Guardian Money

  • Anonymous
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Posted: Wed, 15/10/2008 - 08:22

Guardian Money
I contacted the Guardian by e-mail to draw attention to our plight. I had £200,000 in KSF IOM when it went down. Attached is the response from Rupert Jones, Deputy Editor Guardian Money. My situation unfortunately prevents me from putting myself forward personally but i urge other site members to contact Rupert so our story gets more press. Good lucjk and fingers crossed.

I was very sorry to hear about what has happened to you. I'm looking at

this whole situation for an article due to be published on Saturday, and am
keen to speak to 'victims' of this affair. I would obviously like to
include your name and a few details about you eg how much you are worried
you may have lost, roughly where you live etc. Also, if you have a photo of
yourself that you could send us and that you would be happy for us to
consider publishing, that would be great! Photos and some personal details
will help bring the story to life, and hopefully add to the pressure on the
authorities to sort this whole mess out.
My direct line here is 020 7239 9587 or you can email me at
rupert [dot] jones(?)guardian [dot] co [dot] uk
Thanks, and best wishes
Rupert Jones
Deputy Editor, Guardian Money

You may be interested in my response to Rupert, sent last night:


thanks for getting back to me. I am reluctant to put my name and face in the media due to my personal circumstances. To be honest i am also embarrassed that i put myself in this position. What i have in mind was some publicity to our cause. We have a depositors action group website that has a lot of information on and a lot of depositors stories and plight. I am sure there are many people on this website that would be more than willing to talk to you. I will take the liberty of putting your detail on the site so that you can be contacted.

I will give you some information about myself and my thoughts on this disastrous event.

I have had an account at KSF IOM for about five years. I opened the account when working overseas. I worked for two years then returned to the UK. I maintained my account from this initial period. I had a little over £200,000 in KSF, mostly on 6 month deposit, with about £13,000 in a current account. I have recently taken a job in the CIS so am living here at the moment.

I transferred the amount in the current account some days before the bank went into administration but although i was assured the transaction would take place it never did, up until the internet site went down. This money is my life savings. I have a 2 year old son and long time girlfriend that are depending on it. I am 43 years old and do not want to start again.

60% of the IOM bank's assets were with the UK based Bank that our friend Gordon Brown seized in panic, thus initiating the chain of events that led to the nationalisation of the Icelandic parent. The UK Government have guaranteed all deposits with the UK entity, the Icelandic Government have guaranteed all deposits held by Icelandic citizens and we depositors in the IOM have been left out in the wilderness with no support. The IOM have increased their deposit cover to £50,000 but this of course does not cover customers like myself with larger deposits. Is the UK government going to use the IOM assets to pay off all the UK depositors. Whilst i sympathise with all savers caught up in this debacle, this seems a little unfair.

Many of my fellow depositors are British and many live in the UK and pay taxes. Some are British Expats living overseas with nest eggs so that they can return to the UK and buy property once their contracts overseas finish. Others used to belong to the Derbyshire Building Society that was purchased by KSF some years ago.


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GUARDIAN - we r in

  • Anonymous
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  • Sat, 18/10/2008 - 07:26

The savers they forgot to mention
Spare a thought for those who, through no fault of their own, put their money in offshore banks and now find they're not covered by the rescue plan

They are the forgotten Brits who face losing some or all of their life savings following the collapse of Iceland's biggest bank.

Hundreds, perhaps thousands, of people have money in the Isle of Man arm of Kaupthing, which was nationalised by the Iceland government nine days ago. But while the British government has pledged no UK saver will lose money as a result of the bank's meltdown, the offer was not extended to customers of the Isle of Man division. They now face an anxious wait to see how much, if any, of their money they are going to get back.

Mention offshore accounts and many people think of wealthy expats, tax evaders and millionaire "non-doms". Yet Guardian Money has been in contact with dozens of account holders this week, and most are far removed from that image. Many are UK citizens - development workers, teachers, project managers and the like - who happen to be living abroad.

They did not put their money offshore to avoid tax; they did it because it is difficult or impossible for UK citizens who are not residents to open an account in Britain. Many others, such as West Country guest house owner Jan Otten and Essex surveyor Steve Henderson, are living, working and paying taxes in this country.

