Crooked deals at old Kaupthing

The National Broadcasting station reported today of a loan made by Kaupthing to UK businessman Robert Tchenguiz of 280 billion ISK in the months before the bank’s collapse without any real collateral. The money apparantly made its way to the Caribbean. 

Robert Tchenguiz was and still is on the board of Exista, Kaupthings former largest shareholder.


3 Responses to “Crooked deals at old Kaupthing”

  1. 1 Vilhjalm A. January 28, 2009 at 1:21 am

    Truly appalling. If the ISK was trading at 100 at the time, this would make it a two billion dollar theft. Unbelievable, really.
    No doubt some of that money was sent to other Cayman accounts of Kaupthing owners and “friends”.

    This “loan” raises an interesting issue. Ecuador has defaulted on its debt (i.e. refused to redeem its bonds), on the grounds that the sale of the bonds by the previous government were both illegal and immoral. This is not an empty claim, since the details of the bond sales show that corrupt officials within the government sold the bonds for kick-backs.
    So why couldn’t Iceland do the same? They could tell the Kaupthing creditors in bankuptcy court in the UK and Iceland that $2-4 billion of the pool of assets was fraudently and illegally given away, and that the Icelandic government will not pay this portion of the pool of debt, and that the creditors should go after Tchenguiz for that amount. In other words, if the total debts of Kaupthing were $8 billion, the Iceland government would refuse to pay $2 billion, and the creditors would have to decide among themselves who gets what of the remaining $6 billion. It might work. And after all the other fraudent loans are revealed, and there are no doubt may more that will come out, Iceland may be able to reduce the amount of debt it owes from the banks.

  2. 2 Vilhjalm A. January 28, 2009 at 5:11 am

    If it took place in October maybe it was only a billion or so.

    And here’s a possible explanation. The bank insiders couldn’t sell their shares when the banks were crashing so they shipped cash to a middleman (Tchenguiz) who sent it back to them, all using Cayman accounts. Tchenguiz, who is/was in deep financial trouble, got a significant commission.

    “Er Tchenguiz í raun ekki bara leppur? Sigurður E. og Hreiðar Már vissu að bankinn færi í þrot mánuðum fyrir hrun. Þeir geta ekki selt hlutabréfin sín/kauprétti án þess að fella bankann þar sem þeirra eigin stöður voru svo stórar. Þeir lána/gefa því íranska auðjöfrinum sem er með allt á hælunum stórar upphæðir og hann launar þeim síðan greiðann með því að koma hluta þessa fjár aftur í þeirra vasa í gegnum “untraceable” reikninga á Jómfrúreyjum. Þessir menn eru náttúrulega snillingar! Vissu að þeir myndu tapa hlutabréfunum sínum en ræna bara bankann í staðinn.”

    The banks really were just a “front” for the insiders all along. One big corporate crime scene.

  3. 3 Vilhjalm A. January 28, 2009 at 5:34 am

    And to complete the crime, the insiders will buy up Icelandic businesses or other assets for cheaply when the kreppa really kicks in later this year. Using more phoney cover companies of course, and the stolen money stashed in Cayman accounts. There was a story earlier this week about two foreigners wanting to buy Morgunbladid – now why would any foreigner want to buy a money-losing newspaper in a bankrupt country? As in investment? Surely not. Probably the crooked bank thieves are at work here. A newspaper or tv station in Iceland means power, or it’s a means of shutting out news.
    If you were a very suspicious person, you might think that the $500m that the Central Bank (i.e. Oddson) gave to Kaupthing right before the bank collapse was a gift to the insiders tied to the Tchenguiz deal. The banks after all had no money to lend at that time. The insiders then took that money and sent it to Tchenguiz. In return, Oddson will get to be the new Editor of the Morgunbladid, now owned by the crooks. Why did Oddson refuse to give $300m to Glitnir? Perhaps because he was saving the money to give it Kaupthing. The circle is completed.

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