Archives for Legal Action

Pretrial hearing vs. Rothschild held in Malaga

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PalacioJusticiaClaimants in the equity release CreditSelect 4-Series loan case against N.M. Rothschild & Sons and their respective lawyers held a case management hearing, or pre-trial hearing, at the Mercantile Courts in Malaga.

The hearing lasted for a about 1 hour, inclusive of a short recess demanded by the Judge to consult case law on a specific point of law.

The purpose of this meeting was to narrow the issues involved in the case, set deadlines for providing clarification documents, conducting discovery and listing the witnesses who will be attending the hearing.

Rothschild lawyers unsuccessfully attempted to adjourn the hearing on grounds that one of the claimants had passed away, a petition outright rejected by the Judge. They also tried to file the following objections:

  1. Wrong identification of the companies offering the advertising and the mortgage loans, which they claim are different (Rothschild Bank International and NM Rothschild & Sons Ltd.) The court rejected this as being a matter to be decided on passing judgement, given that she had read the merits of the case and she did not in principle agree with Rothschild’s lawyers.
  2. Claim filed out of time, which they claim had had to be filed at the very latest in 2010. This was also swiftly not attended by the Court on grounds that it would be dealt with on passing judgement.

On the part of the claimants, lawyers submitted a list of proposed witnesses for the hearing that were all accepted, inclusive of the Baron David Rothschild.

On the whole, the prevalent feeling was the Judge was sympathetic to the claimant’s arguments which is positive.

The negative note relates to the date of the trial which lawyers for claimants find totally shocking yet, unfortunately, cannot be altered: 12th of November 2019.

Claimants not part of this case are not bound by this incredibly protracted timeline and are able to file legal separate actions for miselling/misrepresentation in the -hopefully- quicker Courts of First Instance.

On a different note, a crew from France2 television were present at the event and interviewed some of the victims. They were unsuccessful in getting any responses from Rothschild’s unfriendly lawyers who do not forgive the audacious ‘ambush’ on Mr. Steve Dewsnip who, in spite of being sought after a Criminal Court in Denia, had managed to stay ‘at large’ for years, even travelling freely to Spain to assist Rothschild in their cases against victims.

 

 

San Roque Court Dismisses Criminal Complaint in a Bizarre Ruling

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San Roque Court has dismissed the criminal complaint brought by no less than 80 claimants against Landsbanki & others. The disappointing ruling lacks legal depth and factual understanding, mistakenly inserting copy-pasted excerpts of other rulings (which refer to a complaint over an unfinished car paint job) and ignoring Tax Office binding opinion.

ERVA lawyers, who’ve had access to the content of the ruling, have been left baffled as to the level of comprehension of the essence of the dispute by the presiding Judge after years of alleged “investigations”.

For instance, the Judge still today believes (September 2016) that it is legal to use a mortgage to reduce the value of a property for Tax reasons, notwithstanding several writs submitted by this party pointing to a binding tax ruling from the Spanish “Hacienda” that states that is actually tax fraud (not even current Landsbanki lawyer’s believe in this scam any longer).

In 2013, following an extensive press release by firm Lawbird Legal Services, Sur in English published this article.

A year later, 2014, The Olive Press ran a similar article.

On a positive note, the ruling confirms that the ultimate aim of the Landsbanki Equity Release publicity (as confirmed by their lawyers -subsequently sacked) was the reduction of the IHT element

According to the ruling:

the ultimate aim of the marketed product was the reduction of the tax burden that inheritors would eventually have to face, when they received the property after the demise of the subscribers.

And throughout these years, what was the Judge doing? Several options come to mind: Cloud Cuckoo Land, kitesurfing in Tarifa, learning Korean language, studying hard for his copy-pasting exams…which he clearly failed.

On reflection, we should ask ourselves a crucial question: how many of the copious claimants’  lawyers writs -submitted between 2009 and 2016- did the Judge examine when, as has been revealed, he would not even bother proof-read his own 16-page ruling?

Lawyers for claimants have already announced they will be appealing this preposterous ruling.

Day In Court Against SLM and Premier Isle of Man

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On Thursday 14th July, Bilbao Courts heard the case of a number of the SITIRS (Spanish Inheritance Tax and Income Release Scheme) product against Surrenda Link and Premier Isle of Man companies.

