Barclays paid Qatari investors a total of £346 million ($498.45 million) in secret and dishonestly characterized payments to secure their participation in the bank's 2008 emergency fundraising, a £1 billion lawsuit brought by another key investor on the deal has alleged.
PCP, Amanda Staveley's investment vehicle which invested on behalf of a senior Abu Dhabi royal during Barclays' £7.3 billion cash call, has alleged in court documents that Barclays made the payments after the Qataris saw the value of an earlier investment in the bank plummet as the financial crisis took hold.
PCP's London lawsuit, which seeks £720 million in damages plus interest and costs, lifts the lid on frenetic last-minute arrangements in the run-up to the October 2008 deal, which enabled the bank to stay out of the control of the U.K. government but has now come back to haunt Barclays.
Ms. Staveley, a one-time girlfriend of Prince Andrew and now financial fixer to sheikhs, has endorsed the claim on behalf of PCP, which accuses Barclays of making a £280 million secret payment to Qatar Holding that was never made public. That was in addition to a £66 million special payment that was disclosed.
These payments, described in the lawsuit as a "sham," are on top of the £300 million in fees that Barclays disclosed at the time of announcing the deal.