Burley banker Mark Johnson reports to US prison – but has applied for UK jail transfer
A BURLEY banker convicted of a $3.5bn currency fraud is back in jail in the US, having previously lost a bid to re-run his trial.
Mark Johnson, who must serve two years, was allowed back to the UK while the process went as far as the Supreme Court but is now behind bars in America.
However, he has already applied to transfer to a UK prison, officials have confirmed.
That will take months to process and, should it be accepted, means he could serve just under half his sentence on home shores.
The move was confirmed by a Ministry of Justice spokesperson, who said: "After an application is received it can take approximately 12 months before a prisoner is transferred.
"All male prisoners repatriated to the UK are initially held at HMP Wandsworth. Once assessed and categorised, the prisoner is transferred to an establishment of the appropriate category."
As reported in the A&T, Mr Johnson – a former HSBC foreign currency executive – was handed the sentence and a $300,000 fine in April 2018 after being found guilty by a New York jury of nine counts of fraud and one of conspiracy.
After Mr Johnson’s conviction, he served a brief spell behind bars in the US before launching appeals against his trial verdict, for which he was bailed and allowed back to the UK.
His lawyers argued his case as far as the US Supreme Court, unsuccessfully seeking a re-run of his original trial, before a judge ordered his return.
During his banking career Mr Johnson worked in London and New York while living in Burley with his children and wife Diane. He played several seasons with Ellingham and Ringwood Rugby Club, making appearances for the first XV and on occasion captaining the third team.
The case came from a complex transaction in 2011 in which Mr Johnson was found to have manipulated currency values for the benefit of himself and about $8m for the bank.
Edinburgh-based Cairn Energy had asked HSBC to convert proceeds from the sale of an Indian subsidiary from dollars into pounds.