Austria

Austria: Bank of America

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence from the Bank of America - pursuant to a request for judicial assistance from Austria - for a criminal investigation into attempted fraud.

Elizabeth von Pezold et al v. Zimbabwe: Petition to Recognize Arbitration Award

Petition to Recognize Arbitration Award of $263 million, £10 million, ZAR745,498, and €1,163, plus interest, for "Zimbabwe's expropriation of the von Pezolds' property" in Elizabeth Regina Maria Gabriele von Pezold, of Austria; Anna Eleonore Elisabeth Webber, of Austria; Heinrich Bernd Alexander Josef von Pezold, of Zimbabwe; Maria Juliane Andrea Christiane Katharina Batthyàny, of Austria; Georg Philipp Marcel Johann Lukas von Pezold, of Zimbabwe; Felix Alard Moritz Hermann, of Switzerland; Johann Friedrich Georg Ludwig von Pezold, of Scotland, and Adam Friedrich Carl Leopold Franz Severin von Pezold, of the Czech Republic, collectively descibed as "all members of the von Pezold family and are all German and Swiss nationals" v. Republic of Zimbabwe at the U. S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

K-fee System GmbH v. Nespresso USA et al: Discovery Application

Application by K-fee System GmbH to take discovery from Nespresso USA and Nestlé Holdings, Inc., d.b.a. Nestlé USA, Inc. for use in legal proceedings in Austria, France, and Germany, at the U. S. District Court for the Central District of California.

Keiichi Aritomo et al v. Julia Rhee et al: Amended Complaint

Amended Complaint in Keiichi Aritomo, a citizen and resident of Japan, and Joy Zhang, a citizen of the United States residing in Japan v. Youngjoo 'Julia' Rhee, described as a citizen of South Korea residing in New York; Aleksey Igudesman, described as a citizen and resident of Austria, and Music Traveler GmbH, described as an Austrian company "that solicits customers to book performance and rehearsal space for music, singing, and other artistic-related purposes", at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

European Lithium Ltd.: €160K Fine

Public Notice by the Austrian Financial Market Authority that it has imposed a fine of €160,000 on European Lithium Limited "for the dissemination of information and messages that sent out false and misleading signals to the market in relation to a financial instrument". Editor's Note: Research by OffshoreAlert showed that, on its website at https://europeanlithium.com/, European Lithium's "Directors and Senior Management" are described as Tony Sage - Non-Executive Chairman; Dietrich Wanke - Chief Executive Officer; Kimon Gkomozias - Executive Director; Malcolm Day - Non-Executive Director; and Melissa Chapman - CFO & Company Secretary.

BNP Paribas SA: €235K Fine

Public Notice by the Austrian Financial Market Authority that it has imposed a fine of €235,000 on BNP Paribas SA for "breach of the requirements for honest, clear and non-misleading information with regard to its market presence".

Keiichi Aritomo et al v. Julia Rhee et al: Complaint

Complaint alleging fraud in Keiichi Aritomo and Joy Zhang, both of Japan v. Youngjoo 'Julia' Rhee, of South Korea; Alekzey Igudesman, of Austria, and Music Traveler GmbH, described as being based in New York and Vienna, at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Merkanti Bank Ltd.: €259K Fine

Public Notice by the Malta Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit that it has imposed a fine of €259,927 on Merkanti Bank Limited, formerly MFC Merchant Bank Limited, for regulatory breaches. Editor's Note: Research by OffshoreAlert at the Malta Business Registry showed that Merkanti Bank Limited was incorporated on June 17th 2003, its directors are Christian Farrugia, a citizen of Malta; Friedrich Hondl, a citizen of Austria; Otto Karasek, a citizen of Austria; Samuel Morrow, a citizen of the United States, and George Portanier, a citizen of Malta, and its shareholders are Merkanti Holding Plc, of Malta, and Scully Royalty Ltd., of the Cayman Islands. Merkanti Holding Plc was incorporated on May 28th, 2015, its directors are Mario P. Galea, a citizen of Malta; Samuel Morrow, Benjamin Muscat, a citizen of Malta; Silke Stenger, a citizen of Germany, and Martin Ware, a citizen of the United Kingdom, and its shareholders are Merchants Employees Incentive Corp., of the Marshall Islands; Scully Royalty Ltd., and MFC 2017 II Ltd., of the Cayman Islands. The Cayman Islands General Registry showed that Scully Royalty Ltd.'s directors are Dr. Shuming Zhao, Friedrich Hondl, Indrajit Chatterjee, Jochen Dümler, Michael J. Smith, and Silke S. Stenger. There was no record of any company with the name MFC 2017 II Ltd. when OffshoreAlert searched the Cayman companies register.

