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HP Wins Fraud Case in the UK Over Autonomy Purchase

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On Friday, Hewlett Packard was found not guilty of a multibillion-dollar fraud lawsuit stemming from its 2011 purchase of British software firm Autonomy. Cambridge-based Autonomy was sold to the US tech giant for $11bn in 2011. HP accused Autonomy of falsifying its accounting, alleging it had inflated its worth and created substantial losses for the US firm.

 

HP has filed a $5 billion lawsuit against Mike Lynch, Autonomy’s British founder, and Sushovan Hussain, the company’s former chief financial officer (roughly Rs. 37,500 crores). Judge Robert Hildyard stated in a summary of his ruling in what get thought to be Britain’s largest-ever civil fraud trial that HP and the other plaintiffs largely triumphed and the compensation amount will get decided later.

His conclusions, read out at the High Court in London, come more than two years after the start of what was believed to be the UK’s biggest civil fraud trial, which was heard over nine months in 2019. The judge said the number of damages to be paid would be dealt with at a later date.

According to the Home Office, Interior Minister Priti Patel signed an order on Friday ordering Lynch’s extradition to the United States. He is facing separate criminal charges related to the transaction. Lynch has the option of appealing the extradition order to the High Court.

 Autonomy utilized “a range” of deceptive devices to enhance or fabricate income, according to HP’s lawyer Laurence Rabinowitz. In 2018, a US judge found Autonomy’s finance head Hussain guilty of fraud in connection with the transaction and sentenced him to five years in prison.

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Lynch has categorically denied any misconduct. Lynch’s lawyer, Kelwin Nicholls, called the court’s decision “disappointing” and stated that Lynch “intends to appeal.”  Chris Morvillo, another of Lynch’s lawyers, said that his client “firmly disputes the accusations made against him in the United States and that his client will continue to battle to demonstrate his innocence.”

According to Morvillo, Lynch was “a British person who managed a British corporation in Britain, subject to British laws and norms, and there is where the problem should get addressed.” 

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