MILAN, July 28 Italy's tax police said on Monday
they had seized 98 million euros ($132 million) from the British
subsidiary of Japan's Nomura Holdings for alleged fraud
against the Sicily region in relation to past financial deals.
Police said in a statement Sicily's finances had suffered a
damage estimated at around 175 million euros due to a deal
involving the securitisation of healthcare bills managed by
Nomura and three derivatives contracts signed with the Japanese
group to restructure the region's debt.
Nomura said in a separate note it was aware of the action
taken by prosecutors in Sicily, which it said related to trades
it had entered with the region between 2000 and 2006.
"We are reviewing the situation fully and will cooperate
with the prosecutor in this matter," the bank said.
Several local governments in Italy have taken to court their
disputes with international banks over complex derivatives deals
that turned sour.
In a landmark case, a Milan appeals court in March acquitted
four international banks, including JP Morgan and UBS
, overturning an earlier verdict which had found them
guilty of mis-selling derivatives to the city of Milan.
Police said they were investigating seven people - four
Nomura bankers and three local consultants - and had seized
assets from them worth around 6.5 million euros.
($1 = 0.7442 Euros)
(Reporting by Valentina Za; editing by Agnieszka Flak and