Paris, France (PRWEB) June 5, 2004
While THOMAS H. LEE PARTNERS, ranked as the world's second biggest buyout firm by assets (with a portfolio worth over 12 billion US dollars), is preparing to invest between 2 and 2.5 billion US dollars in REFCO GROUP Limited, a huge lawsuit, part civil and part criminal, is now developing against the REFCO Group in France, to the tune of some 90 million euros. This sum keeps going up in line with REFCO SECURITIES S.A.'s turnover.
The REFCO Group, currently the topic, according to the New York Post, of final negotiations for a buyout valued at between 2 and 2.5 billion US dollars, is being brought before the French Courts.
A joint and several civil cases against REFCO OVERSEAS LIMITED and REFCO SECURITIES S.A. have been in progress since April 25, 2003 before the Commercial Court (Tribunal de Commerce) in PARIS at the request of business contributor, GÃ©rard SILLAM. Moreover, two criminal lawsuits, in the form of two writs have been issued against X at the High Court in Paris (Tribunal de Grande Instance), one by the Finance Section, for obtaining judgments by false pretenses and various related offences which may have been committed before the courts in France during hearings before the "Juge de l'ExÃ©cution" (the judge handling the execution of judgments) of the High Court in PARIS in April 2002 and before the "Premier PrÃ©sident" (chief presiding judge) of the Court of Appeals in PARIS in November 2003. These criminal proceedings, which are being examined by two different magistrates, have been brought before the courts on the basis of complaints and civil action filed regarding acts in which the name of REFCO appears, in which the names of its lawyers, JEANTET ASSOCIES and Mr. Yves LEVY, appear in the second complaint.
However, there is worse to come: the essence of the case, namely possible breach of trust and fraud aggravated by receiving stolen goods, should be elucidated in the near future by the Finance Section of the PARIS High Court.
This affair, which has enabled REFCO to develop its securities business in Europe, follows on from the merger/takeover of REFCO HL SECURITIES SNC by REFCO S.A. at the end of 2000, which resulted in the set up of REFCO SECURITIES S.A., now the REFCO Group's subsidiary in France. REFCO HL SECURITIES SNC was the general partnership company set up in 1999 with REFCO by Mr. Imad LAHOUD, and which launching REFCO's securities and derivatives brokerage business in France. Transactions involving very large sums were, and continue to be, handled on these markets by REFCO SECURITIES S.A., generating profits of several million euros a year, whereas it had been losing more or less similar amounts prior to Mr. Imad LAHOUD's involvement.
GÃ©rard SILLAM claims to hold a business contributor contract entitling him to payment of a commission on all trading activities after September I, 1997, the date on which he introduced REFCO and Mr. Imad LAHOUD, business that the latter has brought to the REFCO Group. The legal value of this document is now contested by REFCO, which has consistently refused to pay GÃ©rard SILLAM. The PARIS Commercial Court pronounced sentence on January 30, 2004, declaring itself to have jurisdiction in the matter and rejecting REFCO's demand to have the case heard in London. REFCO has appealed against this judgment.
It should be noted that the New York Post reported that the claim filed by the business contributor who introduced THOMAS H. LEE PARTNERS and REFCO (in return for a promise in writing on the part of REFCO SECURITIES LLC to pay a commission of 1%, i.e. 20 to 25 million US dollars), had been rejected last month by REFCO, and that the contract was declared null and void by REFCO SECURITIES in the USA.
The business contributor's lawyer stated in the New York Post that he intended to sue REFCO for the above sums in the event that a definite agreement should be reached between THOMAS H. LEE PARTNERS and REFCO GROUP LIMITED. GÃ©rard SILLAM also intends to sue REFCO GROUP LIMITED and/or REFCO GLOBAL HOLDINGS INC. in the USA for "corporate misconduct", hoping to win compensation for the moral injury he has suffered in the form of "punitive damages" which should amount to several hundred million US dollars.
The lawyers for the plaintiff in France are Mr. Jean-Marc DESCOUBES, Attorney-at-Law, 3 rue du Boccador 75008 PARIS, Tel.: +33 (0)1 44 43 00 60, Fax: +33 (0)1 44 43 00 62 and Mr. Arthur VERCKEN, Attorney-at-Law, 116 Boulevard Saint-Germain 75006 PARIS, Tel.: +33 (0)1 42 34 52 22 and Fax: +33 (0)1 43 25 61 89. REFCO's address in France is: REFCO SECURITIES S.A., 11 Avenue Delcasse 75008 PARIS. Tel.: +33 (0)1 53 77 30 00 Fax: +33 (0)1 53 77 31 50.
Press contacts : Gerard Sillam Tel : +33 6 66 01 20 20 Fax : +33 1 47 03 10 96
E-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org
In no way does this press release presume to pronounce judgment on any current or future legal proceedings. Its sole purpose, and that of any future press releases, is to inform, within the constraints provided for under the Law, the Public of legal proceedings in progress as brought before the Commercial Court in PARIS and which may be attended by the general public.
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