RBS Forgery Scandal Metastasizes Days before Crucial Earnings Report

The bailed-out megabank hasn’t had a year in the black since 2007.

Two weeks ago, UK mega-lender Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) was accused by whistle-blowers of systematically training its staff to forge customer signatures, which elicited furious denials from senior management. But as we warned at the time, if irrefutable evidence emerges of forged documents, not only will management have to walk back those denials but the bank, which has already cost taxpayers €90 billion in bailouts, losses, fines, and legal fees, could end up facing yet another round of costly legal action.

That process has already begun. Now the bank was forced to apologize after retired teacher Jean Mackay came forward with paperwork that clearly showed her signature was forged on a bank document.

Some years ago the great-grandmother discovered she was being charged a fee for payment protection insurance (PPI) even though she had declined to sign up for the rip-off product when she applied for a credit card in 2008. When Mrs Mackay later confronted the bank, staff showed her a document purporting to show she had indeed agreed to the fees. But two signatures on that document – one agreeing to take out the credit card, the other apparently signing up for PPI – are notably different.

The bank refused to admit any wrongdoing although it did agree to refund her fees as well as £12 in interest. For Mrs Mackay, that was not enough. She wanted an apology and admission of guilt from her bank.

Now, years later and with the public’s attention fixed squarely on RBS’s forgery scandal, she’s finally got it

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