Barclays Bank plc has been referred to the City of London Economic Crime Unit by the Christian Peoples Alliance party, who have written to Detective Chief Superintendent Steve Head of the City Police with a demand that staff at the bank be investigated for fraud and the common law offence of conspiracy. The City Police is the acknowledged lead force within the UK for economic crime investigation. The party says it is vital that the Unit ensures Barclays' staff are brought to book for crimes committed in the course of the interest rigging scandal.
Treasurer of the CPA, Stan Gain said: "The Coalition's move to set up an independent review into the inter-bank lending rate fails to deal with the evidence that criminal acts may have been committed. The urgent review now needed is for the City of London Police to look at the evidence gathered by the Financial Services Agency, establish whether it is sufficient for a prosecution and then refer a dossier to the Crown Prosecution Service for them to take action."
In his letter, Mr Gain asks that Barclays staff be investigated for breaches of Section 2 of the Fraud Act 2006, which provides that a person is in breach of the law if he dishonestly makes a false representation, and intends, by making the representation to make a gain for himself or another, or to cause loss to another or to expose another to a risk of loss. The CPA adds that there is also the common law offence of conspiracy to defraud for the police to consider.
Mr Gain added: "Last year, we saw a man who stole bottles of water worth £3.50 sentenced to six months in jail for offences committed during the London riots. According to the City of London Police, financial fraud costs the nation a staggering £30 billion a year. Swift action was taken against criminals last summer who wrecked our city's streets and we fully expect the same swift and forceful justice for Barclays bankers who
have wrecked public trust in our banking system."
Earlier this week, Barclays was hit with a record fine after it was found in an investigation by British and US authorities to have tried to manipulate inter-bank interest rates. It was fined £290 million while the investigation continues into suspected manipulation by several banks that help set the Libor and Euribor rates - benchmark reference figures compiled from rates that banks pay to each other for loans. The Libor and Euribor play a major role in international financial markets, and are linked to the level of borrowing costs passed on by banks to businesses and consumers for products such as mortgage loans.
For more information see: www.cpaparty.org.uk