Four ex-Kaupthing bosses given jail sentences for market abuse

THE FORMER chief executive and chairman of collapsed Icelandic bank Kaupthing as well as two other senior executives were given prison sentences yesterday for market abuse.

The four were accused by Iceland’s special prosecutor of hiding the fact that a Qatari investor bought a 5.1 per cent stake in the firm with money lent by the bank itself.

The purchase by Sheikh Mohammed Bin Khalifa Bin Hamad al-Thani was announced just weeks before the bank collapsed.

Special prosecutor Olafur Thor Hauksson said that the loan had the sole purpose of boosting Kaupthing shares.

Kaupthing’s former chief executive Hreidar Mar Sigurdsson was sentenced to five and a half years in prison while former chairman Sigurdur Einarsson received a five-year sentence. Kaupthing Luxembourg’s ex boss Magnus Gudmundsson was given a three-year sentence, while Olafur Olafsson – the bank’s second largest shareholder at the time – got three and a half years.