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CITIBANK AGREES TO BROBECK SETTLEMENT Citibank FSB has agreed to take $2.85 million in cash as full payment for the $8.2 million it is still owed by Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison’s estate. The proposed deal between Citibank and Brobeck bankruptcy trustee Ronald Greenspan was filed in U.S. bankruptcy court in San Francisco on Friday. In the filing, Greenspan’s attorneys say the agreement would also settle potential counterclaims and actions by the estate against Citibank. They note that Greenspan investigated whether the bank could be held liable for paying distributions to partners while the firm was insolvent. They say the trustee also questioned whether Citibank could be held liable for funding half the $1 million that a group of Brobeck lawyers paid to the Lanier Law Firm for litigation against Clifford Chance. The suit, regarding Clifford Chance’s hiring of former Brobeck partners, has not been resolved. Citibank is Brobeck’s largest creditor. Prior to the firm’s collapse in February 2003, Brobeck partners reduced some of the firm’s debt to the bank — which at one point reached $86 million — by agreeing to withhold their distributions. The court filing says the trustee would pay Citibank with funds from a $10.2 million settlement the trustee reached with Morgan, Lewis & Bockius. U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Dennis Montali has not yet acted on that proposed agreement. Montali is scheduled to hold a hearing on the motion to accept the Citibank proposed agreement Nov. 19. — Brenda Sandburg KIRKLAND RELOCATES TO BIGGER S.F. OFFICES Kirkland & Ellis moved its San Francisco offices Friday into the Bank of America Building — a relocation that reflects the Chicago firm’s larger footprint in the Bay Area market. The new offices — occupying some 47,000 square feet of the California Street building’s 27th and 28th floors — will accommodate more than 50 attorneys. The 1,000-attorney firm started its office here less than three years ago with just 15 lawyers. Jeffrey Hammes, a member of the firm’s management committee, said the new lease has provisions for future expansion. “We plan to keep growing,” Hammes said. “We’re in the Bay Area forever.” The firm has grown by moving key equity partners from other markets and hiring lateral non-equity partners and associates in the Bay Area, Hammes said. Kirkland’s San Francisco attorneys work in the areas of private equity, commercial litigation, IP litigation and transactions. The firm formerly had 29,000 square feet in offices on Bush Street. — Marie-Anne Hogarth U.S., BRITISH FRAUD TEAMS INVESTIGATE SCAM MIAMI — Following a paper trail across two continents, U.S. and British fraud investigators have moved to subpoena accounts in Miami and San Antonio, Texas, in their search for at least $240 million allegedly swindled from investors. Documents filed in federal court in Miami this month by the U.S. attorney’s office describe a huge, still-evolving scam in which a confederation of con men allegedly peddled bogus “high-yield” bonds to well-heeled victims in the U.S. and United Kingdom. British prosecutors are considering possible criminal charges of conspiracy to defraud and money laundering against 11 U.S. and British citizens named as targets of the investigation, according to court papers. In Miami, authorities are after the financial records of a Houston-based entity, the Avenger Fund, described in court papers as a recent twist in the fraud in which fund units were pitched to investors as a quick way to rack up large returns of up to 100 percent a year. The Avenger Fund had a bank account at Citigroup Private Bank in Miami, “into which it is believed that investors’ funds were deposited and transferred as part of the overall fraud scheme,” Assistant U.S. Attorney John Delionado told U.S. District Judge Ursula Ungaro-Benages this month. A spokesman for the U.S. attorney’s office declined to comment. An executive with Citigroup Private Bank in Miami referred comment to a regional Citigroup spokesman in Palm Beach County, Fla. The spokesman did not return telephone calls before deadline. — Miami Daily Business Review

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