Tesco fraud trial abandoned after defendant's heart attack

From BBC - February 6, 2018

The trial of three former Tesco executives charged with fraud and false accounting has been abandoned.

Chris Bush, Tesco's former UK boss, John Scouler, Tesco's former commercial food director and Carl Rogberg, its former UK finance boss have been on trial for more than four months.

It emerged on Tuesday that Mr Rogberg had a heart attack last Thursday.

The Serious Fraud Office will decide in early March whether to pursue a re-trial. The men deny the charges.

Mr Rogberg, aged 51, remains in hospital awaiting surgery.

Discharging the jury, Judge Deborah Taylor said: "It would not be right or proper to continue with this trial."

She acknowledged the impact on the jury: "It has been a long period and I know it must be quite frustrating for you not to come to a conclusion at the end of all your hard work during the course of this trial."

Nicholas Purnell, QC, representing Mr Rogberg, had asked for the trial to continue while his client was having treatment.

He told the court: "I think he would be utterly devastated to discover that as a consequence of what he has been through, there's a possibility that the trial has to start again."

Inflated profits

The three defendants had been accused of fraud and false accounting in connection with the retailer's 250m accounting scandal.

The criminal charges stemmed from a statement the supermarket group made three-and-a-half years ago.

Delays and holidays


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