Investigating three UK companies that had taken out a series of loans, totaling more than $40m from a bank in Liechtenstein.

Jurisdictions involved

UK, Liechtenstein and Ukraine.

The business and background 

Three UK companies (two of them Scottish Limited Partnerships), had taken out a series of loans, totaling more than $40m from a bank in Liechtenstein. The loans were guaranteed by a Ukrainian bank, which had funds on account with the lending bank.

The loan funds were dissipated, following which the lending bank called in the guarantee funds from the Ukrainian bank’s account. It is alleged that the guaranteed agreement had been entered into by employees of the Ukrainian bank, with a view to profiting from the dissipated loan funds. 

We were engaged by the Liechtenstein bank to trace the dissipated funds with a view to establishing their destination, as well as to research the entities involved in the dissipation. 

What we did

We analyzed the bank statements of the three borrowing companies, identifying key entities to which the loan funds were initially sent. 

We were also provided with s1782 disclosure (being disclosure of inter-bank transactions denominated in USD based on requested search terms). Such disclosure never provides a complete or fully reliable dataset (due to inherent limitations). From our analysis of bank statements, our team identified that many of the entities involved in the dissipation of the loan funds held accounts with Latvian and Estonian banks, thereby frequently sending funds within the same banks (which would not be identifiable in s1782 disclosure). 

The outcome

The investigation is ongoing with further s1782 disclosure pending.