Jessica Harper, the former head of fraud and security for digital banking at Lloyds, has been accused of submitting false invoices “to claim payments totalling £2.46m to which she was not entitled,” the Crown Prosecution Service said. The CPS has authorised the Metropolitan Police to charge her with a single count of fraud.
The charge relates to a period between September 1, 2008 and December 21, 2011. Lloyds is 41pc state owned after the taxpayer rescued the bank with £20bn during the financial crisis, with the first bail-out coming shortly after the alleged fraud started – in October 2008.
As head of online fraud and security, Ms Harper, 50, would have been about six or seven rungs down from the executive board, and is likely to have been on as much as £70,000. The alleged fraud came to light as part of an internal investigation at Lloyds that was reported to the Metropolitan Police earlier this year. No customers are believed to have been affected and she no longer works for the bank.
Andrew Penhale, deputy head of the CPS Central Fraud Group said the charge related to an allegation that: “Jessica Harper dishonestly and with the intention of making a gain for herself, abused her position as an employee of Lloyds Banking Group, in which she was expected to safeguard the financial interests of Lloyds Banking Group.”