Iceland magazine 6 Oct 15: Former CEO of Kaupþing bank wants judge to recuse himself ...

... on account of Facebook likes and work for anti-corruption organization

Lawyers for former CEO of failed Kaupþing bank want a judge to recuse himself from a case involving allegations the managers of Kaupþing fraudulently transferred large sums to a company called Marple Holdings and for a subsequent purchase of bonds from the company. The Special prosecutor alleges that all in all the accused fraudulently transferred 8 billion ISK (63 million USD/56 million EUR) to the company in 2007-8.

Embezzlement, fraud and breach of trust
The Special Prosecutor has charged Hreiðar Már Sigurðsson, the former CEO of Kaupþing, and Guðný Arna Sveinsdóttir, the former CFO of Kaupþing, with embezzlement in the case, Magnús Guðmundsson the CEO of Kaupþing Luxembourg for participating in the embezzlement and Skúli Þorvaldsson, investor and the listed owner of Marple Holdings, for cover-up. The former Kaupþing bosses have claimed innocence while Skúli has denied having actually owned the company.

Now the lawyers of Hreiðar Már have requested one of the judges in the case, Ásgeir Brynjar Torfason, recuse himself the local news site reports. The lawyers believe the judge cannot be considered impartial due to several Facebook likes, Twitter posts, an anonymous blog post they allege was written by Ásgeir and his work for a non-profit which fights corruption. The Reykjavík District court will consider these demands today.


The case is the latest in a series of high-profile cases against the former managers of Kaupþing. Earlier this year the Supreme court of Iceland sentenced Hreiðar Már and Magnús to prison for 5,5 years and 4,5 years in prison respectively for market manipulation. Seven top managers of Kaupþing were sentenced by the Reykjavík District Court in a second market-manipulation earlier this summer.

The Reykjavík District court will hand down its verdict in the current case on Friday, 9 October.

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