We know these are difficult times for creditors of Stanford International Bank and that you still have many unanswered questions. The newly appointed Joint Liquidators are committed to maintaining an open dialogue.
Below are questions and answers aimed to help you understand who we are, our strategy, our most recent efforts and to provide answers to some of your most basic questions.
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The Court has appointed Marcus Wide and Hugh Dickson of the international accounting firm Grant Thornton to run the liquidation as replacements for the former Joint Liquidators. They took over May 12, 2011, and have been working diligently to assess the issues confronting the estate.
The Court had concerns with the suitability of the former Joint Liquidators arising from their conduct, and in its ruling said, “…there is a manifest proclivity for illegality. Nor can it be said that they have been effective and honest. Their conduct has fallen short in several instances rather than once or twice. Their conduct in Canada is of their own making and as such they must bear the professional consequences if and when they arise. Further still, even though this Court has indicated that it is not bound by the Canadian decisions, another Court in one of the countries in which SIB may have investments may say otherwise. These decisions are not complementary to the Liquidators.”
In a highly critical judgment, the Superior Court of Quebec ruled in September 2009 that the former Joint Liquidators destroyed original computer data in Canada; deliberately removed imaged copies of the bank’s computer data out of the reach of the Canadian Courts; acted in Canada without the permission of the Canadian Courts; misled the Quebec Court and repeatedly ignored requests for assistance from the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (the Regulator of Financial Markets of Quebec).
The Liquidators, new and old, are charged by the laws of Antigua which govern their appointment and the Court Order appointing them to gather in the assets of the estate, including using whatever legal rights the estate has to sue and recover assets or damages, and distributing the net proceeds to the creditors, so in essence the Liquidators are working for the creditors.
As above, the Liquidators are to use the resources at their disposal to generate as much cash as can be recovered. Sometimes this requires that cash in the estate be used to chase assets or to sue for the return of money, or recover damages. This requires the exercise of business judgment in the use of money which might otherwise be returned immediately to creditors, so every dollar invested in investigation or litigation has to be expected to yield a greater return that is multiples of the money expended. To help us get these decisions right, we have formed a committee to speak on behalf of the creditors generally. We recognize in an ideal world we would consult with all creditors, but with approximately 21,000 victims, that simply cannot happen. So we sought volunteers, and from those we selected a number of individuals to serve on the committee who represent as broad a base both geographically and in creditor size as possible. The Creditors Committee has members from Antigua, Canada/Bahamas, Columbia, Mexico, Switzerland, USA and Venezuela. With one exception, they are all creditors with personal claims ranging from a few tens of thousands to many millions of dollars. Committee members have agreed that they will not receive any financial benefit, directly or indirectly, from serving on the committee. This ensures that their input and time spent on committee matters is focused on optimizing the recovery for their fellow victims.
Your certificate of deposit will form the basis your claim in the estate.
It is difficult to say. The majority of the physical assets are real property, which in a depressed market, like the one that exists now in the Caribbean. To help us maximize the sale of the real estate holdings, we have engaged property experts who are dedicated to the Caribbean market. We will review and discuss the options the experts present to the committee. We want to fully understand their thinking regarding the right balance between timing that permits creditors to recover some funds as soon as possible, and price, which will maximize what creditors ultimately recover. Similarly, whoever enabled the fraud to take place should be held liable for that assistance. Again, these issues take time to resolve and we will rely on the creditors committee for guidance as we try to strike the proper balance between time and amounts recovered.
Victims will be paid on a shared basis from the net recoveries in the estate. The laws of Antigua provide the exact scheme as to how this happens, but the end result is that generally everyone will receive a share based on the value of their claim.
The claims process is set out in the governing laws and regulations that apply in Antigua. The claims process started by the former Liquidators does not fully comply with these laws and regulations. As a result, a new claims process has been put in place requiring all creditors to complete and return the new proof of debt form. The form can be found under the claims administration section of this website.
Everyone has to make a claim to participate in any future distribution of the estate. A proof of debt form can be found on the claims administration section of this website. All creditors must submit a claim form, this also applies to those claimants that have previously or intend to register their claims with the former Joint Liquidators.
It does not matter where you live; everyone receives the same treatment under the laws of Antigua.
This is an extremely difficult question to answer. A quick sale of the assets immediately available would produce a very small return on your investment. Our mission is to improve the recovery. We will do this by:
• Tracing money and assets funded with your money but not currently held in the name of the bank.
• Initiating a careful and thorough realizations strategy with regard to the estate’s real property.
• Recovering damages from individuals and organizations that benefitted from what is believed to a massive fraud, or who enabled the fraud. We believe these efforts will dramatically improve your chances of recovery.
The Liquidation process provides the legal platform to be used by the Liquidators to gather in the assets, trace money, and sue, to the exclusion of any other individual or group who might try to do those things for their personal and selfish benefit. The Court also authorizes the Liquidators to act anywhere in the world to perform their function. Many countries, but not all, have agreed to a protocol for recognizing the rights of a foreign insolvency Liquidator to pursue asset and claims into their countries and to stop unrecognized individuals or groups from doing so. This is an effort to ensure that one proceeding only is needed to recover assets and to try and avoid multiple proceedings chasing the same assets and to try to make sure that the single pool of money created is shared by all the creditors, no matter where they live.
In many respects there is some overlap, and the former Joint Liquidators were seeking to clarify who was responsible for what in their application to the U.S. Court. We have opened a dialogue with the U.S. Receiver to clarify those issues without having a court battle. Although there are many areas where the objectives are the same there are also points of potential conflict. However, we, have agreed in principal that we should not chase the same assets or claims, and that whoever has the best claim in law should be the one in pursuit. While creditors in each proceeding are not identical, we also believe there are times when we we can cooperate with the claims process to avoid duplicating costs. This will also require cooperation between the courts in Antigua and the U.S settlement agreement. Please refer to the Settlement Agreement FAQs for more info.
Stanford International Bank Limited (SIB) is an Antiguan company under the laws of Antigua, and it was under the regulatory regime of the Financial Services Regulatory of Commission, and specifically not under the laws of the U.S. Thus, Antigua has jurisdiction over the company and its business in the broadest sense. However, SIB did business in the U.S., which arguably brought it under the mandate of the SEC. It also had many affiliated companies that are clearly U.S. incorporated and over which Antigua has no direct jurisdiction. Therefore, the two countries, when the problems became known, both moved to protect the victims using the processes available to them. This situation was further complicated when the Department of Justice intervened in the UK, Switzerland and Canada to seek to forfeit assets to the U.S. government, assets that were already secured by the Court appointed Receiver or Court appointed Joint Liquidators, with a view to also protecting victims indicating that once assets were in the hands of the U.S. Government they would then set up a process to allow the victims to claim against that fund.
Our site should help keep you informed as changes unfold and new information becomes available. You may also e-mail stanford.enquiries@ uk.gt.com
The JLs have admitted your claim as the amount on your letters which is the total net cash deposited at the time of a distribution you will receive a percentage of this amount.