Goldman Sachs “crossed the line and established a close, trusting, personal relationship” with officials during Moammar Al Qaddafi’s regime, lawyers for Libya’s $60bn wealth fund said in closing arguments during the final week of a London trial.
Bloomberg News reports that Youssef Kabbaj, a Goldman Sachs banker who spent time in Libya, engaged in the “deliberate blurring of professional and personal relationships” with the fund’s young investment team, Libyan Investment Authority lawyer Roger Masefield said. Kabbaj, who left Goldman Sachs after the bank’s trades with the LIA fell apart, has denied any wrongdoing.
The $1bn trial between the LIA and Goldman Sachs has shed new light on the New York bank’s dealings with Libya under its former ruler. Goldman Sachs sold equity derivatives to the LIA that lost almost all their value when global markets froze in 2008. Qaddafi was ousted and killed in 2011, plunging the country into violent conflict and economic crisis.
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