Some account holders have a few thousand pounds in Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander (Isle of Man); others much more than that. Many had deposited the proceeds of a property sale; some were relying on this cash to see them through their retirement years.

And many did not specifically seek out an Icelandic bank. A fair number of those affected had put their cash in Derbyshire Building Society's Isle of Man arm, which was taken over by Kaupthing a year ago and merged into its existing island operation. Customers were assured Kaupthing would provide a "parental guarantee" for deposits.

Mat Walker, who helped set up a website and action group to draw attention to their plight (, says: "Lives will be lost over this. You can't put a large group of people through something like this without the fall-out getting tragic."

The Isle of Man is a UK dependency, but the UK Financial Services Compensation Scheme does not cover deposits with banks or building societies there. In theory, the savers should be able to turn to the Isle of Man's own compensation scheme, which last week upped its maximum payout to £50,000. But there are concerns about whether this will be able to cope. In the event of a bank failure, the Isle of Man government warns that savers may have to wait for their compensation to be paid. This is because redress is paid out of levies collected as and when needed from other banks on the island. One victim claimed the scheme amounted to not much more than "a whip-round in Douglas high street".

Perhaps their best hope lies with the politicians. On Wednesday, the UK government confirmed it would represent the Isle of Man in discussions with Iceland over honouring the guarantee.

The bank is currently in the hands of a provisional liquidator, who is trying to recover assets that may have been passed to the bank's mainland UK arm.

Here are the stories of just a few of those people affected:
Forgotten: The Red Cross worker

Anna Dobai returned to Britain earlier this year after working with the International Red Cross in central America for the past five years, and in Switzerland for five years before that. She is now living in south-west London, and was in the process of closing her account so she could move the money to a UK bank.

"I had originally opened an account with the Derbyshire offshore because I didn't have an address in the UK, so I couldn't open a savings account here. While I have not lost so much in the grand scheme of things - £27,000 - it was the sum total of my savings. I was hoping perhaps to use it as a deposit on somewhere to live for me and my two boys," says Anna, a single parent in her mid-40s.
Forgotten: The guest house couple

Jan and Judy Otten run a guest house in Weston-super-Mare, north Somerset, and had most of their savings - £16,500 in total - in two Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander (Isle of Man) accounts. They lived abroad for about 20 years - Jan is originally from Holland - and returned to Britain about four years ago. "That money was a reserve to be used to improve our business," says Jan, 52. "We are very worried that our savings will be lost, at least for a very long time. We pay all our taxes in this country, including tax on the interest of our account in the Isle of Man."
Forgotten: Brits down under

Paul and Angela Cuthbert used to live in Grimsby, Lincolnshire, but emigrated to Australia in November 2006. They sold their house and a couple of investment properties. At the time of the bank's demise they had just over £400,000 in their account. "That is basically all our life savings gone overnight," says Paul, 36, who lives in Hervey Bay, Queensland. The couple are expecting their first baby next month, and were planning to use the money to build their own home. "We're over the upset stage - there were a few tears - though I'm pretty depressed at the minute," Paul says. "I'm still a UK taxpayer, as we have investment properties over there, and feel it is unjust of the UK government not to back us up."
Forgotten: The surveyor

Steve Henderson lives in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex and works as a surveyor. "I earn not much over £20,000 per year, and last week my world fell apart," he says. "I had my life savings from the sale of my flat in Westcliff-on-Sea, and the little money I save each month, deposited with Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander (Isle of Man)." This consisted of £3,600 and €89,000 (£69,000) in two separate accounts. He was looking at buying a small property abroad "and just working there for a while. I don't have any property in the UK and no other savings. I just pay rent for a room in Essex". A few days before the collapse, he requested a transfer of €55,000 into a different account. It appears the money was taken out, and a transfer fee was charged, but, as yet, there has been no sign of it arriving in his other account. "I feel what has happened is criminal," Steve says.
Forgotten The disabled person

Paul Stanton and his family have about £125,000 invested in a Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander (Isle of Man) bond. It is part of a trust fund set up for a disabled relative to look after her in her old age. "It was done through Scottish Provident. As we are not the depositors - Scottish Provident is - we are not covered under the £50,000 Isle of Man guarantee," says Paul, who lives in Berkshire. The family is very worried they could lose some or all of this cash.
Disaster in Dubai

Dr Tom Bailey is a wildlife vet working at a falcon hospital in Dubai, and his wife Theri teaches environmental science at the local university. The couple have two children: Hannah, five, and Malachi, seven.

