Young was acting alone, SFO believes

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Investigators working on the Morgan Grenfell unit trust scandal now believe Peter Young acted alone. The Serious Fraud Office, which raided Mr Young's pounds 450,000 Amersham home over the weekend, appears to have dismissed speculation that he was part of some kind of criminal conspiracy.

Contrary to weekend reports, it is understood the SFO has concluded that Mr Young did not have an accomplice when he set up Luxembourg shell companies to hide the scale of his investment in risky hi-tech firms.

The complexity of the companies had suggested Mr Young would have needed help to hide his actions. The SFO is now working to establish whether Mr. Young has committed any criminal offence. He was not arrested when his home was raided, but documents were taken away.

Neither Mr Young nor his lawyer could be reached for comment yesterday, although in the past he has said his employers knew about his investments.

Parallel investigations have been launched to establish the ownership of 13 Luxembourg holding companies set up by Mr Young and another, Russ Oil and Technology, which helped set investigators on to his trail.

Morgan Grenfell has taken control of six of these holding companies and established it owns huge stakes in a number of Scandinavian firms.

But the ownership of Russ Oil is causing controversy, with some sources claiming a clear line of control to Morgan Grenfell Jersey, while others believe it may have been personally owned by Mr Young.

The contents of Mr Young's Jersey bank account are also being analysed, amid reports that at least pounds 2m is kept there.