Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 12 December 2019

Jury discharged in Barclays-Qatar fraud trial

Four Barclays executives were accused of paying secret fees to Qatar after 2008 financial crash

Former Barclays Middle East investment banking chief Roger Jenkins faces allegations of fraud over payments to Qatar. Bloomberg  
Former Barclays Middle East investment banking chief Roger Jenkins faces allegations of fraud over payments to Qatar. Bloomberg  

The jury has been discharged in the criminal trial of four Barclays executives accused of paying Qatar secret fees to rescue the bank during the 2008 financial crisis.

The men, who include the bank’s former chief executive John Varley, were accused of fraud over the alleged deal to pay Qatari officials bumper fees to secure funding worth £4 billion (Dh19.2bn).

The executives were accused of a conspiracy to hide £322m in commissions to Qatar’s sovereign wealth fund and an investment vehicle controlled by the country's then prime minister, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al Thani.

The payments by the Qataris in 2008 allowed the bank to avoid a government bailout, which would have jeopardised multi-million-pound bonuses to the senior executives, the London court heard.

The four men – Mr Varley, the bank’s Middle East dealmaker Roger Jenkins, and senior executives, Thomas Kalaris and Richard Boath – were the most senior bankers to face charges over the global financial crisis.

The Serious Fraud Office, which brought the case against them, alleged that markets were misled as other investors were not told that Qatar was given extra payments in return for their funds.

The jury, sitting at Southwark Crown Court, was discharged on Monday, more than two months after the trial started. The case is subject to continuing reporting restrictions.

Updated: April 8, 2019 04:50 PM

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