Guardian: Appleby Clients Included Banned Bank

January 24, 2018

Appleby is back in the news again, with the UK’s Guardian reporting the law firm to have provided services to FBME Bank, which is banned from the US financial system due to a number of allegations against it, with Appleby withdrawing from acting as the FBME holding company’s registered agent in 2015.

The story said, “Appleby represented the Cayman Islands holding company of FBME Bank for at least a year after the US Treasury published an extraordinary roster of allegations against the bank, and acted as its agent for more than a decade beforehand.

“FBME, which was banned from the US financial system last year, denies all the allegations against it. It said Appleby regularly carried out full compliance checks on FBME Ltd, which it took on as a client in 2004.

“Appleby withdrew from acting as the FBME holding company’s registered agent 17 months later in December 2015. According to a US court judgment, Appleby decided that “FBME did not fit [its] risk profile”. FBME Ltd effectively ceased to exist in the Cayman Islands, a UK territory, as a result.

“Appleby declined to comment on its longstanding relationship with the holding company of FBME Bank, which ended in December 2015. It said it had sold the part of the firm that handled offshore services, which is now a separate company called Estera, and so could not answer questions about the business.”

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