided by legislation (Directive 98/59/EC) were applicable in case of a judicial decision ordering the dissolution and winding up of a company and therefore, indirectly, to clarify whether such termination was deemed to be a dismissal.
A second step was to rule on the place left, in that specific context, for the information and consultation process and collective bargaining.
Social dialogue survives with the employer’s legal personality
To both questions, the ECJ answered in the affirmative and even ruled in its decision that, until the legal personality of an establishment whose dissolution and winding up have been ordered has ceased to exist, the obligations related to any information and consultation process and social plan negotiation must be fulfilled.
As long as the management of the establishment remains in place, even with limited powers of management, it must fulfil the obligations of the employer in relation to the information and consultation process and social plan negotiation.
Moreover, if the management of the establishment is entirely taken over by a liquidator, the latter will have to fulfil those obligations.
In practice, this ruling sends a strong message to the social partners that, despite the powers possessed by the courts to interfere in such decisive issues, they still have an undisputed role to play in respect of the mission they have been entrusted with by law.
Therefore, the provisions of national legislation cannot provide a way out of a fundamental principle such as the entitlement to information, consultation and social bargaining.
Guy Castegnaro and Ariane Claverie, Castegnaro Cabinet d’avocats
N.B.Information on Durable Medium is required by MiFiD law for any information regarding to the client from the bank or company therefore this includes the obligation of the liquidator to do the same
BUSINESSPublished on 24.01.14 07:18 WORT.Lu
Clearstream pays $152 million over Iran sanctions violations
“Clearstream provided the Government of Iran with substantial and unauthorised access to the US financial system”
(AFP) Luxembourg financial clearing house Clearstream Banking will pay the United States $152 million to settle accusations it illegally helped Iran’s central bank access the US financial system, the Treasury announced Thursday.
The Treasury said that in 2007 and 2008, Clearstream held an account in a bank in New York on behalf of the Central Bank of Iran that contained $2.8 billion worth of securities, violating US controls on financial dealings with Tehran.
Clearstream, with offices in Kirchberg, further transferred the CBI’s interests, an act of custody and related banking services under US jurisdiction which the Treasury said constituted an “apparent violation” of the US Iranian Transactions and Sanctions Regulations.
“Clearstream provided the Government of Iran with substantial and unauthorised access to the US financial system,” said Adam Szubin, director of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).
“Today’s action should serve as a clear alert to firms operating in the securities industry that they need to be vigilant with respect to dealings with sanctioned parties,” he said in a statement.
The Treasury said Clearstream told OFAC officials in 2008 it would terminate its business with Iranian clients.
But it transferred the CBI’s assets to another European bank’s newly opened custody account at Luxembourg’s Clearstream.
“This new custody account allowed the CBI to continue holding its interests in the securities through Clearstream’s omnibus account in the United States,” the Treasury said.
Clearstream “had reason to know” that the CBI still retained beneficial ownership of the securities, it said.
The Treasury, however, added that the settlement announced Thursday was lower than it could have been due to Clearstream’s strong response of strengthening its compliance with US sanction rules.
Un anchiment qui passait par le Luxembourg
Luxembourg authorities ordered an investigation, and then they effected a cover-up.
This sounds familiar to the victims of Madoff, the BCCI, the LANDSBANKI and others being brushed aside by the Luxembourg judiciary
LUXEMBOURG CLEARSTREAM WAS CLASSIFIED BY THE LUXEMBOURG JUDICIARY JUST AS LANDSBANKI AND BCCI.
Clearstream employees joke that the company name means “the river that washes.”
Karp: “How interesting that US stock markets were about to fall off their peak “dot-con” frenzy at the time that Clearstream was beginning to unravel in public!!
This is a background, (to help research recent news of Clearstream) of the CLEARSTREAM SCANDAL up until the Judge Van Rumbyke ( same judge as for the Landsbanki case) investigations into the tangled web running through Luxembourg where many things tie up and arrive at the same destination. COVER-UP in Luxembourg and Judiciary ruling “NO PROBLEM”, in seriously problematic files!
The world’s biggest banks and multinational corporations have set up a shadowy system to secretly move trillions of dollars—a system that can be exploited by tax evaders, drug runners and even terrorists.
In the tax haven of Luxembourg, a little-known outfit called CLEARSTREAM handles billions of dollars a year in stock and bond transfers for banks, investment companies and multinational corporations.
But a former top official of this “clearinghouse” says CLEARSTREAM operates a secret bookkeeping system that allows its clients to hide the money that moves through their accounts.
In these days of global markets, individuals and companies may be buying stocks, bonds or derivatives from a seller who is halfway across the world. Clearinghouses like CLEARSTREAM keep track of the “paperwork” for the transactions.
Banks with accounts in the clearinghouse use a debit and credit system and, at the end of the day, the accounts (minus “handling fees,” of course) are totaled up. The clearinghouse doesn’t actually send money anywhere, it just debits and credits its members’ accounts. It’s all very efficient. But the money involved is massive.
Clearstream handles more than 80 million transactions a year, and claims to have securities on deposit valued at $6.5 trillion.
It’s also an excellent mechanism for laundering drug money or hiding income from the tax collector. Banks are supposed to be subject to local government oversight.
But many of Clearstream’s members have real or “virtual” subsidiaries in offshore tax havens, where records are secret and investigators can’t trace transactions.
