‘Tesco directors acquitted in fraud trial’ reports the BBC

BCL law firm London quoted in BBC News

‘Tesco directors acquitted in fraud trial’ reports the BBC

Richard Sallybanks, partner at BCL Solicitors representing John Scouler, said: “We are delighted that Mr Scouler leaves court today knowing that the judge, having heard the entirety of the prosecution evidence, reached the firm conclusion that he had no case to answer.”

“That decision was obviously correct yet the SFO chose to pursue an appeal which was rejected yesterday.”

Details of the case:

Two former Tesco directors have been acquitted of charges of fraud and false accounting after the judge dismissed their case due to lack of evidence.

Chris Bush, former UK managing director, and John Scouler, former UK food commercial director, were accused of manipulating figures that resulted in Tesco’s profits being overstated.

In autumn 2014, Tesco said that profits had been overstated by about £250m.

Both Mr Bush and Mr Scouler had denied the charges.

Read the full article on BBC News Online here.


The BCL team:

Richard Sallybanks led the BCL team, assisted by Alex Swan and Cindy Laing

Richard Sallybanks is a partner at BCL Solicitors LLP specialising in complex business crime and regulatory defence work. Richard has been involved in numerous SFO, FCA, HMRC & CMA investigations and prosecutions, together with associated restraint and confiscation proceedings. His recent SFO experience includes the Alstom, Barclays Qatar, and Tesco investigations (acting for senior individuals under suspicion), as well as acting for Robert Tchenguiz in the SFO’s Kaupthing Bank investigation (including the successful Judicial Review challenge to SFO search warrants). Richard has acted in a number of FCA criminal and regulatory investigations for brokers, traders and senior executives, including in relation to allegations of insider dealing and market abuse. He is experienced in cartel investigations, both domestic investigations conducted by the CMA and cross-border anti-trust investigations (including those conducted by the US DoJ). Richard is also experienced in the international mutual legal assistance regime, and in leading and co-ordinating teams of lawyers in multi-jurisdictional investigations.

BCL Solicitor, Alex Swan is an experienced lawyer who has worked on a variety of complex and high-profile criminal matters, ranging from serious sexual allegations to multi-jurisdictional bribery allegations. Alex specialises in business crime – including restraint and confiscation proceedings – and has extensive experience of advising clients both pre- and post-charge. Alex has dealt with matters prosecuted by the SFO, the CPS, HMRC, the NCA, and the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills (as was).

Cindy Laing is a trainee solicitor at BCL specialising in business crime, assisting in defending clients in proceedings brought by the SFO and HMRC. She also has experience assisting in criminal investigations concerning money laundering, bribery and tax offences. In addition to financial and corporate crime, Cindy has developed a keen interest in interception laws in the UK, and, as such, she has assisted in advising international clients on the implications of the Investigatory Powers Act 2016.