Schneider arrest tests Franco-Belgian relations
Tuesday 31 May 1994
Mr Pineau-Valencienne, the equivalent in France to Lord Weinstock, chief executive of GEC, has since Friday been incarcerated in a Brussels jail.
The Belgian authorities yesterday arrested a second man, Valentino Foti, an Italian, in connection with the same case, which involves fraud, embezzlement, falsification of the group's accounts, and abuse of confidence. Mr Foti was the majority shareholder of PB Finance, in which Schneider once had an indirect shareholding.
Mr Pineau-Valencienne will appear in court tomorrow, when a decision will be made as to whether to hold him longer. According to French sources, the French Prime Minister, Eduourd Balladur, has called his Belgian counterpart, Jean-Luc Dehaene, to express his concern.
The French business community has also, through full-page newspaper advertisements, expressed its support for Mr Pineau-Valencienne's 'moral rigour' and deplored his treatment in Belgium.
The charges relate to complaints by minority shareholders in two Belgian Schneider subsidiaries - Cofimines and Cofibel - during a takeover bid in 1992 by Schneider's parent company, SPEP. Cofimines
and Cofibel complained the bid undervalued their shares. The case was settled out of court earlier this year after Schneider and SPEP, which have since merged, agreed to raise the offer price. The Belgian authorities, however, are still investigating. PB Finance has been repeatedly reported as having been involved in money laundering, a charge the company has always denied.
Schneider's share price rose Fr14 yesterday to Fr404.
Pierre Berge, chairman of Yves Saint-Laurent, was indicted in Paris yesterday for insider dealing over the sale of shares in the fashion and luxury goods group worth pounds 12.1m.
He is also accused of breaching a stockbrokers' monopoly on the sale of shares. The shares were sold before publication of poor YSL results in 1992.
- 1 Replica Back to the Future Hoverboard released
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Brixton squat flats now costing up to £3k per month show how out of control rent is in London
- 4 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
Costa Concordia: Shipment of Mob drugs was hidden aboard cruise liner when it hit rocks off Italian coast, investigators say
Brixton squat flats now costing up to £3k per month show how out of control rent is in London
Iran nuclear talks: Prospect of deal with Iran pushes Saudi Arabia and Israel into an unlikely alliance
A new (old) cure for MRSA? Revolting recipe from the Dark Ages may be key to defeat infection
Jeremy Clarkson 'could be given minder' ahead of a potential Top Gear return
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
iJobs Money & Business
£50,000 - £55,000: Neil Pavier: Are you a professionally qualified commercial ...
£45,000 - £55,000: Loren Hughes: Are you looking for a new opportunity that wi...
Circa £45,000-£50,000 + benefits: Sheridan Maine: Are you a newly qualified ac...
£150 - £190 Daily Rate: Sheridan Maine: One of London's leading water supplier...