Clearstream, which keeps the central records of financial trades, doesn’t get even the cursory regulation that applies to offshore banks. On top of that, it deliberately has put in place a system to hide many of its clients’ transactions from any authorities who might come looking.
According to former insiders:
Clearstream has a double system of accounting, with secret, non-published accounts that banks and big corporations use to make transfers they don’t want listed on the official books.
Though it is legally limited to dealing with financial institutions, Clearstream gives secret accounts to multinational corporations so they can move stocks and money free from outside scrutiny.
Clearstream carried an account for a notoriously criminal Russian bank for several years after the bank had officially “collapsed,” and clearinghouse accounts camouflaged the destinations of transfers to Colombian banks.
Clearstream operates a computer program that erases the traces of trades on request from its members.
Clearstream was used to try to hide a dubious arms deal between French authorities and the Taiwanese military.
Many of these charges were first made in a controversial book called Révélation$, written by Denis Robert, a French journalist, and Ernest Backes, a former top official at the clearinghouse who helped design and install the computer system that facilitated the undisclosed accounts.
The book’s impact was explosive. Six European judges called it “the black box” of illicit international financial flows.
Top Clearstream officials were fired. The scandal made headlines in big European newspapers; TV networks broadcast specials; the French National Assembly’s financial crimes committee held a hearing.
Luxembourg authorities ordered an investigation, and then they effected a cover-up.
Yet Révélation$ remains unpublished and relatively unknown in the United States.
A bearded, heavyset man in his mid-fifties, Backes spoke with In These Times in Neuchâtel, Switzerland, where he’d gone to attend a conference on international crime, and explained how he’d started fighting “organized crime in banking.”
Ernest Backes was born in 1946 in Trier, Germany. (As he likes to joke, “There were two important people born in Trier; the other is Karl Marx.”)
His father was a Luxembourg metal worker, his mother a German nurse. From 14, he worked on an assembly line to pay for school and joined the Young Catholic Workers.
After a job in the Luxembourg civil service, he was hired in 1971 by Clearstream’s predecessor Cedel (short for “central delivery” office), set up the year before by a consortium of 66 international banks.
Backes helped design and install Cedel’s computerized accounting system in the ’70s.
Cedel and its main competitor, Brussels-based Euroclear, were started to manage transfers of “eurodollars,” U.S. currency kept in banks outside the United States.
Eurodollars were invented in the ’50s by the Chinese and the Soviets so they would not have to put their assets in banks where the U.S. government could seize them.
But others saw value in eurodollars, and they began to be traded for other currencies.
Some banks attracted eurodollars with higher interest than was being paid in America, and U.S. corporations and individuals began using the accounts to avoid laws on domestic banks. The euromoney market was born. (By the ’90s, the Federal Reserve estimated that about two-thirds of U.S. currency was held abroad as eurodollars.)
Cedel and Euroclear eventually expanded into handling transfers of stock titles and other financial instruments.
Their clients needed a system that would guarantee the creditworthiness of their trading partners and keep records of the trades.
The clearinghouses provided speed, discretion, and a system that didn’t make the records of their deals and profits readily accessible to outsiders.
Every few months, a list of members’ codes was distributed. For transfers, members just entered the codes, and Clearstream handled the deals with no further inquiries.
In 1975, several big Italian and German banks wanted to centralize their accounting and didn’t want other members of Cedel to send transfers through their numerous individual branches.
The Cedel council of administration—its board of directors—authorized banks with multiple subsidiaries not to put all their accounts on the lists. Backes and Gerard Soisson, then Cedel’s general manager, set up a system of non-published accounts.
A bank would send a transfer to the code of the headquarters bank, which would send it on to the non-published account of its subsidiary. The bank would regulate this operation internally.
Soisson authorized each non-published account, which would be known only by some insiders, including the auditors and members of the council of administration. As Cedel’s literature to clients explained:
“As a general rule, the principal account of each client is published: the existence of the account, as well as its name and number, are published. … On demand, and at the discretion of Cedel Bank, the client can open a non-published account. The non-published accounts don’t figure in any printed document and their name is not mentioned in any report.”
“ Clearstream was formed in 1999 out of the merger of Cedel and the compensation company of Deustche Börse (the German stock exchange). “No accounts are secret,” insists spokesman Graham Cope. “We are controlled by the local authorities … who have access to information on all accounts. The term ‘secret’ is misused again and again. Our customers choose to have unpublished accounts, which simply means—like a telephone number—they choose not to display the name and number in our publications. Customers often have many unpublished accounts, which they use for their own internal management purposes to ensure there is no confusion between their accounts.”
But Backes thinks otherwise. “I discovered an increasing number of unpublished accounts,” he says. “There were more unpublished than published accounts, and a [large] proportion were not sub-accounts of a principal account, which is what the system was supposedly for. The owners of these accounts were not inscribed on the official list of the clients of the firm.”
How does the system work? Backes explains, for example, that a bank with a published account could open an unpublished account for a branch in the Cayman Islands, an offshore tax haven. A drug trafficker easily could have the Cayman branch debit cash from his personal account to buy stocks on Wall Street. The transaction would be handled by Clearstream, which would transfer the money electronically to a New York bank that had its own clearinghouse account. Soon the shares could be sold to buy real estate in Chicago with “clean” money. But regulators or investigators, depending only on published accounts, would find it nearly impossible to trace the money. Backes says Clearstream employees joke that the company name means “the river that washes.”
