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Founder Member and President of ERVA celebrates Court victory over DANSKE BANK LUXEMBOURG S.A.

Image result for euan armstrong erva

Euan Armstrong, member founder and current President of ERVA, has managed to persuade a Court in Coin to dismiss loan foreclosure proceedings brought by Danske Bank International S.A. in 2010.

The victim of vicious luxembourg-based Danske Bank has fought relentlessly during 7 years to stop the lender from taking his home, after having been cheated by the bank’s staff -at one time based in Fuengirola- who sold him an Equity Release loan named as “Capital Assurance”.

In spite of being unsuccessful in 2 criminal actions, one directed to the bank’s representatives for aggravated fraud and a further one against a Coin-based Judge for negligence, the Superior Court of Justice in Granada -when dismissing the latter complaint against the Judge- deemed that Mr. Armstrong was nevertheless right in denouncing irregularities in the proceedings and observed that a fresh review of the case was necessary.

Finally, a newly-appointed Judge in Coin decided that Danske Bank’s position was untenable and threw the case out.

This ruling can be appealed (est. time 1.5 years to resolve) but it is unlikely it will be upheld.

Meanwhile, Euan is bringing new proceedings against Danske Bank International S.A. to nullify the Equity Release product and invalidate the mortgage loan.

Summary of Court Questioning of Danske Bank Staff

ERVA has received a summary of the  interrogation of the Danske Bank staff members from an undisclosed source.

Morten Runo Waaben said that he was just the investor and came into the bank in 2006, at a later stage.

Acting lawyers were not too keen on his side of the story because he was merely the investment manager, and was not involved in the signing up of the claimant. However, his version of how the investment was conducted grossly differs from the truth; he stated that it was Euan Armstrong who instructed how the spread of the investments should be allocated and that in fact, against his own advice, Euan wanted a higher risk approach.

Morten also said that he was aware that Euan was an ‘avid’ investor, with substantial experience.

Henrik Hjerrild Hansen went on to deny any involvement in the sale stating that although he had signing the product at the Notary Public, it was all done via Luxembourg. When lawyers confronted him on his knowledge of what he was really signing at the Notary Office, he said he was aware it was a mortgage loan but little else.

In respect of his involvement with the Danske Office in Spain, he said that his role was merely that of general information to the public about the bank and its services, without providing advice. This is hardly consistent with the their own publicity:

When lawyers asked him about Spanish tax matters, he said he had little clue about this as that was not his role or remit, and again referred the matter to Luxembourg. Lawyers strongly confronted this statement appealing to his own LinkedIn profile, which he has now removed, where he seems ‘the’ expert in Private Banking with Danske, after 40 years of service for this entity.

Finally, the lawyer for the bank, Ole Stenersen, was quite a funny chap although could not help stop lying. In his words, he was no tax expert and could not answer anything about the Capital Assurance Product. He denied knowledge of this set up and referred it to ‘someone else’ within bank. Surprisingly, when his counsel starting asking questions about this same matter, he suddenly had the answers in respect to whether a mortgage loan for tax purposes refers not to the mortgage itself, but to the loan and how it gets invested.

He also gave inconsistent answers about the KPMG letter citing just one paragraph of it whilst, barefacedly, denied the other (one where KPMG states that they never authorized the tax benefits of the product).

ERVA is now hoping that other victims of these thieves will wish to join the case; in connection to this.

It is our determination to impede Danske Bank get away with this and we are truly hoping that this matter will go to trial.

We will not finish this post without mentioning a new participant soon to be exposed, Mr. Soren Glente.

Danske Bank Managed to Sell Equity Release Throughout Spain

We can today say that Danske Bank Luxembourg, operating from their offices in Centro Comercial Idea, Carretera Fuengirola Mijas, was definitely successful in spreading the story that taking out a mortgage on your home to avoid Spanish taxes was the best thing since sliced bread.

A great deal of the business carried out by Danske Bank in Spain was Equity Release though straight loans to purchase property were also signed.

However, judging by how many equity release contracts we have knowledge of, in so many different places in Spain, we can say Danske’s scaremongers managed to make their lie, no matter how outrageous, a truthful story by repeating it often enough.




