PFA in fraud inquiry
Danish police have arrested Rasmus Trads, director of PFA Byg, the real-estate arm of Copenhagen based pensions insurer PFA, following alleged forging of documents for bank loans running into hundreds of millions of Danish krone.
Trads was arrested with property contractor Kurt Thorsen, who is ac-cused of having bought shareholdings in companies listed on the Cop-enhagen Stock Exchange having ob-tained loans, using apparent forgeries of signed guarantees by PFA Pension's managing director André Lublin.
Suspicions were aroused after the Copenhagen Stock Exchange began looking closely at the size of the trades taking place and their possible impact on the relatively small Danish market.
Subsequent investigation showed that the guarantees for the trade loans, issued to LGT Bank in Liechtenstein and Kjeld Inge Røkke in Norway, had come from PFA.
Trads then admitted he had prepared the forged guarantees, falsifying Lublin's signature, according to PFA.
Lublin himself commented on the affair: It is a very unpleasant situation we have got into regarding the forgeries, and we truly regret the inconvenience caused."
But PFA added that the fake guarantees will neither be binding to PFA Byg or the group, after law firm Gorrisen, Federspiel and Kierkegaard had examined the evidence and found them not fully endorsed, nor fit to stand up legally. "Our clients have no reason to worry about their pensions savings, and the forgeries will not affect our clients even in the event of a trial," said Lublin.
Bent Hansen, chief inspector of the Danish fraud squad, says: "The charges against the two men are very complex indeed.
Basically the documents appearto be undersigned by André Lublin, the head of PFA, saying the fund guaranteed loans in the region of Dkr3.8bn (E511m), of which Dkr700m had already been released from the banks mentioned.
"We are still investigating the alleged forgeries and Mr Trads and Mr Thorsen are still in our custody, and will release them for trial when we have collated all the evidence, which should be within the next two months." If found guilty, the pair could face up to eight years in jail.
Trads has been dismissed by PFA."