Bar­clays faces £30m le­gal fees bill

The Daily Telegraph - Business - - Front Page - By Lucy Bur­ton

BAR­CLAYS is fac­ing an es­ti­mated £30m bill after agree­ing to foot the le­gal fees of four ex-bosses charged with fraud.

The high-pro­file trial brought by the Se­ri­ous Fraud Of­fice (SFO) is un­der­stood to have al­ready racked up around £24m in fees for the bank. Sources said Bar­clays is pick­ing up the bill be­cause the for­mer ex­ec­u­tives, in­clud­ing for­mer chief John Var­ley, faced le­gal pro­ceed­ings dur­ing the course of their jobs. The bank and the ex­ec­u­tives have al­ways de­nied any wrong­do­ing.

Some of the coun­try’s best-known bar­ris­ters are act­ing for the de­fen­dants.

The cast in­cludes Ni­cholas Pur­nell QC, who acted for Tesco’s ex-fi­nance boss dur­ing the SFO’s case against for­mer Tesco ex­ec­u­tives last year; John Kelsey-Fry QC, who de­fended foot­ball man­ager Harry Red­knapp; and for­mer se­nior Trea­sury coun­sel Wil­liam Boyce QC.

Elite City law firms DLA Piper and Her­bert Smith Free­hills have also been called in.

The four bankers face charges re­lated to the bank’s bailout with Qatari in­vestors at the height of the fi­nan­cial cri­sis. Bar­clays de­clined to com­ment on the fee.

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