An ex-Credit Suisse Group banker who was found guilty of espionage in Romania is suing the lender for $US89.5 million ($131 million), saying that he can’t even apply for a job driving for Uber.
In a London court hearing Monday, the lawyers for the bank applied for an early dismissal of the claim, saying it had no real prospect of success.
Vadim Benyatov was arrested in Romania in 2006 while working for the Swiss bank on privatising state utility companies. In a court filing, he said he was rousted in an early morning raid of the Bucharest Hilton by Romanian secret police wielding machine guns before being put in a jail cell with “two heroin dealers and a serial burglar.” He was later released and placed under house arrest in Bucharest.
After nine years of legal proceedings, the former managing director was dismissed by Credit Suisse in 2015 following his criminal conviction by Romania’s Supreme Court. He has remained a fugitive and resides in Los Angeles after leaving Europe in 2015 when a European Arrest Warrant was issued for him. He’s suing the bank, saying it failed to intervene to help him during the legal proceedings. He says his conviction means he can’t get cleared by the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority or the Securities and Exchange Commission.
“I am unable to work,” Benyatov said in his court filing. “Anyone who searches my name online will see that I have been convicted in Romania and that my conviction is still unspent — I still make the news from time to time in Romania. I am also required to declare any convictions on job applications. I could not even complete an application form to become an Uber driver, given my criminal record, let alone work as a senior finance professional requiring FCA or SEC approval.”
Credit Suisse says it took adequate care of the Azerbaijan-born American citizen, paying for his lawyers and continuing to pay his salary despite his imprisonment. In his witness statement, Benyatov said it did this to get him to testify in legal proceedings brought against the bank in London in 2015.
The root of Benyatov’s claim for damages comes from lost earnings. He originally asked for 48 million pounds.
Credit Suisse said it believed Benyatov’s claims were “meritless” and that it would “continue to defend itself vigorously.”
Source: Thanks smh.com