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Former IT star Mike Lynch is in court

Former IT star Mike Lynch is in court

DrSoftware pioneer Mike Lynch was once considered Britain's answer to Bill Gates: the IT inventor who rose to become a billionaire. He has turned the technology company Autonomy, which he co-founded in 1996, into a major player. Now the famous IT climber is on trial in the USA. In the criminal case, he is accused of committing a “large-scale, multi-year and multi-layered fraud” in the sale of Autonomy to the American computer company Hewlett-Packard. HP paid a whopping $11 billion for Autonomy in 2011, but was soon forced to write off billions. In addition to Lynch, 58, Stephen Chamberlain, Autonomy's former deputy chief financial officer, is also on trial in San Francisco.

Prosecutors allege they both committed 16 counts of fraud and “conspiracy” to artificially inflate the company's value through accounting tricks, round-trip transactions and sham contracts. Prosecutor Adam Reeves said the two had “spun a fictional story”. HP “got the company because they thought it was exactly the kind of software company they needed.” Lynch and Chamberlain deny all accusations. If convicted, you could face up to 20 years in prison.

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