Safe Harbor Bank
Last Updated: 24th August 2016    
      News
CONTACT

Mr. Graham Crabtree
P.O. Box 175
The Valley,  Anguilla
 

Tel: (264) 497-6468   Fax: (264) 497-6800


Email:
graham@anguillanet.com or graham@caribcable.com

Copy Emails to: 
info@ceg.ai

 
 
LINKS
- USA Defendants Legal Response 6-12-13 (PDF)
- SHB - US Court Complaint 4-8-13 (PDF)
- SHB - SVG Consent CVD 4-24-13 (PDF)
- SHB - High Court Order SVG 2-6-13 (PDF)
- SHB - High Court Claim SVG 7-25-12 (PDF)
- SHB - Recognition Order Entered 7-18-11 (PDF)
- SHB - Notice of Rescheduled Hearing US (PDF)
- SHB - Notice of Filing USA (PDF)
- SHB Order Provisional Relief USA (PDF)
- Declaration Graham Crabtree USA (PDF)
- Declaration Joseph Delves USA (PDF)
- Declaration John Monaghan USA (PDF)
- SHB Voluntary Petition USA (PDF)
- SHB Verified Petition USA (PDF)
- Notice to Creditors (PDF)
- SHB Claims Letter (PDF)
- SHB Creditor Claim Form (PDF)   or  (DOC)
- Appointment of Liquidator (PDF)
- Granted Petition to WInd up SHB 4-7-11 (PDF)
- Notice of Petition to WInd up SHB 4-7-11 (PDF)
- Notice of Petition to WInd up SHB 3-17-11 (PDF)
- Claim No. 9 of Safe Harbor Bank Limited (PDF)
 
- Profile: Mr. Graham Crabtree (PDF)
 
- Profile: Mr. David Sargeant (PDF)
 
- Financial Services Authority (FSA)
  of St. Vincent and the Grenadines
 
 

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24th August, 2016 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 21

In Update Number 20, posted on 24 June 2016, I reported: “We are pleased to report that we will soon have reached the stage when we will be able to prepare the distribution of funds to the depositors and creditors. To ensure that we are in possession of the relevant information, we require all depositors and creditors to provide their designated bank wiring coordinates to the Liquidator, at the contact e-mail addresses given in the sidebar as soon as possible, as this would eliminate or minimize any delay in arranging the distribution.”

We have taken advice on the matter and as it may be possible that some depositors might not be looking at the bank website, we are sending this update message to depositors in the same way we approached them on the claims process. 

We are setting a deadline for all accepted/proven depositors to provide their information before 28 February 2017 (i.e. within just over 6 months from the date of this message).

We have made what we consider to be reasonable provisions for future costs and can now report that all depositors will receive a payment of 30.064% of their proven balance and this will be paid, starting this week, to those who have provided their bank account wire transfer information.  As mentioned in the previous update, “As the amounts to be paid differ (depending on the balance held at the bank at the time of the commencement of the Liquidation), the cost of the wire transfer will be for the account of the beneficiary”. 

As always, we are grateful for the valuable advice, help and support which we have received from all stakeholders, including Holland & Knight, our Counsel in the United States; the Chambers of Joseph Delves, our Counsel in St Vincent and the Grenadines; the management and staff at the Financial Services Authority of St Vincent and the Grenadines; Mr. David Sargeant and others.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



24th June, 2016 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 20

We are pleased to report that we will soon have reached the stage when we will be able to prepare the distribution of funds to the depositors and creditors.

To ensure that we are in possession of the relevant information, we require all depositors and creditors to provide their designated bank wiring coordinates to the Liquidator, at the contact e-mail addresses given in the sidebar as soon as possible, as this would eliminate or minimize any delay in arranging the distribution.  As the amounts to be paid differ (depending on the balance held at the bank at the time of the commencement of the Liquidation), the cost of the wire transfer will be for the account of the beneficiary.  The amounts to be paid will be determined, in part, by the responses to the claims as set out in updates 5 to 8 (below).

As always, we are grateful for the valuable advice, help and support which we have received from all stakeholders, including Holland & Knight, our Counsel in the United States; the Chambers of Joseph Delves, our Counsel in St Vincent and the Grenadines; the management and staff at the Financial Services Authority of St Vincent and the Grenadines; Mr. David Sargeant and others.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




30th December, 2015 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 19

This is a very overdue update and we apologize to, and are grateful for the patience of all concerned, not least the individual depositors who have been asking for news on the status of the bank and their claims, even though they have been asked to await the posting of this update.  This update itself is very brief and a more comprehensive one will follow as soon as possible.

