SFO moves to resurrect Barclays Qatar loan case


The Serious Fraud Office’s (SFO) application to resurrect its case against Barclays over a $3bn (32.3bn) loan to Qatar could be heard as early as October.

The case relates to the loan paid to the state of Qatar by the bank as it carried out an £11.8bn fundraising at the height of the financial crisis.

The charges are made against both the Barclays PLC parent company as well as the Barclays Bank PLC subsidiary which holds the UK operating licence.

The SFO first brought charges of unlawful financial assistance, referring to loans from Barclays allegedly used to prop up the value of shares, as well as fraud charges, in June 2017.

The fundraising allowed Barclays to circumvent nationalisation, as had been the fate of rival banks Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) and Lloyds.

Barclays scored a significant victory over the SFO in May this year when Southwark crown court threw out the charges, but not long after the SFO applied to the High Court to have the charges reinstated.

If the application goes ahead in October it will be just months before the bank’s former senior executives, including ex-boss John Varley and senior investment banker Roger Jenkins, go on trial for conspiracy to commit fraud in connection with the fundraising.

Barclays has been contacted for comment.