While clearinghouse clients may want to keep transactions secret, detailed information on every transfer, including those via non-published accounts, is listed on daily “security statements”—records to prove that the stock or cash has been sent.
These statements are stored on microfiche and, under Luxembourg law, must be kept 10 years’ for commercial enterprises and 15 years for banks.
A Clearstream insider gave Backes 10 years worth of these records.
“The documents are a mine of information for any financial inquiry,” Backes says.
“The archives of the clearinghouses can contribute to retracing where funds have gone. The knowledge of the list and the codes relative to non-published accounts, until now guarded secrets, offer immense possibilities.”
Backes notes that similar records exist for the other big clearinghouses, Euroclear and Swift, also based in Brussels. “It is possible,” he explains, “when one knows the date of an operation and the bank of entry, to reconstitute inside the clearing companies the voyage of the money and stocks or bonds—to follow the tracks.”
Révélation$ charges that Cedel/Clearstream further violated its own statutes by setting up unpublished accounts for industrial and commercial companies. With accounts in their own names, companies could avoid passing through banks or exchange agents to use the clearinghouse. They thus skirted mandated due diligence and record-keeping. When Siemens was proposed for membership, Backes says, some Cedel employees protested that this violated Luxembourg law. However, management told them that Siemens’ admission had been negotiated at the highest level.
Among the major companies with secret accounts, Backes discovered the Shell Petroleum Group and the Dutch agricultural multinational Unilever, one of whose accounts was associated with Goldman Sachs. On the French TV broadcast “Les dissimulateurs” (“The Deceivers”) in March 2000, Clearstream President Lussi simply denied the accounts existed. “Only banks and brokers are eligible for membership,” he said, “as it has always been the case. No private company accounts, no commercial or industrial companies.”
But his own spokesman contradicts this claim. “Customers of Clearstream can be banks or, exceptionally, corporate clients who have their own treasury departments the size of banks,” Cope wrote in an e-mail to In These Times. “We cannot accept CEOs of multinationals or terrorists and have strict account-opening procedures to prevent such problems.”
By 2000, according to Backes, Clearstream managed about 15,000 accounts (of which half were non-published) for 2,500 clients in 105 countries; most of the investment companies, banks and their subsidiaries are from Western Europe and the United States. Most of the new non-published accounts were in offshore tax havens. The banks with the most non-published accounts are Banque Internationale de Luxembourg (309), Citibank (271) and Barclays (200).
Régis Hempel, a computer programmer who worked for Clearstream, says some dormant accounts were activated for special transactions.
“Such an account can be opened in the morning, used for a transaction, and closed to appear as delisted in the evening,” Backes explains.
“Only the guy who gave the order to open it in the morning knows about the transaction. An investigator or auditor would not look at such an account because it doesn’t appear on the accounts list.”
Hempel also claims that Clearstream erased the records of some transfers.
In testimony before the French National Assembly’s financial crimes committee, he explained that a computer system had been developed to wipe out the traces of transactions in non-published accounts.
When a bank wanted to carry out such a transaction, Hempel testified, it simply contacted a Cedel staff person. “We made a ‘hard coding’ in the program and corrected the instruction that was going to come,” he explained. “[An instruction could be] a purchase, a sale, a movement of funds or a security.
We made it disappear, or we put it on another account. Then, when all was finished, we put back the old program and removed the exception. It was not seen or known.”
He said such requests came every two or three days.
Hempel volunteered to help Luxembourg prosecutor Carlos Zeyen investigate Clearstream.
But Hempel says local authorities seem more interested in blocking an investigation than in exercising oversight.
Zeyen responded that the inquiry into Hempel’s charges hadn’t produced any evidence and dismissed claims that Hempel had been prevented from seeing relevant files as “rubbish.”
In a July 2001 public statement, Zeyen said the investigation would continue.
Luxembourg sources say Zeyen was looking into how Menatep used the system and also into improper ways André Lussi might have gained personally.
In January, a French judge took depositions about Menatep corruption. According to Luxembourg journalist Marc Gerges, writing in the local newspaper Land, the FBI and the German BKA are also interested in what might be revealed about the role of Menatep in the diversion of IMF funds.
The publication of Révélation$ brought forward others with stories about how Cedel/Clearstream had facilitated corruption.
Joël Bûcher, former deputy general director of the Taiwan branch of the bank Société Générale, wrote Zeyen volunteering to testify that SG used the clearinghouse to hide bribes and to launder money.
In his deposition for Zeyen—which is cited in Denis Robert’s new book on the Clearstream saga, The Black Box—Bûcher said he had worked for the bank for 20 years, but quit in 1995 out of disgust at its rampant money-laundering.
He said much of that occurred though a Luxembourg affiliate working through non-published accounts at Cedel.
“Cedel didn’t ask any questions about the origin of funds that would have appeared suspect to any beginner,” he told Robert. “[As a result] we directed our clientele with funds of doubtful origin to Luxembourg.”
In the early ’90s, Bûcher contends, Cedel was used to launder $350 million in illegal “commissions” on a contract for the sale by Thomson-CSF, a French government arms company, of six French frigates to Taiwan. He said that the money, handled by an SG subsidiary, was paid as a registered securities transfer to a “nominee”—a stand-in for the real beneficiary—and that Thomson (now known as Thales) didn’t appear in the transaction except in the Cedel archives.
