A tribunal case involving alleged unfair dismissal due to whistleblowing is underway against Lloyds Banking Group.
Former foreign trader, Paul Carlier, has accused the bank of forcing him into redundancy after he publicly revealed details of a currency trade with Tesco supermarket.
Speaking at the recent London employment tribunal, Mr Carlier claimed he was dismissed from his £175,000 a year job as a result of having made several protected disclosures in which he “challenged the business over various practices”.
Mr Carlier is representing himself at the tribunal where he expressed a belief that his actions of September 2014 were a direct cause of receiving unfair treatment from Anders Henrikson, the head of foreign exchange product at Lloyds.
This was refuted by Mr Henrikson who told the tribunal that Mr Carlier’s dismissal was actually the result of him not reaching agreed business targets. Carlier made £557,000 for Lloyds but ultimately fell short of the £1.7 million he was expected to generate.
While being cross examined Mr Henrikson created an unflattering image of Mr Carlier by claiming that the bank had received offensive emails from the banker which were “frequently offensive in tone and content”. These emails, which were sent after Carlier learned of his dismissal, are so explicit in content that they were initially blocked by Lloyd’s firewall security system.
Mr Carlier’s reputation was also questioned at the tribunal after evidence showed he had a number of county court judgements against him at the time of his being hired by the bank in 2011.
Mr Henrikson also dismissed the idea that Mr Carlier was a whistleblower experiencing persecution, stating that the former banker’s actions while working for Lloyds were far from damning and actually constitute standard criticism within the banking sector: “Paul was vocal in expressing his opinions on the spot [foreign exchange] desk but I did not regard him as a whistleblower”.
Carlier has not yet given evidence at the ongoing tribunal but is likely to reject all the claims against him.
A Lloyds spokesperson released a statement clarifying the bank’s current position on this case; “As the employment tribunal is ongoing, it would be inappropriate for us to comment in detail, other than to say that the allegations are without merit and we are defending them vigorously.”
The hearing will continue at a later date.
Lloyds has been at the centre of several legal controversies in recent years. In 2014 the bank suspended seven employees following a court ruling which forced it to pay £226m for being involved in a case of UK interest rate rigging.