A former HSBC banker has been jailed after admitting to theft and false accounting charges, which saw him steal money from customers’ accounts and transfer money to struggling businesses failing to repay the loans he had secured for them.
Peter Nudd, 50, reportedly stole money over the course of seven years without detection. A total of 51 businesses were affected, some of whom were kept in the dark after Nudd sent false bank statements.
Nudd was a high-flying commercial manager at HSBC’s offices in Meridian Business Park, Norwich.
He stole £131,000 from one customer’s account and moved £80,000 into the accounts of ailing businesses who were failing to repay the loans he had rubber-stamped.
Nudd allegedly also took nearly £50,000 from the same account to spend on takeaways and Butlins holidays.
Nudd began moving money around the bank’s clients in 2004, and apparently thought he would soon be detected. His false accounting continued until February 2011 when a firm called Enviroserve queried why £18,164 had been taken out of its account in three payments.
HSBC brought in an investigator and discovered Nudd had moved thousands of pounds from wealthy to failing firms who he had approved for loans, but could not pay the bank back.
When questioned, Nudd, who joined the bank in 1980, admitted he had been ‘spinning plates’ by moving the sums around the bank’s clients, the Daily Mail reports.
It is estimated that HSBC’s total losses are around £220,00.
Nudd, of Martham, Norfolk, admitted one charge of theft and three of false accounting and was jailed for two years at Norwich Crown Court on Tuesday.
Nudd also asked for 46 other crimes of false accounting to be dealt with by the court.
According to the Daily Mail, Ross Burrows, defending, told the court: “It does have hallmarks of a Robin Hood story, but I think it is more a case of banking pressures which Mr Nudd found himself put under.”
Mr Burrows said Nudd had been out of his depth after being promoted to commercial manager in 2002 and had contemplated suicide after being caught.
Burrows added: “He just assumed from the outset when he transferred these funds that it would be picked up immediately.”
Nudd had not flaunted the £49,000 he had banked and continued to live in a terraced house and drive a humble Vauxhall Astra.
But Martin Ivory, prosecuting, reportedly branded his behaviour “misguided, very foolish and unnecessary”.
Mr Ivory said: “A lot of the money moved round is either to cover his own incompetence or his own concerns.”
Judge Nicholas Coleman told Nudd: “You were in a position where you assumed a high level of trust.
“We know only too well in this day and age the public expects confidence in those responsible for the management of their financial affairs.”
Despite the deception lasting for seven years, HSBC insisted last night it had “processes in place” to uncover fraud.
A bank spokesman told the Mail: “As soon as any fraudulent activity is identified, we always inform the relevant authorities and in this case the bank has worked closely with Norfolk Police and provided appropriate support.”
The court ordered Nudd to pay a nominal sum of £1 under the Proceeds of Crime Act.