Em@ney Plc: €359K Fine

Public Notice by the Malta Financial Intelligence Analysis Unit imposing a fine of €359,339 on Em@ney Plc, described as a "financial institution", for regulatory breaches. Editor's Note: Research by OffshoreAlert at the Malta Business Registry showed that Em@ney Plc was incorporated in Malta on June 14th, 2012, its directors are Germano Arno, a citizen of Italy, and Konstantin Balassopulos, a citizen of Austria, former directors include Nicola Mattocks, who resigned effective October 22nd, 2020, and its shareholders are Malta-domiciled Absolute Holding Limited, whose sole director is Francesco Malandrino, a citizen of Italy, and whose shareholder is Trident Trust Company (Malta) Limited, and Malta-domiciled Tyke Holding Limited, whose sole director is Germano Arno and whose shareholder is Trident Trust Company (Malta) Limited.

PJSC Bank Finance and Credit et al v. Kostyantin Zhevago et al: Complaint

Complaint alleging fraud in PJSC Bank Finance and Credit and Deposit Guarantee Fund of Ukraine, both of Ukraine v. Kostyantin Zhevago, Frold Project Limited, Eastroad Commerce LLP, Portman Shipping UK Limited, and Ian Anthony Pellow, all of England, at the High Court of Justice for England and Wales.

Erste Asset Management GmbH: €279K Fine

Public Notice by the Austrian Financial Market Authority that it has imposed a fine of €279,200 on Erste Asset Management GmbH for a regulatory breach regarding Immofinanz AG.

Torgovy Dom KAToil OOO v. Citibank NA et al: Discovery Application

Application by Torgovy Dom KAToil OOO, described as a Russian company that is "a wholly owned subsidiary of C.A.T. oil AG, a publicly-traded Austrian company", to take discovery from Citibank, N.A., JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., Bank of New York Mellon, N.A., Bank of America, N.A., Wells Fargo Bank N.A., and The Clearing House Payments Company L.L.C. for use in "contemplated legal proceedings" in Russia against Victoria Sokolova for suspected fraud, filed at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

USA v. Peter Weinzierl et al: Criminal Indictment

Criminal Indictment alleging the "laundering hundreds of millions of dollars in connection with the scheme to defraud the government of Brazil and to pay bribes to foreign officials" involving Brazilian firm Odebrecht SA and other companies and individuals in Antigua and Barbuda, Austria, Bahamas, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Liechtenstein, Mexico, Mozambique, Panama, Portugal, Scotland, Switzerland, and the USA in USA v. Peter Weinzierl and Alexander Waldstein, both Austrian former bankers, at the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

Ruslan Assimov v. Andritz Hydro Corp. et al: Discovery Application

Application by Ruslan Assimov, a citizen of Kazakhstan, to take discovery from Andritz Hydro Corp. and Andritz (USA) Inc. for use in "reasonably contemplated civil proceedings in Germany and/or Austria", filed at the U. S. District Court for the Northern District of Georgia.

Elektronik Service AG: Public Warning

Public Warning by the Swiss Financial Market Supervisory Authority that Elektronik Service AG is "suspected of conducting unauthorised activities in the financial market". Editor's Note: Research by OffshoreAlert showed that, in the Swiss Commercial Registry, Elektronik Service AG does not currently have any authorized representatives. Previous members include Samuel Walch, of Zurich, and Wolfgang Pischl, described as a citizen of Austria..

USA v. Funds Held by RAKIA: Forfeiture Complaint

Forfeiture Complaint regarding "an international conspiracy to launder funds traceable to violations of the International Emergency Economic Powers Act ... and a scheme to defraud financial institutions in the Republic of Korea" in USA v. AED 73 million in the custody of Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority and "All Claims Filed And Asserted" by VI2 Partners GmbH, of Austria, against Ras Al Khaimah Investment Authority Georgia LLC in the Republic of Georgia at the U. S. District Court for the District of Alaska.

ADCADA Investments AG PCC: Investor Warning

Investor Warning by the Austrian Financial Market Authority that ADCADA Investments AG PCC, of Liechtenstein, "is failing to comply with its obligations". Editor's Note: Research by OffshoreAlert showed that, in the Liechtenstein Commercial Register, the directors of ADCADA Investments AG PCC are identified as Lukas Jakob Wössner, Florian Scheiber, who is also President, and Benjamin Franklin Kühn, Chairman. On its website at https://adcada.healthcare/, ADCADA group claims to have "set up a production facility for mouth-nose protection mask" in Germany, where "12 million respiratory masks and other protective equipment are manufactured here every month".

