Libor: UBS trader faces US extradition

Dec 20, 2012

US authorities begin extradition proceedings against two former UBS employees

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A BRITISH trader at the heart of the Libor scandal faces extradition to the United States over his alleged role in organising the rigging of interest rates.

The Times reports that on the day that UBS agreed to pay $1.5 billion in fines to authorities in the UK, America and Switzerland, the bank's Tom Hayes and his Swiss-based colleague Roger Darin have been charged in the US with wire fraud.

The Serious Fraud Office in the UK last week arrested Hayes and two brokers at a foreign exchange dealing company but none of the men has yet been charged.

The full scale of the scandal was set out for the first time yesterday when regulators published details of UBS's activities. There were over 2,000 written requests among a network of traders, brokers and bankers asking for prices to be shifted to make more money for the bank and an "unquantifiable number of oral requests" in the five years to 2010.

The Libor rate is set by agreement among a dozen banks in London each morning. The value – which should represent the price at which financial institutions are willing to lend to one another – is the benchmark for many trillions of dollars worth of loans around the world. The fixing scandal has severely damaged the City's reputation.

Emails from one banker to a foreign exchange broker appeared to offer bribes to carry out a series of trades intended to mislead the market. One email read: "I will f***ing do one humongous deal with you ... I'll pay you, you know, $50,000, $100,000 ... whatever you want".

Barclays Bank has already been fined £59.5 million in the UK for its part in the scam while RBS is expected to settle early in the New Year.

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