PracticeAuditFine and reprimand for Wiggins auditor

Fine and reprimand for Wiggins auditor

Large fines handed down to auditor and company director

The auditor, along with a former company director at airports and property
company Wiggins, has been fined and reprimanded by the Joint Disciplinary
Tribunal.

The fines relate to Wiggins overstating its profits by more than £40m between
1996 and 2000.

Kidsons – now part of Baker Tilly – was ordered to pay more than £500,000 in
fines and costs, while two former partners, were each fined £10,000 and
reprimanded.

Roy Blackstone, the accountant who chaired Wiggins’ audit committee, was
fined £10,000 and rebuked for failing to spot or raise concerns about the
mis-statements.
Wiggins was forced to restate 2001 accounts, which turned profits into losses
for each of the previous five years.

In a statement, the Joint Disciplinary Tribunal said: ‘The profits apparently
earned by Wiggins pushed its share price up and kept it high. This enabled
further shares to be issued to raise money to keep the company going.

‘Indeed a share placing in 2000 was essential to enable Wiggins to pay a tax
bill – ironically on profits that it had not yet earned

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