Ex-Pub FD sues over profits warning

The former finance director of the Old English Pub Company is suing the company for libel over a Stock Exchange profit warning which he says wrongly implied that he was responsible for the company’s financial problems.

Stuart Simpson has issued a High Court writ seeking libel damages and aggravated damages for malicious publication from the company, its chief executive, Barry Warwick, and three other directors.

The writ refers to a trading statement issued on 3 February this year which warned that profits for the year to 31 March were ‘likely to be significantly below current market expectations’.

Simpson resigned as FD on 6 January, and his writ says the statement, ‘infers that … he was completely or substantially to blame for the matters leading to the trading statement and the profit warning contained in it’.

A spokeswoman for Warwick said he was aware of the writ, but he could not comment until he had consulted his solicitors.

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