30-Mar-2016: Liquidators' Update, see Deloitte site


This page contains brief summaries of and links to media reports from the source Guardian.

Mervyn King drawn into fresh row over Icesave collapse


• Iceland's former central banker claims King gave assurances UK would not press for guarantee on £5bn of Britons' savings
• Spokesman for King issues denial and says he had been urging country 'for months' to shrink its banking system

A bitter war of words between Bank of England governor Mervyn King and his former counterpart in Iceland is threatening to reopen old wounds from the Icesave scandal, in which billions of pounds of British deposits were ensnared in the north Atlantic island's financial meltdown just over two years ago.

The row comes at a sensitive time in the Icesave saga as Icelandic MPs are scrutinising a controversial bill outlining terms under which Iceland would repay foreign governments that picked up the tab for retail deposit guarantees.  23-Jan-10.


Landsbanki administrators accuse auditor of negligence

PricewaterhouseCoopers warned it will face claims for damages on behalf of collapsed Icelandic bank's creditors.

Administrators to Landsbanki, the failed Icelandic bank behind the Icesave internet deposit account scandal, have accused the firm's former auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers, of negligence, warning the accounting firm they expect to claim damages on behalf of creditors.

Landsbanki's creditors include more than 100 UK councils which placed a total £900m with Icesave and — unlike British retail savers — were not protected by a deposit guarantee. The negligence allegations set out at a creditors' meeting yesterday relate to PwC's audit of Landsbanki's 2007 accounts and an endorsement of its half-year financial update six months later. . .

The accusation against PwC's Iceland operations comes after a year of forensic investigations conducted by a team from Deloitte in London. As well as signalling their intention to pursue damages from PwC, administrators have filed a legal claim against former Landsbanki executives relating to losses of more than 30bn kronur (£165m). 01-Dec-10.

SFO to launch probe into Icelandic banks

The Serious Fraud Office is poised to announce an investigation into collapsed Icelandic banks that operated in the UK. A probe, which will examine Kaupthing, Glitnir and Landsbanki, could be announced within days. Sources at the SFO said investigators were particularly interested in loans made to a number of "high-profile individuals".

Allegations of fraud, embezzlement and market manipulation have been under investigation in Iceland since February. But the SFO has separately been gathering intelligence on the Icelandic banking sector and its UK operations.  13-Dec-09.

Ig Nobel awards

The nation can hold its head up high. Once again, Britons have been honoured in the annual Ig Nobel awards ceremony, the second most important event on the scientific calendar. The Ig Nobels, or Igs, are an annual exercise in irreverence that celebrate research that "cannot, or should not, be repeated". . .

The ceremony took place at Harvard University, with the coveted prizes handed out by real Nobel laureates. . .

Economics prize

Awarded to the directors, executives and auditors of four Icelandic banks: Kaupthing bank, Landsbanki, Glitnir bank and Central Bank of Iceland, "for demonstrating that tiny banks can be rapidly transformed into huge banks, and vice versa – and for demonstrating that similar things can be done to an entire national economy".  02-Oct-09.

Britain 'may be forced to bail out tax havens'

Britain could be forced to bail out one or more of its offshore tax havens at huge cost, according to early drafts of a Treasury report, because the economic crisis has wrecked their finances. . .

The Isle of Man is facing problems associated with the collapse of Icelandic bank, Kaupthing, which had a business on the island. It may be forced to spend hundreds of millions of pounds to compensate savers who have been unable to claw cash back from Kaupthing.

Guernsey could also face similar issues after the collapse of a Channel Island subsidiary of Landsbanki.

Britain has imposed direct rule and suspended the government of the Caribbean Turks & Caicos islands amid claims of systemic corruption there.  13-Sep-09.

Iceland banks' fraud trails 'lead to UK'

Leading Icelandic prosecutors met members of the Serious Fraud Office in London today , underlining the strong British dimension in mounting evidence of widespread and substantial frauds exposed in the Nordic nation's dramatic banking meltdown 11 months ago. . .

Hauksson said he already had 35 cases under investigation and expected the total to rapidly grow to between 60 and 70. Areas of inquiry include loan fraud, market manipulation, document fraud, embezzlement and bank fraud. . .

Also of concern to banking experts has been the large loan exposure of these banks to individuals, some of whom held an interest in the ownership of the banks. A mix of light loan collateral and a complex web of corporate cross-holdings made discovering true asset values in many cases near impossible.  11-Sep-09.

Charities pushed to front of compensation queue after Icelandic banking meltdown

Charities with cash deposited in the failed Icelandic banks should be fully compensated by the government, a Treasury select committee report will recommend today, although local authorities, which had more than £953m invested, should be left to stand in line with other creditors.

The report also backs the government in refusing to compensate British citizens who had money invested in offshore accounts in the Isle of Man and Guernsey with the Icelandic banks.  04-Apr-09.

Iceland to be fast-tracked into the EU

Plan for cash-strapped state to become member by 2011

Iceland will be put on a fast track to joining the European Union to rescue the small Arctic state from financial collapse amid rising expectations that it will apply for membership within months, senior policy-makers in Brussels and Reykjavik have told the Guardian.

The European commission is preparing itself for a membership bid, depending on the outcome of a snap general election expected in May. An application would be viewed very favourably in Brussels and the negotiations, which normally take many years, would be fast-forwarded to make Iceland the EU's 29th member in record time, probably in 2011.  30-Jan-09.

These vile tax havens have had their day

Stopping tax exiles milking places such as Sark for their own benefit should not be a tough choice for Labour . . .

. . .Nor is it the only British territory to become the modern version of pirate statelets of the Spanish Main. In a list of 37 'suspect jurisdictions' drawn up by American politicians pushing a 'Stop Tax Haven Abuse Act' through Congress, 11 are under British control - Alderney, Anguilla, Bermuda, the British Virgin Islands, the Cayman Islands, Gibraltar, Guernsey, the Isle of Man, Jersey, Sark and the Turks and Caicos islands. 14-Dec-08.

Pope attacks tax havens for robbing poor

It is a message sent from on high to the world's financial and political elite. The Roman Catholic Church is calling for the effective closure of secretive tax havens as a 'necessary first step' to restore the global economy to health.

In a policy paper from the Holy See, Pope Benedict pins the blame for the international financial crisis largely on 'offshore centres', many of which, such as the Channel Islands, are British dependencies. Observer - 07-Dec-08.

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