HomeTechTech tycoon Mike Lynch cleared of all fraud charges in US trial

Tech tycoon Mike Lynch cleared of all fraud charges in US trial

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British tech entrepreneur Mike Lynch has been cleared on all counts in his fraud case in the US concerning the sale of his business, Autonomy, to HP over a decade ago.

Lynch, referred to at the time as “Britain’s Bill Gates”, was extradited to the US last year to face a trial alleging he misrepresented the value of his company Autonomy when it was sold to HP in 2011 for £8.6bn.

The San Francisco Jury found the Essex-born tycoon not guilty on all 15 counts against him. Lynch faced more than 20 years in prison if he was found guilty.

Lynch’s defence argued his role at Autonomy was focused on technology and not the finances, as opposed to other executives such as former CFO Sushovan Hussain, who was convicted of fraud in 2020.

“I am elated with today’s verdict and grateful to the jury for their attention to the facts over the last 10 weeks,” Lynch said in a statement.

“I am looking forward to returning to the UK and getting back to what I love most: my family and innovating in my field.”

A major figure in the UK tech industry, Lynch co-founded enterprise software firm Autonomy and founded VC firm Invoke Capital, which would go on to become the biggest shareholder in cybersecurity firm Darktrace.

Brent Hoberman, founder of lastminute.com, Made.com and Founders Forum described the decision as “great news for UK tech”.

Hoberman wrote on X: “Many UK tech founders looked up to Mike and will be happy to see him cleared.”

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