Baker Tilly responds to Wiggins case

Baker Tilly, the mid-tier firm which took over Kidsons, fined at the weekend
for its work on Wiggins, the property company, has responded to the Joint
Disciplinary Tribunal’s verdict on Kidsons’ work.

In a statement, the firm sought to distance itself from the case, which was
brought against partners of Kidsons who no longer work with the firm.

‘The case involved criticism of audit judgements first made almost a decade
ago by respected individuals, acting in good faith, who have died or left the
profession. It did not involve Baker Tilly,’ a spokeswoman said.

The firm also drew attention to Kidsons’ successful appeal against the
penalty and costs imposed. The amount was reduced from a fine of £500,000 and
costs of £420,000 to a fine of £150,000 and costs of £295,000.

The spokeswoman said: ‘There was a successful appeal by HLB Kidsons against
the excessive penalty and cost awards imposed by the original tribunal. The
penalty was reduced by 70% and the cost award by 30%.’

The auditors were fined for signing off accounts that inflated profits by
£40m over five years, through the recognition of receipts from housing projects
that had not yet received planning permission.

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