The couple fear they have lost all their savings from the past six years - more than £100,000 in a Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander Isle of Man account - and told Money they have been through several days of "hell" after learning of the bank's demise.

"My wife and I are paid in dirhams, a dollar-linked currency, which we have sent back to the UK as US dollars over the years we have worked abroad," he says. They transferred their entire dollar savings into Kaupthing in June.

"My wife and I work in the wildlife/conservation and education field, not professions known for being greatly rewarded financially, but we enjoy our work, and over the years we saved a good amount," says Dr Bailey, who is originally from Horsham, West Sussex, and has been out in Dubai for six years. Theri is from Southampton.

The money was to help them fulfil their dream of buying a house in the Devon countryside. That dream was getting close. Now plans are on hold. Theirs is a joint account, which means, in theory, they could eventually get back £100,000 (two lots of the maximum £50,000 per person under the Isle of Man compensation scheme) - but Dr Bailey is not holding his breath.

"If the depositors' compensation is sorted out, we are going to lose a bit," he says, adding that he has heard of retirees who have lost their life savings, and families in between moves to a new house or new job in a new country who have lost every asset they own.
Misery on the Isle of Man

Katy Watt is one of a number of people whose life savings are in limbo. She transferred her money - which included the proceeds from the sale of a house in the Isle of Man - two days before the island's arm of Kaupthing went under, but now her cash is frozen in the clearing system.

Daughter Jenny says a legal conversation between the Kaupthing Singer & Friedlander (Isle of Man) provisional liquidator and the administrators of the UK arm will dictate where her mother's money ends up - either in the account to which it was transferred, or back in a bank that is going into liquidation, which could be disastrous.

Katy is UK born and bred. She moved to the Isle of Man five years ago to take up a post as a youth worker for the island's Department of Education. "I've been off sick, and this has exacerbated how I'm feeling," says Katy, who rents a room in the Isle of Man and is staying with a friend in Wakefield, West Yorkshire.

Jenny adds: "Mum was not trying to avoid tax - she was living and working in the Isle of Man and looking to return to the UK after she retires. Everything was above board. My mum is not a rich woman, has not got a pension, and has never claimed benefits before in her life."

If the money is lost she will be left with "next to nothing" on which to retire, says Jenny.

r [dot] jones(?)guardian [dot] co [dot] uk

Superb press

  • Anonymous
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  • Sat, 18/10/2008 - 08:39

That is a superb article to illustrate our stories. Very well done to all who helped make that happen.

friends you didn't expect!!!!

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  • Anonymous
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  • Sat, 18/10/2008 - 07:46

Interesting, but does it change anything? How is the bank still 'trading' without a licence to do so, or am I missing something?

pleased to read that, but do

  • Anonymous
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  • Sat, 18/10/2008 - 07:44

pleased to read that, but do you expect it was made before the news of the complete closure of Kaupthing Iceland? Expat, how do you think Kaupthing suing UK Gov could affect us? - any scope there or do they stand no chance?

can't say! sorry. But get on

  • Anonymous
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  • Sat, 18/10/2008 - 07:46

can't say! sorry. But get on that Telgraph site get at the gordon brown article and continue the slaughter please, that is the public focal point right now

done, and have passed to all

  • Anonymous
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  • Sat, 18/10/2008 - 07:53

done, and have passed to all family members to hammer.

Guardian Money

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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 12:29

Apologies if i have some of the facts a little squewiff! Whether Mr Brown seized the KSF UK assets or put them into administration the the fact of the matter is that this action triggerred the Icelandic government nationalising the bank. I think that Iceland has a valid claim against the UK for this action but also understand why Gordy did it. Touch times dictate tough actions!

As to the Derbyshire, i picked that info off of another comment made earlier from another site member. Apologies again...............

The main point is that Rupert wants to talk to people and give his article some depth.


guardian money on saturday

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 21:49

talked to Rupert around 5pm (UK) tonight ... seems he was contacted by quite a few people and he's accumulating a range of stories of different people affected which will be packaged together into a story for the money section on saturday.

