Ex-UBS Trader Kweku Adoboli Who ‘Gambled Away $1.4B’ To Be Deported To Ghana

The lawyer of Kweku Adoboli, a former UBS banker convicted for causing the biggest trading loss in British banking history will on Monday make a final attempt to prevent his imminent deportation a day later by filing for a judicial review.

Adoboli’s solicitor Jacqueline McKenzie told reporters at a press conference Thursday that her client is due to be deported by charter flight on Tuesday (September 18) to his native Ghana.

This follows the rejection of his latest appeal by the British government to stay in the country despite his fraud conviction.

Adoboli, 38, had been held at Dungaval detention centre in Scotland since September 3 but he has been moved to a Heathrow detention centre as the Home Office push ahead with deportation plans.

She argued that her client who has lived in the UK since he was 12 is reformed and now uses his business acumen to help young black men set up businesses through an organisation called Bigger.

Arguing for Adoboli’s imminent deportation to be reconsidered in the context of the Windrush scandal she said her client had lived most of his life in the United Kingdom and does not know much about Ghana.

“Nobody can ever argue that, that is humanity. To pick people up and send them to countries that they barely know, and in the cases that I’ve come across, didn’t know at all, didn’t speak the language.

“I mean Kweku doesn’t even speak his native languages in the way that he would be required to. He has some knowledge of them, but not in the way he would be required to were he to try and work in Ghana. And the Home Office says, that, you know business is conducted in English in Ghana, but at the same time the Home Office says that anybody from Ghana requiring a visa to come to the UK must prove they can speak English, so they can’t have it both ways”.


Adoboli joined UBS’s London office as a graduate trainee in September 2006. After working for two years as a trading analyst in the bank’s back office, he was promoted to a Delta One trading desk.

In 2008, he became a director on the ETF desk, and by 2010, he was promoted to director, with a total annual salary of almost £200,000.

Beginning in 2008, Adoboli started using the bank’s money for unauthorised trades. He entered false information into UBS’s computers to hide the risky trades he was making.

He exceeded the bank’s per-employee daily trading limit of US$100 million and failed to hedge his trades against risk.

He also used his personal funds on two spread betting accounts, IG Index and City Index, where he lost around £100,000. In mid-2011, UBS launched an internal investigation into Adoboli’s trades.

On 14 September 2011, Adoboli wrote an e-mail to his manager admitting to booking false trades. His trades cost the bank $2 billion (£1.3 billion) and wiped off $4.5 billion (£2.7 billion) from its share price. The trading losses he incurred while trading for his bank were the largest unauthorised trading losses in British history.

Charges and conviction

On 15 September 2011, Adoboli was arrested by City of London Police. He was charged with two counts of fraud by abuse of position and four counts of false accounting.

He was in prison on remand until 8 June 2012, when he was granted bail subject to being electronically tagged and placed under curfew at a friend’s house. On the morning of 20 November 2012, a jury at Southwark Crown Court unanimously found Adoboli guilty on one count of fraud. Later the same day, after receiving an instruction allowing for a majority decision with a single vote against, the jury found him guilty of a second count of fraud. The jury also found him not guilty on the four false accounting charges.He was sentenced to seven years in prison.

The City of London Police said: “This was the UK’s biggest fraud, committed by one of the most sophisticated fraudsters the City of London Police has ever come across.”

Adoboli was incarcerated at Verne Prison in Dorset, Ford Prison in West Sussex and Maidstone Prison in Kent. He was released in June 2015.

By Gideon Sarpong | WakeUp Africa360