Afriland First Bank, Senate Secretary Slammed With Duping Czech Investors

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Afriland First Bank, Senate Secretary Slammed With Duping Czech Investors

Judge Kennedy Peabody of Civil Law Court ‘A’ on Wednesday, July 19, ruled that it is troubling for Defendant Afriland First Bank to have allowed Senate Secretary Nanborlor Sngbeh to use a non-existent amended article of incorporation to open an escrow account in the name of MHM Eko Liberia, a Czech Republic owned rock quarry company 

Judge Peabody further ruled that Singbeh and the bank relied on the amended article of incorporation to open the account, where  Singbeh’s former partners and Czech Republic investors, Martin and Pavel Miloschewsk, in their private capacity as investors, wired the amount of US$102,000.

Martin and Pavel Miloschewsk hold each 35percent share majority shareholder in MHM Eko Liberia with Singbeh as the minority shareholder with 30percent share. 

Judge Peabody’s judgment was in response to the defendant bank motion asking the court to dismiss the US$3.3million damages for breach of deposit contract filed against the Afriland First Bank by Hans Armstrong a British national and Attorney -In-Fact to Czech Republic investors.

The lawsuit targeting only Afriland First Bank contends that the defendant bank without any authorization from the Czech Republic investors, siphoned said money to a human ghost name Karel Sochor, in breach of fiduciary duty owned the Czech Republic nationals, thereby entitling them to damages for breach.

Armstrong’s suit also argues that the money was intended to be held with the defendant bank as collateral for the issuance of a Class B mining license for the operation of the MHM Eko Liberia.

However, the  defendant bank, in the motion argued that the money subject of the case being for a corporation, all the transactions in the said account were with the full approval of Singbeh and other officers of the corporation, as such, the bank has breached no deposit contract for which the action of damages should be dismissed.

They also contended that the money of the subject of the case belongs to MHM Eko Liberia, and that the defendant bank got full authorization from Singbeh for all the transactions carried out in said account, which they were requesting for the dismissal of the lawsuit against them.

In his further judgment, Judge Peabody said, Cllr Tiawan Gongloe, the lawyer of Armstrong communicated with the Liberia Business Registry (LBR ), in a letter dated May 2, 2019, requesting therein as to whether the article of incorporation for MHM Eko Liberia was ever amended. 

dge Peabody said Registrar General Sampson M Dee, in a communication dated May 3,2019, revealed that the article of incorporation of MHM Eko Liberia has never been amended.

“This court says that the LBR’s letter stating that MHM Eko Liberia article has never been amended was pleaded in Armstrong’s complaint and subsequently served on the defendant bank, and this information of MHM Eko Liberia not being amended was never contradicted by the defendant bank, in its responsive pleading, leaving this court with no other alternative but to believe that said article was never amended,” Peabody’s ruling said.

This beig the case, Judge Peabody noted, “Will mean, there is no legal instrument available to have qualified MHM Eko Liberia being treated as a corporation.”

 

 

As such, dge Peabody ruled:” This court is baffled if not at a lost, to have the defendant bank relied on an amended article of incorporation without requesting for the original article of incorporation, and when in fact said legal instrument never existed.”

“This court says there is legal maxim in law that states, an allegation made and not contradicted is believed to be true, ” Peabody said in his ruling.

Another contentious issue raised by the defendant bank, was that Armstrong has no legal capacity to file the lawsuit seeking damages for breached of deposit contract.

But, addressing the issue, Judge Peabody said recourse to the records in the case filed revealed that the amended article of incorporation submitted by the defendant bank for the opening of the account subject of the case, carry Armstrong’s principals Martin and Pavel Miloschewsk. And, that Martin and Pavel, in their private capacity as investors wired the money to the defendant bank 

” More besides, this court says the information is also in the complaint without being contradicted by the defendant bank,” according to the judge. “So, this court is baffle or wonders why the defendant bank now chose to challenge the Armstrong’s capacity for the filing of the lawsuit, without contradicting any of the evidence submitted by Armstrong.”

.” It is a decision of this court that the motion to dismiss should be and same is hereby denied and dismissed, and the resistance thereto is sustained. And, it is hereby so ordered,” Peabody ruled.

In counterargument to the defendant bank’s motion, Armstrong’s lawyer said, the Czech Republic investors are clothed with the proper legal authority or capacity to file the suit, which they did, through him as an Attorney-In-Fact. Armstrong also argued that the investors and his principals executed a power of attorney, authorizing him to file the suit 

Furthermore Armstrong argued that assuming without admitting that the money subject of the case belong to the corporation, MHM Eko Liberia, the very legal instrument relied on to establish said account carries his principals, the Czech Republic investors, as majority shareholders, “hence it is bizarre, and out of touch with the fact of the case, for the defendant bank to question his capacity to file the suit.”

.According to Armstrong’s complaint, his principals, in their capacity as investors wired the money subject of the case to the defendant bank, and the bank without any authorization from his principals, siphoned said money to a stranger or human ghost, Karel Sochor, in breach of fiduciary duty owed to the investors, “thereby entitling him, Armstrong to damages for breach, same.”

. Armstrong also argued that the defendant bank informed the court, that the its management contention that the money subject of the case belong to a corporation, MHM Eko Liberia, has no basis in law, and absolutely untrue, in that so called amended article of incorporation relied on by the defendant bank to open said account does not exist 

“This information was revealed by the Liberia Business Registry, in a letter dated May 3,2019, which was in response to a request made by Armstrong through his counsel,” the response to the motion argued.

Further Armstrong argued that it is an indisputable fact, which the defendant bank had not denied that his principals, Martin and Pavel Miloschewsk in their private capacity as investors wired the money subject of the case to the defendant bank 

” That there exist no amended article of incorporation for MHM Eko Liberia. And that the defendant bank did not obtain any approval from authorized officers of MHM Eko Liberia to carry out any transactions in the subject, “Armstrong claimed.

” More besides, the defendant bank failed, neglected and refused to follow its own rules and guidelines with respect to transaction it carried out in the account subject of the case,” claimed the suit 

“Hence, the plaintiff prays the court to deny the defendant bank motion to dismiss and expeditiously rule this case to be tried on its merit….”

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