While Appleby showcased its services that facilitated loans for companies owned by Subhash Chandra to their prospective Chinese and Brazilian clients, it raised a red flag as well.
An Appleby internal memo in March 2014 said: “Please note the subject (Chandra) has provided a false declaration by answering no to question #6 of the Compliance form: ‘Have you ever been the subject of a judicial or other official enquiry’,” the compliance department pointed out, attaching two pdfs of news reports titled “Jindal extortion case: “Chargesheet filed against Subhash Chandra and two Zee editors” and “Zee vs Jindal: Court rejects Chandra’s plea for modification of order”.
A year later, in August 2015, Barclays Bank asked Appleby for proof of sources of funding of Veria and its ultimate beneficial owner.
The bank also sought a certificate from Appleby that the firm was “unaware of any activities” on the client’s part which led them to “suspect that the customer is or has been involved in criminal conduct or Money Laundering”.
Asked to provide the certificate, Appleby top brass decided against it. One email said Rory Gorman, then managing director of Appleby Fiduciary Business (Bermuda), “has an objection and is not prepared to sign the attached form”. His colleague Alison Dyer-Fagundo, then partner in Appleby Law (Bermuda), is quoted as: “I don’t think we should be doing these, I agree with Rory.”
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RESPONSE from SUBHASH CHANDRA’S OFFICE
Asked to comment on the alleged “false declaration,” Subhash Chandra’s office said in an emailed response: “We are not privy to any records of Appleby and in fact no one is supposed to be privy to these as any such documents are supposed to be kept highly confidential between a law firm and their clients. You clearly seem to be going overboard if you or anyone has possession of such documents as that’s clearly in breach of confidentiality which will have its own consequences on Appleby and yourself/your firm.” Neither Rory Gorman nor Alison Dyer-Fagundo responded to emails.