The kickbacks were exposed after the 1993 murder of a naval captain named Yin Ching-feng, who had written a critical report on the purchase and its inflated $2.8 billion price. Bûcher told Taipei authorities that a third of the kickbacks went to Taiwanese generals and politicians, while the rest was pocketed by French officials.
Taiwan courts sentenced 13 military officers and 15 arms dealers to between eight months and life in prison for bribery and leaking military secrets.
In March, Bûcher will testify before a French court examining French complicity. “SG is very much implicated,” he told In These Times. “Taipei police searches found many records of transfers of commissions” relating to the frigates and also to the sale of French Mirage fighter planes. In New York, SG spokesman Jim Galvin denies that the bank had any involvement in the arms deal.
There has been no legal action by the Luxembourg prosecutor based on any of his investigations. However, Clearstream Banking, Lussi and others have filed 10 lawsuits for libel in Luxembourg, France, Belgium and Switzerland against Backes, Robert and their publisher, Les Arenes. The first case, Clearstream v. Backes went to court in March in Luxembourg. Another case began its first hearings in Paris a few days later.
With no sense of irony, the liquidator of Russia’s notorious Menatep Bank is also suing the authors and publishers for damage to its reputation. (Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the Russian oligarch who controlled Menatep, did not respond to a request for comment.)
Backes’ knowledge and records make him a valuable investigative partner, and he cooperates with numerous authorities, though he prefers not to say in which countries. But his agenda is larger than that. Backes is lobbying for oversight by an international public body. Unlike banks, Clearstream has no effective outside surveillance.
It is audited by KPMG, one of the “big five” international accounting firms, which either has been ignorant of or has overlooked the non-published accounts system.
KPMG announced it found “no evidence” to support the allegations made in Révélation$, though its report was not made public.
Local officials’ attempts to defend financial secrecy are not surprising.
In November 1979, the U.S. Embassy in Iran was seized, and 52 Americans were held hostage. Their capture, and the Carter administration’s failure to win their release, became a major issue in the 1980 presidential campaign.
Carter had frozen billions in Iranian assets in U.S. banks, money that was being claimed by American firms and individuals who had lost property in the Islamic revolution. American and Iranian officials were negotiating the amount of funds to be released in return for freeing the hostages. The Iranians also wanted Carter to release arms that had been ordered and paid for by the deposed Shah.
Reagan campaign officials allegedly met with Iranian representatives several times during the 1980 campaign, promising arms and money if Iran delayed release of the hostages until after the November election. This scandal would became known as the “October Surprise.”
Reagan won the election, but Carter officials continued to negotiate with the Iranians. Finally, around the turn of the year, an accord was reached under which the United States would release $4 billion but no arms. However, the Iranians did not release the hostages immediately.
A few days before Reagan’s inauguration, Ernest Backes recalls, Cedel got an urgent joint instruction from the U.S. Federal Reserve Bank and the Bank of England to transfer $7 million in bearer bonds—$5 million from an account of Chase Manhattan Bank and $2 million from an account of Citibank—both in offshore secrecy havens. The money was to go to the National Bank of Algeria, and from there to an Iranian bank in Teheran. Backes was informed that the $7 million was a small fraction of sums being sent from around the world and concentrated in the Algerian bank. He was told the transfers were linked to the fate of the hostages.
The Fed and the Bank of England were not members of Cedel, and by its rules had no right to order the transfers. Backes’ two superiors were absent. He informed the president of the Cedel administrative council, Edmond Israel, then acted to execute the order. (Israel, now honorary chairman, did not respond to phone and e-mail messages.)
On January 20, 1981, about 15 minutes after Reagan took the oath of office, the hostages were finally freed. Reagan and then Vice President George Bush have always denied the payoff happened.
Banking with Bin Laden
Following the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, the United States started focusing its investigation on the financial trail of Osama bin Laden and the al-Qaeda network.
Like any other large, global operation, international terrorists need to move large sums of money across borders clandestinely. In November, U.S. authorities named some banks that had bin Laden accounts, and it put them on a blacklist.
One was Al Taqwa—“Fear of God”—registered in the Bahamas with offices in Lugano, Switzerland. Al Taqwa had access to the Clearstream system through its correspondent account with the Banca del Gottardo in Lugano, which has a published Clearstream account (No. 74381).
But bin Laden may have other access to the unpublished system. In what he calls a “spectacular discovery,” Ernest Backes reports that in the weeks before CEO André Lussi was forced to leave Clearstream last May, a series of 16 unpublished accounts were opened under the name of the Saudi Investment Company, or SICO, the Geneva holding of the Saudi Binladen Group—which is run by Osama’s brother, Yeslam Binladen (some family members spell the name differently).
Yeslam Binladen insists that he has nothing to do with his brother, but evidence suggests SICO is tied into Osama”s financial network. SICO is associated with Dar Al-Maal-Al-Islami (DMI), an Islamic financial institution also based in Geneva and presided over by Prince Muhammed Al Faisal Al Saoud, a cousin of Saudi King Fahd, that directs millions a year to fundamentalist movements. DMI holds a share of the Al Shamal Islamic Bank of Sudan, which was set up in 1991 and partly financed by $50 million from Osama bin Laden.
Excerpt from with thanks
By Lucy Komisar
In These Times, March 15, 2002
It is easy to research the recent CLEARSTREAM proceedings under the French Criminal Court Judge Renaud Van Rumbyke who is also handling the Yvette Hamilius Landsbanki Luxembourg case and it’s many similarities and links.
