Executives forged my signature, says founder of collapsed hospital giant NMC
The founder of NMC Health, the FTSE 100 company that entered administration this month, has accused executives of a litany of fraud, including forging his signature.
BR Shetty, the Indian billionaire behind the hospital firm, said that unnamed bosses at NMC and other businesses he is involved in had forged his signature to create loans, personal guarantees, cheques and bank transfers in his name.
Dr Shetty, who also founded Travelex-owner Finablr, said: “My own investigations indicate that serious fraud and wrongdoing appears to have taken place at NMC, Finablr … as well as within some of my private companies, and against me personally.”
The abuses he said went on without his knowledge also included bank accounts in his name, setting up companies in his name, and creating powers of attorney – also in his name and without him knowing.
The billionaire said he had been provided with false and misleading financial statements about some of his private companies.
He further added that expenses had been paid using his private companies and personal bank accounts in a bid to “hide the true financials of the public companies”.
Investigators have been probing a massive scandal at the former FTSE 100 member, which plunged into administration earlier in April.
Questions were raised about NMC in December, when short seller Carson Block questioned some of the hospital builder’s claims through his company Muddy Waters.
NMC later unveiled questions about how much of the business some of its major shareholders, including Dr Shetty, owned.
It also found several billion dollars worth of debt on its books that the board was not aware of.
The scandal forced Dr Shetty to step down as joint non-executive chairman of NMC.
On Wednesday, he said: “This fraud also appears to have been undertaken by a small group of current and former executives at these companies.”
He complained about having been the victim of “misleading and inaccurate allegations”, without elaborating.
“The series of events since December 2019 have shocked me as much as anyone else, including the alleged fraud and misconduct at NMC, as well as the existence and extent of undisclosed company debts,” Dr Shetty said.
He said he would “work tirelessly to clear my name and assist any authorities in getting to the truth”.
Finablr has also warned that it could have to call in administrators.