Nadir boosted shares – trial

ASIL Nadir used stolen money to boost the share price of Polly Peck International, buy a string of luxury properties across Britain and indulge his interest in horse racing, a court heard yesterday.

The tycoon secretly bought shares in PPI, which pushed up the value of his own wealth, the Old Bailey was told. Prosecutor Philip Shears, QC, said the main purpose of the dealings “was to support the share price of PPI by creating a false or misleading impression as to... the demand for such shares.”

It was “important to support” the PPI share price because each rise of a penny added to the value of Nadir’s stock by, for example, £950,000 in December 1989, Shears said.

Nadir, who is accused of plundering £150m between 1987 and 1990, used “stolen” money towards the cost of buying properties including a Rutland estate and a house in Mayfair.

He also put £20,000 of the money into an account to fund his horseracing interests and £14,871 was later paid to Jenny Pitman Racing, set up by the renowned trainer, it is alleged.

The jury was earlier told that PPI fell into administration in October 1990 with debts of £550m.

Nadir, 70, denies 13 specimen charges of theft, relating to £33.1m and $2.5m. The case continues.