Saturday, January 10, 2009

The founder of scandal-hit Indian software company Satyam is to be held in custody until 23 January 2009, after he admitted falsifying its accounts

Ramalinga Raju, who said the firm had exaggerated cash reserves by some $1 billion (£661m), and his brother Rama have been charged with criminal conspiracy. Police have also detained Vadlamani Srinivas, Satyam's chief financial officer, for questioning. The affair is India's biggest-ever corporate fraud. Raju, formerly chairman, and his brother, formerly managing director, have been charged with criminal conspiracy, forgery, criminal breach of trust and falsifying documents, S.K Kumudi, a senior police officer, said. They could face life in prison, he added. The company, which employs 53,000 people and brought in about $40 billion in 2008, is now fighting for its life. Its clients include Nestle, General Electric and Ford. The scandal comes at a tough time for Indian companies, already hit by the global slowdown and faltering growth in India, one of Asia's tiger economies.

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