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Court increases Credit Suisse client loss estimate

Georgian billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili’s fraud losses bring in higher estimates (File photograph)

A Bermuda Supreme Court hearing has revised upwards Georgian billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili’s estimated losses in a scandalous lawsuit involving CS Life, a division of the Credit Suisse bank.

The losses have now been recalculated at some $607 million – ten per cent higher than estimated three months ago.

In March, Chief Justice Narinder Hargun ruled that Mr Ivanishvili and his family were entitled to more than $500 million in compensation from the Credit Suisse life insurance arm. But he ordered forensic accountants to come up with a more accurate picture of Mr Ivanishvili’s losses.

Credit Suisse lawyer Jonathan Crowe acknowledged the revised loss figure on Tuesday, but attempted to narrow the scope of where the compensation might come from.

But the Chief Justice called Mr Crowe’s arguments that compensation be met and met only from the assets in the segregated account, a “complete waste of time”.

According to Bloomberg, the Bermuda trial was seen as a test of whether the bank might be insulated from future liability in cases pending elsewhere in Switzerland.

In 2018, Patrice Lescaudron, a Credit Suisse relationship manager, was found guilty of multiple fraudulent acts against clients such as Mr Ivanishvili and sentenced to five years in prison. He committed suicide in 2020.

Mr Ivanishvili is a former Prime Minister of Georgia and in 2012, was ranked the richest man in the country according to Forbes Magazine.

Credit Suisse has argued that Lescaudron – was a rogue operator who hid his nefarious activities from his coworkers.

The Chief Justice reserved judgment until a later date on the final estimate of losses and on arguments made about the segregated accounts versus CS Life’s responsibility.

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Published June 22, 2022 at 7:54 am (Updated June 22, 2022 at 7:54 am)

Court increases Credit Suisse client loss estimate

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