Libor trial: Five ex-City brokers cleared over interest rate manipulation

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Five former brokers have been cleared of helping to rig key interest rate Libor.

The group was accused of conspiring with Tom Hayes, the former UBS and Citi trader, who became the first person to be convicted over the manipulation scandal last year. He is currently serving an 11-year jail term.

Former ICAP brokers Colin Goodman and Danny Wilkinson, former RP Martin brokers Terry Farr and James Gilmour and former Tullett Prebon broker Noel Cryan were acquitted of conspiring to rig the London interbank offered rate, which helps determine the borrowing costs for trillions of dollars in loans worldwide.

Former ICAP broker Darrell Read, who was charged with two counts of conspiracy to defraud, was acquitted on one count but the jury had yet to reach a verdict on a second count. The judge asked the jury to reach a majority verdict, an SFO spokesman said.

The outcome follows a sprawling global investigation into how Libor rates were set.

The findings have led financial regulators around the world to dole out $9 billion (£6.3 billion) in fines to banks and brokerages.

Around 30 individuals have been charged in connection with the probe.

The SFO alleged the six men helped Tokyo-based Hayes in a scam to persuade bank clients to skew interbank borrowing rates to suit his trading position.

Defence lawyers told the jury the defendants were scapegoats for a fundamentally flawed financial system, which was self-governing and in which the establishment knew banks routinely set Libor rates to suit their commercial positions – and that the trial was unfair and unjust.

Additional reporting by Reuters

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January 28, 2016 |
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