You don’t have to be Einstein to see that the cases which have much criminality to hide, are “dismissed” by the Luxembourg judiciary as they think the scandal can be swept away by a couple of women with a broom and no one will notice!
Just look at the highly suspicious BCCI bankruptcy for 8 years under the same administrator as the one who has sole charge of the suspicious Landsbanki Luxembourg bankruptcy for 6 years.
The Landsbanki case and the BCCI case were thrown out just before this Christmas as a seeming act of defiance of E.U. rules as if Luxembourg is exempt from any laws or rules.
The Lnadsbanki scandal involves hundreds of elderly pensioners whose homes have been seized and where clients accounts were depleted just before the bank closed its doors and the Luxembourg Central bank gave a massive loan to the insolvent bank to artificially delay the bankruptcy and allow all funds to ‘disappear’ out of Luxembourg.
Of course the virulent administrator had no idea that old pensioners with an average age of 75 , with 4 in their 90’s, would refuse to be intimidated and would put up a peaceful fight for Justice and show the determination to fight this callous administration until their last breathe. Neither did she know that the whole would will be watching what Luxembourg does in this shocking case and how it tries to ignore the top Criminal Judges in Europe and the Icelandic Prosecutor as she continues as if Luxembourg ruled Europe and respected nobody but the delinquent whom it protects.
Does such an attitude have a place in the European Union today?
21 victims so far have died with their last years spent in the terror of losing their homes they have worked all their lives to earn, as the Luxembourg Judiciary prefers to protect the criminals and not the clients they seduce into buying their products.
It can take time, but the TRUTH always comes out and those guilty of breaking the law will be punished, as will those who protected the criminals.
Read this catalogue of events that took place in the LUXEMBOURG courts from August 2010 under the direction of Madam Hamilius the administrator of Landsbanki Lu
A BANKRUPTCY ADMINISTRATION FROM HELL
ABHORRENT RUDENESS and ARROGANCE can be seen to the extent that TOP lawyers in London and France have protested openly and even written letters of protestation for the Courts, whilst press (outside Luxembourg, of course),
have voiced the outrage felt particularly within the European legal profession, about the lack of professionalism, ethics and RESPECT that is being put on display in the name of Luxembourg, paid for by the people of Luxembourg and the abused elderly pensioners.
Here is a case showing the 200 DAYS of DELAYS or the Luxembourg Court experience of victims of Yvette Hamilius and Karin Guillaume’s administration of
LANDSBANKI LUXEMBOURG S.A. under the “protection” of the old government, the CSSF and the ABBL.
Delays adding up to 200 days, were considered normal procedure and so many European rules and standards were breached that it will take further comments to list them.
COURT OF THE FIRST INSTANCE LUXEMBOURG
1. 10 Aug 2010 – claim submitted to Luxembourg court and filed.
2. 05 Sept 2010 – the file is registered with the Luxembourg court for an audience on 10 Sept 2010
3. DELAYED HEARING – 10 Sept 2010 by court to be heard on 17 Sept 2010
4. DELAYED HEARING by court again for audience to be heard 20 Sept 2010
5. DELAYED HEARING to be rescheduled 11 Jan 2011 for pleading
6. DELAYED HEARING – 11 Jan 2011 POSTPONED until 22 Feb ‘2011 by the Court.
7. 22 Feb 2011 – hearing took place.
8. 06 April 11 – the verdict came as a REJECTION because the claim was only admissible for items claimed by the victim on 02 May 2010 .
This claim had been a SECOND application of CREDITORS Claim.
The FIRST application was REJECTED, by Yvette Hamilius for
FAILING TO ITEMISE THE ASSETS!
THIS WAS IMPOSSIBLE….The Landsbanki victim COULD NOT itemize the list of assets.
LANDSBANKI LUXEMBOURG S. A. held that list and gave
NO PROPER ACCOUNTING DOCUMENTATION OR JUSTIFICATION .
Neither the Luxembourg bank nor the administrator can produce proper accounting with dates and written PROOF of transactions nor that the transactions which are ALLEGED to have been made, were in fact made and ORDERED by the client.
MONEY HAS DISAPPEARED without proper written proof of it’s destination nor proof of ORDERS of TRANSFERS.
This leads to strong suspicions of MONEY LAUNDERING, as why else would a Luxembourg lawyer and her friend the ‘supervisor’ look the other way for so long?
Criminal Proceedings are taking place in ICELAND, LONDON, FRANCE, SPAIN and a criminal complaint has been lodged in LUXEMBOURG. Most European countries are involved as the victims are European citizens.
The Luxembourg Judiciary, following the lead of Yvette Hamilius, have arrogantly ignored the rest of Europe, their rules and codes of behaviour to the extent that things could not get much worse for the reputation of Luxembourg as growing SCANDALS were ignored and the judiciary played along with the government.
In this destructive Pantomime, HAMILIUS PLAYS HER LEAD ROLE, along with the other LAX LUX judges who are happy to carry on looking at the spectacle put before Europe on the HAMILIUS/LANDSBANKI set for 5 years, whilst they and the old government allow Luxembourg as a country, to fall into disrepute and the old government to end up in a USED TOY BOX ?
There are growing suspicions that there must be MUCH TO HIDE from the E.U. and the CRIMINAL Courts, in order to RISK so much and to have LOST SO MUCH of what should be so important to protect.
