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Legal Floris LLC in the media:
“The case is complex,” said Floris Alexander, a Dutchman who heads Legal Floris LLC, which represents more than 1,300 depositors seeking to recover their money from FBME. “The cross-border activities of the bank and the involvement of two central banks with different agendas make it difficult to come to a swift conclusion. Businesses have been forced to stop operating and individuals fear to lose their life savings. It could have stopped earlier, but the vision of the authorities and the owners of the bank are too far apart.” in A new Bank of Crooks and Criminals, published at the Asia Sentinel.
Floris Alexander, a financial crime lawyer who represents ABLV’s small depositors, says that “self-liquidation is fast and beneficial for depositors, but makes it difficult to scrutinise them”. in Dirty Money, Bloody Murder, published at Tortoise Media and JFMB.eu.
It’s questionable if the Bermuda arm of the Saab empire exists as anything more than a post office box. According to Floris Alexander, whose firm Legal Floris LLC represents 1,300 of the more conventional depositors seeking to get their money back, “There is no public telephone number for Saab Financial in Bermuda and in correspondence from Saab Financial (Bermuda) Ltd” its only address is a post office box in Nicosia, Cyprus. All of its banking activities appear to have been routed through Account 050001 in FBME Cyprus, the unit shut down provisionally in April by FinCEN. The assistant vice president for business development and all of those in control of the Bermuda unit worked and lived in Cyprus. in International Investment Firm Ordered Shut in Bermuda, published at Asia Sentinel.
Another two of Streamtrade’s partners were shell companies in the Marshall Islands, “one of the few jurisdictions where bearer shares were common practice,” Floris Alexander, a financial crime lawyer says. “This creates an issue for the identification of the beneficial owners because the physical holder of the shares – the bearer of the share certificates – “is the owner of the company.” in Dirty Money, published at Tortoise.
For all the attention paid to the Laundromat and similar scandals, national-level politicians in some European countries have been reluctant to pass laws that could deter the flow of illicit capital for fear of also blocking legitimate flows, said Floris Alexander, a financial crime lawyer based in Nicosia, Cyprus. He said smaller, less regulated jurisdictions such as Cyprus and some U.K. overseas territories such as the Isle of Man are still regarded by bad actors as having lighter-touch regulation. in Money laundering scandals said to reveal gaps in EU enforcement published at SP Market Intelligence.
Demand for financial and company formation services has pushed the number of lawyers in Cyprus to more than 3,900 for a population of less than 900,000, one of the highest densities in the EU. The financial sector business combined with a relatively low crime rate has meant that some Cypriot lawyers rely on tax advisory and company formation services more than on litigation and court cases for business, according to Floris Alexander, a Dutch financial crime lawyer who previously provided fund recovery services in Cyprus and now advises duped Danske Bank investors. in The Curious Case of Dr. K. and Mr. C. published at OCCRP.
“The lazy man’s way of trade-based money laundering assumes physical products to be shipped but this rarely happens,” Alexander, who represents small ABLV depositors, says. “The underlying transaction often does not exist.” in Dirty Money published at Tortoise Media.
As the Saabs’ many fights have slogged through courts around the world, hundreds of millions of dollars in deposits have remained frozen. As a result, many of FBME’s legitimate depositors haven’t been able to access much of their money, said Floris Alexander, whose firm Legal Floris LLC represents 1,500 of the bank’s clients. “They keep waiting, they’re still in limbo,” Alexander said. “There are people losing their life savings.” in The Secrets of One of the Worlds Most Dirties Banks and its Powerful Western Protectors published at Buzzfeed.
Experts say the contracts and invoices should have raised eyebrows. “A banker should at least ask for supporting evidence that exceeds the fabricated contracts and invoices,” Floris Alexander, a lawyer who represents small ABLV depositors, says. “It appears that having some basic paperwork on file satisfied regulators.” in The UK is Already a Money Laundering Hotspot. It Could Get Worse published at Tortoise.