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Lagardere, Daimler to face trial over Airbus insider trading case

AFP / Eric Piermont

French conglomerate Lagardere and German carmakers Daimler are to be tried in France for insider trading, in connection with the 2006 sale of shares in the aerospace group EADS, according to judicial sources.

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Seven former executives of the Airbus parent company, EADS, including the former joint chairman, Noel Forgeard, are to face trial, say the sources.

On 4 April 2006 Daimler and Lagardère announced the sale of 7.5 per cent of EADS capital to institutional shareholders.

But there is suspicion that the two groups benefited from privileged information about problems with the A380 super jumbo at the time of the share sale.

Two months after the sale came the announcement of a six to seven month delay in delivery of the A380 aircraft, which triggered a fall in the market value of EADS.

The Financial Markets Authority, the watchdog body for France’s Stock Exchange, initially suspected 17 former or current employees at EADS, as well as shareholders Lagardère and Daimler of involvement.

In 2009 they were all acquitted by the FMA but several people remained under judicial investigation, including the former co president of EADS, Noël Forgeard and Airbus Commercial Director John Leahy.

French conglomerate Lagardère and the German car making giant Daimler are to be tried in France for insider trading in connection with the 2006 sale of shares in the aerospace group EADS, according to judicial sources.

Seven former executives of the Airbus parent company, EADS, including the former joint chairman, Noel Forgeard, are to face trial, say the sources.

On 4 April 2006 Daimler and Lagardère announced the sale of 7.5 per cent of EADS capital to institutional shareholders.

But there is suspicion that the two groups benefited from privileged information about problems with the A380 super jumbo at the time of the share sale.

Two months after the sale came the announcement of a six to seven month delay in delivery of the A380 aircraft, which triggered a fall in the market value of EADS.

The Financial Markets Authority, the watchdog body for France’s Stock Exchange, initially suspected 17 former or current employees at EADS, as well as shareholders Lagardère and Daimler of involvement.

In 2009 they were all acquitted by the FMA but several people remained under judicial investigation, including the former co president of EADS, Noël Forgeard and Airbus Commercial Director John Leahy.
 

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