Yvette Hamilius was making allegations which had no written backing and yet Karin Guillaume allowed her to continue as if there was no need for any form of justification on her part whilst impossible demands were made on the ex -client of the Luxembourg failed bank.
The Court caused some of the initial delay since they said the case would be heard on POST LIQUIDATION. (Yvette HAMILIUS was the sole administrator once Franz Prost had jumped the boat.)
Karin Guillaume and the Court said the PRE- LIQUIDATION would be heard in a separate case as the PRE- LIQUIDATION was regarding LANDSBANKI and the post-liquidation was Yvette HAMILIUS.
Then we get to
9. 03 May 2011 – the Appeal was notified
10. 02 March 2012 – Hamilius date to file her conclusions.
(Victim’s lawyer would then have until 20 April 12 to file his response)
ready for the initial hearing on 24 April 2012)
11. 08 March 2012 – meanwhile, Hamilius sends out letter of her ULTIMATUM “offer”, following her losing the Supreme Court ruling in Paris and being levied a caution of 50 million euros and a fine of 1.875 million euros.
-This letter was sent to the victim without even advising her LUXEMBOURG solicitor or sending him a copy.
10. DELAYED – 10 April 2012 the victim’s solicitor reminds Yvette Hamilius he has still not received her CONCLUSIONS for the Appeal which were due on 2 March.
11. He also points out that, not only did she not notify him nor the court of her delay, but neither did she send him, in LUXEMBOURG a copy of the ULTIMATUM “offer” she had sent directly to the victim, which, under the circumstances, she obviously should have done as he was acting on her behalf.
12. DELAYED – 24 April 12 NO RESPONSE from Hamilius and NO CONCLUSIONS forthcoming.
13. The solicitor asks the court to order Yvette Hamilius to file her CONCLUSIONS.
14. DELAYED – Court reschedules a new audience for 03 July 2012 but DOES NOT order Yvette Hamilius to file her conclusions while awaiting the outcome of the ULTIMATUM “OFFER”.
15. Solicitor responded specifically to the offer, which he was considering, BUT Yvette Hamilius REFUSES the counter offer to settle.
16. DELAYED – 03 July 12 Court gave Yvette Hamilius further time until
14 Aug 2012 to present HER CONCLUSIONS.
That same Court gave the victim’s solicitor until 26 Sept 2012 to present HIS final conclusion.
17. 02 Oct 2012 – case called to hearing for closing of final instruction and fixing of date for final pleading
18. DELAYED – Yvette Hamilius FAILS, to attend and the case is rescheduled for
06 Nov 12 to ALLOW Yvette Hamilius time to respond
19. DELAYED 06 Nov 12 – court meets and POSTPONES hearing to 4 Dec 12 so that Yvette Hamilius’s ‘new evidence’ she had belatedly produced in her pleadings could be answered as the solicitor was not prepared for these ‘NEW’ arguments.
20. The ‘New evidence’ consisted of the sample cases Yvette Hamilius has sent around to all the lawyers in the various countries, as trophy examples of her alleged victories.
These Trophy cases have been flaunted across Europe, even when the cases are in appeal or in Supreme Court appeal and have not yet been “won”. This deliberate deception and all this flaunting and bragging is so that the PEOPLE OF LUXEMBOURG , who are PAYING FOR HER SPECTACLE, will be deceived into thinking she is doing a good job!
The TRUTH lies in the irreparable DAMAGE she is responsible for creating, which is easy to see.
One just has to look at the damage done to the OLD GOVERNMENT.
A Criminal case cannot be ‘shrink -wrapped’ into a simple Civil one at the whim of 2 women in powerful protection, whilst their country is busy signing the EU rulings.
The victim’s LUXEMBOURG solicitor said that the production by Yvette Hamilius of such documents was irrelevant to her case as she had presented documents as if relating to a CRIMINAL CASE and the Court was a CIVIL Commercial Court.
Also, in her ‘NEW’ evidence Yvette Hamilius apparently went into BOASTING in great detail by telling the court the dates, amounts etc. that were paid to the CREDITORS to highlight the fact she felt she was doing such a GOOD JOB as administrator!
THE FACT THAT SO MANY OF US ARE CREDITORS is NOT MENTIONED in Luxembourg Court!
This BOASTING was as IRRELEVANT to the case as her alleged ‘victories’, but this boasting appears to be a necessary justification for the virulence, lack of ethics and proper procedure it is widely said, especially in view of the deliberate ignoring of all evidence of false accounting, embezzlement and possibilities of money laundering not to mention the illegal loans from the CBL to an insolvent company which it was her duty to report and investigate.
This classic and very amateur exercise in DEFLECTION and ‘SIDELINING ‘ the FACTS and EVIDENCE that had been produced and presented to Yvette Hamilius by the victim’s lawyer but which she could NOT ANSWER, was IGNORED by her friend Karin Guillaume and uncontested by the other judges.
NO QUESTIONS are asked when no questions can be answered?
21. 4 Dec 2012 – sets date for FINAL JUDGEMENT hearing for 17 Sept 13
22. 17 Sept 2013 – FINAL HEARING
23. 23 Oct 2013 – As was predicted by the Luxembourg lawyers, the French lawyers, the British lawyers and the Spanish lawyers, the verdict fell and the victim of course LOST to the BANK and the helpfully negligent administrator who it is said, sees no evil when a bank is in need of a protective cover!
