logo


Archive

Posts Tagged ‘Euan Armstrong’

I’ve lost my home through equity release scheme

August 24th, 2011

AN expat is taking Denmark’s biggest bank to court after it convinced him to use his Marbella mansion as collateral in an equity release scheme.

Euan Armstrong, 73, is in litigation after the scheme left him almost penniless with the bank trying to force him to sell his two million euro home to pay off debts. The pensioner had joined the Danske Bank scheme believing it would give him a salary for life, as well as reduce inheritance tax for his daughters – who would be liable to pay Spain’s top rate of 34 per cent.

But Armstrong, originally from Scotland, now faces losing his home. “The whole case is a mess of illegal contracts, bad investment and a loss of clients money in spite of Danske Banks’ huge profits,” Armstrong told the Olive Press. “We must stop these banks stealing our money.”

Armstrong claims he was convinced by three employees in the now-shut Mijas branch that taking out a million euro mortgage would reduce his two daughters Caroline and Kristen’s inheritance tax liability by half.

Illegal

Within the plan Danske Bank was supposed to use 850,000 euros to invest in bonds, Swiss Francs and Euros with the ‘profits’ being used to pay off the mortgage. Meanwhile, a 150,000 euro lump sum would be given to Armstrong as part of the equity release deal.

However things did not go to plan. After the first year Armstrong realised that the bank had actually lost him 18,000 euros. “And then for the next five years it continued to lose money and in 2009 I was told by an account manager in Luxembourg that I should sell my property and pay the bank back the 650,000 euros they had lost.” When he refused Danske Bank issued a foreclosure on his house and also a repossession order through Coin court, which would have taken place in July.

Fortunately however, his lawyer stepped in and obtained a court ruling suspending the repossession. According to boss Antonio Flores, of Lawbird – who is also filing eight separate cases against various Nordic banks in a similar situation – it is actually illegal to indebt yourself in order to reduce your inheritance tax liability.

Nonetheless, he estimates that hundreds of people fall victim to these schemes. “This type of product, peddled by unauthorised agents under the auspices of supposedly reputable banks is becoming more and more common and should be avoided at all costs,” he explained. A Danske Bank spokesman said: “According to the law we cannot comment on individual customer cases nor questions related to individual cases.”

The investigation continues.

In the Media , ,

Expat goes up against Denmark’s biggest bank in a bid to save his Malaga home

August 3rd, 2011

Euan Armstrong, 73, who lives in Marbella, was initially lured in by the false hope he could reduce inheritance tax for his two daughters – who would eventually be liable to pay Spain’s top rate of 34 per cent – and enjoy a salary for life.

But Armstrong, originally from Scotland, now faces losing his home.

“The whole case is a mess of illegal contracts, bad investment and a loss of client’s money in spite of Danske Banks huge profits,” said Armstrong.

“We must stop these banks stealing our money.”

Armstrong claims he was convinced by three separate Danske Bank employees in the Mijas branch that taking out a one million euro mortgage loan against his home would reduce his daughters’ inheritance tax liability by half.

Within the plan Danske Bank was supposed to use 850,000 euros to invest in bonds, Swiss Francs and Euros with the ‘profits’ being used to pay off the mortgage, while a 150,000 euro lump sum would be given to Armstrong as equity release.

But Armstrong added: “After the first year I realised that they had lost me 18,000 euros. For the next five years Danske Bank continued to lose money and in 2009 I was told by an account manager for Danske Bank in Luxembourg that I should sell my property and pay the bank back the 650,000 euros they had lost.

“I refused, so in November 2010 Danske Bank issued a foreclosure on my house and also a repossession order through the local court due to take place last month.”

Fortunately for Armstrong, his lawyer Antonio Flores from the Marbella based firm Lawbird – who is also filing eight separate complaints against various Nordic banks on behalf of expats who bought into similar plans – stepped in and obtained a court ruling suspending the repossession.

According to Flores it is actually illegal to indebt yourself in order to reduce your inheritance tax liability, but there are likely hundreds of people who have fallen victim to this scheme.

“This type of product, peddled by unauthorised agents under the auspices of supposedly reputable banks to mostly British pensioners, is becoming more and more common and should be avoided at all costs,” he explained.

And Armstrong added: “The Judge in Coin Court has accepted that the charges of criminal intent are correct, in spite of their lawyers saying it was not correct as someone else had tried a similar case and lost and had to pay 500.000 euros to Danske Bank, who had lost their money in the same way.”

Armstrong has now been forced to rent out his home and move in with his daughter and resume his former job as a yacht captain in order to raise legal fees.

A spokesman for Danske Bank said: “According to the law we cannot comment on individual customer cases nor questions related to individual customer cases. We have no comment.”

The investigation continues.

