Prosecutors probing Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA’s use of derivatives to hide losses are seeking to seize as much as $2.6bn of assets held by Nomura Holdings Inc. (8604) in accounts across Europe.
Magistrates are trying to sequester money held on behalf of the Tokyo-based firm in accounts at Citigroup and Bank of America in the U.K., according to an April 15 decree signed by four prosecutors in Siena, Italy, and obtained by Bloomberg News.
They are also trying to seize funds Nomura holds at other banks through Target2, Europe’s cross-border payment system, the document shows.
Prosecutors allege Nomura colluded with Monte Paschi’s former managers to devise one of two derivatives in 2008 and 2009 that hid total losses of much as $727.8m. Nomura took advantage of Monte Paschi’s strained finances and knew of management’s intention to falsify accounts with the so-called long-term repo it arranged, dubbed Alexandria, prosecutors said in their order.
Nomura has said it will 'vigorously' contest any suggestion of wrongdoing in the case.
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