Nigel Farage Debanked over Ties to Donald Trump and for Expressing Conservative Views, Bank Docs Show

Nigel ‘Mr Brexit’ Farage had his bank account shut down as a result of his ties to former President Donald Trump, tennis star Novak Djokovic, seemingly spurious accusations of ties to Russia, and his positions on Brexit, vaccines, LGBT issues, and others which were deemed by Coutts bank to “not align with our values”.

Contrary to reports in the BBC and the Financial Times, in which an unnamed Coutts bank source claimed that Nigel Farage had fallen below a financial threshold to maintain his account, a subject access request filed by the Brexit leader shows that the main motivation was actually political in nature.

A 40-page document produced by the bank and provided to Mr Farage and The Daily Telegraph showed that the bank acknowledged multiple times that he fulfilled the “economic contribution criteria for commercial retention”, meaning that it was not for lack of funds that his account was shut down.

In the document, the bank was shown to have decided in November of last year that it did not believe that continuing to bank with Mr Farage was “compatible with Coutts given his publicly-stated views that were at odds with our position as an inclusive organisation”. In an apparent attempt to cover their tracks, the bank claimed that it was not a “political decision but one centred around inclusivity and purpose.”

One such infringement of the bank’s stance on “inclusivity” was apparently his longstanding friendship with former President Donald Trump, who is mentioned 39 times in the bank’s dossier on Mr Farage. “The fact that I support Donald Trump is part of this charge sheet,” Farage said.

Coutts also cited his friendship with Serbian tennis star Novak Djokovic as evidence of him not being “inclusive”, presumably over the 23-time Grand Slam winner’s refusal to take the coronavirus vaccine.

Mr Farage was also accused by the bankers of being “xenophobic and racist”, and of espousing views which they claim are “distasteful and appear increasingly out of touch with wider society”. Other positions that the bank decided did “align” with its values included comments on LGBT issues and even Brexit, which appeared 86 times in the document.

Despite expressing concerns over alleged ties to Russia 144 times, Coutts even admitted within the document that there was no evidence to support assertions that Mr Farage was paid by Moscow. Yet, the bank still included seemingly false accusations from Labour MP Sir Chris Bryant that the Brexiteer had received £548,573 “from the Russian state” in one year. Bryant made the allegations in the House of Commons, meaning he is protected by parliamentary privilege and therefore not subject to normal libel laws.

“I have always said that after Brexit and Donald Trump’s victory in America in 2016, the globalist elite worked hard to undermine those at the forefront of anything that threatened the status quo. In this, it was spurred on by the mainstream media in Britain and America,” Mr Farage wrote, adding: “Vladimir Putin’s Russia was the obvious choice for their smear campaign.”

The document also made reference to the Brexit leader being a Politically Exposed Person (PEP) despite claims that this was not the reason for his being de-banked.

The PEP classification was first introduced by the G7 in 1989 to counter money laundering and bribery of politicians and was later adopted by the European Union. Despite the UK leaving the EU, the law is still on the books in Britain, with successive Conservative governments refusing to abolish all remaining EU holdover laws.

“This story is not just about me,” Farage said. “You could be next … if this situation is left unchecked, we will sleepwalk towards a China-style social credit system in which only those with the ‘correct’ views are allowed to fully participate in society.”

Noting that following the financial crisis, the banking group that owns Coutts was bailed out by the state at a cost of £45 billion — the government still owns a 38.6 per cent stake in the banking group today — Mr Farage said: “Never forget: taxpayers bailed out the banks after their executives’ greed and stupidity in 2008. Now, rather than making sure we get a decent return, banks like Coutts are busy playing political games. Their contempt for the public knows no bounds.”

In response to the de-banking of Farage, and indeed other right-leaning political figures including the current Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt, the government has vowed to implement reforms to the banking sector.

“There will be progress on reforms to banking rules in the coming weeks aimed squarely at this issue,” said Andrew Griffith, Economic Secretary to the Treasury.

A Coutts spokesman said, apparently without irony: “Our ability to respond is restricted by our obligations of client confidentiality”. They continued: “Decisions to close accounts are not taken lightly and take into account a number of factors including commercial viability, reputational considerations and legal and regulatory requirements.”

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