FRC drops investigation into jailed Torex exec

THE UK ACCOUNTANCY WATCHDOG has dropped its seven month investigation into Christopher Moore, a former executive at Torex Retail, the IT business that went into administration in June 2007.

The FRC said it closed the investigation into Moore, a convicted fraudster, because of ‘insufficient evidence of misconduct’ during the period in which Moore was a member of the ACCA.

Moore, a former CEO at Torex, was convicted last year alongside Torex’s accountant Mark Woodbridge and former chairman Robert Loosemore of conspiring to defraud the former AIM-listed company’s shareholders between May and August 2006, by falsely inflating the cash/bank revenue figures of the company’s interim results by £6.5m.

Woodbridge was jailed for three years and ten months, Moore for 30 months and Loosemore for 20.

The trio created a false distribution agreement worth £5m between the company and Loosemore’s private company Magdalen Consulting, and a false goodwill deposit agreement worth £1.5m between the company and Loosemore.

All three were also found to have conspired between November 2006 and January 2007 to defraud shareholders by creating a false agreement between Torex and Magdalen which purported to vary the original false distribution agreement in order to sustain the original fraud.

Woodbridge was also found guilty of one count of false accounting between May and August 2006 by causing a further sum of £2m revenue to be falsely recognised in the company’s interim statement. He was acquitted of two other counts.

In December, the FRC launched an investigation into the conduct of Moore and Woodbridge under its accountancy scheme. Its investigation into Woodbridge continues.

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