Ex-Monte Paschi Finance Chief Baldassarri Released From Jail

Gianluca Baldassarri, a former finance chief at Banca Monte dei Paschi di Siena SpA, was released from a Florence jail yesterday, according to his lawyer.

Baldassarri had appealed his detention because of a technical violation by the court, his lawyer Filippo Dinacci said in Siena late yesterday. A judge in Siena is examining a fresh request by the city’s prosecutors to detain Baldassarri and questioned the former manager yesterday, Dinacci said.

Police detained Baldassarri in Milan on Feb. 14, accusing him of obstructing the authorities by hiding a document linked to Monte Paschi derivative transactions in 2009. Baldassarri, the only suspect to have been taken into custody during the probe, was a flight risk, a prosecutor had said.

“Baldassarri didn’t want to flee before and doesn’t want to flee now,” his lawyer told reporters yesterday.

Monte Paschi’s new management found a document in October that proved the link between an unprofitable derivative deal dubbed Alexandria and a new one, which should have led the bank to book a loss on the original transaction. The bank on March 1 said it filed suits in Florence seeking damages over two contracts from 2008 and 2009 dubbed Santorini and Alexandria.