Benjamin Steinmetz v. Vale SA et al: Discovery Application

Application by Benjamin Steinmetz, of Israel, described as an "adviser" to BSG Resources Limited, "a Guernsey-based international mining and natural resources company", to take discovery from Vale SA, described as a Brazil company that is "one of the largest mining companies in the world"; Vale Americas Inc., Rio Tinto Plc, and Rio Tinto Limited for use in legal proceedings in the United Kingdom involving Vale S.A., of Brazil; Vale Holdings B.V., of the Netherlands, and Vale International S.A., of Switzerland, filed at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Altarius Asset Management Ltd. et al: Reprimand

Announcement by the Malta Financial Services Authority that it has reprimanded Altarius Asset Management Limited and its directors "at the time of the deficiencies identified by the Authority", Heinz Daxl, a citizen of Austria; Pierre Maliczak, a citizen of France, and Peter Mitterlehner, a citizen of Austria.

Austria: PNC Bank

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence from PNC Bank - pursuant to a request for judicial assistance from Austria - for a criminal investigation into "unknown subjects" for aggravated fraud.

Cryptotrustconsulting Ltd.: Investor Warning

Investor Warning by the Austrian Financial Market Authority regarding Cryptotrustconsulting Ltd., a British company owned and operated by Marc Bendrat, 34, a citizen of Germany residing in Austria.

Odebrecht SA et al: Chapter 15 Petition

Chapter 15 Petition for Recognition of a Foreign Main Proceeding in Brazil by Marcelo Rossini, as the Foreign Representative of Odebrecht S.A., of Brazil; Odebrecht Finance Limited, of the Cayman Islands; Odebrecht Participações e Investimentos S.A., of Brazil, and ODB International Corporation, of the Bahamas, at the U. S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

Christine Grablis et al v. OneCoin Ltd. et al: First Amended Class Action Complaint

First Amended Class Action Complaint regarding an alleged cryptocurrency fraud in which much of the proceeds were allegedly laundered in the Cayman Islands and Ireland in Donald Berdeaux, of Montana, and Christine Grablis, of Tennessee v. OneCoin Ltd., of Bulgaria; Ruja Ignatova, of Bulgaria; Konstantin Igantov, of Bulgaria; Sebastian Greenwood, of Sweden; Mark Scott, of Coral Gables, Florida; Irina Andreeva Dilinska, David Pike, of Coral Gables, Florida, and Nicole J. Huesmann, of Coral Gables, Florida, at the U. S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Access Advantage Master Ltd. v. Alpha Prime Fund Ltd.: Complaint

Complaint regarding $30 million invested in a fraudulent scheme by Bernard Madoff in Access Advantage Master Ltd., domiciled in the British Virgin Islands, based in Corte Madera, California v. Alpha Prime Fund Ltd., of Bermuda, at the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York.

Schahin Holdings SA et al: Chapter 15 Petition

Chapter 15 Petition for Recognition of a Foreign Main Proceeding in Brazil by Osana Mendonça, as the Foreign Representative of Schahin Holdings SA, Base Engenharia e Serviços de Petróleo e Gás SA, a.k.a. Schahin Engenharia SA; Schahin Empreendimentos Imobiliarios Ltda, Schahin Securitizadora de Créditos Financeiros SA, Schahin Desenvolimento Imobiliários SA, Companhia Schahin de Ativos, MTS Participações SA, Satasch Participações Ltda, and Deep Black Drilling LLP, at the U. S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of Florida. It is alleged in the petition that the Schahin Group was involved in a bribery scheme involving companies in several jurisdictions, including Austria, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, Panama, Uruguay, and the USA.

Jeffrey Epstein: Liquid Funding Ltd. – Selected Filings

Selected filings with Bermuda's Registrar of Companies by Liquid Funding Ltd., which was dissolved on November 25th, 2015 after going into Members' Voluntary Liquidation and whose chairman and director was Jeffrey Epstein, a USA-based financier who was criminally indicted on two counts of sex trafficking at federal court in Manhattan on July 2nd, 2019. These records, comprising 357 pages, were obtained by OffshoreAlert from Bermuda's Registrar of Companies on July 24th, 2019 and, inter alia, include a Private Placement Memorandum, the registration of mortgage charges, an agreement for derivatives trading, and liquidation notice.

