Former Barclays traders charged in Libor probe

Tim Wallace
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THREE more former Barclays traders were yesterday charged by the Serious Fraud Office over their alleged involvement in attempts to manipulate Libor.

Jay Vijay Merchant, Alex Julian Pabon and Ryan Michael Reich are accused of conspiracy to defraud and will appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court in the coming weeks.

The staff were all based in the US. Merchant worked in fixed-income swaps while Reich and Pabon were interest rate derivative traders.

“Jay Merchant refutes any allegations of wrongdoing. Should this matter proceed, he has no doubt that he will be fully vindicated and it will be shown that he acted at all times in a right and proper manner,” said his lawyer Brian Spiro from BCL Burton Copeland.

Reich’s lawyer, Ben Rose from Hickman and Rose, also said his client is not guilty and will “vigorously contest” the charges. At the time the investigation into the three became public a lawyer for Pabon declined to comment.

The SFO’s actions bring to 12 the number of ex-financiers charged in the investigation so far.

Barclays declined to comment.

Meanwhile US investigators from the Department of Justice are carrying out joint interviews in London with the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority in their probe into alleged foreign exchange benchmark manipulation.

The two authorities did not work as closely on the Libor investigations, and are understood to be keen to operate more efficiently and effectively this time around.