SYSTEMIC CORRUPTION IN CAJA DE AHORROS DEL MEDITERRÁNEO (BANCO CAM)

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30 Sep 2011 00:00 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

The Banco de España dismisses the Director General of CAM for manipulating the accounts
 
EL PAIS - S. NAVARRO / I. DE BARRON - Alicante / Madrid - 28/09/2011

The irregularities in the Caja Mediterráneo (CAM) have crossed all red lines and three FROB rescue fund managers decided yesterday that María Dolores Amorós should leave her post at CAM immediately without compensation. According to sources close to the entity, the FROB believes she has done what is called "creative accounting" in specific transactions, which has resulted in a benefit for Amorós.

The Bank of Spain dismisses the Director General of CAM

Amorós is accused of accounting irregularities for personal gain.
 
In addition to this irregularity, Amorós was awarded, according to the agency under the Bank of Spain, an annual pension of 370,000 Euros.  This figure is considered totally disproportionate, especially after the bad management that has led to CAM to ruin.

Amorós is also believed to have submitted falsified accounts figures in order to deceive the supervisor.

The former director general remained at her post from 22 July which was the date that the FROB took control of CAM, until 10 August.  During this last month Amorós only took half the salary for the collective sector, but with no inherent CEO bonuses.

It is not the first scandal regarding payment of compensation in CAM. Union sources cited more than three million Euros of compensation taken by Amorós's predecessor, Roberto López Abad, based on an annual salary of 700,000 Euros.

Jose Maria Martinez, secretary of banking Comfia-CC OO, yesterday called "an example to María Dolores Amorós, Roberto López Abad and Modesto Crespo, ex-president of the CAM and considered it as "intolerable" the attitude of executive directors of an entity that is receiving state aid.  It is necessary to exercise maximum harshness in these cases, especially when it is in the process of recapitalizing banks" said Martinez.  He also criticized the Banco de España for "lack of vigilance" for failing to inspect the entity for months, as well as the auditor for the last published accounts. However, the auditor, KPMG, did not examine the accounts of March, when the CAM showed 40 million Euros profit, because they do not audit quarterly reports.

On the other hand, the prosecution examines four complaints received while waiting for the final report of the Bank of Spain to determine criminal liability alleged in the management of the former directors of the CAM.  Sources of the Office of the Court of Alicante (
Fiscalía de la Audiencia de Alicante) have said that since the intervention in the case the prosecution has received reports of many other civic groups.  These sources have stated that all complaints are "generic" and are "frozen and pending with the Bank of Spain".

One of the complaints was filed by the partido político extramunicipal Vecinos por Alicante (
partido político extramunicipal Vecinos por Alicante) and the second complaint in the name of 15-M. In Madrid, the third complaint was filed by the group Clean Hands (Manos Limpias). The fourth is from Benicalap Cercle Obert from the CAM management. This complaint, like the other three, questions the legality of accounting, loans to directors at low rates and bonuses.  A complaint from the Tax Collective (colectivo de fiscales), integrated in the International Association Against Prevarication (Asociación Internacional contra la Prevaricación) is not yet included.  However the group warned the Bank of Spain on 4 August that it would file a lawsuit against the institution if Amorós was not dismissed.



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30 Sep 2011 17:37 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

28 / 09 / 2011 - FROM SIMPLY NETWORKING:

http://www.simplynetworking.es/news-8371-31-former_head_of_cambank_faces_accusations_of_fraud.html

Former head of CAM Bank faces accusations of fraud

Former Director General is accused of fraud and accounting irregularities

The former Director General of the CAM bank, María Dolores Amorós, is to be fired by the Banco de España for suspected fraud and irregularities in her management of the company, according to reports in the financial and economic newspaper "Expansión". She was removed from the top job in August, but has still been receiving her salary, which was 593,040 per year (almost 50,000 euros per month).

The Banco de España is now administering the affairs of the stricken bank, and has discovered that Ms Amorós and her predecessor, Roberto López Abad, presented false calculations of their own pension payments.

