"I was subjected to political pressure in the dispute with Credit Suisse" - Ivanishvili
Ivanishvili contra Credit Suisse
Representatives of Bidzina Ivanishvili, the Georgian billionaire founder of the ruling Georgian Dream party and widely considered the shadow ruler of Georgia, publish a letter in the international press about his conflict with the Swiss bank Credit Suisse. The letter claims that Ivanishvili was under political pressure in the dispute. According to Ivanishvili, the bank only created the illusion of negotiations, but in fact its representatives continued to “put political pressure on me.”
“Those who have followed this story will remember that the ongoing dispute with Credit Suisse went beyond the legal and became a political dispute after the outbreak of military conflict in Ukraine in February 2022. For several weeks, Ivanishvili had limited access to his money, and had problems obtaining art and an airplane. Although some issues have been legally resolved with great effort, the main problem of access to funds remains, and we believe that these are informal sanctions,” the representatives of the Georgian businessman write.
According to Ivanishvili, these funds are not related to ongoing litigation in Switzerland, Bermuda and Singapore, but relate to funds subjected to mismanagement and fraud by Credit Suisse. Most of the funds were transferred to another Swiss bank, according to the letter, but about five percent remained with Credit Suisse due to a formal request, ostensibly to ensure the viability of ongoing disputes.
The Credit Suisse trusts are using two resolutions passed by the European Parliament that recommended that the executive authorities apply sanctions on Ivanishvili, according to a letter circulated by Ivanishvili’s lawyers:
“On December 14, 2022, the European Parliament voted for a resolution recommending the imposition of sanctions on Ivanishvili, but it was not adopted by EU executive bodies. Against this background, Credit Suisse made recent transfers to the client, and it is now noted that this prevented the resolution of issues related to the trust in the jurisdiction of the island of Guernsey Green Vals Trust. This claim is backed up by assets transferred to Credit Suisse, and the bank and its designated trustee should not have had an interest in failing to meet the client’s demands. As a result, Ivanishvili sees this obstructive act as political pressure, similar to the decision made in March, when Credit Suisse said that the delay in disbursing funds was due to the ‘geopolitical situation in Eastern Europe’.”
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In a resolution adopted on December 14, the European Parliament called on the European Council and democratic partners to impose sanctions on Bidzina Ivanishvili as the party responsible for the deterioration of democratic processes in Georgia.
On August 2, it became known that the lawyers of the law office MKD Law would apply in connection with the Ivanishvili case to the Parliament of the Swiss Confederation and major political groups, as well as to Finma, the Swiss financial supervisory authority.
According to lawyers, the need for an appeal is due to the high public interest in the client’s dispute with Credit Suisse, as well as the “difficult situation” in which the banking group finds itself.