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TV star takes bank to court

Edmonds ready to lodge £64m Lloyds legal action

TV personality Noel Edmonds is expected to file his £64 million legal case against Lloyds Banking Group within weeks.

The former Deal Or No Deal star told the Press Association that he is “set to go”, with papers to be lodged  in late September or early October.

He said: “This has taken longer than I would have liked but we are now set to go and I look forward to Lloyds Bank and its past and current executives being exposed in a court of law.”

Mr Edmonds is seeking financial redress from the lender after falling victim to fraud by former staff at the Reading branch of HBOS, which Lloyds rescued at the height of the financial crisis.

He is pursuing Lloyds for damages for losses allegedly suffered when his former business Unique Group was destroyed because of the fraud.

Jonathan Coad, solicitor for Mr Edmonds, said he is putting the finishing touches to the case before pressing ahead with filing.

“We will be filing papers to get Noel’s claim under way in late September in the Commercial Court,” he said.

“We’ve been putting in the most enormous amount of preparatory work, and gathering a significant amount of new information. We also have secured significant new witnesses.

Earlier this year, Mr Edmonds secured a “seven-figure” sum from specialist litigation funder Therium to bankroll the suit.

Lloyds has set aside £100 million for victims of the fraud at the hands of HBOS Reading staff between 2003 and 2007.

Bank staff from the branch were jailed last year for the £245 million loans scam, which destroyed several businesses and saw those convicted spend the money on luxury holidays and other personal pleasures.

Mr Edmonds raised the issue at the Lloyds Banking Group agm in Edinburgh earlier this year when he alleged the bank “groomed, pillaged and destroyed” his company, Unique Group.

Speaking this weekend he said: “I’ve made numerous attempts to resolve matters without recourse to the legal system but Lloyds executives are clearly not interested in honouring the bank’s pledges to me and the hundreds of other victims.

“So, I’ve been forced to engage a brilliant team of solicitors, barristers and private investigators, all experienced in banking fraud, and we have uncovered an extensive trail of criminality and wrongdoing.”

Lloyds has rejected the basis of Mr Edmonds’ claim.

A spokesman for the lender said: “Lloyds Banking Group made determined efforts to reach a consensual resolution with Mr Edmonds through mediation in late 2017, but this was not possible.

“We are still waiting for Mr Edmonds to file his legal claim. It remains inappropriate to comment other than to say that, if he does file his claim, it will be contested.”

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