Ms Amorós is also accused of presenting false company accounts: the accounts she signed at the end of June showed a profit of 81 million euros and a repayment default rate of 9.5%, but subsequent audit procedures have shown a loss of 1,136 million euros and a default rate of 19%.

The auditor's report also comments on the excessive lending undertaken by the bank under Ms Amorós, often to companies whose creditworthiness was highly doubtful. On taking over the bank's affairs, the Banco de España had to inject 2.800 million euros immediately just to keep it afloat.

 

 



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11 Nov 2011 10:58 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

Reuters:

Caja de Ahorros del Mediterraneo (CAM) is a 135-year-old Valencia-based savings bank.  CAM sits in a moderately sized Spanish region -Valencia is home to around 5 million people- but it financed grandiose projects like the Terra Mitica theme park in the coastal resort city of Benidorm, which emerged from receivership in 2006, and opened offices in Shanghai, Miami and Geneva.

When the government slashed the number of savings banks by more than half last year and forced them to take on private investors or face nationalisation, CAM was one of those that failed to generate interest because of its real estate losses.
 
On taking CAM over in July, the government found much bigger losses than expected. It also found that CAM directors and their equivalents at fellow failed savings bank NovaCaixaGalicia had awarded themselves multimillion euro severance pay packages while racking those losses up. Union data shows the pay packages of CAM directors increased more than sixfold over the 2004-2010 period, while profits grew 3 percent over the same period.

Five directors at CAM got payouts of 12.8 million euros in total, while three top staff at NovaCaixaGalicia got 23.6 million between them, press reports say. Both banks were bailed out with public money. "There has been an embezzlement of public funds destined to bail out the bankrupt cajas," said the speaker of the United Left party, Gaspar Llamazares. The reports shocked Spaniards suffering the highest unemployment amongst industrialised nations -- one in five is out of work -- and the threat of deep cuts in health and education.

CAM director, Maria Dolores Amoros, was fired and put under investigation for falsifying accounts. Roberto Lopez, a former director at CAM, had to leave an Alicante tennis club in October after people booed and shouted insults at him, according to a local paper. "It is an absolute disgrace that the managers of the bankrupt cajas should receive such massive bonuses," says Jose Luis Corell, lawyer and bankruptcy expert, at a cafe outside Valencia's 17th century basilica.

Bank of Spain Governor Miguel Angel Fernandez Ordonez called the behaviour of the CAM executives "scandalous" and said the bank was "the worst of the worst" at a press conference in September.


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11 Nov 2011 18:06 by sandra Star rating in . 817 posts Send private message

sandra´s avatar

It's the same in the UK.

The directors of those banks that were bailed out here  awarded  themselves huge bonuses from the bailout ( OUR ) money with no apparent increase  in profits to justify the payments. This year RBS are poised to hand out £500million in bonuses after showing a 20 per cent drop in profits and only a 7 percent drop in the corresponding wages bill. This is all to be paid without them offering to re-pay a penny to the taxpayers who bailed them out!

 They are arrogant beyond belief and many of us say, ' It is time their wings were clipped.'  but when even  David Cameron admits defeat in tackling the problem then what can the rest of us do about it except moan?

 

 

 



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22 Nov 2011 22:08 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

For sale: one Spanish savings bank, only 500 million euros in debt

Who will want to take the troubled CAM off the Bank of Spain's hands?

Had Bancaja, Valencia's other major savings bank, not managed to merge with Caja Madrid, it too would most likely have ended up in the same situation as CAM. Both are considered illustrations of the worst aspects of the country's troubled cajas, blighted by poor management, blind faith in the real estate sector and political interference.

Two weeks after the Bank of Spain took over CAM, the goal now is to find a buyer as quickly as possible for the caja. The reason is simple: for every day the savings bank is under state control, its assets decline in value. The FROB, set up by the Bank of Spain, now intends to pump some 2.8 billion euros into CAM; it has already bailed it out to the tune of 3 billion eurosto keep it solvent. At the same time as customers are gradually withdrawing their money, other borrowers are taking advantage of the situation to delay repaying loans. The failure of the property market to resuscitate is also dragging the bank down. Real estate makes up 70 percent of its losses and its loans according to the latest European Union stress tests.

