Miami (May 20, 2004) -- Banco Espirito Santo International Ltd. and some of its affiliates have filed a lawsuit against Chicago-based firm BDO Seidman and its global affiliate, BDO International, alleging that the firm "rubber-stamped" phony financial statements in its 1998 to 2002 audits of E.S. Bankest LC and its predecessor.

The suit, filed Tuesday in Miami Circuit Court, seeks more than $170 million in damages and alleges that BDO Seidman had conflicting interests and was negligent in auditing E.S. Bankest LC and its predecessor over an eight-year period.

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