Tom Hayes has been found guilty on all eight criminal counts of conspiracy in the Libor rigging trial and has been sentenced to 14 years in prison, Southwark Crown Court heard on 3 August.
Hayes, a former UBS and Citigroup trader who was charged after being arrested in 2012, had pleaded not guilty on all counts. He claimed he was not acting without dishonesty, arguing he was just trying to do his job for his employers and said senior management was often aware of his actions.
Judge Jeremy Cooke had urged the jury, who retired on 27 July to consider its verdict, to think about the outcome "by the standards of reasonable, honest members of society. Not by the standards of the market in which he operated".
The case is an important one for the Serious Fraud Office, which accused the 35-year-old former trader who was based in Tokyo of creating a brokers' network and bribing fellow traders to fix rates. He was the first trader to stand trial in a global investigation into the rigging scandal.
During the weeks that evidence was presented, Hayes told the court: "I wanted to do my job as perfectly as I could. It doesn't matter if I was cleaning a deep fat fryer or picking chicken off the bone, those jobs were left to me because I'd do them the best possible."
Hayes has been diagnosed with slight Asperger's and, apart from arguing he was operating in grey areas, his defence largely claimed he was a socially awkward City worker who was nothing more than an aggressive trader. The former trader had admitted he tried to get charged by British prosecutors to prevent extradition to the US, where the penalty could have been a lot more severe, which was the only reason he cooperated with the UK's SFO.
Sarah Wallace, partner and head of regulatory and criminal at Irwin Mitchell, said the case could be seen as a benchmark for future rate manipulation scandals. She said: "This case was the SFO's most high-profile case to date and depending on the state of the blockbuster funding available, this conviction means that it is likely to remain dogged and focused in its approach to investigate and prosecute other alleged benchmark rigging cases. Their tails will be up and the SFO will not be fearful of taking on factually complex cases."
The London Interbank Offered Rate, or Libor, is an interest rate set daily based on information from many lenders and is used by major financial organisations and decides an estimated $450tn (£290tn, €410tn) worth in contracts. The Libor rigging scandal, in which multiple traders manipulated the rate in order to make it more favourable to their banks, was uncovered in 2008.