Following an emergency audit by KPMG on July 31 and a valuation by PwC, Crédit Agricole and HSBC, the Bank of Spain is hoping it can arrange an auction for the first half of September. By that time, CAM will be in the red to the tune of 500 million euros, according to market sources. The winning bid will go to the bank that asks for the least money from the state in return for taking over CAM. "The best outcome would be for the buyer to keep the 2.8 billion euros from the FROB and be content with that," says one analyst.

At one time, CAM was the country's fourth-biggest savings bank, with some 70 billion euros in assets. Its size means that there are not many potential suitors out there. Among the few that would be able to manage a network of almost 1,000 offices are BBVA, La Caixa and Banco Santander. Bankia has opted out, saying it already has enough on its plate dealing with the merger of seven cajas, among them Caja Madrid and Bancaja.

CAM's board had set its sights on La Caixa: it is seen as the most stable and well-run of the country's savings banks, and would respect CAM's commitment to charity and social work. But it won't be easy, even for a giant like La Caixa. Buying CAM would mean a capital increase of up to 4 billion euros as well as the money that the Spanish tax payer has so far stumped up. Raising that kind of money at the moment is not easy, and would be especially so for Caixabank, which has just gone public. The BBVA has shown that it could raise the money, judging by the 4 billion euros it raised to buy Turkey's Garanti bank. Santander is not enjoying its most buoyant moment, with difficulties in the United Kingdom and a 21-percent drop in half-yearly profits, but says that it is interested in CAM.

Banco Popular, Sabadell, Ibercaja, Unicaja, BBK and BNP have asked for information about CAM. But it would require a complicated operation between different banks to pull off a purchase. The Bank of Spain says that it would prefer a single, large entity to take over CAM. In the long term, the winner would be the indisputable leader of the Spanish banking sector.

Once the sale is over, more information might emerge as to why CAM's president, Modesto Crespo, was unable to save the bank. "He lacked long-term vision and was not realistic enough to understand that a merger was the only way forward. There was a lot of interest from the other major players, who knew that CAM was in trouble, but Crespo didn't know how to play his cards right," says one insider.

Crespo was told by Francisco Camps, the disgraced former head of the regional government of Valencia, and the man who put Crespo in charge of CAM, to turn down a merger with Caja Madrid and CaixaGalicia, as well as another offer from Caja Murcia and BBK. But his biggest mistake was when he failed to push through the merger led by Cajastur in March. CAM then found itself out in the cold, and unable to benefit from the FROB. The writing was on the wall.

Crespo continued to insist that CAM could find a private investor, which only annoyed the Bank of Spain further, which was all-too-well aware that CAM was sinking fast.

The relationship between Crespo and the governor of the Bank of Spain, Miguel Ángel Fernández Ordóñez, was never particularly good. One encounter sums up their failure to reach agreement. Fernández Ordóñez had called a meeting at the Bank of Spain with Isidro Fainé, the president of CECA, the confederation of Spanish savings banks, along with five heads of the country's leading cajas, among them Crespo. The meeting was to discuss changes to the law regulating the activities of the savings banks. Crespo began talking about the sector's plans for the future. A couple of minutes into his spiel, a visibly irritated Fernández Ordónez interrupted him. "I can't believe what I am hearing," he said, cutting him off. Crespo froze, and a brief but icy silence followed. It was clear, if it hadn't been already, that the Bank of Spain didn't hold the president of CAM in the highest regard.

By now, CAM was a major headache for the Spanish banking system, which remains under pressure from the international markets, and needs to send out a clear message that unlike Greece, Ireland, or Portugal, its banks are in good shape, and will be able to meet any requirements imposed by the European Central Bank.

Has the takeover been a way of sending a message out to the rest of Spain's savings banks? Have its links to the Popular Party been a factor in the decision? Should the Bank of Spain have intervened earlier? Opinion is divided. "The Bank of Spain should not have allowed the deal with Cajastur to fall apart. This is now going to cost the state a lot of money," says one expert.