At that time the explanation behind the following comments will be provided in the sidebar but can be summarized as follows:

1.       During the course of the legal matter in the United States, referred to in previous updates on this website, it became clear (for reasons to be given, not least of which was that there was a real possibility that there could be an outcome whereby the creditors and depositors would receive zero cents on the dollar) that the interests of the depositors and other creditors would be best served by a negotiated settlement.  This process was further complicated by the need to make it a global settlement involving several parties.  As you can imagine, the process took quite a long time to settle and it would have been prejudicial to the cause of the depositors and other claimants if the ongoing status were disclosed in a public forum, such as this website.

2.       That settlement calls for a series of payments: the first was received and placed into the escrow account of United States’ counsel on 3 August (subsequently transferred to the bank’s account), and some subsequent ones have also been made.  A payment is also due at the end of January 2016.  Accordingly, and the depositors and creditors must keep this in mind, we will not be able to collect the final amount due until the end of January 2016.

3.       Once an agreement had been reached, we had to obtain the approval of the Court in the United States on the matter.

4.       Once that had been given, we had to petition the Court in St Vincent and the Grenadines to give its approval.

5.       We then discussed with the regulators the matter of the statutory (mandatory) document retention requirements in force in St Vincent and the Grenadines.  This is a critical matter for the creditors and depositors because they will have an impact on the amount that we will be able to pay to the depositors and creditors.  Put simply, a document retention period of x years means that the documents have to be available and accessible for x years, so the question arises as to how those documents can be retained for that period because there are different cost implications associated with each of the various possibilities and we are examining them carefully to get the best value-for-money for the depositors and creditors.

6.       So although there is an agreement, and approval has been given by the Courts, and we are approaching a point where depositors and other creditors can expect to receive a payment, the matter is not fully resolved because we are in receipt of some, but not all, of the liquidated assets as noted in #2 above, and we also need to convert an uncertain expense (arising from the document retention requirements) into a fixed amount which would be the most optimal solution for the depositors and creditors.

7.       Finally, the Notice of Appointment from the Court in St Vincent and the Grenadines states (as is normal in these circumstances) that the expenses of the Liquidation must be paid out first before the balance of the proceeds are paid to the depositors and creditors.  I would add that the Liquidator and Counsel in the United States and in St Vincent and the Grenadines have discounted or waived considerable billable time in this matter.  Were this not the case, the depositors and creditors would be entitled to receive hundreds of thousands of dollars less than would be the case. 

We continue to be grateful for the valuable advice, help and support which we have received from all stakeholders, including Holland & Knight, our Counsel in the United States; the Chambers of Joseph Delves, our Counsel in St Vincent and the Grenadines; the management and staff at the Financial Services Authority of St Vincent and the Grenadines; Mr. David Sargeant and others.

We will be providing the next update as soon as possible, so please check back.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



24th April, 2014 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 18


Our legal counsel in the USA reports:

Since the filing of the Complaint referenced in Update No. 15, defendants James F. Tierney (Tierney") and Spinal Technology Inc. ("Spinal Technology") (with Tierney, the "Tierney Defendants'") retained counsel and on June 12, 2013, filed an Answer with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court. In their Answer, the Tierney Defendants denied that Tierney is liable for harm to the Bank allegedly caused by breaches of Tierney's fiduciary duties as former director of the Bank.  The Tierney Defendants admitted that "certain" funds had been advanced from the Bank to Spinal Technology but denied that Spinal Technology must repay those funds.  Rather, in a Counterclaim initiated against the Bank, the Tierney Defendants allege that the Bank is obligated to Spinal Technology on account of advances by Tierney and/or Spinal Technology to or for the benefit of the Bank totaling approximately $5.1 million (plus interest) ("Tierney Advances").  Tierney appears to take the position that he did not authorize those advances even though he was in control of Spinal Technology at all relevant times.  The Tierney Defendants seek to offset the loan obligation of Spinal Technology to the Bank with the alleged amount owing from the Bank to the Tierney Defendants.  In addition, defendants Ariane St. Claire and Thomas D. Mangione ("Individual Defendants") have elected to represent themselves, and too have each filed an Answer denying liability to the Bank.  Separately, the Individual Defendants have informed the Bank's U.S. counsel that they have insufficient assets to satisfy a judgment, even if the Bank prevails on all claims against them.  We are investigating the financial condition of the Individual Defendants and the veracity of their claims.  The Bank understands that the Tierney Defendants have separately sued the Individual Defendants in a Massachusetts court alleging that they caused harm to Spinal Technology by utilizing funds of Spinal Technology to pay for Bank expenses without Tierney's consent; that litigation is pending.

