Serious Fraud Office Make Five New Arrests In Patisserie Valerie Investigation

Five people have been arrested and questioned over alleged accounting fraud at the Patisserie Valerie chain, the Serious Fraud Office has said.

The arrests took place last week following a joint operation with the Hertfordshire, Leicestershire and Metropolitan police services. The arrests follow on from Patisserie Valerie ‘s former FD, Chris Marsh being arrested and freed on bail eight months ago.

The troubled café chain collapsed into administration in January this year after a £40m black hole was discovered in its accounts, plunging the business into a crisis requiring a £20m cash injection.

A spokesperson for the SFO in a statement following the arrests said: “On Tuesday 18 June, as part of a joint operation with Hertfordshire, Leicestershire and the Metropolitan police services, five individuals were arrested and interviewed in connection with the Serious Fraud Office investigation into individuals associated with Patisserie Holdings PLC.”

Causeway Capital Partners acquired Patisserie Valerie after it went into administration in January for £5m.

The administration process has exposed a £94m hole in the accounts of Patisserie Valerie, including failing to show overdrafts of £10m and exaggerating its cash position by £30m.

Patisserie Valerie prior to administration operated 206 outlets employing 3,000 people. Acquirers, Irish private equity firm, Causeway Capital Partners currently operate 96 Patisserie Valerie outlets.