 



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LEY 57/1968
CLICK HERE FOR THE BANK GUARANTEES IN SPAIN WEBSITE

       
      

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22 Nov 2011 22:10 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

'Caja' director fired after FROB regulators discover book-fudging

CAM chief fired after intervened savings bank found to have reported fictitious profits

EL PAÍS - Madrid - 29/09/2011

The Bank of Spain has fired the chief director at Caja Mediterráneo (CAM), which was taken over by the central bank earlier this summer, official sources revealed on Wednesday.

María Dolores Amorós was temporarily suspended in August after bank examiners discovered that she had presented inflated figures about the savings bank's financial health to regulators last March. According to the bank restructuring fund (FROB), Amorós listed the caja's first-quarter profits at 40 million euros. In June, when FROB regulators looked at the books, they found that CAM was actually in the red by 1.13 billion euros. Her firing, without any benefits, was effective from Wednesday.

The Bank of Spain took over CAM on July 22 and injected 2.8 billion euros with an additional three-billion-euro credit line. According to sources, regulators were planning to take legal action against Amorós, who was not getting any salary or benefits since she was suspended. She is still not exempt from any legal responsibility, they say.

A business school graduate from the University of Alicante, Amorós had held different positions in CAM since 1998. In November 2010, she was promoted to chief director replacing Roberto López Abad.

 



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LEY 57/1968
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22 Nov 2011 22:12 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

Sacked CAM manager files jobless claim

S. N. / A. B. - Alicante / Valencia - 19/10/2011

María Dolores Amorós, the former general manager of the failed savings bank Caja del Mediterráneo (CAM), who was sacked after securing a controversial annual pension for life of 370,000 euros, has filed a claim for unemployment benefits.

Amorós was dismissed without severance pay shortly after the Bank of Spain took over CAM for irregularities regarding the award of the pension and her presentation of the bank's financial accounts, accusations she denies. Other top-ranking managers in CAM also received huge pay-offs before the bank was intervened.

Amorós filed her claim with a Valencia employment office last Friday. She could expect to receive monthly unemployment benefits worth some 1,400 euros a month.

 



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LEY 57/1968
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23 Nov 2011 16:12 by ads Star rating. 1663 posts Send private message

It's only when a population becomes more aware and understands the implications on our lives of dishonourable Banks and their unethical approach that we realise the power that Jo public has.

Apathy is our worst enemy right now..........

Everyone should be coming on board to making Banks accountable for their obscene malpractices in Spain that have decimated people's lives. They are failing to adhere to an existing Spanish law intended to protect off plan purchasers from the outset, and the justice system has exacerbated the problem further by their failure to enforce this law. It can't be any clearer than that.

What's more is that so long as this systemic failure of law enforcement continues without Government commitment to ensure that the law is respected in a timely fashion,  with recompense as per successful judicial rulings, the longer it will take to restore purchasers faith in Spain.

We should all continue to keep this at the forefront of everyones' attention  until the law of the land is consistently adhered to. It should not be cherry picked, nor altered to suit developers and Banks, but adhered to as was originally intended when it was first drawn up. Keith has gone to great lengths to explain details within his petition text.

Everyone should be documenting their disgust by signing Keith's petition. And not just those affected first-hand, but by everyone who strives for a Spanish justice system that is fair and effective, a system that will protect consumers and  make Banks accountable according to the Law.

www.bankguaranteesinspain.com

 





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23 Nov 2011 16:29 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

I agree 100% with what you say.

Thanks for your continued support Ads.

Keith



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01 Dec 2011 11:27 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

Bank of Spain set to decide CAM's fate: report

LONDON (Reuters)

The Bank of Spain and Spain's state-backed bank restructuring FROB fund are set to decide as early as Friday whether Banco de Sabadell can buy Caja de Ahorros del Mediterraneo (CAM), the Financial Times reported on Thursday, citing people involved in the negotiations.

The newspaper quoted the people as saying that other potential takers for the 135-year-old lender, which included Santander, BBVA, CaixaBank, regional savings bank Ibercaja, Barclays and private equity group JC Flowers, had dropped out of the contest after examining CAM's books.

