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UBS Asks London Judge To Dismiss Chinese Billionaire's Lawsuit – Report

Editorial Staff

24 January 2022

UBS has reportedly asked a London judge to throw out a $500 million lawsuit brought by an exiled Chinese billionaire over a costly margin call in 2015.

The Zurich-listed bank said in court last Thursday that London does not have the right to hear part of the case brought by Guo Wengui, a businessman, Bloomberg reported. Guo alleges that UBS gave negligent advice that led him to borrow money tied to the purchase of shares in Chinese brokerage Haitong Securities Co. He says that the investment was almost completely lost when UBS forced the sale of the stock after the Hong Kong-traded shares fell sharply.

UBS declined to comment to this news service on Friday when asked about the report.

Guo fled China in 2014 and has made several allegations against the government in Beijing. He has ties to former Donald Trump advisor Steve Bannon, and the link came to light when Bannon was arrested on Guo’s yacht in 2020 over claims that he plotted to siphon campaign funds for a wall along the US southern border. Trump later pardoned Bannon, the report noted.

A lawyer for Guo declined to comment on the case, the newswire said.

UBS’s lawyers told a London judge on Thursday that the case should not be heard in London because the bank is based in Switzerland, the conduct occurred in China and the only person accused of negligence was at that time a Hong Kong wealth manager.