Fraud proven against bank

The liquidators of the Bilta group of companies brought proceedings against two RBS entities alleging that they had dishonestly assisted and knowingly participated in carbon credit VAT fraud perpetrated by the group’s directors.

The case centred on the knowledge of RBS employees, whether they turned a blind eye to the fraud and whether that knowledge imputed to the RBS entities. In a very lengthy fact based judgment, the Judge found that the RBS traders had acted dishonestly from a point in time and continued to do so from that date.

That dishonesty and knowledge imputed on the RBS entities and the Judge held that they should compensate the group companies for the loss suffered by the group in amounts equal to those VAT liabilities which they incurred to HMRC, but which were not satisfied in respect of the admitted or proven chains, from 26 June 2009.

Bilta (UK) Limited (in liquidation) v Natwest Markets PLC and Mercuria Energy Europe Trading Limited [2020] EWHC 546 (Ch)

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