The Bank disputes the allegations of the Tierney Defendants in the Counterclaim.  Bank employees have conducted a thorough review of the historical records; we have not come across any document that supports Tierney's theory that the Bank is obligated to repay the Tierney Advances.  Rather, the Bank takes the position that any advances by the Tierney Defendants were merely capital contributions by Tierney in his capacity as majority Bank shareholder. Accordingly, any repayment of the advances (if required) comes at the time distributions are made from the Bank's assets to holders of equity, and only after the Bank's debts are paid in full.

For the past several months, the Bank and the Tierney Defendants have been conducting discovery regarding each party's claims and defenses.  The Bank has produced several thousand documents to the Tierney Defendants.  The Tierney Defendants have produced documents to the Bank as well.  At the moment, the U.S. litigation is stayed for a short period to enable the Bank and the Tierney Defendants the ability to digest the information produced in discovery and attempt to narrow the disputes.  The Bank, through its counsel, participated in a settlement conference with the Tierney Defendants in March of 2014.  During that conference, the Bank learned that the true amount of the Advances is significantly lower than the $5.1 million alleged; the Bank's U.S. counsel is awaiting an accounting from the Tierney Defendants of the true amount of the Advances.  If efforts to negotiate an amicable resolution of the U.S. litigation that results in payment to the Bank are unsuccessful, the Bank intends to proceed to trial later this year.

A copy of the Answers filed by the Tierney Defendants and the Individual Defendants can be found in the sidebar.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.

 

24th April 2014 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 17

Our legal counsel in St. Vincent and the Grenadines has furnished this report:

RE: High Court Suit 210 of 2012: Safe Harbor Bank Ltd (In Liquidation) v Canouan Village  Development Ltd and Thomas Mangione: Update

I write to update you on the captioned litigation, and more particularly on the collection of the judgement debt.

As you will recall the second judgement debtor had entered into a binding contract with a third party to sell the realty it holds in Canouan. A part payment was made on the signing of that agreement, of which EC$73,000.00 was paid to SHB in October last year.

Since that time the parties to the transaction were awaiting the Government of Saint Vincent and the Grenadines’ (GOSVG) certificate of value, which determines the quantum of stamp duty payable. All sales on land attract a tax of 5% each to the buyer and the seller. This tax is paid on the value set by the Valuation Department of GOSVG and not on the price stated in the conveyance. After a long wait the GOSVG has valued the land at twice what was set out in the conveyance. The parties’ stamp duty liability therefore has gone from approximately US $50,000.00 to US $100,000.00 each.

Apparently the purchaser is appealing or intending to appeal this valuation, a lengthy process. However I have been encouraging the purchaser’s solicitor to forthwith settle SHB’s debt since such payment will not affect the stamp duty issue, however it is decided. The solicitor is amenable to this but is taking instructions from his client.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




24th
April 2014 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 16

We are reporting that while there has been progress on the two legal matters (referred to in previous updates) neither are closed, although in one there is a judgment debt in favor of Safe Harbor Bank Ltd and partial satisfaction.  Realizing a need to provide a current report to the depositors, we asked our legal counsel in St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the USA if they can carefully provide us with the status of the claims while keeping in mind that legal matters are not fully resolved.  This they have done and this can be seen in Updates 17 and 18.