Bank of Valletta notifies Argentarius Group of ‘fraud liability’

The closure of the Malta operations of Argentarius Group, which now operates in the Cayman Islands as iMaps Capital, coincided with preliminary legal action against it by the Bank of Valletta regarding an alleged investment fraud that resulted in losses of at least €79 million, OffshoreAlert can reveal.
Cayman Islands

Scandal-plagued Argentarius Group closes in Malta, moves to Cayman

Amid legal and regulatory issues, Argentarius Group - which provides low-cost, regulation-free investment funds to asset managers, particularly fraudsters - has closed down in Malta, having moved its headquarters to the Cayman Islands, where it operates as iMaps Capital.

CFTC v. 1Pool Ltd. et al: Consent Order

Consent Order in Commodity Futures Trading Commission v. 1Pool Ltd., of the Marshall Islands, and Patrick Brunner, of Austria, at the U. S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Norske Skogindustrier ASA: Chapter 15 Petition

Chapter 15 Petition for Recognition of a Foreign Main Proceeding in Norway by Tom Hugo Ottesen, as the Foreign Representative of Norske Skogindustrier ASA, at the U. S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

CFTC v. 1Pool Ltd. et al: Complaint

Complaint in Commodity Futures Trading Commission v. 1Pool Ltd., of the Marshall Islands, and Patrick Brunner, of Austria, at the U. S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

Argentarius Group ‘removes’ PwC as auditor

OffshoreAlert has uncovered more red flags concerning the Argentarius Group, which operates investment platforms in Malta, Gibraltar and the Cayman Islands. PwC has become the second auditor to be 'removed' in less than three years, while Argentarius' predecessor firm - Minerva Investments - collapsed amid a fraud investigation by the financial regulator in Liechtenstein.

SPV OSUS Ltd. v. HSBC Holdings Plc et al: Amended Complaint

Amended Complaint in SPV OSUS Ltd. v. HSBC Holdings Plc, HSBC Bank Plc, HSBC Bank USA, NA, HSBC Securities Services (Bermuda) Limited, HSBC Institutional Trust Services (Bermuda) Limited, HSBC Bank Bermuda Limited, HSBC Securities Services (Luxembourg) SA, HSBC Bank (Cayman) Limited, HSBC Private Banking Holdings (Suisse) SA, HSBC Private Ban (Suisse) SA, HSBC Fund Services (Luxembourg) SA, Sonja Kohn, Mario Benbassat, Alberto Benbassat, Stephane Benbassat, 20:20 Medici AG, UniCredit Bank Austria AG, BA Worldwide Fund Management Ltd., UniCredit SpA, Herald Asset Management Limited, Eurovaleur, Inc., Pioneer Alternative Investment Management Limited, Alpha Prime Asset Management Ltd., Regulus Asset Management Limited, Carruba Asset Management Limited, Tereo Trust Company Limited, Genevalor Benbassat et Cie, Hermes Asset Management Limited, Thema Asset Management (Bermuda) Ltd., Thema Asset Management Limited, Equus Asset Management Limited, Equus Asset Management Partners, LP, Aurelia Fund Management Limited, Inter Asset Management Inc., T&M Trusteeship & Management Services SA, GTM Management Services Corp. NV, Aurelia Asset Management Partners, Cape Investment Advisors Limited, Erwin Kohn, and HSBC USA Inc. at The Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York.

Petro Welt Trading GmbH v. Meggie Counts et al: Discovery Application

Ex Parte Application by Petro Welt Trading GmbH to take discovery from Meggie M. Counts, Richard A. Counts, MRLDS LLC, Peter Justinius, Laura Justinius, and Lelan Wheeler for a proceeding in Cyprus, filed at the U. S. District Court for the Middle District of Florida.

Austria: James George

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence - pursuant to a request for judicial assistance from Austria - for a criminal investigation into suspected fraud by an unknown person purporting to be James George.

Austria: Richard Drake

Application for the appointment of a Commissioner to collect evidence - pursuant to a request for judicial assistance from Austria - for a criminal investigation into Richard Drake for suspected fraud.

Odebrecht Oleo e Gas SA: Chapter 15 Petition

Chapter 15 Petition for Recognition of a Foreign Main Proceeding in Brazil by Rogerio Luis Murat Ibrahim, as the Foreign Representative of Odebrecht Oleo e Gas SA, Odebrecht Oil & Gas GmbH, Odebrecht Oil Services Ltd., Odebrecht Oil & Gas Finance Limited, Odebrecht Drilling Norbe VIII/IX Ltd., Odebrecht Drilling Norbe Eight GmbH, Odebrecht Drilling Norbe Nine GmbH, Odebrecht Offshore Drilling Finance Ltd., ODN I GmbH, Odebrecht Drilling Norbe Six GmbH, and ODN Tay IV GmbH, at the U. S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.