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Five ex-brokers accused of helping convicted trader Tom Hayes rig Libor, the benchmark interest rate used in trillions of dollars of derivatives and loans, were acquitted Wednesday by a London jury, which is still deliberating charges against a sixth.
Noel Cryan, 50, who worked at Tullett Prebon in London, Colin Goodman, 54, and Danny Wilkinson, 49, formerly of ICAP, and RP Martin Holdings's Terry Farr, 44, and James Gilmour, 50, were found not guilty and released. The jury couldn't reach a unanimous verdict on ICAP's Darrell Read, 50, and were told to continue to discuss the remaining charge. The jury took about a day to find the others not guilty.
"It's always been a surprise and disappointment that these people were seen as front and center when they weren't even bankers," said Matthew Frankland, a lawyer for Wilkinson. "If what the SFO says is true, it's rather shocking that more senior people aren't being prosecuted."
Hayes, the former UBS Group and Citigroup trader, was jailed in the United Kingdom in August. His sentence was reduced to 11 years from 14 years upon appeal in December.
The verdict marks the culmination of a sprawling and complex four-month trial that was postponed for several days when one of the defendants, Wilkinson, fell ill. Wilkinson was absent for the last few weeks of the proceedings, returning only to hear the jurors deliver their verdict.
Several of the men cried as the verdicts were read out. Farr burst from the dock and climbed the stairs to embrace his wife and son.
Four of the five counts of conspiracy to defraud were dismissed. One, relating to Read, is still being deliberated.
"We can only reiterate what his counsel told the jury, that the SFO case was a complete shambles and should never have been brought," said David Janes from Janes Solicitors, which represented Goodman.