Regulation 

Barclays execs given two years to prepare for trial

Barclays execs given two years to prepare for trial

Barclays bank and four of its former senior executives will not be tried until January 2019 for fraud related to raising billions of pounds from Qatar during the financial crisis.

Former chief executive John Varley and three of his senior colleagues – Roger Jenkins, Tom Kalaris and Richard Boath – allegedly raised £11.8bn in emergency fundraising in 2008.

The deal - which allowed the bank to avoid taking a taxpayer bailout - was the subject of a five-year investigation by the Serious Fraud Office.

It is the first time criminal proceedings have been launched against any senior bankers for events surrounding the financial crisis.

The four former executives appeared at Southwark Crown Court for a trial preparation hearing today (Mon).

The charges relate to two fundraisings the bank organised in June and October 2008 through two investment vehicles connected to Qatar - Qatar Holding LLC and Challenger Universal Ltd.

One was used by the then-Qatari prime minister, Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber al-Thani, and a $3bn (£2.3bn) loan advanced to Qatar in November 2008.

Varley, Jenkins, Kalaris, all 61, and Boath, 58, are charged with one count of fraud by false representation, between 1 May 2008 and 31 August 2008.

The charge alleges they conspired together with Barclays Plc 'to commit fraud by making a false representation, namely within documents relating to Barclays' capital raising of June 2008, intending to make a gain, namely or cause loss to another, or exposing another to a risk of loss.'

Varley, Jenkins and the bank face a second like charge of fraud by false representation, between 1 September 2008 and 30 November 2008.

The charge alleges they conspired together with Barclays Plc 'to commit fraud by making a false representation, namely within documents relating to Barclays' capital raising of October 2008, intending to make a gain, namely or cause loss to another, or exposing another to a risk of loss'.

Varley, Jenkins and Barclays face a further charge of providing unlawful financial assistance through the loan.

None of the defendants were arraigned today (mon) and will not be asked to enter their pleas until sometime next year.

Edward Brown QC, prosecuting, asked for the trial not to be listed until 9 January 2019 to allow enough time to prepare the complex case.

Mr Justice Edis listed the trial for that date.

Jenkins left Barclays in 2009 and was famously once paid £40 million in a single year by the bank.

He is now based in Malibu, California.

Varley was chief executive of Barclays until the end of 2010.

Kalaris, a London-based US citizen, ran the wealth management arm of Barclays.

Boath is the former head of the bank’s European financial institutions group.

Barclays said previously that the US justice department and Securities and Exchange Commission is also investigating these agreements, and that the Financial Conduct Authority had investigated.

Varley, of Pembridge Villas, London, Notting Hill, Jenkins, of Villa Costera, Malibu, California, Kalaris, of Thurloe Square, South Kensington, Boath, of Park Corner Cottage, Henley-On-Thames, Oxfordshire, and Barclays, based at One Churchill Place, Canary Wharf, are due back in court for further hearings early next year.

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