– Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation and Bankard, Inc. sued for role in alleged international credit card processing scam.
LOS ANGELES, Nov. 10, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — Fraud and negligence claims were filed against Philippines based Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation and Bankard in Los Angeles Superior Court in the State of California by Verotel Merchant Services, a Netherlands based registered European Payment Institute. The jury trial in California is deemed to start this Thursday November 13th, where the jurors will decide whether the Yuchengco owned companies were indeed acting fraudulent by paying the wrong beneficiaries for credit card processing in the period from 2004 to 2006.
Verotel filed the claims in California because both Rizal and Verotel have a large customer footprint in that area. The California court agreed to assert jurisdiction in California over both Rizal and Bankard. The complaint was filed against Rizal and Bankard in regards to Bankard sponsored credit card processor CNP. In 2006, just before Bankard lost one of its MasterCard licenses, the companies allegedly did not wire money to the merchants that were processing with CNP and Bankard – merchants that already provided products and services to cardholders in return. Instead, the companies wired these funds to other companies and/or individuals, of which some of them seem to have had very close connections to Bankard.
"We were 1.5 million US Dollars short," says Joost Zuurbier, CEO of Verotel. "Our claim, including interest and lawyer fees has increased to 3.3 million in the last seven years. If the jury grants our fraud claim, the total damage for Rizal and Bankard may increase to over 30 million dollars. We are ready to go to trial. Rizal and Bankard has been delaying this trial already for a long time. The judge will hold a final status conference tomorrow. We hope the trial starts the next day – on Thursday."
Verotel is a small company based in Amsterdam with only 30 employees. Yet, despite its size, it is fighting a large Philippines conglomerate, which employs more than 5000 people. "We are fighting this case against Rizal and Bankard as David fought against Goliath," Zuurbier continues. "This is not only about the money. It’s about fighting a company owned by a rich Philippines family that may have found ways to circumvent fraud claims at home in Manila, but certainly not in the United States. We will prevail."
About Rizal: Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation (RCBC) provides commercial banking services. The Bank offers foreign exchange, trust, depositary, loans, financing and fund transfer services to its customers. In October 2013 Rizal has agreed to sell Bankard – RCBC’s credit card issuing and acquiring business – to the Philippine Business Bank Trust and Investment Center on behalf of various clients. RCBC filed the sale of its 89% stake in Bankard in January 2014 with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
About Verotel: Verotel Merchant Services is an internet payment service providers based in Amsterdam, Netherlands. It’s registered as European Payment Institute with the Dutch Central Bank, MasterCard Payment Facilitator and VISA Merchant Agent. Verotel started its business in 1997 in San Francisco, California and moved its headquarters to the Netherlands in 2001.
More information about the case:
Verotel Merchant Services, B.V. v. Rizal Commercial Banking Corporation, California Superior Court, Case BC467109