Let’s take a look at Husnu Ozyegin and the case of Credit Europe Bank (CEB), a financial institution that’s been active since 1994.
CEB’s owner and founder, Husnu Ozyegin, 77, had $3 billion in assets at the time. He was named by Forbes the richest Turk in 2017. He was embroiled in controversy in a situation with a former employee, who accused CEB of money laundering in May 2021. Credit Europe Bank came on our radar after our Chief Investigator came across a Dutch article on Quotenet.nl.
Sasmaz and Ozyegin’s Relationship
Interestingly, Sasmaz and Ozyegin had a close relationship. They spent holidays together and they treated each other’s children as their own. Now, their relationship is in the trash. How did this happen? The two seniors declared war against each other, with the letter stating that he lost over $20 million because of Ozyegin and CEB.Sasmaz also claimed that he was used as a straw man by Husnu Ozyegin, without him and his wife knowing about the millions Ozyegin illegally hid from the public in various shipping business dealing.
CEB Founder Ozyegin’s Alleged Illegal Activities
To further his allegations, Sasmaz presented documents from the Maltese business register, the Malta Financial Services Authority. The documents show that on November 12, 2002, Beril (Sasmaz wife) registered the companies, all of which they used to get the Hyundai contract. The contract involved building new ships intended to be used as tankers carrying chemical products and other materials. However, the Netherlands has issued a halt to the construction because it is a hotspot for tax evasion, money laundering, and even terrorist financing. The involvement of the said government fostered Sasmaz’ claim of illegal activities performed by Ozyegin and his family. On the other hand, CEB claimed that Sasmaz’ claims had everything to do with him. CEB said that Sasmaz and companies affiliated with him stopped paying off loans, which were related to shipping investments at some point. CEB also claimed that it ended the business relationship and didn’t want to discuss the matter further.
DNB’s Probe and CEB’s Involvement
However, Sasmaz was not finished. In a gist, Sasmaz is committed to exposing the illegal, unethical games the Dutch bank played for several years in this matter. One simple yet main reason? Sasmaz was treated like collateral damage. Sasmaz and Ozyegin may have made tons of money together, but Sasmaz claimed that he was never paid to stand in any advisory or director role. The then-confident Sasmaz also stated that he and Ozyegin bought ships with loans from their bank. This went on for years until the bank came to the attention of De Nederlandsche Bank (DNB), a supervisory authority, in 2015.
Other similar situations have come to light
For example, a European bank has recently made Exposed Foundation aware of other financial misappropriation by the CEB. The Supreme Court of the Russian Federation is holding Credit European Bank responsible for fabricating credit agreements totaling more than USD 40 million. Case number: N2 3344595/2020. The court observed illegal financial action on the part of Credit Europe Bank JSC and Credit Europe Bank N.V. The aggregate actions of which, together with Minkarlo Limited, were aimed at preventing the resolution of a civil dispute within established time limits, creating the appearance of the legality and validity of those disputed transactions in order to inflict harm to other parties in the case. The matter refers to a civil dispute that was brought to the Solnechnogorsk City Court of the Moscow Region, filed by Hasan Janeid Zapsu and Zhilinvest XXI LLC against Mehmet Zeki Uchdogan, Aytach Erkaya, LLC “Art Aztek Limited,” JSC “Credit Europe Bank,” Credit Europe Bank N.V. and Minkarlo Limited.
So why did DNB not investigate, or fine CEB in The Netherlands? Why did MarketWatch halt their investigation and delete their article on their website?
Interestingly, these questions raise more questions. Instead of answers. But we keep investigating.