Bank IT glitch keeps man in cell
NatWest opened 1,200 branches on Sunday for the first time ever as it dealt with a massive backlog of payments caused by a computer glitch
A defendant in a court case had to spend the weekend in prison because the RBS computer failure prevented his bail money being transferred, it has been revealed.
The unnamed man was granted bail at Canterbury Crown Court in Kent on Friday on condition that a surety was paid before his release.
But the IT problem which has also affected customers at NatWest and Ulster Bank meant the defendant had to remain in a remand cell. HM Courts and Tribunals Service said he was released Monday morning.
In another case on Friday, at Westminster Magistrates' Court in London, a judge is believed to have used his discretion to grant a defendant bail even though the same problem had occurred.
A statement issued by HM Courts and Tribunals Service said they were aware of two cases where there had been a "banking issue". It said: "Defendants are released on bail once confirmation of the receipt of bail is received. We are aware of only two cases where there was a banking issue.
"We were advised of one case by barristers yesterday morning. It related to a case last Friday and court staff used their discretion to ensure that the defendant was released as soon as possible yesterday morning. In the second case, the judge made a judicial decision last Friday to release the defendant given the circumstances."
RBS chief executive Stephen Hester reassured customers that a "corner has been turned" in dealing with the computer problem, adding that senior executives would face "proper accountability" following the fiasco.
Some customers have been unable to view an up-to-date balance, payments such as direct debits for bills have not been made and some wages have not been received following a software update last Tuesday.
Some 1,200 main NatWest and RBS branches will be open from 8am to 6pm for the rest of the week after opening on Sunday, the first Sunday opening, and late last week.
The computer software problem started last Tuesday night and reportedly arose following an attempt to install a software update on RBS's payment processing system, which was then corrupted. The group has said this issue has now been fixed. It will also reimburse customers who had to pay to ring an 0845 helpline number for any cost incurred when doing so.