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Top Coutts banker disciplined for 'sexual harassment'

Top Coutts banker disciplined for 'sexual harassment'

One of Coutts leading private bankers has been disciplined following sexual harassment allegations from female colleagues. 

Harry Keogh, who is managing director for London Private Wealth at Coutts according to his LinkedIn profile, was accused of excessive drinking, unwanted physical contact, and lewd comments. 

Reports state that concerns over Keogh's behaviour were uncovered following a review of the culture at RBS-owned Coutts instigated in 2015 and led by the firm's managing director of future proposition design Gayle Schumacher. 

The investigation is said to have comprised interviews with 20 Coutts bankers who had issue with Keogh's conduct.

The Wall Street Journal said Scumacher was 'shocked' by some of the allegations from Keogh's team. 

Coutts, which counts the Queen among its clients, gave Keogh a final written warning and provided him with coaching to manage his behaviour, according to the Wall Street Journal. His bonus that year was also suspended. 

A Coutts spokesperson quoted in the Financial Times said: 'When allegations of inappropriate behaviour were made in relation to a particular team within the bank in 2015, an investigation was conducted into those concerns.

'The investigation found that within that team, standards had fallen below what we regarded as acceptable. Decisive disciplinary action was taken as a result.'

According to the FT, one Coutts female banker claimed Keogh boasted about his sexual exploits at a company dinner and whispered to her as he was leaving he would 'take her with him if he could'. 

In a statement to reporters, RBS head of commercial and private banking Alison Rose added: 'The allegations made public today are serious. No one should ever have to experience this type of inappropriate behaviour in the workplace.

'This matter in question was properly investigated in line with our established policies and procedures and based on the findings of this process, appropriate action was taken at the highest level within Coutts.' 

Keogh, 57, has been part of RBS's wealth operation for almost two decades. After a 11-year spell as managing director for private banking for RBS, he moved across to Coutts in January 2010. 

Last April he was appointed head of key client coverage, charged with developing relationships with the bank’s most influential clients including royal family members, celebrities and sports stars. 

Keogh is yet to comment on the allegations, but is believed to have some issues with them. 

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