It was stated in Asharq Al-Awsat:
Judicial references in Lebanon seek to limit the damages they consider resulting from the actions of Judge Ghada Aoun, the Public Prosecutor in Mount Lebanon. In this regard, Judge Ghassan Oweidat, the Public Prosecutor of the Discrimination (the highest prosecutor in the Lebanese judiciary), annulled Judge Aoun’s decision to prevent banks from making any financial transfers abroad, given its negative repercussions on health and social security, and to stop the import of medicines, foodstuffs and fuels. However, despite this, these high-ranking judicial references did not succeed in addressing their decisions by seizing the properties of the chairmen of the boards of directors of 6 major banks and banning them from traveling permanently.
On this issue, lawyer Dr. Paul Morcos, head of the human rights organization Justicia, expresses his fear that “judicial procedures, if we assume that they are benign in the background, contrary to their apparent purpose, will lead to an increase in reputational risks for the Lebanese financial and banking sector, and pay what is We are left with international correspondent banks through which we carry out transfers and finance foreign trade, to sever their relations with local de-banking banks, after they actually mitigated de-risking transactions to reduce risks.
Dr. Morcos points out that “after increasing the caution of the regulatory bodies such as the Central Bank of Cyprus, which clamped down on Lebanese banks in Cyprus, there is an urgent need for radical solutions by the political authority that will be re-elected next May, for fear that the depositor will pay the price alone for these lawsuits and prosecutions. And not to be circumstantial.”
On a related level, all the prosecutions affecting the banking sector in Lebanon currently involve grave legal violations, according to the expression of a prominent judicial Source. The reference explained to “Asharq Al-Awsat” that “the procedures adopted by Judge Ghada Aoun, currently contradict the law that defines the valid reference for these prosecutions.” Then he added that the aforementioned Public Prosecutor “used the powers of the Public Prosecutor of the Discrimination, the Financial Prosecutor and the Public Prosecutions in all governorates,” stressing that “the peak of the violations lies in the perseverance of Ghada Aoun in the pursuit of the governor of the Banque du Liban and the Lebanese banks, which fall within the jurisdiction of the Financial Prosecutor exclusively.” .
This opinion does not stem from the concept of disagreement with Ghada Aoun, the judicial Source says, “but rather from the principle of concern for the judicial authority, which has begun to lose people’s confidence in it.” The Source cites the provisions of the Code of Criminal Procedure, and asserts that Article 19 of this law states the following; The Financial Prosecutor shall undertake the prosecution duties in the following cases.
A- Crimes arising from violating the provisions of tax and fee laws in various public facilities, institutions, and municipalities, including state and municipal taxes, customs duties, and wire and wireless intelligence fees.
b- Crimes arising from violating the laws of banking, financial institutions and the stock exchange, particularly those stipulated in the Money and Credit Law.
C- Crimes arising from violating the laws of joint stock companies and crimes by multinational companies.
d- Crimes that undermine the financial standing of the state or Lebanese or foreign bank bonds circulating legally or by custom in Lebanon, and crimes of counterfeiting and counterfeiting currency and its promotion, public bonds, stamps and banknotes.
E – crimes of embezzlement of public funds and crimes of bankruptcy.
Article 20 of the same law also states that “banking crimes resulting from violating the monetary and credit law shall not take place except upon a written request from the Governor of the Banque du Liban.” The judicial Source asserts that Ghada Aoun “violated all these clear and explicit legal texts.”