Australia's former money trader arrested over Libor rate-rigging scandal

A former Rabobank money trader has spent the weekend in a Perth jail after being arrested over allegations that he was part of the global LIBOR- rigging scandal.

Former money trader for Dutch-based Rabobank, Australian high-flyer Paul Thompson is facing extradition to the United States over his alleged role in the London Inter Bank Offered Rate (LIBOR) rigging between May 2006 to early 2011 following a U.S. grand jury indictment.

LIBOR is one of the global key benchmark interest rates overseen by the British Bankers Association, representing 200 banks in more than 60 countries, underpinning hundreds of trillions of dollars of financial products from mortgages to credit cards.

The scandal has seen banks fined billions of dollars while dozes of people have also been charged with rigging the rates to boost profits.

Thompson, former managing director and head of liquidity and finance for Rabobank Asia along with former colleagues allegedly intended to manipulate to their advantage the benchmark interest rates and engaged in a scheme to obtain money and property by making false and fraudulent U.S. dollar and Japanese Yen LIBOR submissions.

The alleged manipulation occurred at their offices in Singapore, London, Tokyo and Utrecht in the Netherlands between May 2006 and early 2011.

The U.S. grand jury indictment also names former London-based colleague Lee Stewart and indicates four of their former colleagues have become U.S. prosecution witnesses.

Thompson is expected to apply for bail while his family weighs up extradition.

The charges come as two former Rabobank traders from Britain are currently on Trial in Manhattan federal court for LIBOR related charges including conspiracy to commit wire fraud to benefit the bank's trading positions.

The two executives are the first to face trail in the United States over the rigging scheme after being indicted in October 2014, a year after the Netherlands-based bank reached a 1 billion U.S. dollar deal to resolve investigations by the U.S. and European authorities.

Earlier in October, a former Deutsche Bank AG trader pleaded guilty in a U.S. court to conspiracy for participating in a scheme to manipulate LIBOR.

The trader was the first Deutsche Bank individual charged after the bank agreed to pay 2.5 billion U.S. dollars to resolve investigations by the U.S. and British authorities in April. Xinhua