From the victims’ part, lawyers insisted –and proved beyond doubt- on the crucial lack of regulatory clearance on not only the product, but the financial entities and the IFAs. Lawyers also proved that the inheritance tax reduction proposition was fraudulent. Our lawyers alleged that the product, called SITIRS (Spanish Inheritance Tax and Income Scheme), was a sham in every aspect. They also evidenced that lawyers appointed to act for victims were for the most part on the list of SLM appointed lawyers.

A witness who had worked for Hamilton’s attended as the hearing and confirmed that clients were approached by telephone cold-calling. The witness also advised that IHT was the main reason why this product ever existed, in the first place. When asked by the Judge if her company was registered, the witness stated that it had applied for a license but never received a reply from the CNMV.

For the part of SLM and Premier, the former argued that all risks were properly presented to the customer by signing the relevant forms. Insofar as Premier is concerned, their main allegation was that they were a different company from the one that sold the product during the 2005-2007 period.

The presiding Judge took an interest in the case beyond what is normal and tried, whether successfully or not, to understand the mechanics of this product. At one point, she argued that if this whole financial proposition was so difficult for legal people to understand, what chances did pensioners have (?).

The trial took six hours and the parties presented their oral conclusions.

The ruling will be issued any time now although, as August is a Court holiday month, it may be that we do not hear any more until September.

Nykredit’s Notary Indicted for False Information on Public Document

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Alicante-based Notary Public J.A.N., acting for Nykredit Realkredit Marbella branch, has been indicted on a count of false mention on a public document. 

The Notary Public had issued a certification stating what the balance of the loan was and the methodology for calculating the interest. Against logic, the Notary accepted a statement from Nykredit that introduced a reference interest rate never before mentioned in the loan contract (Euribor).

When lawyers acting for borrowers challenged the Notary, he admitted his mistake and requested Nykredit lawyers to rectify the statement, only to be rebuffed by the borrower.

The Court has ordered the Notary to appear in Court to be interrogated.

Elusive Steve Dewsnip now formally indicted by Denia Court

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Ever since Mr. Dewsnip turned up at a Marbella Court -15 days ago- to help his former company bash equity release pensioners seeking justice, his fortunes have been reversed. Tipped by lawyers acting for ERVA, the Marbella Judge ordered Mr. Dewsnip -who had been issued with a search warrant- to provide an address in Guernsey for notifications and further remitted the findings to the Denia Court.

The Judge presiding over this case in Denia has lost no time and ordered claimants’ solicitors to submit a list of questions that he will have to respond at the appropriate Guernsey Court. This deposition will be made via “letter rogatory”, as with Baron David de Rothschild.

Sydbank (Schweiz) and Nykredit Realkredit Provided Offshore Companies in Spain

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Lender Nykredit, from its Marbella office, and its business partner Sydbank, from an illegal Fuengirola office, persuaded British pensioners to take out offshore companies as part of a IHT tax avoidance scheme.

The “Equity Release Package” or Equity Release Product, as was named by the advertising literature, consisted on a loan granted by Nykredit -Christel Mark Hansen acting for the latter- guaranteed on a Spanish property, the proceeds of which loan were invested via Sydbank in Switzerland -with the assistance and supervision of Mads Petersen-

Sydbank would provide a guarantee to its business partner Nykredit for 33% of the loan, who would pay for the privilege, so as to ensure that the lender was fully covered.

To achieve full anonymity, Sydbank in Switzerland offered offshore company to shelter the investments and make it more difficult for the Spanish Tax Office to find out the whereabouts of the loan proceeds, now presumably invested.

Nykredit and Sydbank sold this product as a legal, lawful manner to achieve state-of-the-art wealth planning for retired British property owners in Spain.

The highly opaque offshore companies were incorporated in Belize and had directors posted in New Zealand.

Marbella Court orders Stephen Dewsnip to give an address for summons

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Steve Dewsnip has been formally ordered by the Marbella Courts to provide an address for summons, as petitioned by a Denia Court via a Search Warrant.

Mr. Dewsnip, who is ‘disappeared’ for the Denia Court where proceedings are currently underway against himself, Baron David de Rothschild and Mark Coutanche, is nonetheless alive and contactable when required to turn up in Marbella to testify tin favour of his old bosses, N.M. Rothschild & Sons, on other cases brought against the latter company.