Not only was the Appeal lost but the victim, having invested and trusted Luxembourg’s banking sector, was ordered to pay the full amount Yvette Hamilius ALLEGED was owed (without any proper accounting, neither was any WRITTEN PROOF of sale of assets produced by Yvette Hamilius who had liquidated them WITHOUT CONSENT in June 2010 and which indicates to most a possibility of money laundering)
The victim was ordered to pay INTEREST, plus ALL the COURT COSTS and the victim was ordered to pay for ALL THE HEARINGS which had been delayed, postponed and Yvette Hamilius had FAILED to appear at.
FURTHER COSTS were awarded to Yvette Hamilius.
The victim of course had the high costs of all the lawyers as well and the damage to health, the loss of everything when all the evidences of crime and embezzlement were never questioned by any one of the list of lawyers and judges who should be respecting the rulings of the EU if they wish to say they are a part of the EU.
DELAYS DIRECTLY FROM YVETTE HAMILIUS DURING APPEAL
1. Yvette asks for several delays during appeal hearing
2. Inappropriate ULTIMATUM offer having lost in France, sent to victim whilst by-passing proper channels and ignoring LUXEMBOURG lawyer.
3. 02/03/2012 Fails to submit conclusions on date court ordered
4. 24/04/12 court hearing but no conclusions for LUXEMBOURG Lawyer to respond to and court does not order her to file conclusions because of her unsolicited and unrealistic belated offer, but sets new date for
5. 03/07/12 still NO conclusion and court gives her until 14/08/12 to present her conclusions during the holiday month of August.
6. 02/10/2012 Hamilius FAILS to attend court without notification to the solicitor nor to the court. It is then rescheduled for
06/11/12 in her absence
7. 6/11/2012 rescheduled to 4 Dec for the victim’s lawyer to answer ‘new evidence’ and to set date for final judgment.
It was a classic You LOSE I WIN situation. We know now that, according to Luxembourg lawyers, it appears NO ONE has won, but for one extraordinary case which was the exception.
NB. In total, Yvette Hamilius caused a delay of 200 days and ‘broke’ many of the rules a lawyer would normally not get away with.
The LUXEMBOURG lawyers are embarrassed although wealthier for the LANDSBANKI PERFORMANCE put on by Yvette Hamilius and Karin Guillaume and left uncontested by those who should have known better than to allow the disgraceful spectacle Luxembourg has put before Europe!
Luxembourg has disgraced itself not through the behaviour of any delinquent ORDINARY CITIZENS but by the abusive and negligent behaviour of it’s old government and judiciary who have not had the courage to stand up and stop the abuse in the name of proper justice and human decency.
FANTASTIC RESULT IN THE FRENCH COURTS JUNE 2013
Summary of Arnaud and Patrick’s well-deserved victory, sent with thanks from one of the French victims with a good understanding of legal French: ( Thanks P.)
In fact, the court dismissed the Bank’s foreclosure action:
Ordered the suspension of proceedings initiated by order of foreclosure issued on July 28, 2010 to our fellow victims Arnaud and Patrick for payment of the sum Mme Hamilius said was owed under
the mortgage deeds drawn up on 19 July 2007, published in the first
mortgage office of Draguignan on August 6, 2010, Volume 76 No. 2010S
What is important is the following:
1.The bank does not have an enforceable right.
( La banque ne detient pas un titre executoire)
This is very important for everyone because the bank does not have an enforceable right written into the mortgages and recorded by the Notaries.
2 a) The fact that the clause governing the infamous SCR Security Cover Ratio that triggered the demand for immediate payment of unjustified and manipulated demand for funds cut off the anticipated 20 year period of the loan and IS NOT CONTRACTUAL.
b) The SCR clause invoking the payment demand under the ratio of coverage is a postulation, a hypothetical calculation or averaging which is non-contractual and fixed UNILATERALLY by the bank, sustained by the administrator which allowed the bank to choose to reduce the value of the assets( shares,bonds, cash, property value etc.) that the bank was responsible for managing, WITHOUT ANY REFERENCE TO ANY REALISTIC VALUATIONS.
3. Finally, that the bank cannot seize the asset as the mortgage loan has been frozen by the Judge Van Rumbeyke in the Criminal High Court of Paris. The bank cannot action for it’s benefit what has been already blocked by the judge.
According to article 706-145 of the Criminal code it is not possible to seize assets in the framework of a Criminal proceeding other than in the particular cases cited in the code.
So, in summary, as we understand it, ( this is a broad summary but the document needs to be shown to the lawyers and translated by a professional)
Mme Hamilius can no longer intimidate the French victims with the threats of losing their homes which has been the case for some of us, since 2009.
Landsbanki and Kaupthing reveal dubious financial practices carried out with impunity in different countries of the European Union.180 victims in Spain and France, most of whom are pensioners of British and French nationality, lodged a complaint in November 2012 into the hands of a judge in Luxembourg, the only country where, up until this complaint, no investigation was conducted.
The complaint reported numerous failures and illegal practices directly related to the events denounced by the Prosecution in Iceland. In fact, the complainants state in their complaint that financial products were sold from the end of 2006, when the banking sector was no longer secure or financially viable.
The complaint points out that the auditors of Landsbanki in Iceland were the same as those for Grand Duchy of Luxembourg. The complaint also echoes the dubious and reckless practices to subscribe to financial obligations of the parent company in the months, weeks and even in some victims’ victims’ cases, in the days immediately preceding the liquidation of Landsbanki Luxembourg.
