Goldman Sachs Drops Bid to End Libyan Wealth Fund Suit

Goldman Sachs Group Inc. abandoned its bid to get a U.K. court to throw out a $1 billion lawsuit by the Libyan Investment Authority that alleged the New York-based bank made about $350 million selling it investments that turned out to be worthless.

Goldman Sachs had asked a London judge in April to decide that the case didn’t have a realistic chance of success and to issue a so-called summary judgment dismissing the suit, the sovereign wealth fund said in a statement today. The bank has withdrawn the request, LIA said.

The “application was misconceived and issued purely for tactical reasons, including a desire to delay the determination of the LIA’s claims,” the fund said.

Libya’s sovereign wealth fund is one of dozens of small companies and government agencies that have sued lenders over deals the investors claim were too complicated to understand. It also sued Societe Generale SA in a $1.5 billion lawsuit, saying that the French bank paid about $58 million to a friend of the Qaddafi family to secure investments.

“We continue to believe this case is entirely without merit and intend to contest it vigorously as it moves through the legal process,” Goldman Sachs said in an e-mailed statement.

A London court hearing is scheduled to take place in early October, the fund said.

The case is: The Libyan Investment Authority v. Goldman Sachs International, case no. 14-310, High Court of Justice, Chancery Division.

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