Treasury select committee chair Andrew Tyrie has called for bankers who are guilty of wrongdoing to face criminal charges to act as a deterrent to others.
Speaking at a CityUK fringe event on financial services at the Conservative conference in Birmingham this week, Tyrie said it is “astonishing” that no one has been prosecuted in the banking sector in light of recent scandals.
The review into Libor by FCA chief executive designate Martin Wheatley, published last month, calls for criminal sanctions for those guilty of Libor rigging. The Government is currently considering the proposals.
Tyrie said: “We must strengthen the law, particularly the criminal law. We cannot find ourselves in a position where it seems that serious misdemeanours have been conducted but nobody is culpable enough to be prosecuted.
“There is a good principle of law, where crimes are difficult to uncover. On the rare occasions you do succeed in uncovering them, you make sure culpability lies with the right person. Maybe what you do need is to get the old orange jump suit on that individual to discourage the others. Maybe that is where we are going to have to go with the criminal law.”
Treasury economic secretary Sajid Javid said: “Martin Wheatley recommends there should be a serious look at criminal sanctions for behaviour. We have not made up our mind but it is sensible to look at it.”