Allan Graydon, Danske Bank, KPMG and PriceWaterHouseCoopers

Allan Graydon, the Chartered Accountant that was not, established fruitful relationships with reputable entitiesto sell Equity Release schemes.

Danske Bank did share offices with Graydon, and they have admitted to this, so no troubles here. Allan Graydon was also partners with Norman Steele who, according to the South African financial regulators, had an arrest warrant out for illegaly conducting financial investments on behalf of customers.
PriceWaterHouseCoopers name was prominently displayed as a collaborating partner, but there are no further news from them.
KPMG’s name is also mentioned but then vehemently deny any involvement in the scheme. Their name is however mentioned on the Danske Bank promotional literature.

Court in Fuengirola Agrees to Carry Out All Investigation Measures in Danske Bank Criminal Case

In spite of dismissing the case shortly after it had been submitted, Fuengirola Court of First Instance has now agreed to implement a number of fact-finding requests on behalf of Euan Armstrong, as petitioned by his lawyers, after the initial dismissal was appealed successfully at the Malaga Appeal Court.

According to the decision of the Appeal Court, the dismissal of the criminal case against Danske Bank was found to be contrary to law because it was redacted in a laconic format incompatible with the Constitutional Tribunal doctrine and did not deal with the matters raised.

The Court of First Instance has now agreed to the following requests petitioned by EUAN ARMSTRONG’s Counsel:

  1. Summons ordering the following individuals to appear in Court to give a judicial statement: Mr. Peter Staarup, Mr. John Lundskov Larsen, Mr. Morten Runo Waaben, Mr. Henrik Hjerrild Hansen.
  2. Summons ordering the legal representative of DANSKE BANK INTERNATIONAL S.A. to appear in Court to give a judicial statement, on account of its potential responsibility for payment of damages.
  3. Summons ordering LCV, agent involved in the sale of Equity Release, to appear in Court to give a judicial statement, on account of its potential responsibility for payment of damages.
  4. Order to DANSKE BANK SPAIN and DANSKE BANK INTERNATIONAL to disclose the following:
    • Type of relationship, employment or other, between DANSKE BANK and LCV.
    • If LCV was authorized by DANSKE BANK as a financial advisor, or commercial agent, and if so the type or nature of products sold on behalf of DANSKE BANK.
    • Remunerations during the period of relationship, whether in the form of commissions or benefits in kind, that may have been given by DANSKE BANK to LCV, through the network of offices in Spain.
    • Number of DANSKE BANK CAPITAL ASSURANCE policies or contracts signed in Spain, with reference to the age and profession of the clients of this product.
    • Destination given to the funds given to the DANSKE BANK by EUAN ARMSTRONG, in respect of the product called “Inverse Mortgage”.
  5. Request to the Spanish Insurance Regulator (Direccion General de Seguros y Fondos de Pensiones), with a view to confirm whether a product known as DANSKE BANK CAPITAL ASSURANCE, consisting in an insurance policy sold as a financial product for the elimination or mitigation of Spanish Inheritance Tax, as well as Spanish Wealth Tax, has obtained administrative authorization to be sold to the public or, in any event, whether it is compliant with applicable legislation, specifically advising on its characteristics and if it is currently sold in Spain.
  6. Witness Summons ordering the following to appear in Court to offer testimony:
    • C.D. (Daughter of Mr. Armstrong)
    • K.A. (Daughter of Mr. Armstrong)


Danske Bank Luxembourg Agreed to Settle With an 85-year Old British Couple Not Before Extracting an Apology

Klaus “Monster” Pedersen, the same high-flying executive who thought to be above-board to sell his Spanish tax-evading equity release products to old-age pensioners, preferably through Costa-del-Sol financial cowboys, promising them it was a miracle-product (only to later make the advice disappear from the company website), found that further humiliating his victims by extracting an apology was correct, not before taking €300,000 from them. 

Humiliator-in-Chief Pedersen had to agree on a settlement after his company was approached by Sharon Bowles, MEP for the victims, but took great offence that the matter had “transpired” because in opaque Luxembourg, where he is based, washing dirty-linen in public was seen as a sacrilege, particularly with tax-evasion being high on the agenda.

