POLITICS
22/07/2013 09:59 BST | Updated 22/07/2013 10:04 BST

Archbishop Of Canterbury Justin Welby Warns Of 'Lynch Mob' Against Bankers

AP

The Archbishop Of Canterbury has warned that targeting individual bankers for blame after the financial crisis is “lynch mobbish” behavior.

“This business of somehow saying that one individual bears the whole blame as opposed to simply the accountability - it feels lynch mobbish," the Most Reverend Justin Welby said.

"Certainly one of the trends that has been very unfortunate, to put it mildly, is that in some financial services companies there was a clear policy of not telling the top people - they made sure they weren't told things - because then they could plead ignorance, and that's just unacceptable,” the Most Reverend Justin Welby said.

“This business of somehow saying that one individual bears the whole blame as opposed to simply the accountability - it feels lynch mobbish."

The Archbishop used to be an oil executive before entering the priesthood and, over the last year, served on the Parliamentary Banking Standards Commission.

When hearing evidence from bankers, the Archbishop admitted: "thinking, 'I'm not sure I would have been very different,' rather than thinking how bad they were".

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The Archbishop was speaking to the Bishop of Liverpool for BBC Radio 4’s “The Bishop and the Bankers”, in his first public comments since the Banking Commission published its report last month.

The report recommended a raft of banking reforms, including jailing bankers for reckless mismanagement of a bank.