Property fraud costs Philips, Rabobank €250m

Corruption and bribery involving the directors of the Philips pension fund and project developer Bouwfonds have cost their employers a combined €250m, the Financieele Dagblad said on Wednesday.

Rabobank, which owns Bouwfonds, put its losses at €100m. And the Philips pension fund is attempting to sequester goods worth €150m from the main defendants, the paper says.
The claims are made in a book by two of the FD’s journalists.
The scandal came to light in 2007 when it emerged pension fund bosses had been taking bribes in return for passing on confidential information and had bought and sold property at below the market rates. The fraud had been under way since at least 1995.
The directors had been able to get away with it for so long because the fund’s regulators did not pay enough attention to the poor performance of its property arm, the paper said.
So far 40 people are officially described as suspects in the case and some 80 firms are implicated. On Tuesday, Harm Trimp of property developers Trimp & Tartwijk became the latest suspect to be arrested.
Trim & Tartwijk worked with Bouwfonds on the Amsterdam business park Zuidas.

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