Sept 7 U.S. investigators probing the alleged
manipulation of interbank lending rates are now focusing on
possible violations of a commodities law that has previously
been used to send financial executives to prison, the Financial
Times said, citing people familiar with the probe.
U.S. authorities are modelling their Libor probe on an
earlier prosecution of three energy companies for violations of
the Commodity Exchange Act, which resulted in criminal
settlements and prison terms of up to 14 years, the paper said.
As per the act, it is illegal to transmit a false report
that would affect the price of a commodity.
The interbank lending probe, led by the U.S. Commodity
Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Department of Justice
(DOJ), is examining possible collusion between traders and bank
treasury departments in 2007 and 2008, the paper said.
The commission is examining whether traders placed bets on
future yen and dollar rates and colluded with bank treasury
departments, who help set the Libor index, to move the rates in
their direction, FT said .
The CFTC and DOJ could not immediately be reached by Reuters
for comment outside regular U.S. business hours.
(Reporting by Sakthi Prasad in Bangalore; Editing by Vinu