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Proton Bank - the bank with many friends

12 December 2011 / 20:12:34  GRReporter
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Unclear is the funding of Yiannis Rigas’ holding Sciens, in which the wife of then-CEO Antonios Atanasoglou, Vasiliki Atanasoglou appeared as a law adviser. The subsidiary of Sciens, Sciens Cyprus Properties & Holdings Ltd. was founded on Christmas Eve, December 24, 2010, as an offshore company registered in the Cayman Islands. On the same day, Christmas Eve, a request was submitted to Proton Bank for a loan for € 35 million. It was approved on Wednesday, December 29 and again on the same day, the money was transferred to an account of the new company, although the reason for the loan was submitted two months later on February 21, 2011. It says that the loan is taken for investment in real estate without a serious explanation. The shocking money lending goes on, as Lavrentiadis’ bank lent to the president and major shareholder in the telecommunication company On Telecoms Andreas Rialas. It was worth the small amount of €3.6 million and the supervisors have determined it as a high-risk transaction. Initially, real estate in London worth about four million euros was recorded as securities in the loan contract, but after the payment of the amount, the property had been unilaterally written off from the contract, and the bank silently accepted it.  

Besides the big deals, there are personal services the Bank of Greece supervisors have detected in the transactions of "the bank with many friends." This is the case with the loan granted to the Deputy General Manager of KPMG Spiros Martsekis. It was worth € 320,000 and the Executive Director of the Bank Antonios Atanasoglou recommended the loan granting under very favourable terms of repayment, because as stated in the report, Laurentios Laurentiadis was godfather of Martsekis’ child. The loan was given against a deposit of € 50,000. Friendly relations were obviously important for getting a loan in the case of the basketball player Thassos Delibasakis from the team of Panionios, in which the main shareholder is one of the founders of Proton Bank, Elias Lianos. The basketball player took a loan of € 650,000, which he was unable to repay. Therefore, Elias Lianos deposited € 260,000 to repay overdue interest and principal payments. The supervisors have found that Lianos is both chairman of the bank credit committee and approved the loan for the player.

The actress Vana Barba also seems to have taken advantage from the easy Laurentiadis. She took two housing loans totalling € 388,000 and a personal loan worth € 23,000 against a mortgage on an apartment in the Athens coastal neighbourhood of Glyfada. The area of the apartment is 152 sq m and its market value at that time was € 610,000. The supervisors found that the bank approved the housing loan of Vana Barba once she had entered the lists of irregular payers and had overdue payments on the housing loans and credit cards. The lawyer Alexandros Likourezos, who has one term in the Greek Parliament with New Democracy ballot, received an investment loan of € 563,000 against a mortgage of an office of 175 sq m in the central Athens district of Kolonaki and market value at that time of € 700,000. The property is owned by Adroit Maritime Co Ltd., which gave corporate securities for the loan approval. The supervisors are currently awaiting confirmation on the regularity of this security. Former CEO of Marfin Popular Bank Efthimis Bouloutas had postponed the payment of a loan of € 1.9 million from Proton Bank from September 2010 to July 2011. As Bank of Greece auditors emphasize, the loan is secured by approximately 445,000 shares of MIG, the value of which in the period examined was € 240,000, or only 13% of the loan amount.

Tags: EconomyCompaniesProton BankLavrentios LavrentiadisFraudsFraudulent loans
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