We continue to be grateful for the help and support received from all stakeholders.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




31st May
2013 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 15

We are pleased to report that as the result of a considerable amount of time, consultations and work our legal counsel in the USA, Holland & Knight, has filed a (legal) complaint in the United States Bankruptcy Court, District of Massachusetts, Eastern Division in which the Defendants are Spinal Technology Inc., James F. Tierney, Thomas D. Mangione, Ariane St. Claire (individually and as Trustee of Simoon Realty Trust) and Simoon Realty Trust.  For the benefit of readers who are unfamiliar with Chapter 15 procedures in the United States, such a complaint can be defined as the pleading which initiates an adversary proceeding, setting forth for the court claims for relief for damages caused, or wrongful conduct engaged in, by defendant(s).   The complaint has been assigned adversary proceeding no. 13-01108.  The Clerk's Office issued a summons, which was served with the complaint on the Defendants on 18 April, 2013 and the certificates of service reflecting that were filed in the adversary proceeding on 22 April, 2013.    

A copy of the complaint can be found in the sidebar.

Subsequently all Defendants have requested an extension of time to respond to the summons for a period of 30 days and there have been further responses which are being evaluated by counsel and the Liquidator team.

We continue to be grateful for the help and support received from all stakeholders.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




18th May
2013 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 14

As you will have seen from Update Numbers 12 and 13, one of the assets which appears in the bank’s accounts at the time of the commencement of the Controllership (in October 2010) and Provisional Liquidation (in January 2011) is a claim against Canouan Village Development Ltd., a company registered and holding assets in St. Vincent and the Grenadines being a subsidiary of Canouan Village Development LLC. (a limited liability company incorporated in Delaware, USA, said to be either owned or controlled jointly by Thomas Mangione, Ariane St. Claire and James Tierney who are, or were, shareholders and/or directors and/or officers of the Bank), originally in the amount of US$500,000.00; we also reported that our counsel filed a legal claim in the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in the High Court of Justice in St Vincent And The Grenadines which we placed in the sidebar and felt it was quite detailed and of considerable interest to the bank’s depositors and creditors.   Subsequently there was further legal action which has resulted in the parties agreeing to a self-explanatory Consent Order which can be found in the sidebar.

We continue to be grateful for the help and support received from all stakeholders.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



12th
March 2013 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 13

As you will have seen from Update Number 12, one of the assets which appears in the bank’s accounts at the time of the commencement of the Controllership (in October 2010) and Provisional Liquidation (in January 2011) is a claim against Canouan Village Development Ltd., a company registered and holding assets in St. Vincent and the Grenadines being a subsidiary of Canouan Village Development LLC. (a limited liability company incorporated in Delaware, USA, said to be either owned or controlled jointly by Thomas Mangione, Ariane St. Claire and James Tierney who are, or were, shareholders and/or directors and/or officers of the Bank), originally in the amount of US$500,000.00; we also reported that our counsel filed a legal claim in the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in the High Court of Justice in St Vincent and the Grenadines which we placed in the sidebar and felt it was quite detailed and of considerable interest to the bank’s depositors and creditors. 

We can report that the defendants filed a defence to the claim which led to further action on the part of both parties.  The final outcome was that the court issued the Order which can be found in the sidebar, striking out the defendant’s defence with the exception of the paragraphs which deal with interest and that as the defendants admit the bank’s claim for US$500,000, judgment has been entered in the sum of US$500,000.

We can also report that in February 2013 we noted that the bank’s website ("www.safeharborbank.com") was inaccessible.  Our IT consultants reported that the domain "safeharborbank.com" was registered via GoDaddy by Richard Gregory-Allen, Ph.D. (who works or worked at Spinal Technology, Inc, or Spinal Group Inc) and that our IT consultants had no control over the domain name - just website hosting.  Further enquiries indicated that the owner of the site is Ariane St. Clair and that unless Spinal Technology, Inc, or Spinal Group Inc were to give us access to the GoDaddy account, we could not use the domain.  As Spinal Technology, Inc, and/or Spinal Group Inc are potential adversaries in a legal complaint it was decided to acquire a new domain of shbsvg.com, post existing content onto it and to notify stakeholders of this change.

We continue to be grateful for the help and support received from all stakeholders.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




23rd
August 2012 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 12

As you will have seen from the last two updates, one of the assets which appears in the bank’s accounts at the time of the commencement of the Controllership (in October 2010) and Provisional Liquidation (in January 2011) is a claim against Canouan Village Development Ltd., a company registered and holding assets in St. Vincent and the Grenadines being a subsidiary of Canouan Village Development LLC., a limited liability company incorporated in Delaware, USA, said to be either owned or controlled jointly by Thomas Mangione, Ariane St. Claire and James Tierney who are, or were, shareholders and/or directors and/or officers of the Bank, originally in the amount of US$500,000.00; we also reported that the liquidator team and counsel also met with Thomas Mangione (former Executive Director of the Bank), Ariane St. Claire and their counsel, and with the accountant and counsel for Spinal Technology Inc. and Spinal Group Inc. (whose owner and officer is James Tierney).