 

In the Media , ,

Scottish expat takes on Denmark’s biggest bank over equity release scheme

August 3rd, 2011

Danske Bank, Denmark

Denmark’s biggest bank faces a criminal investigation amid claims it offered “illegal” financial products Photo: Francis Dean/Rex Features

Six years on, Mr Armstrong is forced to live with one of his daughters as he prepares to take on the bank that promised so much yet threatens to leave him penniless.

His lawyer is filing eight similar complaints against various Nordic banks on behalf of expats who bought into equity release plans in the false hope that they could avoid inheritance tax and enjoy a salary for life. He believes the true number of victims could run into the hundreds.

Scottish-born Mr Armstrong, aware that his daughters would eventually be liable to pay Spain’s top rate of 34 per cent inheritance tax on the €2 million home he owned outright in Malaga, sought the advice of an independent financial advisor known to advise British expat pensioners living on the coast.

The advisor, who was allegedly unauthorised to sell financial products in Spain, suggested Danske Bank’s Capital Assurance product as a means to reduce liability and introduced him to the local Danske Bank branch in Mijas. He too faces possible criminal investigations.

Mr Armstrong alleges that he was assured by no less than three Danske Bank employees that taking out a €1 million Danske Bank mortgage loan against his home and effectively indebting himself would reduce his daughters’ inheritance tax liability by half.

It was agreed that €850,000 would be used by Danske Bank to invest and the profits used to pay off the mortgage, while a €150,000 lump sum would be given to Mr Armstrong as equity release.

According to Mr Armstrong’s lawyer Antonio Flores from Lawbird Legal Services , it is illegal to indebt yourself in order to reduce your inheritance tax liability.

He said: “This type of product, peddled by unauthorised agents under the auspices of supposedly reputable banks to mostly British pensioners, is becoming more and more common and should be avoided at all costs.”

The Danske bank mortgage loan of €850,000, Mr Armstrong was told, would be invested in bonds, Swiss Francs and Euros.

Mr Armstrong said: “After the first year I realised that they had lost me £18,000. For the next five years Danske Bank continued to lose money and in 2009 I was told by an account manager for Danske Bank in Luxembourg that I should sell my property and pay the bank back the €650,000 they had lost.

“I refused, so in November 2010 Danske Bank issued a foreclosure on my house and also a repossession order through the local court due to take place last month.”

Fortunately for Mr Armstrong, his lawyer obtained a court ruling suspending the reposession following the lodging of criminal complaints against the bank and its staff.

Mr Armstrong has now been forced to rent out his home and resume his former job as a yacht captain in order to raise legal fees.

A spokeman for Danske Bank said: “According to the law we cannot comment on individual customer cases nor questions related to individual customer cases. We have no comment.”

The investigation continues.

 

 

In the Media , , ,

Danish Bank risks trial in Spain

May 24th, 2011

Peter Straarup summoned by a British investor who believes that the Danish Bank has cheated him. File photo: Lars Krabbe

From Google Translate

Danish Bank risk trial in Spain

Published at 22:05:11. 23:30

An elderly Englishman plaintiff Danish Bank after a loss of 800,000 euros.

Much has Danish Bank’s CEO, Peter Straarup, had to listen and eyes, through his many years in the bank. But it is probably the first time that he experiences seeing his name appear on an indictment that was sent to a Spanish court.

It is nevertheless true in a case in southern Spain, where a law firm is now trying to get a case to stand up against Danish Bank.

Company Lawbird Legal Services believes it can prove that the Danish Bank has cheated an elderly Englishman, because the bank has given him the wrong information on some tax in the information that helped to convince him to invest through the bank.

»Danish Bank has simply given incorrect information to my client. He has therefore been lured into an investment that he never should have made, “said lawyer Antonio Flores from Lawbird Legal Services, headquartered in Marbella in southern Spain.

The English man, now retired, borrowed in 2004 1 million. euro by Danish bank, which at that time had a branch in southern Spain. The money was invested through the Danish Bank branch in Luxembourg, which it did not have a lucky hand when the value has fallen by 800,000 euros.

The loan has not decreased

The loan of 1 million. euro has not fallen in value and the money will Danish Bank now want back. But it has the man no more, and therefore the bank tries instead to get his house in southern Spain.

To prevent this Englishman contacted the Spanish law firm in connection with the case thus believe they have found out that Danish Bank has cheated and deceived the man.

The paper on serious charges against the Danish Bank – and Peter Straarup that are mentioned in the indictment – are not bank employees to lie sleepless at night.

It failed Sunday to catch the person responsible for Danish Bank branch in Luxembourg, Klaus Mønsted Pedersen. But the bank’s press officer says on the matter.

