Credit Suisse sued by Mozambique in London courts over debt deals

Pedro Gonçalves
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Credit Suisse sued by Mozambique in London courts over debt deals

Mozambique sued Credit Suisse AG in UK court this week over the bank's involvement in the $2bn "tuna bond" scandal.

Credit Suisse was one of the lenders that helped to arrange $2bn (£1.5bn) of government-backed loans that pushed Mozambique into a debt crisis. Also named in the filing are three former Credit Suisse bankers, who have already been indicted in the US.

The loans, taken out between 2013 and 2016, were marketed as investments in schemes including maritime security projects and a state tuna fishery. But a proportion of the money has not been accounted for and the allegations made in the US indictment include accusations of kickbacks and fraud.

Manuel Chang, the former Mozambique finance minister who signed off on the loans, has been detained in South Africa since December on charges related to the loans scandal. He denies any wrongdoing.

The global investment bank, three of its former employees, Andrew Pearse, Surjan Singh and Detelina Subeva, and an Abu Dhabi-based holding firm and its affiliates are all named in the filing.

The action follows an indictment in January by the US Justice Department against three former Credit Suisse bankers, accused of diverting at least $200m of the funding to pay bribes and kickbacks.

It is the first public lawsuit naming Credit Suisse as a defendant to arise from the scandal and raises the risk that the Swiss bank might face financial penalties for arranging bonds and loans to Mozambique in 2013. The debt deals were arranged by bankers in London.

A spokesman for Credit Suisse declined to comment.