We can now report that counsel has filed a legal claim in the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in the High Court of Justice in St Vincent And The Grenadines which we feel is quite detailed and of considerable interest to the bank’s depositors and creditors.  It can be found in the sidebar and we encourage you to read it. 

We continue to be grateful for the help and support received from all stakeholders.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



10th August 2012 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 11

Recently, in the context of the pending Chapter 15 proceeding in the USA, Bankruptcy Rule 2004 examinations of Ariane St. Claire (former Chief Financial Officer of Spinal Technology Inc. and Spinal Group Inc.) and James F. Tierney (president of Spinal Technology Inc. and Spinal Group Inc.) were taken by The Gordon Law Firm LLP, in Boston MA on behalf of Treehouse Park, S.A. and Venturecor, S.A., two depositors at the bank.  Additionally, the liquidator team and US Counsel also met with Thomas Mangione (former Executive Director of the Bank), Ariane St. Claire and their counsel; and with the accountant and counsel for Spinal Technology Inc. and Spinal Group Inc. 

We have received a considerable amount of information, much of which has been useful and for which we are grateful.  Counsel in the USA and  St. Vincent are assimilating the information received and are reviewing options in order to arrive at the most optimal outcome for the depositors.  Further enquires are contemplated.  Additionally, the liquidator team has spent some time addressing the situation of a few depositors who had investments, via the bank, at overseas brokerages; for various reasons this has proven more difficult than first appeared.  Unfortunately, it is envisaged at this stage that the only likely way forward toward full or partial recovery of funds will be through the litigation processes in the court systems in the USA and St. Vincent & The Grenadines, the timing of the conclusions of which cannot be predicted with certainty.  Therefore, it would not be prudent at this stage to give a timetable as to the length of the recovery process other than to say that it is unlikely that the liquidator will be in a position to make a distribution to depositors in the near future. 

Finally, we have also taken steps to reduce our ongoing cost still further; in doing so we have vacated the bank’s former rented premises and have sold most of the assets.  We continue to be grateful for the help and support received from all stakeholders.

We will be providing news of further developments as soon as it is available, which we expect to be in the very near future, so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




1st August 2012 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 10

The success of the liquidation depends on the extent that the bank is able to realize certain assets which appear in its accounts at the time of the commencement of the Controllership (in October 2010) and Provisional Liquidation (in January 2011).  Besides funds on deposit with the regulators and at certain financial institutions, the most significant financial assets are:

  • an advance which the bank’s records show as being due from Spinal Technology Inc., a company registered and domiciled in Massachusetts; according to its 2009 Annual Return, filed with the Secretary of the Commonwealth, Corporations Division, its President, Secretary, Treasurer and Sole Director is the bank’s former major shareholder Mr. James Tierney; the claimed amount is originally US$1,650,000.00 (it is also noted that this claim is contested by Spinal Technology Inc. and/or Mr. James Tierney and/or another company of which he is the owner and director, Spinal Group, Inc.);
     

  • a claim against Ms. Ariane St. Claire, a former Chief Financial Officer of Spinal Technology Inc. at or about the time that certain loans or advances were made to her by the bank, and former spouse of the bank’s Executive Director, Mr. Thomas Mangione, originally in the amount of US$340,000.00; and
     

  • a claim against Canouan Village Development Ltd., a company registered and holding assets in St. Vincent and the Grenadines being a subsidiary of Canouan Village Development LLC., a limited liability company incorporated in Delaware, USA, said to be either owned or controlled jointly by Thomas Mangione, Ariane St. Claire and James Tierney who are, or were, shareholders and/or directors and/or officers of the Bank, originally in the amount of US$500,000.00

It is noted that the above-mentioned amounts exclude interest and/or penalties and/or other chargeable amounts.  As is commonplace and prudent in liquidations, expenses have been curtailed wherever possible and the funds on deposit are being applied in order to recover the more material amounts as set out above.  By doing so, and continuing to consult with counsel and review options, the Liquidator Team’s goal remains to maximize the interests of the various stakeholders.

