Barclays blamed for suicide

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BARCLAYS BANK has been blamed by a coroner for the suicide of a financial adviser who was 'harried' over a loan repayment which would have resulted in a pounds 72 overdraft.

Steven Langley, 45, died in a fume-filled car four days after receiving two letters from the bank - one demanding he return his chequebook and card.

The bank's branch in Coventry High Street took the action because Mr Langley, of Balsall Common, West Midlands, could not meet a loan instalment after his wages were delayed. But the money had been paid in; the delay was caused by the bank's clearing system. His body was found in his car last August, along with the letters and a suicide note.

At the inquest yesterday, the Dr Richard Whittington, the Birmingham coroner, recorded a verdict of suicide and blamed the bank for 'tipping the balance'. He said: 'Mr Langley was harried in a way quite unsuitable in the circumstances for a comparatively small amount of money.'

Barclays Bank declined to comment.