Credit Suisse refused to pay a finder’s fee to a former employee for bringing in new business because the bank said it discovered that she was classified as a Russian government official.
Bloomberg News reports that Yana Alexandroff is suing for more than $10 million, saying the decision not to pay her was “capricious, wrongful and unjust.” She says Credit Suisse was wrong to label her a government official.
Alexandroff says she introduced Credit Suisse to Tatfondbank PJSC, where she was a non-executive director, when the Tatarstan bank needed help with a debt restructuring in 2009 - a transaction that Credit Suisse ended up working on. She says she should have been paid for the introduction and for helping to facilitate the deal.
But the bank says in its court filings that when its due diligence checks revealed her non-executive director role, it couldn’t pay her because Tatfondbank was part-owned by the Russian government. That meant she was “classified as a government official” under the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act 1977, Credit Suisse said, and would’ve made it illegal to pay her a fee.
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