“I do not know the case and I do not know about that Danish Bank International have misinformed. We have already seen that some lawyers in certain countries have a quite aggressive approach and, when they try to get a case to court, “said Donald Klinkby Madsen.

 

Original Article in Danish

Peter Straarup stævnes af en engelsk investor, der mener, at Danske Bank har snydt ham. Arkivfoto: Lars Krabbe

Danske Bank risikerer retssag i Spanien

CLAUS IVERSEN

Offentliggjort 22.05.11 kl. 23:30

En ældre englænder sagsøger Danske Bank efter et tab på 800.000 euro.

Meget har Danske Banks ordførende direktør, Peter Straarup, måttet lægge ører og øjne til gennem sine mange år i banken. Men det er formentlig første gang, at han oplever at se sit navn stå på et anklageskrift, som er sendt til en spansk domstol.

Det er ikke desto mindre tilfældet i en sag i Sydspanien, hvor et advokatfirma nu forsøger at få en sag op at stå mod Danske Bank.

Firmaet Lawbird Legal Services mener at kunne bevise, at Danske Bank har snydt en ældre englænder, fordi banken har givet ham forkerte oplysninger om nogle skatteregler i det informationsmateriale, som var med til at overbevise ham om at investere gennem banken.

»Danske Bank har ganske enkelt givet urigtige oplysninger til min klient. Han er derfor blevet lokket ud i en investering, som han aldrig burde have foretaget,« siger advokat Antonio Flores fra Lawbird Legal Services, der har hovedkontor i Marbella i Sydspanien.

Den engelske mand, som nu er pensionist, lånte i 2004 1 mio. euro af Danske Bank, som på det tidspunkt havde en afdeling i Sydspanien. Pengene blev investeret via Danske Banks afdeling i Luxembourg, hvilket den ikke havde en heldig hånd med, da værdien er faldet med 800.000 euro.

Lånet er ikke faldet

Lånet på 1 mio. euro er imidlertid ikke faldet i værdi, og de penge vil Danske Bank nu gerne have tilbage. Men dem har manden ikke mere, og derfor forsøger banken i stedet at få fat i hans hus i Sydspanien.

For at forhindre dette kontaktede englænderen det spanske advokatfirma, som i forbindelse med sagen altså mener at have fundet ud af, at Danske Bank har snydt og bedraget manden.

De på papiret alvorlige anklager mod Danske Bank – og Peter Straarup, som bliver nævnt i anklageskriftet – får dog ikke bankens ansatte til at ligge søvnløse om natten.

Det lykkedes ikke søndag at fange den ansvarlige for Danske Banks afdeling i Luxembourg, Klaus Mønsted Pedersen. Men bankens pressechef siger om sagen.

»Jeg kender ikke den konkrete sag, og jeg kender ikke noget til, at Danske Bank International skulle have misinformeret. Det er før set, at nogle advokater i bestemte lande har en ret aggressiv fremfærd, når de prøver at få en sag for domstolene,« siger Anders Klinkby Madsen.

 

In the Media , , , ,

Danish Bank hauled into court by dissatisfied investors

May 23rd, 2011

An elderly Englishman plaintiff Danish Bank after a loss of 800,000 euros. The daily newspaper Jyllands-Posten Monday.

The Englishman has sued Danish Bank, as he believes that the bank has given him the wrong information in the information which prompted him to invest in the bank.

- Danish Bank has simply given incorrect information to my client. He has therefore been lured into an investment which he never should have made, “said lawyer Antonio Flores from Lawbird Legal Services, headquartered in Marbella in southern Spain to the newspaper.

The English investors borrowed in 2004 1 million. euro by Danish bank, which at that time had a branch in southern Spain. The money was invested through the Danish Bank branch in Luxembourg, but since then the value has declined by 800,000 euros, said the newspaper.

Translated with Google Translate

Original Story in Danish

Danske Bank hives i retten af utilfreds investor

En ældre englænder sagsøger Danske Bank efter et tab på 800.000 euro. Det skriver Morgenavisen Jyllands-Posten mandag.

Englænderen har lagt sag an mod Danske Bank, da han mener, at banken har givet ham forkerte oplysninger i det informationsmateriale der fik ham til at investere i banken.

- Danske Bank har ganske enkelt givet urigtige oplysninger til min klient. Han er derfor blevet lokket ud i en investering, som han aldrig burde have foretaget, siger advokat Antonio Flores fra Lawbird Legal Services, der har hovedkontor i Marbella i Sydspanien til avisen.

Den engelske investor lånte i 2004 1 mio. euro af Danske Bank, som på det tidspunkt havde en afdeling i Sydspanien. Pengene blev investeret via Danske Banks afdeling i Luxembourg, men siden da er værdien faldet med 800.000 euro, oplyser avisen.

In the Media , ,