Barclays Hit By Fresh Charges In Qatar Capital-Raising Case

The additional charge was brought against Barclays’ operating company which holds the lender’s banking license

The Serious Fraud Office has charged Barclays Bank PLC with "unlawful financial assistance" related to billions of pounds raised from Qatar in 2008.

The announcement follows a decision by the SFO in June previous year to charge Barclays PLC, or the unit's parent group, over the same alleged offence.

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Barclays PLC and Barclays Bank said in a statement that they intend to defend themselves against the charges, and do not expect there will be an impact on customers or clients as a result of the investigation.

The Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has charged Barclays' (LON:BARC) operating arm over the lender's Qatar fundraising during the financial crisis when the group turned to Middle Eastern investors to avoid a state-funded bail-out.

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Barclays pulled off a huge fundraising package to avoid the need for a Government rescue but the Qatari part of the deal, through a loan to its Ministry of Economy and Finance, has been mired in controversy. Barclays does not expect there to be an impact on its ability to serve its customers and clients as a outcome of the Charge having been brought.

Two former top executives also face a charge of unlawful financial assistance. The SFO opened an investigation into the deal in 2012 and has since charged several former executives and Barclays Plc over the fundraising.

Qatar, which is a major United Kingdom investor, has not been accused of wrongdoing.

'Further to that announcement, the SFO has today charged Barclays Bank with the same offence'.

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