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Societe Generale trader ‘not on the run’

   PARIS, January 24, 2008 – The trader blamed for the near
five-billion-euro fraud at French banking giant Societe Generale is "not on
the run", his lawyer said Thursday.
   "I can confirm that my client is not on the run," Elisabeth Meyer told AFP.
   The bank has blamed the trader, Jerome Kerviel, for the loss of 4.9 billion
euros (7.15 billion dollars) — one of the biggest fraud cases in history.
   "(Kerviel) was told verbally on January 20 by his employer, Societe
Generale, that he was being dismissed and was asked not to show up at work the
following Monday, January 21," Meyer added.
   She said her client was still awaiting formal written notice of his sacking.
   In an earlier television interview, she specified that Kerviel "was at the
disposal of the judiciary".
   A member of his lawyer’s firm told AFP on condition of anonymity that
Kerviel had been in the firm’s offices earlier Thursday.
   Bank chairman Daniel Bouton told reporters he did not know where the trader
was located.
   Kerviel worked in the investment bank division, moving from the middle
office, which checked deals, to the front office or trading desk in 2005, a
bank source added.
   Bouton said the rogue trader had used "extremely sophisticated and varied
techniques" to carry out "fraud of a considerable scope."
   The Paris prosecutor’s office opened a preliminary investigation into the
scandal while scores of shareholders lodged suit against the bank for fraud
and misconduct.