Jubilee 2000 breaks with Holocaust lawyer

Ed Fagan's reputation gives the impression that victims are trying to get rich, says Jubilee 2000 Keystone Archive

The South African organisation representing Apartheid victims is parting company with the lawyer Ed Fagan over his lawsuit against Swiss banks.

This content was published on August 5, 2002 - 16:06

Jubilee 2000 - a coalition of church groups and unions - said on Monday it disapproved of the methods used by the United States lawyer, who is best known in Switzerland for his role in the Holocaust dormant accounts affair.

The non-governmental organisation said it would continue to support the class-action suit against foreign banks, and had engaged another US lawyer, Michael Hausfeld, to represent its case.

"The way Ed Fagan presents the lawsuit gives the impression that the victims are just trying to get rich," said spokesman Neville Gabriel. "That is not the aim of Jubilee 2000."

Bankrolling Apartheid?

Fagan filed the suit against top Swiss banks UBS and Credit Suisse as well as the American bank, Citicorp, in June. It accuses the banks of propping up the Apartheid government by continuing to lend it money after international sanctions were imposed in 1985.

On Wednesday, Fagan confirmed that despite Jubilee 2000's withdrawal of support, he was planning to launch another batch of lawsuits in the United States against companies and financial institutions which dealt with the Apartheid government.

The lawsuits mark the second time Fagan has crossed swords with the Swiss banks. In 1998 he became a household name after he helped force the banks into a $1.25 billion settlement for Holocaust victims and their dependents.

This time Fagan hopes to secure $50 billion for his clients, who include parents of children killed in the Soweto uprising.


In compliance with the JTI standards

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

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