Ex- Porsche’s Former CFO Haerter Is Charged With Fraud

Former Porsche SE (PAH3) Chief Financial Officer Holger Haerter is one of three managers charged over statements made to a bank when the holding company refinanced a 10 billion-euro ($13.2 billion) loan in 2009.

The men are accused of understating Porsche’s liquidity needs by 1.4 billion euros if all purchase options the company held on Volkswagen AG (VOW) (VOW3) shares had been exercised, Stuttgart prosecutors said in an e-mailed statement today, without disclosing any names. Haerter will fight the charges, his attorney, Anne Wehnert, said in an e-mailed statement.

Along with the criminal investigation, investors in the U.S. and Germany are suing Porsche, accusing the company of misleading them about plans to take control of Volkswagen. A planned combination of the companies was called off last year because of legal uncertainties related to the litigation.

“The risk to the merger will increase because the normal shareholder won’t want to pay too much and the funds will use this to their advantage to seek a significantly higher settlement," said Ferdinand Dudenhoeffer, director of the Center for Automotive Research at the University of Duisburg-Essen.

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