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Prosecutors in Munich have charged Wirecard’s former chief monetary officer with fraud, greater than three years after the funds firm collapsed in certainly one of Germany’s greatest company scandals.
Burkhard Ley, who was CFO from 2006 to 2017 after which labored as an exterior advisor at Wirecard, was charged on Thursday with fraud, breach of belief, accounting and market manipulation.
Ley was arrested in 2020 after the as soon as high-flying funds group went bankrupt. He was launched in November that yr after spending 4 months in police custody.
The costs in opposition to Ley come because the trial of Wirecard’s former CEO Markus Braun and two different former executives continues. The trial, which started a yr in the past, is predicted to final a minimum of till subsequent summer time.
Wirecard was valued at greater than 24 billion euros at its peak and was hailed as a uncommon German expertise success. It failed in June 2020 after it was revealed that 1.9 billion euros in firm money associated to outsourced actions in Asia didn’t exist.
Prosecutors in Munich allege Ley deceived Wirecard’s buyers and collectors by inventing the outsourced operations in Asia. Prosecutors say the operations, which accounted for half of the corporate’s revenues and almost all of its income, have been used to inflate its outcomes and inventory worth.
Braun, Oliver Bellenhaus, a former Dubai government, and Stephan von Erffa, Wirecard’s former accounting chief, have been accused by prosecutors of comparable deception.
Ley denied the allegations. In a press release Thursday, his attorneys stated: “Our consumer didn’t take part within the felony exercise alleged within the indictment.”
The proof supporting the fees was “extremely controversial” and based mostly largely on “questionable statements” by Bellenhaus, who linked Ley in the course of the trial, the assertion stated.
Braun and von Erffa additionally deny wrongdoing and accuse Bellenhaus, who grew to become prosecutors’ star witness, of fabricating the fees.
Braun claims that Wirecard’s outsourced actions have been actual. Throughout his trial, the ex-chief accused Wirecard’s former second-in-command Jan Marsalek, who has been on the run since June 2020, and Bellenhaus of embezzling proceeds from the operations.
In a letter despatched to the courtroom by his lawyer this summer time, Marsalek claimed that Wirecard’s third-party takeover actions survived the group’s collapse and live on.
Below German regulation, the Munich courtroom will now evaluation the fees prosecutors introduced in opposition to Ley and resolve whether or not the previous CFO ought to face trial.