Apr 14, 2020

Former Barclays banker cleared of fraud hits out at SFO’s powers

One of the three former Barclays bankers cleared in a high-profile fraud trial in February has called on the attorney-general to review whether the Serious Fraud Office is properly exercising its powers to both investigate and prosecute cases. The SFO, which was set up in 1988, has powers to both investigate and prosecute fraud cases under its so-called Roskill model. A longstanding recommendation that an independent oversight body - a fraud commission - should be set up to oversee the SFO's fraud cases has never been implemented. Mr Boath, who was cleared of wrongdoing by the financial regulator even as the SFO pursued criminal charges against him, is highly critical of the Roskill model, claiming it brings a "Conflict of interest" and is akin to "Marking your own homework". The SFO is inspected regularly by HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate, an independent body and supporters of the Roskill model argue that it is more relevant now due to the ever- increasing complexity of SFO cases.

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