UK Fraud Office charges Barclays over Qatar fund-raising

Cornelia Mascio
Giugno 20, 2017

Barclays PLC (LON:BARC) has said it "is considering its position" after the Serious Fraud Office today launched criminal charges against the bank for offences related to a £7.3bn emergency cash injection from Qatar in 2008 which staved off a United Kingdom government bail-out.

It also charged Barclays' former senior executives John Varley, Roger Jenkins, Thomas Kalaris and Richard Boath.

The emergency funds raised by Barclays allowed it to avoid a government bailout in 2008 at a time when rivals Lloyds Banking Group and Royal Bank of Scotland were forced to rely on a taxpayer rescue.

Late yesterday ratings agency Moody's downgraded 12 of Australia's banks, including those of the biggest four (ANZ, CBA, NAB and Westpac) which are now graded Aa2.

Barclays, Varley and Jenkins were also charged with providing unlawful financial assistance.

The charges against the four executives are conspiracy to commit fraud.

Barclays responded that it "awaits further details of the charges from the SFO".

Barclays said in a statement that it is "is considering its position in relation to these developments".

The SFO has been investigating commercial agreements and fundraising deals made between Barclays and Qatari investors which date back to the 2008 financial crash.

The defendants will appear at Westminster Magistrates' Court on July 3. Boath and Kalaris each face one fraud count.

"As one might expect in the challenging circumstances of 2008, Mr Jenkins sought and received both internal and external legal advice on each and every topic covered by the SFO's accusations today", Brad Kaufman, long-time counsel for Jenkins at U.S. law firm Greenberg Traurig, told Reuters.

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