Two BA executives labelled liars in price-fixing trial

TWO British Airways (BA) executives embroiled in price-fixing allegations were labelled as “liars” in court yesterday on the third day of the trial.

Richard Latham QC told a jury at the Southwark Crown Court yesterday that accounts given to the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) by BA executives in 2007 did not “sit side by side” and that “one pair is lying”.

The accounts relate to interviews conducted by the OFT of former executives Martin George, Iain Burns and Alan Burnett, and current head of sales Andrew Crawley at BA during an investigation into fuel surcharge price-fixing allegations with Virgin Atlantic.

Latham suggested that evidence given by George and Crawley had a “striking contrast” to evidence given by Burns and Burnett.

Virgin executives will be called to the witness stand next week to give evidence over their collusion with BA executives. The OFT granted Virgin immunity for blowing the whistle on agreements made with BA.

The four executives are pleading not guilty.