Singapore's International Commercial Court ruled Friday that Credit Suisse must pay $926 million to former Georgia Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili due to fraud by a former bank trust manager. File Photo by Hugo Philpott/UPI | License Photo
May 26 (UPI) -- Singapore's International Commercial Court ruled Friday that Credit Suisse must pay $926 million to former Georgia Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili due to fraudulent activity committed by a former bank trust manager.
The total amount represents the difference between Ivanishvili's Credit Suisse holdings of a $1.1 billion trust and what that money should have earned had the fraud not existed, the court said in its ruling.
The court said Credit Suisse "had within its ranks a fraudster, Mr. Patrice Lescaudron" who was appointed as the Ivanishvili trust manager, adding that "many millions of dollars" was taken from the trust over nine years.
It found that Credit Suisse failed to act as Lescaudron perpetuated his fraudulent activity over roughly a decade.
Credit Suisse acknowledged in a Sept. 16, 2022, concession tot the court that it should have "taken reasonable steps to address the issue of unauthorized transfers from the bank accounts of Meadowsweet Assets Limited, including directly contacting Mr Ivanishvili to verify the propriety of the transfers out of Meadowsweet's bank accounts."
Credit Suisse also admitted to the court through its legal representatives Allen & Gledhill LLP, that Lescaudron would have been removed or the bank would have implemented "new investment instructions or trust assets" or moved the assets to another bank if a direct inquiry had been made.
Credit Suisse told Forbes in a statement that it intends to "vigorously pursue an appeal" because the judgment is wrong and raises very important legal issues.
Credit Suisse was sold to the Swiss bank UBS in March after a bank run took $69 billion of its assets out.
USB said earlier this month in a filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission that its emergency takeover of Credit Suisse would mean taking a financial hit of $17 billion