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Some misrepresentations however aim at esteeming an organization’s financial position to present a better image to stakeholders. I, in this paper, review cases of accounting fraud. Worthen reports a claim by Hewlett Packard that Autonomy, a United Kingdom based company that it acquired two years ago, had misrepresented its financial position to the harm of Hewlett Packard. Hewlett Packard reports that the acquisition was overvalued and the transfer of ownership led to an almost nine billion dollar write off and a consequent loss in hp’s trading. hp claims that its internal audit detected gross misrepresentation by Autonomy prior to the 2011 acquisition with claims of intentional motive to overstate both income and profitability of the organization. The perpetrators, according to the article, further intended to conceal such acts but Autonomy’s founder dismissed the claims as false. The founder, Mr. Lynch who worked with hp after the acquisition however cited poor management by the new owner of his former software enterprise as the possible cause of the financial conditions at Hewlett Packard. Reports of formal action by hp for legal investigations and action by both United States and United Kingdom authorities identified significance of the case that would transcend international legal systems. History of Hewlett Packard, prior to the acquisition, had however been marred with integrity compromises that led to reorganization of its top management and the departure of its two chief executives in 2010 and 2011. While Mr. Hurd had to resign in the year 2010 for conflict of interest that manifested in relationship with a client, his successor who also spearheaded the Autonomy deal bowed down to pressure after barely a year (Worthen 1). Investigations into the fraud case were initiated in May 2012 after Hewlett Packard’s lead legal personnel reported allegations from a member of Autonomy’s management team that gross manipulation of accounting records occurred before the property’s transfer to Hewlett Packard. While the informant’s anonymity was maintained, Autonomy’s auditing firm expressed its positions of having no interest of knowledge of such malpractices though the accounting firm did not express confidence in its client’s accounting records prior to the sales. Mr. Lynch however maintained that his former business was developed on integrity and was stable before internal differences among hp’s management team led to its collapse. Supporting Lynch’s allegations are reports of other managerial challenges such as mobility among hp’s top executives, reduced costs, increasing liabilities and reducing demand for some of the organization’s products. Even though private audit identified inconsistency in classification of items for recording, hp’s allegations of gross misrepresentation was downplayed by its representation by distinguished accounting firms during the acquisition and the fact that the firms did not detect such claims (Worthen 1). Even though existing information does not establish validity of the claim, Autonomy appears to have misrepresented its accounting records to portray a profitable and competitive enterprise that it was not. The primary motives of such misrepresentations have however not been established but occurrence prior to Autonomy’s sales suggest that the misrepresentation aimed at deceiving potential ...Show more


Research paper Legal frameworks and moral constructs regulate behavior among professionals. Politically established rules that are enforced by legal systems regulate legal environments while enforcement of ethical provisions majorly relies on an individual’s conscience and fundamentals of integrity…
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