Baugur boss faces fraud charges
Baugur chief executive Jón Ásgeir Jóhannesson (pictured) is to appear in a central Reykjavik court today to face fraud charges. Jóhannesson and five others, some family members, are charged with 40 offences. There is a charge of embezzlement of company funds against Jóhannesson, who, with his former finance director, is accused of collaborating with a former supplier to create false invoices.

The executives deny all the charges, which it is thought could take up to two years in hearing. The charges focus on incidents that are alleged to have taken place between 1998 and 2002.

The affair has affected the Icelandic group's reputation for doing deals in the retail arena. On June 14, Baugur had to walk away from talks to buy UK supermarket Somerfield, although since then it has bought fashion chain Jane Norman.