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Santander withholding my money - suspected fraud - now offering to return it if I keep quiet!


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I see it now. The name was a moniker for the person who gave me a loan. and the DVLA form I referred to (D11) was for transfer of ownership. 

The court has asked for a POC again. Could you point me towards where I can get a sample on here please?

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So when you say that the name was a "moniker" – what do you mean? Are you saying it wasn't their real name?

If you want this sorted out so that you can provide the necessary POC in time, then I think you need to stop mucking around and make life a bit easier for all of us.

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I don't care about their names. What I need to know is the relationship to you? Is Mrs Anderson some dodgy person in a pub who lent you the money? Or is it a family friend – somebody you know well?

Did the money come from their bank account?

I think at the moment you in a position where it is for us to ask information and to ascertain its relevance – and not for you to make decisions on that basis. That's why you're here after all

I have to say that if you are just as cagey providing the information to the bank, then it's not surprising that they formed their suspicions

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And because we are all in a bit of a hurry, this is what I have drafted so far.

You need to look over this and make comments. Not veiled comments – but explanatory comments and also identify anything which is inaccurate and let us know – and also anything that you think should be added, and let us know.

 

Quote

The Legal Basis of the Claim

The defendant bank has breached their statutory duty under the Banking: Conduct of Business regulations contained in the FCA sourcebook in that they have not treated the claimant fairly.

Although the relationship with the defendant bank is governed by their own standard terms and conditions, these terms conditions are subject to statutory obligations laid down at least in the FCA regulations referred to above.

 

My Banking History

I have had a current bank account number XXX with the defendant bank for XX years since XXX date.

The account has always been my main account. I do/do not have accounts with any other bank.

The account has been properly conducted, has never been in overdraft and has never attracted any penalties.

 

The Transaction Events Questioned by the Bank  is there actually a CIFAS marker?

From XXX date to XXX date, I carried out a number of transactions and made various payments into my account.

On XXX date I received a communication from the defendant asking for evidence in relation to those transactions because they suspected that I was involved in some fraudulent activity.

I cooperated completely with the defendant bank and supply them with all the information that they asked of me.

Despite this, the defendant decided to block my account and to withhold my access to funds in the account to the tune of £XXX.

The defendant bank has suspected me being involved in fraudulent transactions. However, they have no definite evidence of this. The suspicions are based on speculations and on a “checkbox” approach.

The defendant’s suspicions are based upon personal sale of a vehicle which I sold on behalf of a friend.

The defendant seems to suggest that because I am not in the used car business, that I have no right to undertake to do favours for friends.

The defendant bank asked to see evidence relating to the sale and I provided them.

It seems that a particular concern of the defendant was a payment which I received of £1035.

This sum was a loan which I borrowed from XXX who is a long-standing personal friend.
I provided the defendant with a screenshot relating to this payment.

In respect of payments relating to the sale of the vehicle, I supplied the defendant with copies of sales receipts and screenshots of payments from the purchaser.

I also provided a letter of confirmation from the purchaser.

The defendant also asked for a vehicle form V5.

Form V5 is a DVLA form relating to ownership the vehicle. As I was not the owner or keeper of the vehicle I was unable to provide this and I explained this to the defendant.

However, I requested and obtained a form D11 (transfer of ownership form) from DVLA and I provided this to the defendant.

There has never been any suggestion by the defendant or any bank relating to any of the friends with whom I have had transactions that those friends have been involved in any fraudulent or otherwise suspicious activities.
There has never been any suggestion that any of those friends were victims of fraudulent activity or in any other way connected with criminal activity.

 

The Bank's Breaches of Statutory Duty

FCA regs – Banking: Conduct of Business Regulations costs

The defendant bank has treated me unfairly

They have closed my account.

They have prevented me from accessing my own money.

They have failed to provide any proper explanations for blocking the account and withholding my money.

They have failed to act transparently.

Their action against me is Draconian and based on mere speculation.

At all times the bank is apparently relying on CIFAS guidelines which is an industry subscriber organisation and does not relieve the bank of its statutory obligations to treat me fairly under FCA regulations.

Although it is clear that the bank has a duty to take action against money laundering or other dishonest activity using its bank accounts, this duty must be exercised lawfully and subject to any statutory provisions including FCA regulations.

It is clear that if the bank is satisfied to the extent of blocking my account and in particular preventing my access to my own money, then it has a duty to inform the police and to hand all evidence over to the police to allow them to carry out their proper professional and independent investigation so that I am given a full opportunity to be questioned – under caution if needs be – and to provide any answers so that if the police conclude that there is reasonable suspicion to charge me, that either should then be arrested and stand trial.

