Business secretary Vince Cable has asked officials to investigate whether three former HBOS directors could be banned from working as company directors as it emerges Sir James Crosby has a pension pot of over £20m from the collapsed bank.
The Sunday Times reports Cable has told the investigations and enforcement branch of the Insolvency Service to see if there is enough evidence to start disqualification proceedings against former HBOS chairman Lord Stevenson, and former chief executives Crosby and Andy Hornby.
It follows a damning report from the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards last week into the collapse of 2008, and which called for the three executives to be banned from working in financial services.
Crosby stepped down from his role at private equity firm Bridgepoint in the wake of the report, but remains a director of the caterer Compass.
The Sunday Times reports Cable describing the intervention to ask officials to look into the conduct of the former HBOS directors as the “first step” in a process which could see them banned as company directors for life.
Cable told the newspaper: “There are things I am able to do. It is quite a legalistic process. I can ask [officials] to look at whether the companies investigations branch take action. We do have this power that I have begun to initiate.”
The paper also reports that Crosby is sitting on a retirement fund of over £20m from his time as HBOS, entitling him to an annual income of £700,000.
Meanwhile Hornby is in line for a possible share windfall of more than £50m from the bookmaker Coral, his current employer.
Some MPs have called for Crosby and Stevenson to be stripped of their titles, as was the case with former Royal Bank of Scotland chief executive Fred Goodwin.