Islamic charity wins case to stop ING closing its bank account

A Dutch courtroom. Photo: Odi Busman

A charity raising money for the victims of the earthquake in Morocco has won its legal battle against ING which wanted to close its account over money laundering doubts, the Financieele Dagblad said on Tuesday.

Foundation Najiba, a Dutch Islamic charity, has already raised some €900,000 but said it would have been unable to receive more donations or finance help for the stricken area if the ING closed the bank account by the end of October as planned.

The ING had claimed the charity’s administration is “not up to scratch” and is employing an “untrustworthy accountant”.

The judge in Amsterdam, however, said there are no indications that the foundation is not acting in good faith. “Stopping the aid now would be disastrous,” the court said in its ruling. “In addition, the foundation is doing its best to professionalise its operations,” the court said.

The court ordered the closure to be halted pending further proceedings, which will take at least a year.

ING said it wanted to study the ruling carefully before commenting.

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