Cuatrecasas Portugal advises on criminal case against former BPP directors

Court finds evidence of offences involving qualified tax fraud, breach of trust and money laundering of an unprecedented magnitude for economic and financial offences in Portugal

pjimage 89Banco Privado Português, SA – has received legal advice and forensic support from Cuatrecasas in a criminal case in which, on May 14, a record judicial decision for economic and financial offences in Portugal was handed down, that will require all the ex-directors of the former Banco Privado Português to serve jail time.

Cuatrecasas’ White Collar Crime and Administrative Offences Department has been involved in this case as legal assistants and has collaborated closely with the Public Prosecutor since early 2009, when the Bank of Portugal first became involved in the proceedings. This would later result in the bank having its license to perform banking activities withdrawn and being wound up and liquidated.

Throughout these years, almost the entire team of lawyers led by partner Paulo de Sá e Cunha (pictured left), has been involved in the criminal proceedings against the former BPP diretors. Senior associate Miguel Coutinho (pictured centre) and associate Rita Travassos Pimentel (pictured right) were particularly involved in this stage of the trial.

In the judgment handed down last Friday, the Panel of Judges presiding at Lisbon’s Central Criminal Court found evidence of offences involving qualified tax fraud, qualified breach of trust and money laundering and sentenced each of the former BPP directors to between six and ten years imprisonment. The Court also fully upheld the petition for civil damages that had been filed as part of the proceedings and ordered the former directors to pay an indemnity totaling € 29,539,629.08 to BPP (In Liquidation).

Paulo de Sá e Cunha coordinating partner of Cuatrecasas’ White Collar Crime and Administrative Offences Department stated: “After the Supreme Court confirmed last year that the penalties applied to the former BPP directors in other proceedings we were involved in, this is an unprecedented decision involving penalties of a magnitude that have never been seen before for economic and financial offences in Portugal, and which will definitely become a case study for the criminal justice system in Portugal.

Cuatrecasas Portugal advises on criminal case against former BPP directors

Michael Heron

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