by Jukka Davidsson
Finland, as so many other countries in Europe as well as in Asia, experienced a devastating economical collapse in the 1990’s. This writer has been researching the event privately and at the Uppsala University, Sweden. The summary presented here is only a superficial scratch of the very complex case. Only main events, outcomes together with the legal analysis will be presented. The huge amount of victims should finally get justice.
This is a story of a country which has been sold to foreign actors i.e. foreign people planned and executed the economical destruction and local top people aided the process. In this sense there are no news compared with other cases.
The background of the developments in Finland lies on the concept of globalization. All capabilities to protect the country were lifted. This is, financial market was opened and local finance inspection was controlled. The so called market forces made everything happen.
The planning of the banking crises began in early state in 1990. First in 1992 when the chaos was well on the way started to happen. In March President Mauno Koivisto invited the top baking executives to the presidential premises. The message of the banks was that they should get rid of liabilities up to FIM 180 billion. When calculated this number with all liabilities the real figure would be about FIM 256 billion. This equals about 45 percent of all liabilities on the banking sector. The plan was accepted and adopted.
The following meeting held with the President Koivisto took place in May 1992. This time the judicial people were invited to the President Koivisto. Although President Koivisto was officially the host of the seminar, the program and management of the seminar was carried out by invited people. The invited group, about 40 people, consisted of the Supreme Court members, judges from lower level courts as well as professors of law. Finance Inspection authority was also invited. According to the invitation letter the objective of the seminar was to evaluate and criticize the judicial operations and practice. The outcome of the seminar was the total collapse of the legal system in Finland. The effective remedies and fair trial as legal principles were removed. One study presented the result of the meeting with the following figure – out of about 3000 hearings banks won 2998 and the debtor only two.
Although the period of financial crises consists of several taskforces and publication the third quotable matter is the secret agreement signed in October 1993 between the major banks and the State of Finland. Parties agreed that the buyers were entitled to transfer customers with loans and guarantees to the bad bank Arsenal. The right to transfer was defined through the ownership of companies and through loan agreements i.e. promissory notes and notes of debt etc. It was also agreed that the banks were entitled to transfer certain lines of businesses which are real estate business and any business related to real estate business, other investment business, construction, any retail business, hotel and restaurant business, any business related to leisure business.
This meant from bank customer point of view that the banks were entitled to transfer any customer or force the company in bankruptcy. Beside private people about 22 percent of all active companies faced the bankruptcy. According to the bank of Finland provided statistics about FIM 256 billion worth nominal value loans were transferred out from banks. Due to the undervaluation of properties the real amount of stolen property is about 1,7 – 2 times of the nominal value. This is that the stolen value would be about 80 – 120 billion Euros.
Other outcomes besides the lost property values are the decreased volumes in sales, construction etc. The horrified result of this exercise is the increased numbers of suicides, divorces and mental damages and so on.
People have tried to get justice, tried to get the case of their heard by an independent court. So far this has not succeeded. There is, however, one possibility to do. It is the international criminal law based on the universality principle.
The fair trial and effective remedies are the core elements in a constitutional state. In Finland those values were forgotten during the time of banking crisis. The case law provides the proof on that issue. The rulings of the European Court of Human Rights support the comprehension. In the absence of fair trials and effective remedies the trials are useless. Therefore it is important to discuss the additional possibilities how the victims of the Finnish plot would be able to enjoy the benefits of fair justice, claim damages and begin the healing process.
The main are in the international trial would be crimes against the humanity. The crime against humanity is described in the Convention on the Non-Applicability of Statutory Limitations to War Crimes and Crimes Against Humanity of the United Nations as follows: The General Assembly of the United Nations states in its resolutions 2184(XXI) of 12 December 1966 and 2202(XXI) of 16 December 1966 which expresslycondemned as crimes against humanity the violation of the economic and political rights. The Rome Statue of the International Criminal Court is another foundation for the elements of the crime of the crimes against humanity.
Thousands of deaths should be analyzed against elements of crime like causing death by indirect methods or extermination by inflicting conditions of life. Further there are questions concerning serious discrimination, expropriation, crime against humanity of imprisonment, torture i.e. the perpetrator inflicted severe physical or mental pain or suffering upon one or more persons, persecution i.e. the perpetrator severely deprived, contrary to international law, one or more persons of fundamental rights, other inhumane acts i.e. the perpetrator inflicted great suffering, or serious injury to body or to mental or physical health, by means of an inhumane act.
In this context we shouldn’t either forget in this context the United Nations’ Declaration of Basic Principles of Justice for Victims of Crime and Abuse of Power and Principles of international co-operation in the detection, arrest, extradition of persons guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity. Among other things following requirements are presented by the United Nations:
“Victims” means persons who, individually or collectively, have suffered harm, including physical or mental injury, emotional suffering, economic loss or substantial impairment of their fundamental rights, through acts or omissions that are in violation of criminal laws operative within Member States, including those laws proscribing criminal abuse of power.
War crimes and crimes against humanity, wherever they are committed, shall be subject to investigation and the persons against whom there is evidence that they have committed such crimes shall be subject to tracing, arrest, trial and, if found guilty, to punishment.
The Finnish people are persistent and unyielding. At the moment this process needs international support and some resources. The European international lawyers have accepted the case and they are ready and willing to file the case. The proof and documentation exists. This trial would be partly a trial against the international financial cabal.