Will he be asking for an apology from the largest Danish newspaper, Jyllands-Posten, for stating that they actively promoted tax fraud through Costa-cowboys?

Expat equity release victims take on banks

The directors of action group Equity Release Victims Association stand to lose their homes Photo: Larry Lilac / Alamy

Tempted by the offer of a salary for life and an inheritance tax reduction, organisers of Equity Release Victims Association, Ian Sherdley, 69, and Euan Armstrong, 73, used their Spanish holiday homes as collateral to buy into the equity release schemes.

The schemes were sold by independent financial advisors working the expat communities along the Costa del Sol on behalf of Denmark’s biggest bank Danske Bank and Nordea Bank SA.

They were told that if they took out full mortgages against the value of their Andalucian homes, which were fully paid for, and then gave the money to the bank to invest, their inheritance tax liability would be reduced and they’d receive a small lump sum, as well as a monthly return on the bank’s investment which would cover the cost of the remortgage and provide a small salary.

Mr Sherdley, from Lancashire, and Mr Armstrong, from Scotland, followed the advice only to be later told by their Nordic Banks that the investments had gone badly, the remortgaged money had been lost and their homes suddenly belonged to the banks.

It is thought that there could be hundred of expats in similar positions across Spain and France.

A Spanish court has so far suspended Danske Banks’ foreclosure and repossession order, while a decision as to how the cases will proceed is expected in the near future.

According to Mr Armstrong’s lawyer, Antonio Flores from Lawbird Legal Services, the schemes were mis-sold, bearing in mind it is illegal to knowingly indebt yourself in order to reduce your inheritance tax liability.

He said: “We want to find out exactly how many of the schemes were sold, to who, and on what basis.

“As far as I can gather, retired expats were targeted because they had paid off their mortgages, so could use them as collateral and would be tempted by talk of reduced inheritance tax liability.”

Mr Armstrong added: “We encourage everyone who, like us has been sold one of these schemes to get in touch.

“Do not lie down and take this. These banks are making billions every year with your money.”

A spokesman for Nordea bank said: “We can’t comment, but we can say is that Nordea runs its business in compliance with local laws.”

A spokesman for Danske Bank said: “According to the law we cannot comment on individual customer cases nor questions related to individual customer cases. We have no comment.”

If you have a story to tell about equity release, please contact sean.o’hare@telegraph.co.uk.

Originally published on http://www.telegraph.co.uk/property/expatproperty/8759583/Expat-equity-release-victims-take-on-banks.html.

Expats in Spain battle the banks

UNITED: Euan Armstrong and Ian Sherdley have joined forces against the banks

Euan Armstrong, who the Olive Press reported is taking Danske Bank to court after it convinced him to use his two million euro Malaga home as collateral, has now teamed up with fellow expat Ian Sherdley, 69, to form the Equity Release Victims Association.
“We are forming an association to prevent these banks from robbing expats of their property by offering a pile of cash as part of an investment plan,” explained Armstrong, 73, who lives in Marbella.
“Equity release is not safe and a loan against the property with the idea of hiding the money in an offshore account or removing the money from the value of the property is certainly illegal in Spain.”
Sherdley, 69, from Lancashire, who is involved in similar scheme with Nordea Bank SA, added: “These banks are just trying to fill their coffers. So now we are working on getting a legal voice to pursue them through the criminal courts.”
The pair are being backed in their venture by lawyer Antonio Flores from the Marbella based firm Lawbird.
“The purpose of the association is to support people through their predicament,” Flores explained.
“Equity release is actually killing people, through such degrees of stress. Their livelihoods are being reduced and in some cases their lifespan.

“We have decided to do something.”

Now Armstrong and Sherdley are calling on other victims – believed to run into the hundreds – to stand up and fight these huge financial institutions.
“We ask everybody to join us who has or is suffering a similar rape and pillage from a Scandinavian Bank,” said Armstrong.
“Do not lie down but stand up and fight them.
“These banks are making billions of euros every year and stealing your money.”
When questioned both banks said they were unable to comment on individual cases.

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