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Gary Wilson and Sarah Wilson, 'Criminal Responses and Financial Misconduct in Twenty-first Century Britain: tradition and points of departure, and the significance of the conscious past', 1-24

Article

Published onNov 01, 2013
Gary Wilson and Sarah Wilson, 'Criminal Responses and Financial Misconduct in Twenty-first Century Britain: tradition and points of departure, and the significance of the conscious past', 1-24

Abstract
The Financial Services (Banking Reform) Bill 2013/14 (hereafter Banking Reform Bill) is set to introduce a new criminal offence of reckless misconduct by senior bank staff. The introduction of such an offence was recommended in the Final Report of the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards (PCBS) Changing Banking for Good, published 19 June 2013; as part of a ‘package of recommendations to raise standards’.2 This particular recommendation had been widely anticipated. A short time before this Report, the PCBS Chair, Andrew Tyrie MP, had bemoaned the lack of ‘orange jumpsuits’ being donned by bankers.3 Equally, press reportage that ‘reckless bankers’ could ‘face jail’ had started to appear from as early as the close of 2011.4 Government endorsement of the PCBS recommendations followed quickly from the publication of the latter’s report. On 8 July 2013 the Government Response to the Report to this effect signalled that this would be achieved by adding amendments to the Banking Reform Bill 2013/14, first introduced in Parliament 4 February 2013. This has now transpired, by virtue of amendments to the Bill introduced on 9 October 2013. Like the initial PCBS recommendation, government support for the new criminal offence was also widely anticipated. Government favour for such a measure had been strongly signalled in the Treasury Consultation Sanctions for the Directors of Failed Banks, published in July 2012.5 It had been signposted earlier still by very public declarations of support from Matthew Hancock, MP, a close ally of George Osborne, the Chancellor of the Exchequer.6

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