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Former minister accuses Starling Bank over Covid loans

Boss of Starling bank defends its efforts to prevent Covid loan fraud after public attack by Lord Agnew

Former Tory minister Theodore Agnew has launched a public attack on Starling Bank, dragging the online lender into the Covid loans scandal by claiming it did not run adequate checks on borrowers before handing out taxpayer-backed loans.

During the pandemic, the UK government relied on high street and online banks to hand out £47bn to small businesses under the bounce back loan scheme, which offered up to £50,000 a company. The Treasury promised to cover 100% of the losses if borrowers failed to repay. In the rush to distribute money, critics say minimal checks were made to prevent fraud and the cost to the taxpayer could be as much as £5bn.

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Read the original article at The Guardian

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