The founder of British tech company Autonomy has said he will fight extradition to the United States for fraud after a London court granted the ruling.
Dr Mike Lynch, who sold the software company to Hewlett Packard (HP) for $ 11 billion in 2011, faces trial in the United States over allegations he artificially inflated Autonomy’s value before the sale , resulting in “colossal” losses for HP.
The billionaire businessman has always denied these allegations.
His legal team said at a hearing in Westminster Magistrates’ Court that the decision on his extradition should await judgment in a separate civil case, brought by HP against him and the former chief financial officer of Autonomy, Sushovan Hussain.
A preliminary version is expected in September.
But District Judge Michael Snow told Dr Lynch: “I have dismissed your various challenges under the extradition law.
“I am required to send the matter to the Secretary of State to find out if you should be extradited to the United States.”
The decision means Home Secretary Priti Patel has the final say on whether to allow the move.
If she approves the decision, Dr. Lynch has 14 days to appeal.
His lawyer Chris Morvillo said of the ruling: “Dr Lynch is disappointed that the court ruled against him without waiting for the judgment of the High Court in the civil case which considered all of these issues.
“Dr Lynch denies the charges against him. At the request of the United States Department of Justice (DoJ), the court ruled that a British citizen who ran a British company listed on the London Stock Exchange should be extradited to the States United for allegations regarding his conduct in the UK.
“We say this matter belongs to the UK. If the Home Secretary nevertheless decides to order extradition, Dr Lynch intends to appeal.”
At a previous hearing, the DoJ said of his extradition request: “(Lynch) may be a British citizen, he may have long ties to the UK, but once he has directed his dishonest activities against the United States on such a monumental scale, he cannot expect – just as any other English CEO could expect – to be immune from the American justice system . “