Olympus accounting case kicks off in London

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Robert Lovell
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Japanese camera giant Olympus Corporation misled auditors over the purpose of US$620m of shares, the Serious Fraud Office (SFO) has told a court in London.

Olympus and UK subsidiary Gyrus Group are being prosecuted by the SFO, who allege they made misleading or false statements.

Company representatives appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday (10 September), however the hearing has now been adjourned to 24 September when it will be transferred to Southwark Crown Court.

As revealed in court papers filed in the Westminster court, one charge against Olympus alleged it told Ernst & Young (EY) that an issue of 176,981,106 preference shares was remuneration for financial advice, but the shares had been issued for a fraudulent purpose.

The SFO said that in February 2011 the group knowingly...

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