The previous Olympus president who lifted the lid on the corporate’s $1.7bn accounting scandal has claimed that a lawsuit introduced by a unit of his former employer over his £64m pension is motivated by “revenge”, the Excessive Courtroom heard on Tuesday.
Michael Woodford is defending a £55m lawsuit introduced in opposition to him by KeyMed, a UK division of the Japanese digital camera maker.
Mr Woodford was fired as Olympus president after elevating questions in 2011 about $1bn in funds allegedly made as a part of acquisitions. The corporate solely investigated and located wrongdoing after he went public together with his issues. Three former Olympus executives have been later convicted for his or her involvement within the fraud.
Now Keymed has introduced a civil lawsuit in opposition to Mr Woodford and an ex-colleague Paul Hillman, alleging they breached their duties and conspired to maximise their pension pots whereas performing as Keymed administrators and trustees of its pension scheme. Each males deny the allegations.
John Wardell QC, performing for Keymed, claimed to the Excessive Courtroom that the 2 males abused their positions as administrators and had ended up with “staggering” and “terribly beneficiant” pension advantages.
He mentioned the 2 males ought to have “been scrupulous in making certain Keymed’s pursuits have been correctly sorted given their very own conflicting roles” however that they had “failed to take action.”
Nevertheless, Mr Woodford has claimed in courtroom paperwork that Keymed’s lawsuit could also be motivated by “greater than just a little need to hunt revenge”, the Excessive Courtroom heard on Tuesday.
Simon Salzedo QC, defending Mr Woodford and Mr Hillman, known as Keymed’s case “inherently implausible”. He mentioned the allegations “ought to by no means have been made” and all choices across the pension scheme had been rigorously scrutinised by exterior authorized and actuarial advisers.
Whereas Mr Woodford’s £64m pension worth could appear “giant” this quantity had been constructed up over his total 30-year profitable profession at Keymed, he instructed the courtroom.
The case centres across the establishing and administration of a senior govt pension scheme at Keymed in 2007 by Mr Hillman and Mr Woodford, who additionally grew to become trustees.
In 2014 Mr Woodford transferred his pension out of the corporate scheme into a private pension. The £64.7m measurement of the switch worth triggered a probe by Keymed.
The case continues.