Open Letter to Gordon Brown re: HBOS/Lloyds

HBOS logo courtesy of MV Picton

Rt Hon. Gordon Brown, MP
10 Downing Street

14th January 2010

Dear Mr Brown

Re: HBOS Reading – Quayside Corporate Services

We first alerted you to the existence and nature of the HBOS/Bank of Scotland Reading scandal 15 months ago and asked you to intervene at that point, but you don’t seem to have paid any notice.

I now realise that my first letter to you, dated October 6th, 2008 in which I asked your Government to intervene, was sent at the same time as your government sanctioned a £25.4bn emergency Bank of England loan to HBOS. This was three weeks after your government decided to shut HBOS to new business if a buyer could not be found, as stated in the NAO report.

Yet in the reply sent from your office on October 20th 2008, you gave no hint of the Government’s concerns about the state of HBOS. Consequently your reply gave us encouragement as it expressed genuine concern. It also prompted our local newspaper to publish a story highlighting your interest in our case.

Fifteen months on, I feel disappointed and let down. I provided you with detailed, factual information about the HBOS Reading fraud in October 2008. In subsequent letters I have raised serious points about HBOS including the matter of the “secret dossier” prepared by the Treasury in November 2008, all copies of which have since, apparently, been destroyed.

I have repeatedly stressed to you that Lloyds shareholders ought to have been made aware of the serious allegations against HBOS before Lloyds TSB sought their approval for buying it. It is now common knowledge that your Government and the Board of Lloyds were fully aware that HBOS was so deeply troubled it was essentially bankrupt at the time of those merger talks. Yet the replies I received from HM Treasury on your behalf stated repeatedly what a wonderful deal it was for everyone, including the taxpayer.

As you must by now be aware the FSA is investigating the HBOS Reading scandal and the regulator’s chief executive Hector Sants has confirmed this in writing.

To help the FSA with its investigation, we compiled a comprehensive 28-page report containing evidence from victims of Bank of Scotland and its preferred advisory firm Quayside Corporate Services, whistleblowers, lawyers and Companies House records. Mr Sants has confirmed that this is a smoking gun and has asked if we are prepared for the report to be passed on to a third party for independent investigation.

Bank of England Governor Mervyn King and opposition leaders David Cameron and George Osborne are among those who have expressed an interest in the dossier. Mr King has written to us confirming he has asked the FSA to keep him informed of its progress.

Despite all this, we face another Eviction Hearing on Monday January 18th – this will be our 18th such Hearing in two years. We were due to be in Court on the 18th December and that Hearing was adjourned in part, I believe, because of a letter sent to us by Mr Sants which confirmed the FSA’s Investigation is under way. He suggested we should show this letter to the Judge.

Logic and decency would suggest that no Eviction Hearing should go ahead until the outcome of the FSA Investigation is known – which in turn will allow the FOS to reach their conclusion which they have stayed pending the results of the FSA’s investigation.

This could lead to compensation and would restore us to a position where we could start trading our Companies and paying our bills. Both Lloyds and HBOS are fully aware of this, which makes their attempts to evict us even more pernicious. They will also be aware that they are vicariously liable for the actions of bank employees at HBOS Reading.

I would make the point, Mr Brown, that while we have no legal representation and have been refused Legal Aid, HBOS/Lloyds Banking Group are employing top barristers and, on three occasions, Rory McAlpine, the Deputy Chairman of Denton Wilde Sapte, has attended the Cambridge County Court for our eviction Hearings.

As the taxpayer owns 43% of Lloyds Banking Group and therefore HBOS, it appears that we are funding the Bank to evict us while we are wrongly being denied Legal Aid to protect ourselves. I believe Mr McAlpine’s fees are in the region of £600 per hour.

Many people have been outraged at the bank’s determination to evict us even though the only reason we are in arrears with our mortgage repayments or any other matters is because HBOS defrauded us.

People we have never met have created a Facebook group called “STOP HBOS” and also a website. The Facebook site, created five days ago now has approx. 500 members and a petition I created yesterday (the No.10 petition site refused a similar petition) has had over 100 signatures since yesterday.