The defendant bank has not contacted the police and it is not clear at all if they are intending any other action other than to withhold funds indefinitely and presumably to earn interest on those funds.

 

The Proceeds of Crime Act 2002

The bank also has a statutory duty under the Proceeds of Crime Act to report suspicious activity to the National Crime Agency.
The claimant believes that the defendant has not reported this matter as required by statute or else complied with its statutory time frames and if so this amounts to a criminal offence by the bank.

If it is correct that the bank has not reported the matter as required by the PCA 2002 in relation to reporting and to consent or has not complied with statutory timeframes, then this is a further example of unfair treatment by the bank of the claimant.
The claimant puts the defendant bank to proof that they have complied with the above statute and have complied with the various timescales set out by the Act in relation to the consent regime.

 

The Bank's Obligations As a Subscriber to CIFAS

Although the bank has apparently complied with its subscriber obligations under the CIFAS system by blocking my access to the account and preventing my access to my own money, it is submitted that although this satisfies CIFAS requirements, the bank has an obligation then to inform the police that their banking facilities are being used for the purposes of crime and then to cooperate fully with the police in order for the facts to be ascertained and for me to be arrested and put on trial if necessary.
Reporting my apparent criminal activities to the police is not inconsistent with the defendant's obligations under CIFAS – and if it were the case that such action was inconsistent then it is submitted that the banks duty to the public interest to refer criminality to the police would take priority over their own industry subscriber obligations.
To do otherwise effectively means that the bank imposes what amounts to a sanction over somebody who they suspect of being involved in criminality whilst allowing that alleged criminal to go free, unchallenged and to continue their criminal activities elsewhere.
It is the claimant's position that addition to being required to block access to suspected fraudulent funds it is an implied term that banks will then turn the matter over to the police for independent and professional investigation.

 

 

Proposed Action

 

If the bank' s suspicions are upheld but they are considered to have acted unfairly towards me then they should refer the matter immediately to the police so that the issue can enter into the proper criminal process. I undertake to cooperate fully with all police enquiries.
If the banks suspicions are not upheld and they are considered to have acted unfairly towards me then I should be given access to my money plus interest plus I should be given leave to make a separate request for a measure of damages.

If the bank suspicions are not upheld and I am given access to my money then it is still open to the bank if they so wish to refer the matter to the police for proper investigation

 

 

Edited by BankFodder
This needs lots of editing
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So they would know the identity of the paying bank.
Is there any suggestion that any of these people you have been dealing with, the friend of the friend – or the other friend – et cetera I'm losing track – has ever been involved in anything dodgy?

In other words I'm trying to find out whether any of these transactions or payments might have been tainted by someone else

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Have you ever mentioned the police to the bank or invited them to turn the matter over to the police?

Let me say, that a successful outcome in my view would be that they are either ordered – or more likely that the judge wants to know why they haven't turned the matter over to the police and considers that they should have done.
A successful outcome in my view would be that the judge would require that the bank either turns the funds over to you or else turns the matter over to the police within a certain amount of days.

When it comes to CIFAS, the bank seem to be a law unto themselves. They ignore all other considerations and as far as I know nothing is ever handed over to the police.

It's clear to me that CIFAS may well be useful to stop money laundering and other fraudulent activity, but it should be concerned absolutely with simply blocking account and withholding funds – but on the basis that where there is sufficient suspicion within the bank to take this action, then the bank must absolutely refer the matter to the police.

This seems to be the missing element.

At the moment, the way that CIFAS is operated by the banks basically allows banks to form their suspicions, to withhold money and then not involve the police so that if there really is fraud, the fraudulent party is never investigated, never charged and never convicted.
This cannot be in the interests of the public good.

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Thanks BankFodder. I haven't mentioned anything to the bank related to involving the police, although that would be very much welcome. 

 

Is there any suggestion that any of these people you have been dealing with, the friend of the friend – or the other friend – et cetera I'm losing track – has ever been involved in anything dodgy?: No.

 

 

 

 

The account has been properly conducted, has rarely/never been in overdraft and has never attracted any penalties. Is this true? [Yes]

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I've made some additions and edits to the particulars of claim which I suggested above.

I hope you are busy checking them. As I said, we are in a hurry about this and I'd like to get these particulars over and done with

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As a side note the Order states that along with your amended particulars you must also provide the legal basis on which you the claimant contend you are entitled to be paid the sums claimed. ?

