Two former RP Martin Holdings Ltd. employees in London today became the first brokers to face criminal prosecution in the global probe into manipulation of the London interbank offered rate.
Terry Farr, 41, and James Gilmour, 48, were charged at a London police station with conspiracy to defraud, the U.K. Serious Fraud Office said in an e-mailed statement. Farr and Gilmour, both from Essex, are the second and third suspects to be charged in the U.K. investigation.
The brokers were arrested in December along with Tom Hayes, the former UBS AG and Citigroup Inc. trader. Hayes was charged with eight counts of conspiracy to defraud by the SFO last month. Hayes, who remains free on bail, is charged with working with employees at JPMorgan Chase & Co., Royal Bank of Scotland Group Plc, HSBC Holdings Plc, Rabobank Groep and Deutsche Bank AG, as well as Tullett Prebon Plc, ICAP Plc and RP Martin over a four-year period to manipulate yen Libor rates.
Hayes has also been charged by the U.S. Justice Department, which is running a parallel criminal investigation. Today’s charges come just over a year since the SFO said it would open an investigation, after Barclays Plc was fined 290 million pounds ($438 million) by U.S. and U.K. regulators.
Farr “will place his trust in the court to determine a just outcome,” his lawyers at Bindmans LLP said in an e-mailed statement. “It is regrettable that of all the very many organizations and individuals who may have contributed to the failings of Libor-setting, the SFO has chosen to charge Mr. Farr, an unqualified interbank broker who had no responsibility whatsoever for setting Libor rates, a minnow in a very large pond, for doing what he believed to be his job.”
Farr and Gilmour are scheduled to appear at a London criminal court on July 19, the SFO said. Gilmour’s lawyer, Sean Curran, didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment.
Andrew Honnor, a spokesman for RP Martin, a U.K.-based interdealer broker, declined to comment.
At a hearing earlier this month, a lawyer for the SFO said the documentation in the case against Hayes was voluminous.
Hayes, who worked in the Tokyo offices of UBS and Citigroup, tried to manipulate rates “with the intention that the economic interests of others would be prejudiced and/or to make personal gain for themselves or another,” the SFO said in the indictment.
Four of the charges against Hayes cover the period from Aug. 8, 2006, until Dec. 3, 2009, while he worked at UBS, and the other four from Dec. 1, 2009 until Sept. 7, 2010, when he was at Citigroup.