British Lord Barker Got $4 Million Bonus on Deripaska Sanctions Deal

(Bloomberg) -- Greg Barker, a member of Britain’s House of Lords and the chairman of En+ Group Plc, was awarded a bonus of about 3 million to 4 million pounds ($3.9 million to $5.2 million) for negotiating the removal of U.S. sanctions on the Russian company, according to people familiar with the matter.

Barker spent months shuttling between Washington, London and Moscow to put together an agreement between the Treasury Department and Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska, who was sanctioned last April. The talks culminated in a deal in which Deripaska agreed to step away from En+, which holds a controlling stake in aluminum giant United Co. Rusal.

Barker’s work for the Russian company has been the focus of scrutiny in Britain. He was briefly under investigation by the House of Lords Commissioner for Standards for an “alleged breach of the Code in relation to personal honour, parliamentary services and paid advocacy.” The complaint was dismissed in February.

The Sunday Times reported last weekend that the U.K. government is backing a change in House of Lords rules to force greater disclosure of peers’ Russian and Chinese business interests.

Barker confirmed in March at the FT Global Commodities Summit that he would get a bonus for his work on sanctions, describing it as “relatively modest.”

En+ hasn’t publicly disclosed Barker’s pay. In reports, the company said it paid $16 million last year to "key management personnel," which includes $1.8 million to non-executive directors, including Barker.

Those compensation figures don’t include Barker’s bonus because it was awarded when the sanctions lifted in early 2019, the people said, asking not to be identified discussing a sensitive matter.

Deripaska was sanctioned in April 2018 by the U.S., which cited his close ties to the Russian government as well as allegations that he “bribed a government official, ordered the murder of a businessman, and had links to a Russian organized crime group.” Deripaska has denied those charges, calling them “absolutely groundless, ridiculous and simply absurd.”

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