 

Its almost as if you are on trial with your particulars and the court has already accepted he defendant's defence and gone along with suggestion that your claim should be struck out. Now the court are entitled to make an order of its own initiative without the defendant having to make an application with fee...but this just smacks of this is going to be an up hill fight.

 

You submitted your initial particulars...the defendant submitted a substantial defence...the claim proceeded to Directions Questionnaire for allocation.

 

The claim was then transferred to Edmonton and then transferred to Clerkenwell and Shoreditch County Court and now the court suddenly decides that your Particulars are insufficient ?  

 

Strange.

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Good point about the order requiring that you provide the legal basis for your claim. We will emphasise that it is the FCA regulations and at the end we will also say that if the court considers that there has been a statutory breach and that you have been treated unfairly then the money should be returned

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Very useful article which we have been referred to above. I made an amendment to the proposed particulars of claim to include a reference to the proceeds of crime act.

Incidentally, you need to understand that once you have filed this particulars of claim, don't expect it to go easy. The bank will rise up and muster all its resources against you and it is likely to become an extremely difficult experience.
You need to be prepared for this so that it doesn't hit you by way of a surprise

 

I have just made some further edits

Edited by BankFodder
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Also, there is an outside chance that if the bank hasn't complied with the Proceeds of Crime Act that they may reach out to you and attempt to make a settlement in confidence.

If you get an approach like this then you should let us know in confidence using our admin email address. Don't hold your breath – but if they haven't complied with that statute then it would be a very serious matter and they would very much prefer that it was not the subject of a public court judgement

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I'm a bit surprised that we haven't had any engagement from @bradybunch yet. There is still a lot of work to go on this particulars of claim and we need comments on it.

For instance, I've referred to CIFAS in the suggested particulars of claim that I've now suddenly realised that maybe the issue wasn't referred to CIFAS at all. We need to make sure this particulars of claim is tight.

I don't know why @bradybunch isn't dealing with this. There is a fairly short deadline and even if @bradybunch has other commitments, it should be realised that so do we and we are the ones providing the help free of charge.
I think you need to engage with this thread because we are trying to help pull you out of the mess that you have found yourself in

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Not read the whole thread, but it appears that Santander had reason to believe that a personal Bank account was being used for business purposes, which would not be allowed.

 

Perhaps this has now been resolved by @bradybunch

 

Not exactly sure of the way Banks handle such situations, but  closing the account seems like a reasonable action and then there should be a process where the Bank contacts the account holder asking for information to be provided before the money is released.

 

Have we been told the whole story by @bradybunch

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Interesting point although "business use" doesn't seem to be what they are relying upon in order to block the account and to withhold funds. And also, of course if it was simply a question of business use then although they would be entitled to block or close the account, I don't see that they would be entitled to prevent access to money.

I agree that there may be more to this than meets the eye that if that is the case and the new particulars of claim is signed off as a statement of truth and the bank then comes up with other evidence or the court discovers something else, then it could be very serious.

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Business transactions being hidden in personal accounts, therefore not disclosing to HMRC etc ?

 

Banks may look at such transactions, thinking they could be proceeds of crime related, money laundering.

 

For Santander to close the account and not release the money makes me wonder what information they have, which has raised enough doubt to justify the actions they have taken. 

 

And Santander will be restricted in their responses, if they have reported this to authorities to investigate.

 

Or Santander have got this totally wrong, based on a few transactions only, which were only related to private personal affairs, nothing to do with any business that was being operated by the account holder.

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Hi all, 

Apologies for the gap n communication. I have been at work and could not  update the thread. I will provide an update copy of the POC shortly. There is nothing more to this at all and I am happy for it to go all the way. As you see from their statement, they are willing to release some amount of money to me but not the amount they believe is "Business related/fraudulent".  

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Thank you for coming back. I appreciate that you have work commitments et cetera but you need to understand that the people who are working to help you are all unpaid volunteers and we have our own work and family commitments as well.

I'm afraid it's up to you to make the necessary sacrifices.

 

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Thank you.
You haven't addressed my question about whether or not there has been a reference to CIFAS?

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Also I see that in your version you have not included the reference to the fact that it is your main account. Can you tell us about that please. Was it your main account? Did you have other accounts?

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  • BankFodder changed the title to Santander withholding my money - suspected fraud - now offering to return it if I keep quiet!
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