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Ex-Credit Suisse CDO Chief Serageldin to Plead Guilty

Ex-Head of CDO Unit at Credit Suisse Kareem Serageldin
Kareem Serageldin, the former head of the CDO unit for Credit Suisse Group AG, arrives at Westminster Magistrates Court for a court hearing in London, on Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012. Photographer: Chris Ratcliffe/Bloomberg

Kareem Serageldin, the ex-global head of Credit Suisse Group AG’s structured credit trading business, is scheduled to plead guilty to criminal charges today in Manhattan federal court, a court clerk said.

Serageldin is charged with leading a 2007 scheme to mark up the value of debt securities to meet targets and boost year-end bonuses for his $5.35 billion trading book. A U.S. citizen who lives in England, he was taken into custody by the FBI April 5 after he was extradited from the U.K., a prosecutor told U.S. Magistrate Judge Kevin Fox at Serageldin’s arraignment last week.

Serageldin initially pleaded not guilty to the charges and was ordered released on $1.5 million bond.

Melissa Seitter, a spokeswoman for the law firm representing Serageldin, declined to comment on a plea.

Last year, two of Serageldin’s former subordinates, David Higgs and Salmaan Siddiqui, pleaded guilty to overstating the value of mortgage-backed assets in a Credit Suisse trading book known as ABN1 after the collapse of the U.S. housing market. Both said they acted at Serageldin’s direction and agreed to cooperate with prosecutors.

Credit Suisse, based in Zurich, fired all three employees in 2008 and cooperated with the U.S. government’s investigation.

Serageldin is charged with conspiracy, falsification of books and records and wire fraud. He was arrested outside the U.S. consulate in London in September.

The U.S. criminal cases are U.S. v. Higgs, 12-cr-00088, and U.S. v. Siddiqui, 12-cr-00089, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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