RE - Guardian Money

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 12:06

""60% of the IOM bank's assets were with the UK based Bank that our friend Gordon Brown seized in panic, ""

Not correct, PM didn't seize KFS (UK) it went into administration

Robbed twice!

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 11:58

If the Guardian wants a story, I have one for them. Married 21 years, husband and I had a successful business in UK, employed a bunch of people and paid a ton of money in taxes. The stress was killing us and so we sold up and moved lock, stock and barrel to the States. Lost my husband to another woman and spent two years battling for my fair share of the divorce proceedings, paying attorneys and accountants a ton of money in the process. Finally was paid a half decent settlement which was transferred into KSFIOM in June, while I tried to fathom out how to put my life back together. The rest of the story you know - with the exception of the last bitter irony. Had to take the only job I could find (employment at an all time low because of the recession) with a non-profit organization.....calling people up and begging them for money!! Got to go to work now but will keep checking in from time to time. I have to say....the people who set up this site and have been working tirelessly on behalf of us all are quite simply THE BEST!! It has been my lifeline in these times of despair.

dont worry

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 12:04

your husband is an idiot and you will get your money.


  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 12:10

I cannot believe what wonderful people we have heading up this FIGHT - THANK YOU
I also want to cry at the words of comfort being expressing to fellow depositors - BLESS YOU
If we getting nothing else out of this we have learnt how many really really courageous people there are out there!!!

Thanks IsleofMuppets

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 12:09

It's so nice to know there are so many good people out there who care. On the bright side (always look on!) I'm getting plenty of practice in how to beg for money. My skills could come in useful when we go to the liquidator with the begging bowl...."please Sir, can we have MORE" ;-) On a serious note, I have NO problem coming forward with name, pics, or whatever it takes to get our story out.

speak to the Guardian- give em your story

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 17:09

Hi Wanda,
My condolences go to you darlin' . As you say there are good people out there and all will be well in the end!
You have a mightly story to tell - dont let the opportunity go by- speak to the guardian's Paul .....??? (details at the top of this page!)
Most of us dont want to look the right plonkers we feel like we are right now and it is underatandable we dont want our photo or even our name in the press but either way, let's take all the opportunities any willing journalist gives us to have our say. This scandal will only become a real scandal when we make enough noise!
Wanda.....I love you and if I wern;t married and broke I an sure you would love me too!

Have put my story out there

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 19:50

You are so right Claus - it's too easy to hide behind a cloak of anonymity because we feel stupid or ashamed about what has happened to us but the danger with that is "out of sight, out of mind". Therefore, I've taken the bold step of contacting Rupert Jones at the Guardian to see if he's interested in putting my story out there. I'm ready, willing and able to tell all, if it will help. I will keep you posted of any response.

KSF buyout of Derbyshire

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 09:32

KSF took over the Derbyshire just last December, not some years ago! I'd been with the Derbyshire, onshore and offshore, for over 20 years, being from the local area originally. So much for loyalty.

KSF buyout of Derbyshire

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 15:37


I cannot beleive what you wrote, I also could have written it too as your comment also fts me like a glove, (also from Derbyshire originally too). Still feel sold out by the Derbyshire. At least we are in this all together, which is the only thing keeping my spirits up. Cheers

KSF buy out Derbyshire

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 17:34

Me too, fifteen years offshore banking - would not have chosen a bank called Krapthing, Swindler & Freeloader by choice! But, the clauses and agreements seemed perfectly reasonable and its a bank for goodness sake - banks are for safekeeping your money! That's the trouble with being a boomer, we have a different perception of what constitutes right and wrong and what is loyal and what's not.

Same Derbyshire boat

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 15:50

My parents are in the same boat, had the account with Derbyshire for years.

Derbyshire sell off of KSF

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 15:49

Mike/ difficulttobelieve

Have you seen my post under contacts re the extract from the Derbyshire 2007 annual report. Contact details are also there - you should let them know your views!! I have also approached the Derby Telegraph but I am not local - would you follow up as you have a local connection?

Derbyshire UK

  • Anonymous
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  • Wed, 15/10/2008 - 17:04


Thanks for the contact details, sent email to all the contacts provided in the Derbyshire. Should wake them up and ruffle a few feathers in their little nest!!!!