Mike Lynch: Home Secretary authorizes UK tech tycoon’s extradition to US but his lawyers vow to break order | business news
Home Secretary Priti Patel has agreed to extradite a British businessman to the US to face criminal fraud charges.
However, Mike Lynch’s lawyers say they will appeal to the High Court if they fight the order, which was previously signed by Ms Patel after a midnight deadline.
It comes the day when The tech tycoon lost a billion-dollar fraud lawsuit brought about the sale of his software company Autonomy to Hewlett-Packard (HP) in 2011.
In what is believed to be the largest civil fraud case in the UK, a High Court judge found HP had “essentially” succeeded in its lawsuit, but suggested the US company paid significantly less than the $5 billion it was seeking (3, £7bn) in damages would be awarded.
HP said it was duped on the deal
dr Lynch, founder of Autonomy, is accused of intentionally overestimating the value of his company before it was acquired by HP more than a decade ago.
The American tech giant has slashed the company’s value by almost $9bn after buying it for $11.1bn (£8.3bn) and it has done so years of bitter strife.
HP claimed it was misled about Autonomy’s true financial performance and prospects when it reviewed its accounts prior to the acquisition.
In its lawsuit, the company accused Dr. Lynch and former Autonomy CFO Sushovan Hussain to artificially inflate the company’s earnings and commit “prolonged deliberate fraud”.
Lynch denies any wrongdoing
Autonomy founder Dr. Lynch, who earned an estimated $800 million from the deal, has consistently denied any wrongdoing, arguing that he was being “scapegoated” by HP for mismanagement.
But Mr. Justice Hildyard, the judge in the civil case that was heard over nine months in 2019, found that Autonomy had concealed sales of hardware products and engaged in convoluted resale programs to cover up a defect in its core software products.
On Wednesday this week, Ms Patel had until midnight on Friday to decide on his delivery After a High Court judge challenged Dr. Lynch’s legal challenge had decided.
Ms Patel wished to review Mr Justice Hildyard’s decision on the High Court’s civil action before making an extradition decision.
The home secretary has now approved the extradition request to the US, where the Briton faces criminal charges in connection with the deal, including wire fraud and securities fraud.
But his lawyers will appeal that order.
“This is not the end of the fight”
“Dr. Lynch strongly denies the charges against him in the US and will continue to fight to prove his innocence,” said Clifford Chance’s Chris Morvillo.
“This is not the end of the fight – far from it. dr Lynch will now appeal to the High Court in London.”
US authorities claim Dr. Lynch deliberately overestimated the value of his company, which specialized in software for sorting large amounts of data.
dr Lynch, from Suffolk, has resisted extradition on the grounds that the alleged offenses should come under UK rather than US jurisdiction.
His Autonomy colleague Sushovan Hussain was sentenced to five years in prison in the United States in 2019. He subsequently lost an appeal against that conviction.