Business Secretary denies interfering in RBS lawsuit

Business Secretary Vince Cable has rejected claims he tried to influence legal proceedings against directors of Royal Bank Scotland (RBS) in relation to the lender's 2008 taxpayer rescue.

Business Secretary Vince Cable has rejected claims he tried to influence legal proceedings against directors of Royal Bank Scotland (RBS) in relation to the lender's 2008 taxpayer rescue.

Cable reportedly wrote to prosecutors calling for a decision as quickly as possible about the lawsuit, which was referred to Scottish prosecuting authority the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service in January 2012.

It followed a damning report into the bank by the Financial Services Authority (FSA) which found RBS collapsed due multiple poor decisions and a £50bn risk on buying ABN Amro.

Cable told Sky News he asked for an update on the progress of the case in his letter to Advocate General Lord Wallace but denied he was interfering in the legal process.

"I am very keen for a decision to be reached as quickly as possible in order to maintain public confidence in the efficiency of the decision-making process," he said.

"I am fully aware that the decision whether or not to prosecute rests with the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service as the relevant independent prosecuting authority."

He said he merely requested likely timeframes for a decision "to reassure the public that this matter is still being pursued".

Shareholders last month launched a civil case against RBS, claiming they were misled by directors over a £12m rights issue in April 2008 which kicked off a £45bn taxpayer bailout.

The group of more than 12,000 individual and institutional investors named four former directors including ex-chief executive Fred Goodwin in the suit. They said their final claim against the bank could potentially be worth up to £4.0bn.

RD

Recommended

Broker safety – your questions answered
Investment strategy

Broker safety – your questions answered

Cris Sholto Heaton answers more of your questions about the safety of stockbroker accounts
25 Mar 2020
How demographics affects stock valuations
Investment strategy

How demographics affects stock valuations

New research suggests that stock and bond valuations are driven by the age of the population – at least in the US.
24 Feb 2020
Do you own shares in Sirius Minerals? Here’s what you need to do now
Stocks and shares

Do you own shares in Sirius Minerals? Here’s what you need to do now

Mining giant Anglo American has proposed a cash takeover of Yorkshire-based minnow Sirius Minerals. Unhappy shareholders must decide whether to accept…
20 Feb 2020
Why investors should be “cautiously bullish” for 2020
Stockmarkets

Why investors should be “cautiously bullish” for 2020

Analysts have been out in force making rosy predictions for stockmarkets in 2020, but while there is certainly a case for optimism, investors should r…
17 Jan 2020

Most Popular

Will a second wave of Covid lead to another stockmarket crash?
Stockmarkets

Will a second wave of Covid lead to another stockmarket crash?

Can we expect to see another lockdown like in March, and what will that mean for your money? John Stepek explains.
18 Sep 2020
Here’s why you really should own at least some bitcoin
Bitcoin

Here’s why you really should own at least some bitcoin

While bitcoin is having a quiet year – at least in relative terms – its potential to become the default cash system for the internet is undiminished, …
16 Sep 2020
James Ferguson: How bad data is driving fear of a second wave of Covid-19
UK Economy

James Ferguson: How bad data is driving fear of a second wave of Covid-19

Merryn and John talk to MoneyWeek regular James Ferguson about the rise in infections in coronavirus and what the data is really telling us.
17 Sep 2020