Investors sued Barclays this week claiming that the British bank made false and misleading statements to them concerning former Chief Executive Jes Staley’s ties to Jeffrey Epstein.
The class action suit was filed in a Los Angeles federal court. It contends that Barclays knew or at least should have known that Staley had a deep, personal relationship with Epstein and that he may have been aware of his sex trafficking of underage girls.
The suit was initiated by the “Law Offices of Howard G. Smith on behalf of investors who purchased the bank’s securities between July 22, 2019, and October 12, 2023,” according to Investing.com.
“The case stems from the misrepresented relationship between Staley and Epstein, which led to Staley’s departure from Barclays. The Financial Times reported that Staley had over 1,200 email exchanges with Epstein, leading to a 0.5% decrease in Barclays’ stock price in November 2021. The emails revealed that Staley referred to Epstein as one of his ‘deepest’ friends and allegedly spent personal time with victims trafficked by Epstein,” the business outlet reported.
Barclays investors, led by one Stephen Merritt, are now suing the bank over its failures to correctly vet Jes Staley, ties to Jeffrey Epstein. This led to a false inflation of Barclays’ value, which may not have happened if these connections were brought to light sooner.
— Epstein, Epstein! Read all about it! (@TasteSubjective) November 3, 2023
“Further allegations arose when JPMorgan Chase (NYSE: JPM) Bank lodged a complaint against Staley for breach of fiduciary duty and the faithless servant doctrine. This triggered another decrease in Barclays’ stock price,” Investing.com wrote.
The UK Financial Conduct Authority announced in October that it would fine Staley and ban him from officer positions in the financial services industry based on its finding that he “recklessly approved a letter to the FCA” that the agency said “misled” the FCA and the Barclays board concerning Staley’s relationship with Epstein.
Staley was previously a top banker at JPMorgan Chase where he developed a close friendship with Epstein. He was Barclays’ chief executive from 2015 and 2021.
“The investors said Barclays concealed or made misleading statements about Staley’s and Epstein’s relationship in public statements, regulatory disclosures about risks it faced, and communications with Britain’s Financial Conduct Authority,” according to the New York Post.
“Investors said the price of their American Depositary Receipts fell four times as the truth emerged, including on Oct. 12 when British regulators banned Staley from senior banking roles and fined him 1.8 million pounds (US$2.2 million),” the news outlet added.
Barclays was sued this week by investors in its U.S.-listed securities who said the British bank misled them about former Chief Executive Jes Staley’s ties to the disgraced financier Jeffrey Epstein.
Investors said the price of their American Depositary Receipts fell four times… https://t.co/v5DxB1VS9F
— Lalitha Kunaratnam (@LalithaVelvet) November 4, 2023
Epstein was arrested on federal sex trafficking charges on July 6, 2019. He reportedly committed suicide in a Manhattan jail cell five weeks after that.
According to the New York Post, “The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages for ADR investors from July 22, 2019, when a New York Times article discussed Epstein’s relationship with Staley, through Oct. 12, 2023.”
In June, JPMorgan agreed to pay $290 million to settle a proposed class action by Epstein’s victims. In September they agreed to pay $75 million to settle a lawsuit by the US Virgin Islands. Epstein had a home there.
Also in September, JPMorgan reached a confidential settlement with Staley. He had sued them to cover his legal costs in both lawsuits.
“A Nov. 9 hearing is scheduled in Manhattan federal court to consider final approval of the victims’ settlement,” the New York Post noted.