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Ex-Banker Wins $95,000 Libel Claim Against U.K.’s Mail Newspaper

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Jan. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Associated Newspapers Ltd. must pay a former director at the Bank of Scotland Plc 60,000 pounds ($95,000) in damages in a U.K. libel judgment after publishing articles claiming the man committed perjury and was part of a criminal conspiracy to defraud banks.

The two articles, published in the company’s Mail on Sunday newspaper, caused Irfan Qadir “distress and embarrassment,” Christopher Hutchings, his lawyer, said in a written statement filed at London’s High Court.

Qadir, described in court documents as a “leading figure in the U.K. banking sector for the past 22 years,” will receive damages and legal costs of more than 500,000 pounds, according to Hutchings. Bank of Scotland is a unit of Lloyds Banking Group Plc.

The decision to print a lawyer’s allegation that Qadir was a central figure in a conspiracy to defraud banks of 49 million pounds was unfair because it omitted comments from a judge that said there was no evidence to support the claim, according to an October ruling.

Mark Dennis, a lawyer representing Associated Newspapers, declined to comment. The company, responsible for publishing the Daily Mail newspaper, apologized in open court to Qadir today.

To contact the reporter on this story: Jeremy Hodges in London at jhodges17@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Anthony Aarons at aaarons@bloomberg.net