December 18, 2017
Monday, August 4, 2014

Judge Griesa allows JP Morgan payment, confirms Pollack as mediator

New York judge Thomas Griesa has granted the JP Morgan bank permission on a one-time basis to pay out interest services to holders of restructured Argentine bonds, after ruling that the titles, like those administered by Citibanks, could not be included in his original judgement in favour of holdout investors against Argentina.

The justice also confirmed that 'Special Master' Daniel Pollack would remain as mediator between the holdouts and the nation, despite accusations from Argentina that the lawyer had behaved in a partial manner towards the so-called 'vulture funds' during negotiations and subsequent statements.

Griesa's decision does not alter the block that he maintains over 539 million dollars deposited by Argentina in the Bank of New York in order to pay bond interest on titles restructured during the swaps of 2005 and 2010, a ruling that forced the country into partial default.

"JPMCB [JP Moran Capital Bank] is allowed to effectuate the One-Time Payment in respect of the US Dollar-denominated Bonds by transferring the Funds. Any other person or entity in the payment chain of the One-Time Payment to and including the holders of beneficial interests that receives a portion of the funds constituting the One-Time Payment is permitted to transfer such funds," Griesa stated, according to the court records from today's hearing.

"This permission applies only to payments due June 30, 2014 in respect of the U.S. Dollar denominated Bonds with !SINs ARARGE03E113 and ARARGE03G688. Any payments in respect of the U.S. Dollar-denominated Bonds, other than any transfers as set forth ... above, remain subject to the Amended February 23, 2012 Orders and the July 28th Order."

Griesa had made a similar ruling on July 28 to authorise Citibank to pay Argentine bondholders, and last Friday the judge widened the order to clear European agents Clearstream and Euroclear to transfer payment to creditors under that jurisdiction.

Referring to the position of Pollack as mediator in the ongoing legal dispute, Griesa confirmed that the attorney would continue in his post.

"The purpose of this ruling is to confirm that Daniel Pollack, the Special Master appointed by the court to preside over settlement negotiations, will remain in office. This confirmation is needed because of certain discussion which occurred at a hearing held by the court on Friday, August 1, 2014," the magistrate explained.

Referring to a complaint made by Jonathan Blackman, part of the legal team defending Argentina in the case, over Pollack's use of the term default in a statement released following the breakdown of talks on the eve of the July 30 deadline, Griesa rejected the nation's concerns that the lawyer's remarks were "harmful and prejudicial to the Republic."

"It is hard to imagine any worse move that the court could make than to remove the Special Master. It would be a gross injustice and would drastically interfere with the process which has been going on and must continue," the judge underlined according to court records, highlighting that Pollack had conducted negotiations in an "even-handed" manner, with "no bias in any degree."
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Tags:  Vulture funds  Argentina  Griesa  negotiations  

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