SEAN FitzPatrick is facing 12 charges under section 197 of the Companies Act 1990.
Under that section of the act, it is a criminal offence for an officer or employee of a company to knowingly or recklessly make a statement that is misleading, false or deceptive in a material way to an auditor of a company.
It is also an offence to fail to provide the auditor – within two days of the auditor's request – with any information or explanation that is within the knowledge of or can be obtained by the officer/employee.
Such breaches usually come to the attention of an auditor during routine audits, when there is a Revenue settlement or if there is legal action.
If convicted following a jury trial, offenders face a fine of up to €12,697 and/or a maximum sentence of up to five years in prison.