The banning by the CSSF of David Mapley in Luxemburg did not stay unnoticed by the Luxemburg press. The REPORTER published a comprehensive article on the matter. You can read it here. For those who don’t master the French language we have made a translation.
FINANCIAL REGULATOR: End of the road for a self-proclaimed vigilante
May 28th 2020
David Mapley presented himself as a benefactor serving the victims of investment fraud. He has become their bane. The financial sector regulator has put a stop to its journey. Considered manipulative and uncontrollable, he lost his honor.
The Financial Sector Supervisory Commission (CSSF) struck hard on Monday 25 May when it declared David Mapley persona non grata for four years in the financial center. This administrative measure is exceptional, as is the story of this 60-year-old Briton who readily pretends to be a vigilante from the financial center who flew to the aid of investors in the specialized investment fund (FIS) LFP1, victim of a major fraud.
Columna Commodities, one of the sub-compartments of the FIS, was indeed at the heart of a fraud involving 50 million euros. The funds would have partly evaporated in the pocket of an African kleptocrat, according to a relative of the file who requested anonymity. Mapley’s mission was to recover the assets.
However, the “Robin Hood” of the fight against financial crime has not lived up to his task. Mapley lied on his curriculum vitae in September 2018 to obtain a director’s approval as head of LFP1. He had to get the investment fund back on track. His mission went wrong. “Mr. Mapley provided incomplete and false information to the CSSF in the context of a sworn statement submitted as part of the approval procedure,” said the press release of May 25.
Fictitious company in Switzerland
David Mapley has an MBA from the University of Chicago where he was enrolled between 1984 and 1985. He assures directing Intel Swiss, a financial investigation company in Switzerland which does not exist. “It is an informal group of financial investigators and analysts who investigate financial crimes and recover assets,” he defends himself from REPORTER.
We wonder how the CSSF was able to admit such an individual without verifying his background, which is quite impressive ” A lawyer from the Geneva Bar
His professional career mentions a position as CEO of City Windmills, in liquidation since 2019. According to information from REPORTER, the shareholders of this company which sold wind turbines in the United Kingdom for individuals, brought a complaint against him before the Attorney General of Geneva for fraud and embezzlement. His detractors accuse him of dragging around thirty bankruptcies behind him, which he was careful not to declare to the CSSF. “We wonder how the CSSF could admit such an individual without verifying his background, which is quite impressive,” said REPORTER a Swiss lawyer who worked with Mapley in the City Windmills case.
A few months after his appointment, his muscular methods, his professional faults and his ignorance of financial regulations earned him the hostility of a majority of the shareholders of the FIS. They demand his resignation. But the man clings to his mandate. The shareholders rebel and go so far as to sue him. The CSSF is alerted.
REPORTER has taken cognizance of a summons before the Commercial Court in which investors are claiming 41.5 million euros, corresponding to their financial loss due to breaches, professional misconduct and lies attributed to David Mapley and to another administrator of LFP1. They are suspected of wanting to get their hands on the 23 million cash left in one of the fund’s compartments. The recording of a telephone conversation and text messages, presented during the summons, document shocking practices, bordering on the orthodoxy of the financial sector.
Mapley does not hesitate to use the press to denigrate its opponents. In a very oriented article published in the Financial Times at the end of February , the president of LFP1 indicates having seized the European authority of the financial markets to denounce the propensity of the CSSF to put itself more at the service of the marketing of the financial center than to act. in favor of investor protection.
The Briton stubbornly refuses to implement a resolution of the general meeting of shareholders for the transfer of one of the “healthy” compartments of LFP1 to another investment fund. On April 30, in a letter REPORTER obtained, a group of shareholders representing 60% of the capital demanded, within a month, the holding of an extraordinary general meeting to obtain the resignation of Mapley and the two other directors. of the fund.
REPORTER, Mapley claims to have submitted a summons request to the CSSF and is awaiting a response.
An FIS out of control
The CSSF’s May 25 decision should speed up the end of Mapley’s mandate. The fact that his name was mentioned in the administrative decision, an extremely rare practice, testifies both to the urgency of the regulator’s intervention and to the seriousness of the reproaches made against him.
David Mapley did not come to Luxembourg by chance ”A familiar with the matter
Out of control, the investment fund no longer has a depositary bank. In July 2019, the CSSF removed it from its official list of FIS funds and since that date, has acted as supervisory commissioner, which in principle reduces the scope of the fund to only protective acts. However, the board of directors is suspected of wanting to overcome these constraints. The FIS paralysis is total. Many shareholders feel trapped.
In fact, the withdrawal of his honorability by the CSSF should force Mapley to shed his mandate as chairman of the board of directors of this regulated fund. However, in a press release, the Briton deplores the “unilateral” character of the decision and announces, right in his boots, that he will appeal to the administrative court. He attacks the regulator whom he accuses of complacency in the protection of investors and the fight against financial crimes.
We must therefore expect a long legal battle and, at the same time, a great unpacking of dirty laundry. It will probably take time before such a controversial figure comes out of the radars of the financial center.
A folder that hides another
“David Mapley did not come to Luxembourg by chance”, indicates a relative of the file who requested anonymity. “Alter Domus presented its authorization request file as administrator of the fund to the CSSF”, specifies this source. The Alter Domus communications department considers this assertion to be inaccurate.
The Mapley case would only be the tip of the iceberg of a much larger affair which would originate in the chaotic sale in 2018 of Luxembourg Fund Partners (LFP), a fund management company, which had offered its first directors to LFP1.
The conditions for the arrival of the British leader at the helm of the fund are enigmatic. His arrival in spring 2018 corresponds to the sale to the financial service provider Alter Domus of LFP. But the negotiations between LFP and Alter Domus went wrong. The buyer has suspended the last installment of the payment to the seller after Mapley began to fire its first salvos against its predecessors on the board of directors of LFP1, accusing them of complicity in the fraud at 50 million euros on the Columna compartment Commodities. A fraud that the fund’s auditors had not detected and that the ex-administrators had themselves reported to the authorities. These former directors of LFP1 are also the sellers of the management company.
Mapley considers this to be the Luxembourg financial crime of the decade and compares it to the Madoff and Landsbanki cases.
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