But we need your support in this matter Mr Brown. Our MP, James Paice, and the MPs of other victims of HBOS Reading have been very supportive and secured a debate in the House of Commons last June.

But Lloyds/HBOS have simply thumbed their noses at the MPs. The last correspondence we received on behalf of Eric Daniels stated categorically that; the Bank’s position remains the same as it has always been i.e. they deny there was any wrongdoing at HBOS Reading; they have every intention of evicting us; and they will not correspond further.

Given the clear evidence of wrongdoing by Bank of Scotland Reading and Quayside, this beggars belief.

We have no doubt both Lloyds and HBOS will use any number of legal technicalities to ensure our eviction is sanctioned by the Judge on Monday and make no mistake, our eviction is a punishment for exposing the HBOS Reading scandal.

I am enclosing a copy of our Report sent to the FSA, which we have asked all recipients to confirm they will not disseminate as it contains evidence that will be relied on in various legal cases against HBOS and Lloyds. We would be grateful if you would confirm in writing that you will also maintain the confidentiality of this Report.

I realise you are extremely busy but would be grateful if you would take the circa 40 minutes it takes to read our report, which is based on an investigation that has taken us over two years and is still ongoing. Once you have read it and unless you feel it is equitable to evict people in theses circumstances, please intervene directly to stop these malicious attempts to make us homeless.

At a time when the whole country is feeling betrayed by politicians and the financial sector, you now have a concrete opportunity to show that your Government is concerned with helping the public and not just the bankers.

As time is of the essence I would appreciate a prompt reply.

Yours sincerely

Nikki Turner (Mrs)

P.S. I recently received a copy of a letter that was sent by the Treasury to Mrs Elizabeth Watson on this subject. As Mrs Watson is a victim of the HBOS/Vavasseur fraud and not HBOS Reading fraud and as she did not write to the Treasury on this matter, she assumed the Treasury letter was intended for me. As I did not write to the Treasury on 10th August 2009, the letter was obviously not to me. Perhaps so many people have been defrauded by HBOS, HM Treasury has got mixed up. That does not indicate serious concern by the Government for the public against quite monstrous behaviour by banks.

  • Note from Ian Fraser: To find out why I put this letter on my website please click here. It is an open letter, so it is not subject to copyright and anyone who cares about the future of banking in the UK is welcome to reproduce the letter.

Short URL: https://www.ianfraser.org/?p=1011

Posted by on Jan 15 2010. Filed under Blog. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

10 Comments for “Open Letter to Gordon Brown re: HBOS/Lloyds”

  1. Great letter, Nikki.

    I hope that Mr. Brown has the sense to see that he can’t let the banks ruin lives and continue to make him and his government look like fools. If they stand up to the banks in this case, hopefully it will help shape the future of banking.


  3. Fantastic letter, Nikki.

    If Mr Gordon Brown does not support you at this important time, it shows he has lost control of the bankers. HBOS Reading was the black hole of BANKING in HBOS. Those behind it were totally out of control; totally blowing the money away. It was like the last days of the Roman Empire.

    Peter Cummings, Lynden Scourfield, David Mills, Michael Bancroft, Anthony Cartwright and others. These guys were dining on distraught companies’ assets like hungry pigs. Justice will come Nikki, and the pigs will be sausage meat soon.

  4. Excellent letter, Nikki – quite commendable.

    You’ve raised highly valuable points which needed saying a long time ago., Whether Mr. Brown now responds appropriately remains to be seen: but the government’s time has almost ‘run out’ and their every move is now being watched, so they will need to make urgent reparation if they are to regain any self-respect whatsoever.

    Without any one to challenge them, the banks will be left to rot in their own cesspit of corruption and will never discover how to grow, learn and mend their ways. The people of Britain can no longer tolerate the oligarchy that is in place and which is wrecking so many of our rights and civil liberties.

    HBOS was and is up to so many tricks it should be shut down and liquidated immediately and their assets used to repay all their victims (who are legion). Gordon Brown has so much to answer for, in all his string-pulling on James Crosby’s behalf, who is known to be unhealthily close to our unelected prime minister. The root of the problem starts there. The huge government cover-up begins there.

