October 20, 2017 / 1:53 PM / 5 months ago

UK Court of Appeal refuses Libyan SWF right to appeal in Goldman case

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain’s Court of Appeal has refused Libya’s $67 billion (£50.8 billion) sovereign wealth fund the right to appeal against the 2016 judgement handed down by Britain’s High Court in the fund’s $1.2 billion case against Goldman Sachs.

FILE PHOTO: A trader works at the Goldman Sachs stall on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange, New York, U.S. on April 16, 2012. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid/File Photo

The Libyan Investment Authority (LIA) lost the 2016 case, which related to nine equity derivatives investments carried out in 2008 that turned out to be worthless.

In the trial, the fund had argued that it was too unsophisticated to understand what it was buying, and that Goldman had abused its position as a trusted adviser. But the trial judge dismissed these claims.

The LIA subsequently sought permission to appeal, but in the court order seen by Reuters and obtained from the Court of Appeal, Judge Launcelot Henderson refused the request.

A spokesman for the LIA said the fund was “considering its options”.

Goldman Sachs declined to comment.

One of the grounds the LIA had cited as the basis for an appeal related to an internship offered by Goldman Sachs to Haitem Zarti, the younger brother of Mustafa Zarti, a key LIA decision-maker at the time the trades were carried out.

However, Judge Henderson said the LIA’s arguments in this regard had “no real prospect of success”.

He added that it was not open to the LIA to advance a new case that the offer of the internship constituted a bribe as a matter of law.

Reporting by Claire Milhench, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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