The Bank of Spain, CAM, Sabadell, Santander, BBVA, Ibercaja, CaixaBank, Barclays and JC Flowers were not available for immediate comment.

Some of Sabadell's advisers are concerned that unless it can secure exceptionally favorable purchase terms, pushing ahead with a takeover of Cam could damage its business, according to the article.

"The FROB can turn down the offer," one person with knowledge of the sale process is quoted as saying.

The newspaper said if Sabadell did not buy CAM, the Alicante-based lender's assets and business could be offered piecemeal to interested parties like CaixaBank and JC Flowers but they are now worried about CAM's sovereign debt exposure as well as its non-performing property assets.

"If it comes back on the market and the proposition is different, and some of these issues especially around sovereign debt can be resolved, then they (JC Flowers) would be interested again," one person familiar with the private equity group's thinking on Spain is quoted as saying.

Alicante-based CAM was taken over by the central bank in July and had losses of 1.7 billion euros at end-September.


(Reporting by Michelle Martin; editing by Carol Bishopric)

 



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LEY 57/1968
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08 Dec 2011 13:00 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

CAM racked up billions of euros of debt, stole innocent purchasers Off-Plan deposits, was corrupt from top to bottom and still the ex-CEO Roberto Lopez Abad and ex-President Modesto Crespo were allowed to jump ship back in July and take with... them millions of Euros in self-awarded 'golden handshakes' and pensions.

The woman who was then promoted to CEO by the Banco de España/FROB - María Dolores Amoros was then sacked after one month for 'creative accounting'.

SHAME ON THE BANCO DE ESPAÑA - THE SUPERVISOR OF THE SPANISH BANKING SYSTEM - FOR ALLOWING THIS CORRUPTION AND FRAUD TO HAPPEN UNDER THEIR SUPERVISION.

SHAME ON THE SPANISH GOVERNMENT.

There should be a public enquiry into the corruption at Banco CAM.

We, the FINCA PARCS ACTION GROUP demand that BANCO CAM (BANCO SABADELL) are made to immediately refund the 2 million Euros they stole from our group!



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LEY 57/1968
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07 Feb 2012 11:23 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

Cabinet puts salary caps at banks that got public money

Popular Party says it will reduce salaries of top executives at affected firms by up to 75 per cent

EL PAÍS - Madrid - 03/02/2012

The Popular Party administration on Friday announced it would cut salaries for top executives at all savings banks that received public money.

Deputy Prime Minister Soraya Sáenz de Santamaría said the Cabinet decided to make cuts of up to 70 percent in such salaries as part of the government's drive to steer Spain's public finances out of the red.

The measure is part of the broader financial sector reform announced on Thursday by Economy Minister Luis De Guindos. The Cabinet has capped annual salaries for bank presidents at 600,000 euros. This would affect the heads of those institutions that needed a bailout from the Orderly Bank Restructuring Fund (FROB), and Sáenz de Santamaría said the salaries would vary from bank to bank. The new limits would also affect other institutions that got FROB money, such as Bankia, or in which the government intervened, such as CAM, Novacaixagalicia and Banco de Valencia.



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LEY 57/1968
CLICK HERE FOR THE BANK GUARANTEES IN SPAIN WEBSITE

       
      

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10 Feb 2012 12:51 by Keith110 Star rating in the UK and I am lead.... 664 posts Send private message

Bank of Spain opens investigation into ex-CAM officials

Probe targets early retirement payoffs

El País - Rosa Biot / Santiago Navarro Alicante 9 FEB 2012 - 20:54 CET

The Bank of Spain has opened a disciplinary inquiry into the leadership of the nationalized Caja Mediterráneo (CAM) savings bank.

The measure affects the main former directors of the bank, including ex-president Modesto Crespo and ex-director generals Roberto López Abad and María Dolores Amorós, as well as its board of directors and control committee.

The move comes six months after the government intervened to guarantee CAM’s solvency after the failure of its merger with Cajastur, Caja Cantabria and Caja Extremadura last July. Among the scandalous discoveries administrators have unearthed at CAM since the intervention are multi-million-euro early-retirement payouts to five ex-directors



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LEY 57/1968
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