    Therefore, this ‘core root’ needs to be tackled and addressed before any of us can hope to see any reform or justice emerging from this stenchpot of biased behaviour.

  5. Very concise and well written Nikki,

    With an imminent election you would think that winning over voters would be a priority and therefore a demonstration that these criminals are dealt with properly should be a foregone conclusion. If ultimately Mr Brown aligns himself with the bankers that have caused so much distress in order to line their own pockets, then he should not have the support of the public when it comes to an election and I would suspect he is merely an impotent representative of the people.

    Brown was quick to enforce “terrorist” laws on Iceland in order to freeze assets, why then does he not act with the same vigour on those fraudulent bankers in the UK? Maybe he is no better than a playground bully who takes from those least able to defend themselves.

    This is just one example of the way governments abuse power once elected, justice is an expensive commodity and the legal system fails those who need it most. It is a shame that there is so much general apathy, it is time people woke up to reality, we deserve better.

  6. Come on Mr Brown, we would like to hope that the government should be looking after our country and it’s people – full stop. Those of us who are a little more sceptical of politicians would add that with an election approaching at least this is a time where you should be ‘acting’ like you care.

    Come on, step on up while you have the chance to make a difference, you have the potential here to prove to the people of this country that you care and want to help put the Great back into Great Britain.

    Stop the banks ruining this country further, with their fraudulent dealings. Stop them covering up these terrible goings on, before it is too late.

    Imagine how it would be for you to be hitting the headlines for doing something honest and good for a change!

    Make that stand now, and expose and deal with the HBOS Reading scandal. Start with giving The Turners and the other victims of this scandal the support they need and deserve.

  7. I just want to add, that on many occasions I have seen first hand the pain and misery it has put on the shoulders of Nikki, Paul and the rest of team Turner. I just hope that this whole thing has not been too detrimental to these great folks spirit. Though knowing them as I know them, and seeing what they have done, and continue to do, daily, all day long, to bring this awful situation to a stop, tells me that the more HBOS throw at them, the stronger and more determined they come. I remember how heartbreaking it was when this started, because it just stopped our plans in its tracks. For no other reason than to cover the tracks of a bunch of low-life scumbags, who deserve the repercussions of their actions, and march spitefully, heads held high towards their own pending fates. They never thought for one second that anyone would try and argue, fight them, or investigate their faults and frauds. Neither, may I say, did they ever bank on doing it to someone like Paul and Nikki Turner. Those of you who know them, will know exactly what I mean.

  8. If the government doesn’t do something about this, they will have missed out on a golden opportunity to start rebuilding public faith in their ability run this country. They have put this country in huge debt and have put money into these banks that continue to defraud us, and now our own taxes are being used to fund this outrageous and disgraceful court case.

    Words cannot describe how unjust this whole situation is. These people have done nothing wrong, they are victims of HBOS’s fraud and their only wrongdoing has been to expose the case for what it is. HBOS have no business evicting these people, especially given that what the bank should actually be doing is publicly apologising for the corruption within their own organisation that has caused this situation in the first place, and compensating the victims.

    If the Governement doesn’t pay attention and respond to this as leaders of the country and therefore the people (as it seems the opposition have) then what is the point in them being in power?

  9. Many thanks for all the comments folks. Unfortunately and save for a miracle, we will be in Court tomorrow and we fully expect to be subjected to much legal trickery and legal technicalities. But, nothing is over until the fat lady sings and what ever happens tomorrow won’t change the facts about HBOS Reading; it won’t stop the FSA enquiry; it won’t stop our investigations; and it won’t stop the truth coming out. And when it does, I wonder what Eric Daniels will have to say about the behaviour of his bank? “Thank you for allowing me to answer the question” will not cut the mustard Eric. You bought HBOS and you are responsible for it.

  10. […] Sir Victor Blank in the dark about the dark secrets he knew about HBOS. For example, it is well documented that Brown was made aware of the Bank of Scotland Reading fraud, over which Cummings seems to have […]

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