Jan 29, 2020

Sports Direct fights order to hand documents to watchdog

Sports Direct is battling to prevent "Private" documents it provided to its accountants being handed over to regulators, in a court case that is being closely watched by the audit profession. It is attempting to overturn a High Court ruling from 2018 that ordered it to hand over 40 company documents to the Financial Reporting Council, the audit regulator. The FRC took Sports Direct to court to gain access to the material in relation to its investigation of Grant Thornton's audit of the business in 2016. The judge sided with the regulator in 2018 and criticised Sports Direct for "Obfuscation and delay verging on obstruction" by refusing to hand over the documents. The documents include emails and faxes Sports Direct exchanged with its lawyers but which were subsequently sent to Grant Thornton, then its auditor, and Deloitte, which was advising the company.

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