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22 July, 2021 - 21:29 By Tony Quested

Mike Lynch challenge to Priti Patel: ‘I will fight any US extradition order’

Cambridge tech entrepreneur Dr Mike Lynch says he will fight on with a robust appeal if Home Secretary Priti Patel backs a court’s decision to extradite him to the US over fraud charges he vehemently denies.

Michael Snow, district judge at Westminster Magistrates’ Court, today refused Dr Lynch’s attempt to block extradition to face 17 counts related to the 2011 $11 billion sale of his technology firm, Autonomy to US giant HP.

Dr Lynch’s lawyer, Christopher Morvillo of Clifford Chance, said: “Dr Lynch is disappointed that the court has ruled against him without waiting for the high court’s judgment in the civil case that examined all these issues. Dr Lynch denies the charges against him.

“At the request of the US Department of Justice, the court has ruled that a British citizen who ran a British company listed on the London Stock Exchange should be extradited to the US over allegations about his conduct in the UK. 

“We say this case belongs in the UK. If the Home Secretary nonetheless decides to order extradition, Dr Lynch intends to appeal.”

Business Weekly understands that the verdict of a UK civil case has been delayed until September.

David Davis, the former shadow home secretary, said it was an “outrage” that Mr Lynch should be tried in a US court.

“This is all about the purchase of our largest software company, Autonomy, from the London Stock Exchange, and a voluntary purchase by Hewlett Packard. That all happened in Britain,” he told the Daily Telegraph.

“The implication of that from a business point of view is that every single purchase or contract by an American company will be adjudicated by the American court. That's really serious post-Brexit.”

Dr Lynch has continuously and vigorously denied that he held back or distorted financial information when HP dived in for enterprise software business Autonomy. HP spent multimillions with top financial and legal advisers to pore over Autonomy’s books and if there were any red flags, which Dr Lynch disputes, they went unheeded by HP management.

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