The complaint echoed incestuous relationships between the shareholders of the irresponsable banking group and the credit granting division. Finally, the complaint evokes the fraudulent mechanism of the Equity Release scheme which, as it was sold to the victims, was totally unworkable.
180 victims restate their hope in the Luxembourg system whilst insisting on their formal question: how and why can it be that in Luxembourg, a country priding itself on abiding by regular banking practices, that no investigations were conducted before the filing of this complaint.180 victims are now demanding that the the police and judicial authorities in charge of these issues in Europe should coordinate their actions, that the justice division of the European Union must facilitate this process and finally that Justice should be achieved regarding these inadmissible practices of which hundreds of people have been victims, their lives destroyed by fraud and the attitudes of white-collar criminals. No justice system can condone these practices and every person in charge of judicial responsabilities must now therefore fight so that those criminal activities will be punished and the rights of the victims re-established.For the 180 victims
On the 28th and the 29th of November, more than 180 victims of LANDSBANKI LUXEMBOURG announced at a press conference that they had lodged a complaint in the Luxembourg criminal courts against the bank, its officers and intermediaries.
Early in January, Mme Hamilius, the Liquidator announced that she was lodging a complaint for slander and libel against the plaintiffs and their lawyers, apparently without consulting the proper authorities.
The following is the response from the victims and their lawyers.
The 180 victims of LANDSBANKI LUXEMBOURG learnt of the recent statements
by the Landsbanki liquidator, Mme Hamilius and are astonished by these latest
declarations which do not properly reflect the substance of their complaint. The
victims are questioning the motivation of this action.
It must be recalled that the complaint refers to fraud, breach of trust committed by the
bank, its officers and intermediaries to the detriment of the victims.
If the bank is referred to as a body corporate, then it must by definition contain the
name of Mme Hamilius.
On this subject, the victims had no reproach to make against Mme Hamilius who
must have read the complaint and cannot have failed to have been aware of the
This said, the case against Landsbanki, its officers and intermediaries is very serious
and warrants a thorough and exemplary investigation.
Conversely, it is clear that the victims of Landsbanki Luxembourg, it’s officers and
intermediaries did not and do not understand or accept that the actions concerning the
bank as denounced by the victims, were not reported by the liquidator at the
commencement of the liquidation proceedings, as Mme Hamilius , liquidator was in a
position of having the right and the duty to lodge a Criminal complaint.
The victims of Landsbanki Luxembourg wish to remind you that this bank is
currently under investigation for fraud by a French magistrate. This indictment is
fully in the Criminal context, particularly in France, where Landsbanki unjustly
seized mortgage deeds which constitutes one of the central points of the Criminal
complaint. The victims believe that to continue to pursue the realisation of their
claims in defiance of the many Criminal complaints against them, in defiance of the
indictment of the bank by the instructing Magistrate, exposes the instigator of these
procedures to charges of money laundering and concealment of evidence.
This is what the victims have expressed in their complaint and at a press conference
through their lawyers.
The complaints lodged by Mme Hamilius, simply because the victims wished to
exercise their right to lodge a complaint, and to freely expose to the European press
their legal position, constitutes a fundamental breach of their right to Freedom of
Expression and to the ultimate recourse of complainants to appeal to the Criminal
Court and the free press as the guardians of truth.
The complainants, contest any libel or slander and once again request the liquidator
to reconsider her position with regard to the fraud of which they were victims.
The complaint filed by Mme Hamilius against those who are the spokesmen or legal
advisors is also a violation of the right to verbal self defense outside the Courtroom,
when the jurisprudence of the European Court confirms that defending lawyers,
deserve particular protection in the excercising of their freedom of speech even
outside of the courtroom.
As for the alleged pressure Mme Hamilius claims to have suffered , the victims and
their legal counsel would like to bring to attention that they were excercising their
right to complaint and their right to speak to the press.
Speaking of pressure, it is pertinent to remember that the many people who filed
complaints have been subjected, since the start of the liquidation, to many dozens of
menacing letters and a multitude of procedures by the bailiff in a legal language that
is foreign to them and which constitutes extreme heavy threats and pressure on their
This has weighed and continues to weigh very heavily on their lives.
A full depth investigation must be conducted on the tragic social consequences of the
attitude of banks such as Landsbanki and all those who wish to ignore the Criminal
reality of this case.
The victims point out that they are empoverished by the events of these years and
will be inevitably ruined if the position of Mme Hamilius , a position which continues
to disregard the fraud and abuse committed , should this be endorsed by the Criminal
judiciary. It should be remembered that Mme Hamilius has a legal and logistical
support that the victims do not have recourse to and that this social and economical
inequality must enter into the legal debate and taken into account.
In fact the Landsbanki case is the perfect example of the serious problems Criminal
Justice has in dealing with the practices of the delinquent banking establishments
who get protection from their dubious practices with the help of extensive lobbying
groups supported by well renumerated consultants and lawyers.
The victims, hope that the Luxembourg authorities will take this case in hand in order
to prevent this execrable crime for everyone’s benefit.
The British Embassy posted the following document on their site in 2012, albeit a bit late for the victims of this scam it does at least show that the Government of the UK is well aware of the problems that we all face even though they care to ignore them.
Here you will find some interesting links to articles we have found.