Germany: Ex-Wirecard CEO arrested on suspicion of falsifying accounts

The former chief executive of a company once regarded as one of Germany’s hottest stocks – a payment processing company with ambitions to be a global leader in a world where cash was history – was yesterday bailed from police custody after posting a deposit of €5m (£4.5m), public prosecutors in Munich said on Tuesday afternoon.

Markus Braun, 51, was arrested on Monday on suspicion of falsifying accounts at Wirecard. The once highly rated German business, operating in the go-go financial tech sector, has now admitted to a €1.9bn (£1.7bn) hole in its balance sheet. Braun, who styled himself after Apple’s Steve Jobs, wearing black turtleneck sweaters, is also accused of manipulating the markets.

The Austrian was arrested yesterday evening after presenting himself to police, according to German media, which has described the crash of the internet giant a huge embarrassment for corporate Germany, robbing investors of arguably one of the most important tech firms to have emerged from Europe’s largest economy.

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(Photo: CHRISTOF STACHE | AFP | Getty Images)

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