The liquidation continues to proceed smoothly thanks to the ongoing invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.  We will be providing developments, including references to the above-mentioned persons and entities in the very near future, so please check back for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.




3rd January 2012 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 9

As Liquidator I appreciate that it might seem that little progress has been made in recent months in regard to the Safe Harbor Bank Liquidation as no updates have been appearing on the website.

The opposite is in fact the case and a great deal of progress is happening behind the scenes, thanks to the continued invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.

Unfortunately the process of establishing and collecting debts due to the Bank in order to finalize its assets and liabilities involves a lengthy litigation process which has to be dealt with mainly in the US Courts and this is ongoing at the present time.

Whilst as Liquidator I would like to keep all depositors and claimants fully informed I am sure that you will appreciate that as in any litigation process the proceedings have to be confidential up until a certain point in time.

We are not yet quite at that point in regard to the progress of the Safe Harbor Bank proceedings and I am not therefore, at this stage, able to make public any further detailed information.

It is hoped that in the next few weeks matters will progress to the fixing of hearing dates etc at which time we may be able to release more information but for now please be rest assured that things are not standing still and that, in this case, no news is still good news as far as depositors are concerned because it means that the whole legal and liquidation team are working hard behind the scenes to take matters forward.

I therefore ask your patience and you have may assurance that as soon as further information can be made public then I will do that.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.

 

18th July 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments: Update Number 8

Legal Action

In “Update Number 7” we reported that a final hearing on recognition under Chapter 15 was re-scheduled for Friday, 15 July 2011.  Our US counsel today reports: “You now have not only the statutory protections of the United States Bankruptcy Code, including an automatic stay against any actions adverse to you, the bank or property of the bank, but you also have the statutory right to invoke the jurisdiction of the United States courts to recover property of the bank”.  Please refer to “Safe Harbor Recognition Order entered 7-18-2011” in the sidebar for further information.  We consider this to be very good news for the interests of the various creditors/depositors and are grateful to US counsel.

Claims

As mentioned in previous updates creditors, including bank depositors, have been requested to file their claims.  The bar-date for claims was 22 June, 2011.  We are grateful to those claimants who responded.

As a consequence of the above two events, the Liquidator Team is now consulting with counsel and reviewing  its options in order to maximize the interests of the various stakeholders.

The liquidation proceeds smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.


2nd June 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 7

Legal Action

In “Update Number 6” we reported that a final hearing on recognition under Chapter 15 was re-scheduled for Friday, 3 June 2011.  Our US counsel now advises that due to unexpected construction work at the courthouse, the hearing has been re-scheduled for Friday, 15 July 2011.  Please refer to the “Notice of Rescheduled Hearing” in the sidebar for further information.

Claims

As mentioned in “Update Number 5” and “Update Number 6” creditors, including bank depositors, have been requested to file their claims.  The Liquidator has sent all claims documents to depositors care of their service provider / intermediary / registered office/agent or, if no record of such an entity exists, to them directly.  In most cases these have been sent by e-mail; where e-mails have bounced back, the claims documents have been hand-delivered.  If any claimant has not received such a document, please contact the Liquidator immediately at the addresses given elsewhere on this page.  We are grateful to those claimants who have already responded.

The liquidation proceeds smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.


12th May 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 6

Legal Action

In “Update Number 5” we reported that a final hearing on recognition under Chapter 15 was scheduled for Friday, 13 May 2011.  Our US counsel now advises that this has been re-scheduled for Friday, 3 June 2011 and furthermore adds:

“In connection with the final hearing on recognition before the U.S. Bankruptcy Court, District of Massachusetts (the "Bankruptcy Court"), which is scheduled for June 3, 2011 at 9:30 a.m. (EST) in Barnstable Town Hall, 367 Main Street, Hyannis, Massachusetts, copies of following are available for review at the side panel: (i) Notice of Filing and Hearing on Petition Under Chapter 15 of the United States Bankruptcy Code (the "Notice"); (ii) Official Form Petition (iii) Verified Petition For Recognition of Foreign Insolvency Proceeding and Application For Related Provisional Relief Pursuant to Sections 1504, 1507, 1509, 1515, 1517, 1520 and 1521 of the Bankruptcy Code; (iv) Declaration of Graham Crabtree; (v) Declaration of Joseph A. Delves; (vi) Declaration of John J. Monaghan; and (vii) Order Granting Provisional Relief Pending Hearing on Petition for Recognition as a Foreign Main Proceeding Pursuant to 11 U.S.C. Sections 105(a) and 1519.  As set forth in greater detail in the Notice, the deadline for filing an objection to the petition with the Bankruptcy Court is June 1, 2011 at 4:30 p.m. (EST).”

