T&T Central Bank granted injunction to stop news article

(Trinidad Express) The Central Bank was granted an injunction against the Newsday newspaper on Friday night to prevent the publication of a story.
The ex parte (without the other party) injunction was granted by Justice Robin Mohammed at the Hall of Justice, Port of Spain, at about 10.30 p.m. on Friday and served on the newspaper’s Editor-in-Chief Jones P Madeira at about midnight.
Central Bank Governor Jwala Rambarran and Michelle Majid were the claimants of the application while Madeira, the Daily News Limited and journalist Nalinee Seelal were the defendants.
In a statement issued on Saturday, the Central Bank said the newspaper “was attempting to report on the unauthorised access in May 2014 by unknown person(s) who used the Bank’s information technology systems to disseminate an unarguably false, malicious and defamatory communication relating to Bank employees. When the unauthorised access occurred, the Bank’s Chief of Security immediately referred the matter to the Cyber Crimes Unit of the Trinidad and Tobago Police Service.”
On Saturday, Newsday reported that Rambarran was seeking to block the newspaper from publishing a story on the contents of an e-mail which was circulated in the bank.
Rambarran had forwarded the e-mail to the police for investigation. Seelal, who was investigating the contents of the e-mail, contacted Rambarran for comment but he declined because he said it was a police matter.
Attorney Kerwyn Garcia, on behalf of Rambarran, sent a letter to Newsday requesting it to “refrain from publishing any report related to the e-mail or its contents or to the fact of and/or contents of this letter” and if it did not, the Central Bank would seek an injunction.

The Central Bank’s claim for an injunction was supported by an affidavit from attorney Elena Araujo.
Araujo’s affidavit noted that the allegations contained in the e-mail are “unarguably defamatory”.
“Moreover, if the matter is in fact the subject of an ongoing police investigation, the publication of these matters by the press may have the effect of undermining and/or prejudicing the investigation,” Araujo stated.
The Central Bank said “it sought the Court’s intervention on publication of this sensitive matter which could potentially undermine national confidence in the integrity of the Bank’s information security systems” and the ”injunction was also necessary to prevent the media house from further disseminating defamatory libel and possibly prejudicing the ongoing investigation by the authorities.”
“The Central Bank views the unauthorised access of its information technology systems as an isolated one and assures all stakeholders its information security framework is strong and conforms to internationally-accepted best practice and standards,” the statement said.
The Bank said its actions “in this matter demonstrate the Bank’s commitment to maintaining the integrity of its information security assets and protecting the dignity and privacy of its employees.”
Justice Mohammed ordered that Newsday be restrained from “printing or publishing or causing to be printed or published any article or headline or by-line or story the subject of or relating to the matters stated in the documents attached to and/or contained in an e-mail dated and/or sent on May 21, 2014 internally within the Central Bank.”
The next hearing is on August 21.

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Delcidio do Amaral

Brazil corruption probe widens; Senate leader, BTG Pactual CEO arrested SAO PAULO/BRASILIA, (Reuters) – The chief executive of Brazil’s biggest independent investment bank and the leading senator in the governing coalition were arrested yesterday on suspicion of obstructing the country’s most sweeping corruption investigation ever. The detention of such prominent power brokers on orders from the Supreme Court raised the stakes dramatically in a bribery scandal that started with state-run oil company Petrobras and now threatens the heights of Brazilian banking and politics. The arrest of Andre Esteves, the billionaire CEO and controlling shareholder of BTG Pactual SA and Brazil’s most influential dealmaker, sent the bank’s listed shares into a dive that wiped out a fifth of its market value and raised red flags at the central bank. Brazil’s Congress also ground to a halt with the arrest of ruling Workers’ Party Senator Delcidio do Amaral, a veteran lawmaker who has run the economic affairs committee and who has been key to President Dilma Rousseff’s unpopular austerity program. Brazil’s currency fell as much as 2 percent as the scandal threatened both the country’s sixth-largest bank and the president’s sputtering efforts to pass a new budget and avoid another credit ratings downgrade to junk. Brazil’s central bank said it was monitoring the arrest of Esteves to see whether it would impact operations at BTG Pactual and trigger regulatory action. Banking analysts warned that BTG Pactual, the largest independent investment bank in Latin America, could struggle to navigate Brazil’s worst recession in a quarter century without its wunderkind founder at the helm. Clients withdrew funds equivalent to less than 1 percent of assets under management at BTG Pactual, which was less than had initially been expected by some, said a source with knowledge of the bank’s strategy. The six-year-old BTG Pactual, which manages about 230 billion reais ($61 billion), tapped less than 5 percent of its about 40 billion reais in cash reserves to cover those redemptions, said the source, who requested anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue. SHOCKWAVES IN CONGRESS The political gridlock that has obstructed economic policy this year is likely to worsen with the jailing of Amaral, one of about 50 Brazilian politicians under investigation for their alleged roles in a vast kickback scandal at the oil giant known as Petroleo Brasileiro SA. Amaral’s arrest was the first ever for a sitting senator in Brazil and it sent shockwaves through the capital. Congress suspended its sessions as senators met to discuss how to handle the arrest. After a heated debate in which some government supporters defended Amaral, the Senate voted 59-13 to uphold the top court’s decision to order his arrest. Supreme Court Justice Teori Zavascki said he authorized the arrest after prosecutors presented a taped conversation in which Amaral tried to bribe Petrobras’ former international director, Nestor Cervero, out of taking a plea bargain that could implicate the senator and other politicians. Prosecutors alleged that Amaral conspired to help Cervero flee authorities. They also said the senator offered a monthly stipend to the former executive’s family, financed by Esteves, who had obtained a copy of a plea bargain based on Cervero’s testimony. Cervero was received a 12-year sentence in August for corruption and money laundering in connection to bribes paid on two drillship contracts. Another defendant in the case testified that Cervero had passed bribe money to Amaral skimmed from Petrobras’ controversial 2006 purchase of a refinery in Pasadena, Texas. Amaral’s lawyer, Mauricio Silva Leite, dismissed the accusation that his client obstructed the Petrobras investigation, saying it was based on the word of a convict. He also criticized the Supreme Court for ignoring the senator’s immunity as an elected official. SHARES DIVE BTG Pactual confirmed the arrest of its chief executive and said the bank was available to cooperate with the investigation. Esteves’ lawyer, Antonio Carlos de Almeida Castro, told reporters that the banker “certainly” had not acted to obstruct the investigation. The bank’s listed units, a blend of shares in its investment banking and private equity divisions, tumbled as much as 39 percent to an all-time low on the Sao Paulo stock exchange before paring losses to 21 percent. Court representatives said Esteves had been arrested temporarily for five days, with a potential extension of five days. Amaral was arrested for an indefinite period. Esteves, 47, has drawn on powerful connections in politics and global finance to steer BTG Pactual through turbulent times as Brazil’s economy plunged into a sharp recession. BTG Pactual’s major deals with Petrobras have drawn the attention of investigators, including the bank’s stake in Sete Brasil Participacoes SA, a supplier of oil-drilling platforms that has been swept up in the probe. BTG Pactual also bought half of Petrobras’ Africa unit in 2013. Last quarter, credit to oil and gas and infrastructure companies, which are the most impacted industries in the widening graft probe, accounted for about 16 percent of BTG’s loan book. That is the largest exposure among Brazil’s listed traded banks, according to Thomson Reuters data. Brazil’s central bank said in a press statement that it was monitoring the arrest of Esteves, adding that BTG Pactual has solid liquidity indicators and continues to operate normally. The net worth of Esteves was last estimated at $2.2 billion by Forbes Magazine.


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