Friday, November 6, 2015


Grand Cayman's Dundee Merchant Bank,* though ordered liquidated years ago, and which was operating illegally, was abruptly cleaned out, and its computers and bank records removed post haste yesterday, when the news broke that a major civil suit had been filed against it. The bank has been a base for a $450m trading fraud, perpetrated by the Cayman Gang of Four, a quartet of financial scoundrels who stole from Canadian and American retirees and pensioners.

A review of Cayman Islands public records showed that no liquidation, nor receivership, nor any other permitted class of dissolution of the bank, has ever been initiated, let alone completed, notwithstanding that Canadian regulators has ordered it closed a long time ago. The bank has only a Class B banking license, which requires a full-service financial institution as a parent organization, and Canada's Dundee Corporation had sold off its banking arm years ago. Financial media, and even reputable reference materials, have listed Dundee as "in liquidation" for years, meaning that this disinformation was deliberately leaked to the financial press.

The bank had never been liquidated, though Dundee Corporation has claimed that it had completed the necessary actions, and handed off the liquidation to bank management, headed by President Derek Buntain. Mr. Buntain is missing, and is believed to be hiding somewhere in Canada's Atlantic Provinces, possibly Prince Edward Island, where his family resides.

Dundee President Buntain

Witnesses stated that Sharon Lexa Lamb, the Senior Vice President of Dundee Bank, ordered the bank's small Grand Cayman offices stripped, after she was notified by a staff member at the Grand Court of the Cayman Islands that a Statement of Claim had been filed, against her, and the bank, alleging massive breaches of fiduciary duty to account holders**.

There are three unanswered questions that deserve attention:

(1) If the bank was in clear violation of Cayman banking laws, why was it allowed to remain in operation by CIMA, the Cayman Islands Monetary Authority, the relevant government agency charged with regulating the financial sector ? No liquidation was filed, yet media was declaring it as fact. Who was guilty of regulator malpractice at CIMA, and should they not be disciplined for this abject failure ? Also, why didn't CIMA catch Dundee's parent's sale ? Is this not gross negligence ?

(2) If Dundee Corporation did, as it claims, sign off on the liquidation, why was there never any on-site inspection and report, to confirm that it actually was accomplished ? That is basic due diligence, and the fact that a document was issued, under the bank's name, recently, showing Dundee Corporation's Toronto address for Dundee Merchant Bank, in a mailing to clients, suggests that it knew, or should have known, that the bank was still in operation.

(3) Where is Canada's financial regulator, the National Bank of Canada, in all this ? There is no publicly-available document that tells consumers and investors the details of the ordered liquidation, and the authority through which it was ordered. Investors were blindly following word of mouth. Should we not have regulatory filing transparency, especially regarding high-risk, and non-CDIC/FDIC, financial institutions located in offshore financial centers ?

One wonders where the bank's computers, and books & records are. Perhaps someone at the Royal Cayman Islands Police Service might want to step in here, and pay Ms. Lamb, and the rest of the Gang of Four,  a visit.

* The bank was also trading under the name of Dundee Bank.
** This case shall be covered in a subsequent article.  

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