Claims

As mentioned in “Update Number 5” creditors, including bank depositors, are now requested to file their claims.  The Liquidator has sent all claims documents to depositors care of their service provider / intermediary / registered office/agent or, if no record of such an entity exists, to them directly.  In most cases these have been sent by e-mail; where e-mails have bounced back, the claims documents have been hand-delivered.  If any claimant has not received such a document, please contact the Liquidator immediately at the addresses given elsewhere on this page.

The liquidation proceeds smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



27th April 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 5

Recent Legal Action

In addition to the ongoing duties and responsibilities inherent on the liquidation of the bank and preparing and submitting the report to the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court In The High Court of Justice in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, as required in the Court Order entered on 17 January 2011, the Liquidator and the team have been busy researching and preparing the bank’s claims against certain assets and investments shown in the bank’s books. 

On 29 March 2011, we were informed by the law firm Salter McGowan Sylvia & Leonard, Inc. that there would be a hearing in Massachusetts (Barnstable Superior Court) on Friday, 22 April 2011 (Good Friday).  The hearing was captioned “Spinal Technology, Inc, Spinal Group Inc, James Tierney Plaintiffs vs. Graham Crabtree, Liquidator of Safe Harbor Bank, Thomas D. Mangione, Ariane St. Claire, Defendants”.  The law firm Salter McGowan Sylvia & Leonard, Inc. acted for the Plaintiffs.  The complaint alleged breach of contract, breach of fiduciary duty, fraudulent misrepresentation, violation of M.G.L. ch 93A, interference with contractual relations, unjust enrichment, declaratory judgment – offset and equitable relief.  In April we consulted and worked with counsel, extensively.  A major element of the opposition to the injunctive relief sought was the failure to effect service properly.

Our US counsel, Holland & Knight, filed a Chapter 15 application in the United States Bankruptcy Court.  A Chapter 15 is a proceeding in the United States Bankruptcy Court seeking official recognition of (in this case) the winding up proceeding in St. Vincent and the Grenadines as binding in the United States and of the Liquidator’s right and ability to take action in United States’ courts to carry out duties as Liquidator.  It imposes an injunction on the sort of action outlined above and it avoids the problem of dueling jurisdictions - where the Courts of St. Vincent and the Grenadines are rushing to deal with our action against certain entities before the Courts of Massachusetts enter a judgment, and the Courts of Massachusetts are rushing to enter judgment before the Courts of St. Vincent and the Grenadines do so, and it constitutes a directive that all U.S. courts provide comity and recognition to the actions of the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.  A Chapter 15 comes with certain protections - including that all actions against the Liquidator or the assets of the bank are stayed (nobody can sue the Liquidator or seize bank assets without leave of court).  However, the filing of a Chapter 15 does not immediately and automatically give rise to these protections.  Rather, to obtain immediate protection, one must seek provisional relief.  When Holland & Knight filed the pleadings on 21 April, they asked the Court for a hearing the following day, before noon, for the purpose of considering our request for provisional relief.  The Court agreed to hear the application on the morning of the 22nd.  John Monaghan of Holland & Knight appeared on our behalf.  Mr. Harris K. Weiner of the law firm Salter McGowan Sylvia & Leonard, Inc. appeared for Spinal Technologies. 

I am pleased to report that the United States Bankruptcy Court granted the provisional relief we sought.  That provisional relief included entry of a stay precluding any party in the United States from bringing an action or otherwise pursuing litigation.  The entry of that provisional relief prevented the hearing in the Massachusetts State Court (Barnstable Superior Court) from going forward.

 A final hearing on recognition under Chapter 15 is scheduled for Friday, 13 May 2011.

