Berkshire

Noel Edmonds claims HBOS scandal will 'cost over £1bn'

Noel Edmonds
Image caption Noel Edmonds is seeking compensation of up to £60m

Noel Edmonds claims Lloyds Banking Group will have to pay out significantly more than the £100m set aside as compensation for victims of a major HBOS fraud.

The TV star wants £64m in damages over a scam involving staff at an HBOS office in Reading, which he alleges destroyed his business Unique Group.

Letters released by the Treasury Select Committee show the lender has so far paid out £75m to victims.

Lloyds said the case will be contested.

Corrupt financiers from HBOS were jailed last year for the £245m loans scam which destroyed several businesses, before they squandered the profits on high-end prostitutes and luxury holidays.

Lloyds' £100m damages pot for 64 victims does not account for potential court settlements related to HBOS, which means Edmonds' legal claim would be paid out separately, as he is not part of the compensation review.

But the former Deal or No Deal host claimed the banking giant will have to pay out a much higher figure in legal claims outside of that figure.

"I believe from the meetings that I had that the scale of legal claims (outside the Lloyds review) are over £1bn," he said.

Edmonds said next week was "big" for him as he and his legal team decide when to file court papers, as he plans to pursue his own claim.

"Heads have got to roll, starting with Lord Blackwell, and also Antonio (Horta-Osorio) and the board," he added, calling out the Lloyds chairman and chief executive.

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption António Horta-Osório, the boss of Lloyds, has expressed his deep regret

Compensation paid out by Lloyds has ranged from less than £100,000 to more than £5m, on the basis of "distress and inconvenience" suffered by customers.

Nearly 90% of victims have received offers and 80% have accepted and settled their cases.

Lloyds said it had "made determined efforts to reach a consensual resolution with Edmonds through mediation late last year, but this was not possible".

They added "it would be inappropriate to comment other than to say his claim will be contested".

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