Tag archives for Jyske Bank Gibraltar

Following an ERVA posting, Jyske Bank Gibraltar is Slammed By Spanish Press

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The most influential Spanish online news site, El Confidencial has written a damning article about the dubious practices of Jyske Bank Gibraltar, in Spain.

The piece, clearly inspired -and acknowledged twice- by a post published on ERVA, questions the activities of Jyske Bank Gibraltar in Spain and reminds that the bank was recently fined 1,7 million Euros for refusing to disclose sensitive information demanded by Spanish authorities pursuant to  anti-money laundering legislation.

The article considers Jyske Bank¬†to be ‚Äúsuspicious‚ÄĚ of acting in breach of Spanish tax and anti-money laundering provisions, just what Switzerland was accused of doing for years, but on a worldwide basis (only to finally budge under very serious pressure from the U.S.).

Non-Residents to Pay IHT on Unit-Linked Offered in Spain

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A 2002 ruling states it clearly: where an insurance company is offering life insurance in Spain, the beneficiary of the policy is to pay taxes in Spain, whether his status is one of residency or non-residency.

According to the ruling:

Where the policy holder and the beneficiary of the policy are different persons, any payments made under the policy will pay Spanish IHT, irrespective of whether the beneficiary is a tax resident in Spain, or not, pursuant to the provision of Act 29/1987 of the 18th of December and the Royal Decree 1629/1991, of the 8th of November, which approves the Inheritance Tax Regulation.

Of course, it was not in the interest of Lex Life, Nordea Life and Pensions, Jyske Bank etc. to tell people the truth, was it?

How best to further your business in this country by cheating foreign property owners, hey?

At least, you did study carefully and took into account the legendary Spanish laid-backness, we’ll give you that, but for sure, this scam will soon be properly picked up…!

Contracts Used to Evade Taxes Declared Void

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Several Spanish Courts are already ahead of the game on using contractual artifices to evade taxes, pretty much what the Equity Release was all about. The chief difference between both setups is that whilst the ones already set aside were mutually agreed on the understanding that it was illegal to do so, on the Equity Release banks lied as to the legality of the matter and misrepresented the truth.

As Nordea put it

We offered you advice which we thought was correct at the time of publication. It was however your prerrogative to go elsewhere to obtain correct advice…(!)

In contrast to Nordea’s clever plan, Madrid-based National Audience said the following about contracts used to avoid Capital Gains Tax:

It is reasonable to presume that the profuse and complex series of contracts carried out by the parties answered to a fiscal strategy and, in reality, had no other purpose than to evade taxes…In summary, the object of each of the contracts agreed to was unconnected from the real economical nature that they are intended for, and were rather used seek tax avoidance, once the contracts were succesfully implemented, on the gains derived from the main agreement.

The Superior Court in Navarra established that:

No juridical contract can enjoy this status if it is intended to attain a tax advantage, because no tax advantage can be transferred between the parties, and thus such contract produces no effect in respect of third parties…what has been confirmed is a surreptitious avoidance of taxes which none of that parties were entited, directly or indirectly, to legally avoid.

And more recently, on the 2nd of February 2012, th Supreme Court in Madrid endorsed all prior judicial opinion on the matter by ratifying that:

We must conclude ¬†by asserting the illicit nature of the object of the contract insofar as the aim pursued by the parties was an illegal and immoral business common to both…exemption and tax advatange…without any of the parties being entitled to it.

If the contracts are not valid, there is no question of them being set aside and damages being awarded…for they never existed.

JYSKE BANK GIBRALTAR ACCUMULATES ADVERSE COURT RULINGS IN SPAIN

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Jyske Bank Gibraltar is one of those financial entities that we can say has been, for some time now, sailing a little too close to the wind.

The latest scandal in the making is the proposed eviction of a Spanish resident lady, called Anne (pictured), who somehow managed to become eligible for a loan of ‚ā¨550,000 after presenting her credentials to the bank: survivor of several cancer operations (the last one 2 months prior), jobless, resident of Spain, never registered with the Social Security and with a meager ‚ā¨150/week pension from Belgium.

This form of predatory lending is certainly unknown in Spain where mortgage scandals generally relate to 120% loan-to-value mortgages, abnormal assessment of debt-to-income ratios of borrowers and other similar excesses.

Jyske has done that and more: they have lent where there was absolutely no physical possibility to repay (so much so that the Anne could not even cover the first repayment), have used an illegal company in Spain to assess its value (i.e. not registered with the bank of Spain) and moreover, have been happy with a valuation on the property next door because they could not find keys to the one transacted! Such a display of Nordic efficiency so that they could give out ‚ā¨550,000, seemingly in desperation to lend, to a convalescing jobless 62-year old lady (66 now) who already owned her little apartment outright -mortgage free-, and who thanks to Jyske would enjoy the benefits of a 35 year repayment plan (last repayment when she reached 97).

When Anne‚Äôs ex-husband found out what Jyske, and his ex too (!), were up to, he tried to prevent the mortgage loan from being signed by addressing a letter to Mr. Christian Bjorlow, Jyske’s Managing Director at the time of ¬†the infamous event, who rhetorically¬†(or rather sarcastically we would add) responded by manifesting, in obvious incoherence with the financial status of the borrower, that:

‚ÄúNo responsible lender should grant a loan unless it reasonably believes the borrower has the ability to repay it‚Ķafter carefully considering the facts along with the supporting documentation available to me, I am of the opinion that the bank has acted with due care and attention to this matter and consequently, I am unable to withhold your claim.‚ÄĚ

Luckily, the Spanish Government yesterday passed a law stopping dangerously immoral people like Bjorlow from evicting vulnerable people like Anne.

Jyske’s historic relationship with Spain has traditionally been bumpy, to say the least. In 1994, they closed their Spanish branch for reasons we do not know. In 1999, they re-opened the branch with a view to serve the diverse expat communities investing heavily in Spanish property only to order its closure again in 2007, so that they could operate from the safety of Gibraltar it appears (cross-border service), and on the 26th of April 2010 they were fined by the Bank of Spain with 1, 7 million Euros for failing to comply with Spanish anti-money laundering provisions.

A while before, in 2004, the Supreme Court ruled against them by upholding a Court of Appeal ruling that ordered Jyske to pay an ex-employee compensation (‚ā¨70,000), whose loan had been wrongly foreclosed because, even though it was agreed that whilst he worked for bank he would enjoy special terms and conditions, failing to pay higher interest when he left was not agreed as a “foreclosureable” default. As it happened, he had opted for a job with another bank which, clearly, was not of the liking of the bank. According to the Court, Jyske was found ‚Äú‚Ķlacking good faith when exercising its rights under the mortgage loan contract‚ÄĚ.

And not that long ago either, the Malaga Court of Appeal ruled that Jyske was not the owner of a company, Valiant Holdings, whose shares were pledged in guarantee of a loan repayment on a Spanish property. In spite of this, they chose to flatten the gardens, cut out the windows and close them up with wooden planks.

Last year, the Olive Press stepped in to help a victim of rogue trading and as recently as the 4th of October 2012, the Advocate General issued an opinion to the European Court of Justice, as requested by the Supreme Court on occasion of the appeal filed by Jyske Bank Gibraltar to the imposition of the 1, 7 million fine, to the extent that Spain has the right to exercise its right to supervise any bank operating in Spain, in respect of anti-money laundering provisions and any other matters of public interest, regardless of whether they are, or not, operating via a branch.

And we would not like to finish this post without a reference to what is going to be the very latest scandal to soon hit the headlines: the Equity Release tax-evasion fraud perpetrated by Jyske Bank Gibraltar.

 

 

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