Tom Hayes, a former star trader at UBS and Citigroup has become the first person to face trial by jury over allegations he conspired to rig global Libor interest rates. As Sonia Legg reports, the trial in London marks a new phase in a seven-year, global inquiry that has shredded public faith in the integrity of financial markets.
He was once a star trader at the Swiss bank UBS - now he's on trial in a London court. Tom Hayes is the first person to face a jury over allegations he conspired to rig global Libor interest rates. The case marks a new phase in the seven-year global inquiry that has damaged the reputation of financial markets and left banks and brokerages with settlement bills of around $9 billion. The former Tokyo-based derivatives trader denies eight counts of conspiracy to defraud between 2006 and 2010. The UK's Serious Fraud Office alleges he was a central figure in a conspiracy with staff from at least 10 banks and brokers to rig the London Interbank Offered Rate - known as Libor. It's used to price an estimated $450 trillion of financial contracts worldwide. The prosecution opened its case by saying Hayes was motivated by greed and acted in a "thoroughly dishonest and manipulative manner." The offences carry a maximum jail sentence of 10 years. And the trial is expected to last 10-12 weeks. Libor isn't the only scandal to have damaged the financial industry in recent years. Seven banks have been fined $10 billion over currency rigging allegations since last November. Many were also penalised over Libor - but no individuals have yet been charged in connection with alleged currency rigging.