Bank's ex-Asia chief settles suit

BSI's former Asia chief Hanspeter Brunner, who was referred to Swiss and Singapore regulators over the bank's ties with a Malaysian state firm, has settled a lawsuit seeking deferred payments, according to the bank's lawyer.

His lawsuit alleged that BSI's Singapore unit breached bonus agreements and a separation pact without any legal basis.

Mr Brunner, 64, is among six BSI bankers referred by Singapore's central bank to prosecutors over lapses in dealing with 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB). He is also one of two former BSI executives against whom the Swiss financial regulator has started proceedings. His retirement was announced in March.

"Hanspeter Brunner has withdrawn his claim against the bank in its entirety," Mr Muralli Rajaram, a Singapore-based lawyer for BSI, said yesterday by phone, confirming the settlement. "The bank is pleased that good sense has prevailed and is happy with the outcome."

Mr Brunner's lawyer declined to comment. Details of the settlement were not disclosed.

1MDB is at the centre of international probes into suspected money laundering and embezzlement. It has consistently denied wrongdoing.

BSI's Singapore unit was fined by the city's regulator and is set to lose its licence.

The bank, which is being taken over by EFG International, has challenged the Swiss regulator's decision to seize some of its profits.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on August 19, 2016, with the headline 'Bank's ex-Asia chief settles suit'. Print Edition | Subscribe