Andrew Grosso & Associates, a District of Columbia law firm, announced
today the filing of a lawsuit against HSBC Bank USA, N.A. for
retaliation and wrongful termination of John Cruz, a former Vice
President and Senior Business Relationships Manager for HSBC Bank on
Long Island, New York. The lawsuit accuses the Bank of attempting to
silence and punish Mr. Cruz for reporting suspected fraudulent accounts,
used for money laundering and maintained in violation of federal law;
and terminating Mr. Cruz under false pretenses when its coercive
measures failed to deter Mr. Cruz from providing his information to the
Suffolk County District Attorney's Office and to Special Agents from th
U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
The Complaint alleges that in 2009 Mr. Cruz discovered numerous
fraudulent accounts at the Bank, including accounts having large
financial value but belonging to companies with non-existent addresses
and, in at least one instance, an individual who did not know an account
was maintained at the Bank in her name. It also alleges that Mr. Cruz
attempted to report his findings to his supervisors at the Bank, and
that they sought to silence and otherwise punish him for doing so. Mr.
Cruz's book on his experiences, "World Banking, World Fraud," was
published last year.
The Complaint alleges a breach of Mr. Cruz's employment contract by the
Bank; and wrongful and retaliatory conduct against Mr. Cruz for his
attempts to fulfill his legal responsibility to report his findings to
law enforcement. The Complaint asks for compensatory and punitive
damages of $10,000,000.
The lawsuit was filed on December 11, 2012 in the United States District
Court in the Eastern District of New York, Case No. CV-12-6088, and is
before Judge Leonard D. Wexler. Mr. Cruz is being represented in this
lawsuit by the law firm of Andrew Grosso & Associates, in Washington,
D.C.; and Nicholas J. Damadeo, P.C. in Huntington, New York.
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