HP has filed a legal claim seeking a staggering $5.1bn in damages from former Autonomy executives including Mike Lynch, as the fallout from the US giant's acquisition of the UK search company continues.
HP confirmed in a statement sent to V3 that it submitted the claim on 30 March, and that former chief financial officer Sushovan Hussain is also included in the suit.
“The lawsuit seeks damages from them of approximately $5.1bn,” it said. “HP will not comment further until the proceedings have been served on the defendants.”
The claim was filed in London’s Chancery Division High Court.
The figure represents a sizable chunk of the $8.8bn HP wrote-off from the acquisition back in 2012 after it uncovered what it alleges is evidence of accounting fraud at the company.
Autonomy’s former management, led by Lynch, has always denied this and it confirmed that it has filed a counter-suit against HP, seeking damages of £100m.
“The former management of Autonomy announces today they will file claims against HP for loss and damage caused by false and negligent statements made against them by HP on 20 November 2012 and in HP’s subsequent smear campaign,” it said in a statement cited by Bloomberg.
The latest chapter in the long-running legal saga comes after the UK's Serious Fraud Office (SFO) announced in January that it had closed its investigation into the sale of Autonomy to HP without any formal charges.
Lynch welcomed the SFO's decision to close the investigation at the time.
"As we have always said, HP's allegations are false and we are pleased that, after a two-year review of the material presented by HP, the SFO has concluded that there is not a case to pursue," he said.
The SFO said it had been unable to gather sufficient evidence to lead to the prospect of a conviction in the UK. However, the case is still ongoing in the US.
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