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SFO charges four individuals with fraud at Balli Group and Balli Steel

29 September, 2020 | News Releases

The SFO has charged four individuals with various fraud offences in relation to the activities of Balli Group Plc and Balli Steel Plc.

Nasser Alaghband and David Spriddell are each charged with two counts of fraudulent trading in the carrying on of the businesses of Balli Steel Plc and Balli Group Plc with the intent of defrauding creditors. Nasser Alaghband is additionally charged with six counts of conspiracy to defraud various financial institutions.

Two further individuals, Louise Worsell and Melis Erda, are each charged with one count of fraudulent trading in the carrying on of the businesses of Balli Steel Plc with the intent of defrauding creditors. Melis Erda is also charged with six counts of conspiracy to defraud various financial institutions, while Louise Worsell faces five counts of the same charge.

The individuals appeared at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Tuesday, 29 September 2020, and are due to appear at Southwark Crown Court on Tuesday, 27 October 2020.

A further individual, Vahid Alaghband, is to appear at Westminster Magistrates’ Court on Thursday, 22 October, where the SFO intends to charge him two counts of fraudulent trading and one count of conspiracy to defraud.

As this is an active case, the SFO can provide no further comment.

Notes to editors:

  1. Nasser Alaghaband (D.O.B 03/05/1961), Director of Balli Steel Plc and Balli Group Plc, is charged with two counts of fraudulent trading, contrary to section 993(1) of the Companies Act 2006 and six counts of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to common law.
  2. David Spriddell (D.O.B 29/11/1961), Finance Director of Balli Steel Plc and Balli Group Plc, is charged with two counts of fraudulent trading, contrary to section 993(1) of the Companies Act 2006.
  3. Louise Worsell (D.O.B 23/12/1954), member of the Balli Steel Plc Executive Committee, is charged with one count of fraudulent trading, contrary to section 993(1) of the Companies Act 2006 and five counts of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to common law.
  4. Melis Erda (D.O.B 17/08/1966), Treasurer and member of the Balli Steel Plc Executive Committee, is charged with one count of fraudulent trading, contrary to section 993(1) of the Companies Act 2006 and six counts of conspiracy to defraud, contrary to common law.
  5. Defence representatives:
    – Nasser Alaghband: K&L Gates LLP
    – David Spriddell: Jonas Roy Bloom
    – Louise Worsell: Blackfords LLP
    – Melis Erda: WilmerHale
  6. The SFO announced its investigation into Balli Group on 3 May 2017.
  7. These are active proceedings and the strict liability rule in the Contempt of Court Act 1981 applies.

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