Nigel Farage will next week launch a formal legal battle with NatWest Group and its former boss as he seeks millions of pounds in damages over the banking scandal that escalated into a crisis for the state-backed lender.
Sky News has learned that Mr Farage, the former UKIP leader, has instructed London-based Grosvenor Law to act for him in a claim against both NatWest and Dame Alison Rose, who stepped down as its chief executive in July after having admitted to discussing his personal banking deals with a BBC journalist.
The first legal letters are expected to be issued by Mr Farage’s lawyers within the next week, they said this weekend.
A source said he was expected to seek a total sum worth millions of pounds for damage to his reputation and to cover his legal costs.
In a statement issued to Sky News shortly before he flew to Australia to compete on the ITV entertainment show I’m A Celebrity, Mr Farage said: “For all their lies and deceptions against me and their illegitimate ripping off of tens of thousands of innocent people, NatWest and its former chief executive, Dame Alison Rose, must be held to account.”
The claims are expected to be filed just days after NatWest confirmed they were canceling the majority of Dame Alison’s potential £10m. plus severance pay.
More than £7.5m in share awards and bonuses were canceled after the bank declared she was not a “good leaver”.
It also said there was “no finding of wrongdoing” against her, making her eligible to receive payments during her 12-month notice period expected to amount to approximately 3.2m. GBP.
Sir. Farage wrote on social media platform X on Friday that he was “instructing lawyers to take action against NatWest Group” and would “aim to make this a class action as so many others have been wronged”.
The revelation that he intends to sue Dame Alison personally underlines Mr Farage’s determination to secure compensation for what he has described as a major banking industry scandal.
A report commissioned by the bank and prepared by law firm Travers Smith concluded that the decision to close his Coutts accounts had been legal, but that there were “serious flaws” in the way it had treated him.
Sir. Farage called the report “a whitewash” and has called on the Financial Conduct Authority to pursue further action against NatWest.
The Information Commissioner’s Office, which is responsible for data protection regulation, was this week forced to issue an embarrassing apology to Dame Alison for suggesting she had personally breached privacy laws by speaking about Mr Farage’s banking arrangements to a journalist.
In fact, it had only investigated the actions of the bank.
NatWest, which is just under 40% owned by UK taxpayers, was bailed out with a £45.5bn bailout. pound in 2008 when the banking industry teetered on the brink of collapse.
The bank has seen its shares fall sharply in recent months as it grapples with the fallout from the row with Mr Farage and disappointing quarterly results.
Its stock has fallen by nearly a fifth over the past year.
Over the summer it emerged that Coutts staff had belittled Mr Farage – now posted to GB News – by making a barrage of disparaging comments about his political views and finances.
Dame Alison had given the impression that the decision to reject him had been primarily a commercial one.
Last month the bank issued another apology to Mr Farage, while Dame Alison distanced herself from the views expressed by Coutt’s staff, describing them as “deeply unpleasant and unfair”.
The decision to “debank” Mr Farage sparked a firestorm in Westminster and forced the city’s watchdog into an urgent review of practices across Britain’s banking sector.
Dame Alison, who was the first woman to lead one of Britain’s major high street banks, has been replaced on an interim basis by Paul Thwaite, formerly head of its commercial business.
Despite her and fellow board members’ hopes that an initial apology in July would save her job, her departure was sealed within hours as Downing Street signaled it had lost confidence in her leadership.
NatWest and a spokesman for Dame Alison declined to comment on Saturday.