Barclays found guilty of "serious deceit" in 2008 fundraising, Staveley denied damages

Kirstin Ridley
·2 min read
FILE PHOTO: Dubai International Capital's chief negotiator Staveley smiles before the Champions League semi-final match in Liverpool

By Kirstin Ridley

LONDON (Reuters) - A London High Court judge has found Barclays guilty of "serious deceit" over how it negotiated a financial lifeline with Amanda Staveley during the credit crisis in 2008, but on Friday denied the British businesswoman damages.

Judge David Waksman said the decision would be a grave disappointment to Staveley's PCP Capital Partners group, which has claimed around 836 million pounds ($1.16 billion) in compensation.

"...while PCP has succeeded on liability, it has failed on causation and loss with the result that the overall claim fails," he said.

The civil case revolved around how the bank secured billions of pounds from Qatar and Abu Dhabi-backed investors 13 years ago, allowing it to secure its independence - and the jobs of its bosses - by avoiding a state bailout during turbulent markets.

A Barclays spokesman welcomed the decision to dismiss PCP's claim and not award damages. But Staveley said she would be taking advice on an appeal.

"In spite of Barclays' efforts to question my character and credentials, the court has recognised my abilities as a businesswoman and the truth of my account of events," she said.

"The judgment confirms what I have said from the outset and repeated in my evidence; a senior executive at Barclays repeatedly lied to me when seeking private investment in the bank during the 2008 financial crisis."

PCP, which led a 3.25 billion pound, Abu Dhabi-backed investment into the bank, alleges it was induced to fund Barclays on much worse terms than Qatar -- despite assurances it would get the same deal.

PCP alleged Barclays paid Qatar 346 million pounds in hidden fees and handed the Gulf state a $3 billion loan that almost matched Qatar's investment.

Barclays countered that it had struck separate, commercial agreements with Qatar and that PCP's case was "wrong at every stage".

($1 = 0.7189 pounds)

(Reporting by Kirstin Ridley; Editing by Jon Boyle, John Stonestreet, Kirsten Donovan)