Italian authorities have ramped up the charges against Deutsche Bank and its executives who are facing criminal charges of market manipulation in the merger of two banks in Italy in 2008.
In October, I wrote that six current and former managers of Deutsche Bank, including Michele Faissola and Michele Foresti, who were charged in Milan for colluding to falsify derivative accounts pertaining to Monte Paschi — the world’s oldest bank — in its takeover of another Italian bank.
In total, Deutsche Bank and Japan’s Nomura both went on trial in December, accused of colluding with Monte Paschi to cover up losses that almost toppled the Italian lender. Thirteen former managers of Deutsche, Nomura and Monte Paschi were charged for alleged false accounting and market manipulation.
Well this week Italian prosecutors in Milan have persuaded the three-judge panel to add further charges for Deutsche and its defendants of running an international criminal organization at the time. These additional charges of global fraud carries with it hefty prison sentences for the bankers should they be found guilty.
However, it could be the death knell for Deutsche, since if the bank is found guilty of running a global criminal cabal it could have to cease its banking business in Europe, Asia and the US due to losing its banking licenses.
Italian prosecutors relied on emails and other internal banking records obtained from an earlier probe by German financial regulator Bafin to build their current case.
In one instance, in order to make the Monte Paschi deal work a certain internal derivative instrument needed to be at a certain value. Once the derivative hit that needed value through Deutsche’s manipulation it is alleged, a London trader sent a “well done!” message. The recipient was Foresti, then the bank’s head of European fixed income, who stands at trial in Milan, Bloomberg reports.
In my award-winning story on the Deutsche banker suicides, I could only suggest at the time that the bank was running nefarious global operations and that this was why there were deaths in New York, London and Sieina, Italy and that these deaths were tied to possible whistleblowers.
The Italian authorities seem to be in agreement with me on the global criminal activities, let’s see if they will go further and look into the circumstances surrounding these deaths.