Claims

Creditors, including bank depositors, are now requested to file their claims.  In addition to this posting on the website and the insertion of a notice in the “Searchlight” newspaper, the Liquidator will be sending the documents, recently listed in the side panel, to depositors care of their service provider / intermediary / registered office/agent or, if no record of such an entity exists, to them directly

The liquidation proceeds smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



13th April 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 4

In past “Recent Developments” we have explained that the “Petition referred to in the Court Order” was re-scheduled to 7 April 2011.  We are pleased to report that this took place.  A copy of the Order of Court can be found in the link in the side panel. 

The Liquidation proceeds smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of our team, including IFSA.

Please check back from time to time for updates, including filing notices of claims.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



23rd March 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 3

In past “Recent Developments” we have explained that the “Petition referred to in the Court Order” was re-scheduled to 17 March 2011.

Please be advised that the Petition has now been re-scheduled to 7 April 2011.  A copy of the document can be found in the link in the side panel. 

The Liquidation proceeds smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of IFSA and others.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.



18th February 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 2

In the “Recent Developments: Update Number 1, Posted on 3 February 2011” it was stated that the “Petition referred to in the Court Order [presented by the Honourable Attorney General of St. Vincent and the Grenadines to St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ High Court of Justice on 10 January 2011] is scheduled to be heard on 24 February, 2011.”

On 16 February 2011 the Court granted a Petition for the matter to be heard on 17 March 2011, rather than 24 February 2011.  A copy of the Petition can be found in the link in the side panel. 

The Liquidation is proceeding smoothly thanks to the continued invaluable help of IFSA.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.


3rd February 2011 - Safe Harbor Bank Ltd : Recent Developments:
Update Number 1

On 20 October 2010, the International Financial Services Authority of St. Vincent and the Grenadines (“IFSA”) appointed Mr. Floyd A. Patterson, a practicing partner with the firm BDO Eastern Caribbean, as Controller of the Bank, pursuant to section 21(e) of the International Banks Act, 2004.  In order to assist in the execution of his duties as Controller, Mr. Patterson retained staff from BDO and legal counsel.  A recommendation of the Controller was that the Bank be placed into Liquidation.

The Controllership of the Bank was revoked on January 6th 2011 and the IFSA took possession of the Bank premises and notified the employees that their services were suspended, pending the appointment of a Liquidator.

On 10 January 2011, a Petition for the winding up of the Bank was presented by the Honourable Attorney General of St. Vincent and the Grenadines to St. Vincent and the Grenadines’ High Court of Justice pursuant to section 21(5)(d) of the said International Banks Act. Also in the application of the Attorney General and consequent thereto, the High Court appointed Mr. Graham Crabtree as Provisional Liquidator of the Bank.  The Court Order, dated 15 January 2011 and entered on 17 January 2011, appointing the Provisional Liquidator can be viewed on the "Links" section of this page.  The IFSA previously posted an update on its website www.svgifsa.com under News and Events.  The Petition referred to in the Court Order is scheduled to be heard on 24 February, 2011.

Mr. Crabtree has appointed Mr. David Sargeant as Representative for any time that he is physically unable to be present in St. Vincent and the Grenadines.

The initial steps and processes of the Liquidation were taken up with necessary procedural and logistical matters as well as meetings (in person and by phone), the collection of information and discussing the findings with legal counsel.  Among other matters:

1.      The Provisional Liquidator and his Representative have safeguarded the assets of the Bank by obtaining control and signing rights of the Bank’s accounts at National Commercial Bank (SVG) Limited as well as access to accounts at Morgan Stanley Smith Barney and Clariden Leu;

2.      Arrangements were made to obtain administrator access to the Bank’s software;

3.      Access was gained to the Bank’s premises and steps were taken to ensure that electricity, water, and telecommunications (including internet access) would be maintained;

4.      Correspondence which had been received but not collected was gathered and processed;

5.      Meetings were held with staff and, of necessity but reluctantly, discussions took place regarding their redundancy and terms;

6.      Notices of the hearing of the Petition will be issued in the Gazette of St. Vincent and the Grenadines and the nationally circulated newspapers as well as IFSA’s and this website. Thereafter creditors, depositors and all other interested parties will be notified of how to make their claims if any, and of all relevant dates.

The Liquidator and Representative are pleased to report that IFSA has been of invaluable help and has worked along with them to ensure the smooth progress of the liquidation.

Please check back from time to time for updates.

Graham Crabtree
Provisional Liquidator
Safe Harbor Bank Ltd.