Olympus back in news – will face fraud charges in England

The British Serious Fraud Office (SFO) will prosecute Olympus and its sub in England, Gyrus, for fraud.

The Olympus press release on this page says the SFO will bring criminal charges against the company. The statement says:

The charges against the Company and GGL (Gyrus) allege that certain representations made to the auditors of GGL in the documents related to GGL’s financial accounts for the fiscal years 2009 and 2010 were misleading, false or deceptive in a material particular, contrary to Section 501 of the UK Companies Act of 2006.

The company cannot estimate the amount of possible fines.

Reuters points out this is a prosecution of the company, not the individuals:

Olympus said this would mark the first time the SFO had decided to prosecute a company, rather than an individual, for fraud, and that the lack of precedent made it unclear how long proceedings may take or what level of fines may be imposed. It added that court proceedings would begin this month.

Rueters also cites an Olympus representative who says an investigation by the U.S. Justice department is still underway.

My most recent coverage of the company is Suspended sentences for senior Olympus officials in $1.7B fraud. Top three officials got just a suspended sentence. My post has several editorialized translations of the meaning of a suspended sentence.

My previous post on Olympus can be found on this tag.

Some articles from this morning:

It is fascinating to watch how stories get reported – Oddly enough, the Wall Street Journal doesn’t seem to have filed a report yet even though the oldest articles online are seven hours old.

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