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After seven months in the job Deutsche Bank reassigns legal affairs chief

Having received fines from investigations relating to Libor manipulation and the unexpected resignation of its joint chief executives this week, Deutsche Bank has shaken up its legal department and reassigned its legal affairs chief Christian Sewing.

In late May the bank decided to realign responsibilities on its managing board which included moving Sewing, responsible for legal, as head of private and business clients for legal and incident management, succeeding Rainer Neske who will leave the bank on June 30 through mutual agreement.

The move is unusual as it comes only seven months after the German lender appointed Sewing as legal chief from his previous role as global head of group audit in what appeared to be attempts to deal with investigations and lawsuits.

Meanwhile general counsel Richard Walker, a former partner in Cadwalader, Wickersham & Taft and director of enforcement at the US Securities and Exchange Commission, is no longer listed on the bank’s board. Appointed to the group in 2012, he was singled out last year in a report urging the bank to make changes in senior management following the Libor scandal. Deutsche Bank did not return a request for comment when asked whether Walker will remain in his position.

The news also follows Deutsche Bank’s £1.7bn fine for Libor rigging and the announcement in April of a sharp fall in profits after setting aside litigation expenses of €1.5bn in the first quarter of this year. Its litigation reserves were €4.8bn at the end of last year’s quarter. Joint chief executives Anshu Jain and Jürgen Fitschen this week expectantly resigned, although Jain will continue to advise the bank as a consultant until early next year.