As it happens, lawyers acting for ERVA turned up at the Marbella Court and requested the Guardia Civil, whom were handed  the document that is currently visible on this site, to warn the Judge -presiding over a case brought by victims of Rothschild- that Mr. Dewsnip was listed as a witness for the Guernsey-based bank.

So what exactly happened later is uncertain, as ERVA lawyers were not present, but it appears that when Mr. Dewsnip went in to the Court the Judge asked him not to leave straight after finishing his deposition as he had to be notified of a summons from a criminal Court.

Rothschild lawyers were needless to say outraged and were looking for those to blame for what they deemed underhand and disloyal tactics.

Meanwhile, we are eagerly waiting for news on Mr. Rothschild interrogation at the appropriate French Courts.

Thousands of Life Insurance Policies Could be Voided

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Unit-linked insurance

Feels good to take care of your family’s future

A recent Supreme Court ruling (March 2015) has sent shock waves through the many insurers that are offering single premium life insurance policies. Whether named as unit-linked single-premium life assurance policy, life assurance bonds, capital assurance or any other more or less fanciful denomination, any life insurance bond that is made up solely for the purpose of investment faces one very serious prospect: being declared void by Spanish Courts.

But this ruling has not come from nowhere: for some years already the administrative section of the Spanish Supreme Court is applying a not-too-well know article of the Consolidated text of the Private Insurance Supervisory Act, which states the following:

Article 4. Forbidden transactions and sanction of nullity. It is forbidden for insurance companies, and its conclusion will determine its utter nullity and voidness, the following transactions:

a)      Those that lack actuarial technical base

But what does the word “actuarial base” mean? Simply put, traditional actuarial base or science largely revolves around the analysis of mortality and the production of life tables, and the application of compound interest. Which is exactly what these “life insurance” policies, for want of a better word, actually lack.

The Spanish highest Court, in declaring the nullity of these contracts in at least 8 rulings, has argued the following:

“Judging by its features, this contract cannot be classed as an insurance policy but a capital investment”.

“In normal insurance death impacts the assurer in such way that, when a claim occurs, it is the company that suffers a loss”

“The evidence points to the existence of a financial investment accord that pursues a tax advantage”

“The blurring of the risk element is, in these contracts, complete and distorts the very nature of an insurance contract”

“If there is no transfer of risk from insured to insurer there is no insurance contract”

“It makes no palpable difference if the insured lives or dies”

“Where age or medical condition –absence of medical questionnaire being symptomatic- are not parameters of any interest, the contract is doubtfully an insurance policy”

“It is easily observable that the risk has been all but completely eliminated from these deals, in fact the health condition of the subscribed is indifferent, to the point of disregarding the medical exam.”

“The nature of financial product has been repeatedly concluded by Section 3 of the Supreme Court”

Judging by these conclusions, thousands of contracts signed by expats face a serious risk of nullity: to name a few, Lex Life/Altraplan’ life policies, Nordea’s Capital Managed Plan, Seb-Irish Life’s Spanish Porfolio Bond, Prudential’s Spanish International Prudence Bond, Old Mutual’s Executive Investment Bond, Danske Life/Danica Life…and there is no time limitation to being a claim.

Rothschild case: Denia Court sends letter rogatory to Paris

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Denia Court  1 has now received the translations from the Benidorm Translation Services Office and ordered a letter rogatory to be sent to the Paris appropriate judicial office. The letter of request obviously includes a petition that Baron David de Rothschild answers the questions submitted by the various lawyers.

The Court decision can be said to be an official judicial decision to formally interrogate Mr. Rothschild in the Court of his domicile.

Rothschild Criminal Case: Denia Court Urges Benidorm Translation Services

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Denia Court number 1 has issued a note urging the Benidorm Translation Services (Servicio de Traducciones de Benidorm) to speed up the international rogatory letter translation, into French.

At the same time, the State Prosecutor has requested from the  Court that investigation proceedings are declared as “complex”, a description that give the Courts -under recently approved procedural regulations- 18 months to conclude the investigation and either drop charges or, where the evidence is sufficient, proceed with trial stage.

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