Ligresti probes broaden to include accounting fraud

Family homes and offices searched

Ligresti probes broaden to include accounting fraud

Turin, February 7 - Turin investigators said on Thursday that they are broadening probes into members of the Ligresti family, the former majority owners of the nearly-defunct Milano Assicurazioni and Fonsai insurance companies, for damages to the companies' former shareholders and accounting fraud. Investigators are looking into alleged consulting and service contracts for "tens of millions (of euros)" with companies' related to the Ligresti family. The offices and homes of family members are being search, investigators said. The boards of directors of the two companies, which almost collapsed last year, called for shareholder meetings on the 13th and 14th of March to determine actions against former company administrators and auditors. The meetings will determine what actions to take against Ligresti family members Salvatore, Jonella, Giulia and Paolo, former Chief Executive Fausto Marchionni as well as councilors and auditors who served with the two companies. In the statement Tuesday Matteo Caratozzolo, Fonsai's administrator, said that in real estate transactions he investigated the group "was subjugated to the will of the Ligresti family, through the action of yes-men administrators. The value of the damages caused is "huge, in the order of hundreds of millions of euros," Caratozoolo said. Caratozzolo also said in his report that Salvatore Ligresti was paid "abnormal compensation for the purpose of making the Fonsai group purchase real estate owned exclusively by connected companies". Photo: Salvatore Ligresti

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