Wirecard insolvency administrator Michael Jaffe announced in an interim report that he would file claims against board members, supervisory boards, auditor EY and others involved in the scam.
According to the report available to SPIEGEL, the group’s third-party partner business did not exist and so Wirecard may be ready to go bankrupt in early 2017. Receipts from third party business were reported to be much higher at 743.6 million euros for 2017 and 972.6 million euros for 2018. Therefore, Jaffé is investigating the court as to whether the annual financial statements for 2017 and 2018 are null and void.
The insolvency administrator wants to try to get back about 47 million euros in dividends from former shareholders. Claims can also arise from share buybacks of more than 140 million euros. However, Jaffe also acknowledged that it would be difficult to find shareholders who, in his opinion, benefited from these unfair distributions.
Dispute with EY
Jaffa’s declaratory action before the Munich 1 Regional Court has apparently been followed with interest by former Wirecard Auditor EY as well. EY requested access to the files in the proceedings, arguing that the annual financial statements would have to be remodeled and then rechecked by EY. On the other hand, Jaffe argues that EY’s request is ineffective “because there is reasonable concern that EY cannot continue to act as the debtor’s auditor in a fair, impartial and unaffected manner with any consideration of his own interests” . ”
The EY has been criticized for months as the auditor unreservedly audited Wirecard’s balance sheet until 2018. The insolvency administrator also conducts investigations to confirm claims against EY.
The Jaffes report also provides deep insights into Wirecard’s explicitly driven fraud model. It states that some payments coming to Wirecard from alleged third-party partners in Asia came primarily from the circular business, that is, ultimately from Wirecard itself. “Many explicit circuits” have become recognizable.
Among other things, the group got out of the money through consultations and software contracts without any consideration. The insolvency administrator temporarily identified 94 distinguished advisers in several countries and tax havens, who received approximately 40 million euros.
Further funds were scrapped through so-called “strategic loans”, which Wirecard Bank provided to unsecured partner companies. Jaffe describes his sometimes dismal efforts to recover these debts. In some cases, the post office also failed to meet claims.
Jaffe wants to hold Marcus Braun and Jan Marslake as well as former board members of the former supervisory board accountable for the fact that when Wirecard was already ready for bankruptcy, they would have approved the payment. On the other hand, Braun is of the opinion, according to Jaffa’s report, that the bankruptcy was announced by his heirs on June 19 last year, a week after he left, and that Wirecard can still be saved. The insolvency administrator considers it absurd.
The creditors have filed more than 40,000 claims with the liquidator, some of which Jaffa denies. There are already three reports that come to different conclusions as to the extent to which shareholders and lenders as well as bondholders can claim damages. Clarification of claims can take years, it said in the report.
The signs with the “Wirecard” logo, which is meanwhile monetized by the former corporate headquarters in Eshheim, are apparently of historical interest. The House of Bavarian History in Regensburg has “already shown great interest” in it and “other symbolic objects”, the report continues. The fate of the signs, which had become a trademark in worldwide reporting and is currently in storage, has not yet been decided.
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