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Barclays chief executive Jes Staley has stepped down following an investigation into how he described his relationship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

The UK financial watchdog and the Bank of England have been investigating Mr Staley’s links to the dead financier.

Barclays said it had been made aware of the conclusions of that probe on Friday and that Mr Staley would contest them.

The bank said it and Mr Staley decided he should stand down but Barclays said it was “disappointed at this outcome”.

A statement from Barclays said: “It should be noted that the investigation makes no findings that Mr Staley saw, or was aware of, any of Mr Epstein’s alleged crimes, which was the central question underpinning Barclays’ support for Mr Staley following the arrest of Mr Epstein in the summer of 2019.”

It added that the regulatory process had still to run its full course and it was not appropriate for Barclays to comment further on the preliminary conclusions.

Mr Staley will receive 12 months pay, totalling £2.4m, as well as his pension allowance of £120,000 for the year, and any other benefits.

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