FIt has been investigated for almost two years, now the Munich public prosecutor is filing charges against Markus Brown, the former CEO of the insolvent payment service provider Wirecard. According to a report by the “Handelsblatt”, in addition to Braun, Oliver Bellenhaus, former Wirecard manager in Dubai, and Stephan von Erffa, former chief accountant and deputy chief financial officer, are also accused. The indictment is now with the fourth criminal division of the Munich I Regional Court, which must decide whether it wants to start a process. This decision is expected in the summer, and the process could then start in the fall. A spokeswoman for the public prosecutor’s office declined to comment on Sunday.
The prosecutors accuse Braun of commercial gang fraud, misappropriation of corporate assets, accounting fraud and manipulation of the Wirecard share price. The accusation of commercial gang fraud weighs the heaviest. If convicted, Braun expects a prison sentence of up to ten years for this offense alone.
Wirecard, then a Dax group, admitted on June 18, 2020 that 1.9 billion euros in trust assets in Manila could not be proven. A week later, Wirecard had to file for bankruptcy. Braun was arrested in June 2020 and has been in the Augsburg-Gablingen correctional facility ever since. The investigators see the former CEO as the head of a system that was shaped “by esprit de corps and oaths of allegiance to the CEO”. Brown denies all allegations.
Against the former Wirecard board Jan Marsalek, who is believed to be pulling the strings and is on the run, no charges have yet been filed. However, this may follow at a later date. Wirecard’s imbalance is considered one of the biggest scandals in the German financial center.