Tesco executives to face trial in 2017 after £326m accounting scandal

The trio could face up to 10 years in jail if found guilty of the fraud charge and seven years for false accounting

Zlata Rodionova
Thursday 20 October 2016 10:36 BST
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The Tesco scandal related to a £326m black hole in the retailer's accounts
The Tesco scandal related to a £326m black hole in the retailer's accounts

Three former Tesco executives will stand trial in September next year in relation to the £326m accounting scandal at Britain’s biggest supermarket.

Carl Rogberg, Christopher Bus and John Scouler, who respectively held the positions of finance director, former managing director and former commercial director, have been charged with one count of fraud by abuse of position and one count of false accounting.

The trio could face up to 10 years in jail if found guilty of the fraud charge and seven years for false accounting.

They have all pleaded not guilty to the charges, which have been brought by the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) following a two-year investigation.

The trio allegedly failed to correct inaccurately inflated income figures for the supermarket, which were then published to auditors, other Tesco employees and the wider market.

The SFO has said its investigation into the accounting practices at Tesco is ongoing.

Tesco has said it continues to cooperate with the investigation.

In a statement, the retailer said: “The last two years have seen an extensive programme of change at Tesco, but given this is an ongoing legal matter, we are unable to provide any further comment at this time.”

Earlier this month, Tesco's former chief financial officer Laurie McIlwee was cleared by the accountancy watchdog, the Financial Reporting Council (FRC), over his role in the scandal.

Mr McIlwee resigned as chief financial officer of Britain's biggest supermarket in April 2014, and the FRC said it had ended the investigation because there was “no realistic prospect” that a tribunal would make an adverse finding in relation to his conduct.

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