December 6, 2021

Parmalat

Maybe Deloitte Should Give Up Doing Business in Italy

Deloitte has managed to get itself into more trouble in Italy. After settling the lawsuit with freakishly long-life milk company Parmalat, the firm may be facing charges of “market manipulation, false accounting and obstruction of justice, as well as fraud,” according to Bloomberg.


In this particular Italian job, Deloitte is lumped in with a couple of Deutsche Bank employees, who were allegedly complicit in losses at Banca Italease SpA, “Milan prosecutors are probing Italease after potential losses accumulated by clients on interest-rate swaps swelled in 2007 and the bank’s unprofitable positions ballooned. The Bank of Italy fired the company’s board in July 2007 for lack of internal controls.”

While zee Germans are standing behind their two boys, Francesco Giuliani and Dario Schiraldi, Deloitte didn’t comment for the article but the firm is certainly familiar with the tenacity of the Italians are not be trifled with. The Parmalat case dragged on for over six years before investors finally received a settlement from the firm so you can expect that the screwed investors of Italease will be equally as determined.

Deutsche Bank Employees, Deloitte Said to Face Charges in Milan [Bloomberg BusinessWeek]

Deloitte, Grant Thornton Settle with Parmalat Investors

check.jpgU.S. Investors in Paramalat — the disturbingly long-life milk producer — have settled their lawsuit with Deloitte and Grant Thornton for $8.5 million and $6.5 million respectively.

Personally, if you make the decision to be associated with a company that consciously screws with the natural dairy production of a bovine, we’d say you’re on your own. However, this is America, where if you lose an asston of money on an investment (despite the morally ambiguous nature of said investment, not to mention the shiesty management), you sue.

The case was brought by several funds on behalf of thousands of investors who said they lost money from Parmalat’s multi-billion-dollar fraud.

“It is very rare that worldwide coordinating audit networks enter into settlements like what we have,” said James Sabella, a lawyer at Grant & Eisenhofer PA in New York representing the investors, in an interview.

Lead plaintiffs include Hermes Focus Asset Management Europe Ltd, Cattolica Partecipazioni SpA, Capital & Finance Asset Management, Societe Moderne des Terrassements Parisiens and Solotrat, court documents show.

We don’t know about the statement that settlements are “very rare”. The Big 4 has paid out nearly $6 billion in settlements since 1999 and settlements this year have included Deloitte/American Homes and E&Y/Akai.

Regardless, the good news for the investors is at least they got something. The bad news is that it was far less than the amount they claimed to have lost:

The U.S. equity investors believed they suffered $138.2 million of damages, but Sabella said their claims might have been reduced by earlier settlements. He also said taking their case to a jury could have been “full of difficulties.”

A Deloitte spokesperson declined to comment pending the approval of the settlement by Judge Lewis Kaplan. Grant Thornton did not immediately return our email requesting comment.

This latest development in the story that never ends Parmalat case is the first that we’ve reported that doesn’t involve the persistence of the company trying and failing and trying again to chase down banks and auditors for money related to the company’s bankruptcy in 2003. From the looks of it, we’ll be following these developments long into the next decade.

Ex-Parmalat auditors settle US investor lawsuit [Reuters]

Grant Thornton Continues on Some Sort of John Gotti Teflon-esque Run

john20gotti.jpgThe Wall St. Journal reports that a judge has tossed a case brought by freaky-ass, longlife milk company Parmalat against Grant Thornton and Bank of America.
Parmalat filed for bankruptcy back when everyone thought invading Iraq was a good idea so this thing has been dragging.
This is another major lawsuit that G to the T has managed to avoid, along with the dismissal of the Refco suit last month.
GT seems to be quite the bullet dodger and can probably breathe easy. For now, anyway.
Judges Tosses Parmalat Lawsuits [WSJ]