Two UK pension funds — Merseyside Pension Fund and North Yorkshire Pension Fund — and the Dutch metalworkers fund have filed a motion to become lead plaintiffs in a securities class action against Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) filed in the US. The funds have retained law firm Coughlin Stoia to pursue the complaint, and Cherie Booth QC has also been retained as a “special adviser” on the case. IPE reports that Booth is the wife of former Prime Minister Tony Blair.
The class action reportedly covers all investors that bought RBS securities between June 26, 2007 and January 19, 2009. The complaint alleges that RBS “sought and obtained billions of dollars from US investors and the funds were raised in order to finance a securities fraud that was perpetrated on investors worldwide,” and that “defendants falsely reassured investors that RBS was well-capitalised and risk management procedures firmly in place when, in fact, the bank was virtually insolvent….”
Other law firms including Pomerantz Haudek Block Grossman & Gross; Kahn Gauthier Suick; Murray Frank & Sailer; and Zard Nobel LLP have also reportedly filed cases on behalf of clients seeking to become lead plaintiff.
Merseyside stated that it had “been reluctant to take this step but believes that as a responsible investor it is important to hold RBS management to account.”