Update on ICC arbitration against the Republic of Cyprus

29 January 2019

On the 15th January 2019, by an Award communicated to the parties on the 29th January 2019, the International Court of Arbitration of the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris ruled in favor of Cyprus by two arbitrators with a dissenting opinion by the third member of the Tribunal, in our arbitration proceedings against the Republic.

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Supreme Court upholds ruling that Central Bank of Cyprus was wrong to liquidate FBME Bank Ltd.

24 August 2018

The Supreme Court of Cyprus has unanimously dismissed an appeal by the Central Bank of Cyprus (“CBC”) and the Resolution Authority against an earlier court decision which ruled that the Central Bank was not legally justified when it attempted to liquidate FBME Bank Ltd registered in Tanzania.There has notably been very little press coverage of this decision, which is in keeping with the negative portrayal of FBME Bank Ltd in the media. We therefore wish to update depositors on this development and confirm that we are doing everything in our power to ensure the return of their deposits.

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Notice to FBME Clients and the Public

23 December 2017

Recently there have appeared in the press various wholly false and outrageous allegations against FBME Bank, which is owned by FBME Ltd. For example, we have recently been accused of banking Manafort and Gates, who have never had accounts at FBME and who are widely known to have accounts with Bank of Cyprus. The Bank believes these falsehoods have been deliberately generated by people with a commercial axe to grind against FBME. The timing of this egregious smear campaign started in earnest immediately following the final hearing of a Bilateral Investment Treaty arbitration in June 2017 between the Saab Brothers and the Republic of Cyprus at the International Chamber of Commerce in Paris, which we are currently awaiting the outcome of.

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News Update

14 December 2017

There have recently appeared online false allegations against FBME. We categorically deny the alleged wrongdoing. We are consulting with our lawyers.

For further detail please see our more comprehensive response to these allegations in our post below entitled ‘Announcement’.

Legal Floris LLC Warning

18 November 2017

It has come to our attention that a certain Mr. Floris Alexander, affiliated with a Cypriot company named Legal Floris LLC, has been advertising legal services on that company’s webpage relating to FBME Bank Ltd, claiming that they can help depositors recover their funds from the Bank.

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Legal Recourse Pursued

1 November 2017

 FBME Ltd and the Saab family are deeply disappointed by the D.C. Circuit’s denial of rehearing earlier today.  Although FBME Ltd. was quickly reinstated such that it always retained standing and ability to sue under the governing law of the Cayman Islands, its appeal has been dismissed and the merits have been left undecided.  The result now is the same as it has been in so many instances where FinCEN and the U.S. government have imposed the dreaded fifth special measure under Section 311 of the USA Patriot Act:  a foreign bank has been subjected to the death penalty and wiped out without getting its full and fair day in court.

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21 October 2017

During the last few months and, in particular as from June last, the smearing campaign against FBME and, consequently, against its ultimate beneficial owners Mr. Ayoub Farid Michel Saab and Mr. Fadi Michel Saab (both herein after referred to as the Saab brothers) intensified through publications in various newspapers and internet sites.

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FBME Ltd refutes fake news

7 July 2017

Recent articles published in both online press and local media make unsubstantiated and false claims alleging various wrongdoings by FBME. We, as FBME Ltd, totally refute the general sentiment of these articles as well as the specific accusations.

In the instances of claims being made with reference to third party audits, FBME Ltd would like to clarify, for the record, that all independent audits commissioned by the Bank or by Regulators completely exonerate the Bank of any general and/or specific wrong doings. Any claims to the contrary are deliberately misleading and intentionally false, with a clear aim of creating a false impression with both the public and official bodies.

We reserve our legal rights against these publications as well as against any entity that has illegally divulged confidential reports which are the property of the Bank. FBME Ltd will be taking all available legal actions against these publications who are publishing fake news. This fake news is unfortunately harmful to both the reputation of the Republic of Cyprus as well as to the Bank and its clients.

Update on D.C. Circuit Appeal

1 May, 2017

 On April 28, following expedited briefing and a week of deliberation, the D.C. Circuit denied FBME Bank’s request for emergency stay pending appeal.  Consistent with the extraordinary nature of the requested relief, the D.C. Circuit noted simply that FBME Bank had “not satisfied the stringent requirements for a stay pending appeal,” without addressing any of the specific merits questions that remain before it.  A copy of the order denying emergency stay is linked here.  It is worth emphasizing that the D.C. Circuit, in denying emergency stay, did not purport to resolve the merits of FBME Bank’s pending appeal of the judgment upholding FinCEN’s latest rule.  To the contrary, it the very same day issued an order setting forth a schedule for FBME Bank to brief its appeal.  A copy of that order is linked here.  FBME Bank is currently arranging for its appeal to proceed on an expedited basis so that the merits can be decided this fall.  In the meantime, FBME Bank respectfully asks that all concerned be patient and await decision by the appellate tribunal before considering the outcome of FBME Bank’s challenge in the United States to be final.

Stay Pending Appeal

25 April 2017

 On Friday, April 14, 2017, Judge Cooper of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia issued his final judgment in favor of FinCEN, upholding its Second Final Rule and denying reconsideration that FBME Bank had sought on certain points. To read, press here.  At the same time, Judge Cooper lifted his preexisting stay and denied a full stay pending appeal. To read, press here.  Consistent with its rights to seek appellate relief from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit, FBME then sought and obtained from Judge Cooper on Monday, April 17, a temporary, administrative stay of the Second Final Rule that will remain in place for at least 14 days (i.e., through Monday, May 1); that temporary stay ensures that the D.C. Circuit has time and opportunity to consider FBME’s stay request. To read, press here. Also on Monday, April 17, FBME initiated its appeal to the D.C. Circuit, press here, and filed an emergency motion asking the D.C. Circuit to reinstate a full stay pending appeal; if granted, such a stay would remain in place and protect FBME against implementation of the Second Final Rule until its appeal is resolved. To read, press here.  The D.C. Circuit quickly ordered FinCEN to respond to FBME’s request for emergency stay by Friday, April 21, and FBME to reply by Monday, April 24. To read, press here.  Consistent with that schedule, FinCEN has filed its stay opposition, press here, and FBME has filed its reply, press here, such that FBME’s request for stay pending appeal is now fully briefed, under submission, and awaiting ruling by the D.C. Circuit.  FBME will report further on developments surrounding its stay request at the D.C. Circuit.