Calling on Shayne Nelson, CEO of Emirates NBD to stop using or threatening to use Interpol as debt collectors
June 22, 2015
We call on Shayne Nelson and other CEO's to stop using Interpol as a negotiation tactic to recover debts. While debt is treated criminally in the UAE, it is not a reportable crime to Interpol. Manipulating the case to make it appear as fraud for the purposes of an Interpol report is a gross abuse of the Interpol organisation.
Most people who have defaulted on their loans and mortgages experienced unpredictable circumstances such as loss of employment, illness, loss of business or have been the victims of fraud themselves. There are countless foreigners who return to their home countries and in good faith, wish to resolve their debts with institutions.
Banks would benefit more from being accommodating and helpful to people who are trying their best to resolve the situation. Instead, some are met with hostilities when offering their maximum payment capacity. Emirates NBD's representatives respond with threats regularly throughout negotiations, for example, "If the amount is not remitted urgently legal team will go ahead and file Interpol + civil case" or "Your papers are sent to the legal heads for filing legal and Interpol thereafter". Is it their impression that with an Interpol threat, hidden money will miraculously appear? On the contrary, if the bank refuses to negotiate and tries to pursue Interpol, I would have to advise a client to reserve all funds for Interpol related legal expenses instead of debt repayment. How does this benefit the bank?
According to Arabian Business, Interpol removed most financially oriented UAE red notices from over 200 to under 50 in 2012 because debt is not considered a reportable crime:
Banks are still however, this June 2015, threatening Interpol action. Whether or not the banks are still trying to manipulate debts to appear as fraud, Interpol needs to be removed from the table entirely. If the banks and their representatives threaten Interpol action or attempt to abuse the Interpol system, customers need to retain their funds as a precaution.
We call on banks and their collectors to work together with customers to achieve amicable solutions. Leave Interpol and unprofessional Interpol threats out of it.