A Suffolk tech entrepreneur accused of cooking the books when he sold his company says he is "elated" after he was acquitted of all charges.

Mike Lynch faced 15 counts of fraud and conspiracy relating to the multi-billion pound acquisition of Cambridge-based software company Autonomy by tech giant Hewlett-Packard (HP) in 2011.

The huge £8.5bn deal went sour and he was accused of inflating the company’s value - an allegation he strenuously denied.

After the sale, the value of the company was written down by HP but Dr Lynch claimed this was a result of mismanagement

The once-feted and admired UK tech role model insisted throughout that he was innocent but was extradited to the United States where he faced a 12-week trial in federal court in San Francisco.

On Thursday, the jury cleared him on all counts after listening to evidence over a 10-week period.

"I am elated with today’s verdict and grateful to the jury for their attention to the facts over the last 10 weeks," said a relieved Dr Lynch.

"My deepest thanks go to my legal team for their tireless work on my behalf. I am looking forward to returning to the UK and getting back to what I love most: my family and innovating in my field."

Since the sale, the tech expert has faced many years of litigation and rows - and a 13-year battle to clear his name.

Once he arrived in the US, he was up against very challenging odds, his team pointed out.

Conviction rates for defendants in US federal criminal cases are high, it said, pointing to analysis by Pew Research Center taken from the federal judiciary.

It showed that in the 2022 fiscal year, just 290 out of 71,954 – or 0.4% – of those who went to trial were acquitted.

"The fact that only 12% of all prosecutions under the lead charge of wire fraud result in acquittal, the jury’s unanimous decision unequivocally reaffirms Dr Lynch's steadfast assertion of his innocence and underscores the lack of substantive evidence against him," a spokeswoman said.

"This decision allows Dr Lynch to move forward and continue his work without the cloud of these charges hanging over him."

Christopher Morvillo and Brian Heberlig - legal counsel for Dr Lynch - said they were "thrilled" at the jury's verdict and said it reflected a "resounding rejection of the government's profound overreach in this case".

"The evidence presented at trial demonstrated conclusively that Mike Lynch is innocent," they said.

"This verdict closes the book on a relentless 13-year effort to pin HP's well-documented ineptitude on Dr Lynch. 

"Thankfully, the truth has finally prevailed. We thank Dr Lynch for his trust throughout this ordeal and hope that he can now return home to England to resume his life and continue innovating.” 

Dr Lynch denied any wrongdoingDr Lynch denied any wrongdoing (Image: Newsquest)

Dr Lynch team is now highly critical of the ordeal he went through to prove his innocence - including what it believes was a "protracted and unfair extradition process, coloured by the asymmetrical extradition treaty and relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom".

The team also felt that "key" post-acquisition evidence it wished to present about communications between HP's auditors and its finance executives should not have been excluded from the trial.

The prosecution called 35 witnesses compared to just six by the defence, Dr Lynch's team pointed out.

Former vice president of finance for Autonomy Stephen Chamberlain - who faced the same charges at trial alongside Dr. Lynch - was also acquitted on all counts.

Autonomy's office in CambridgeAutonomy's office in Cambridge (Image: Newsquest)

Both have been standing trial in federal court in San Francisco since March. 

Dr Lynch - who has a PhD in signal processing from the University of Cambridge - was made an OBE for services to enterprise in 2006. After he left Autonomy in 2012, he co-founded Invoke Capital, which invests in European technology companies. He bought a working farm near Wickham Market.

He held a number of top roles, including as a member of the prime minister’s scientific advisory body The Council for Science and Technology and a UK trade ambassador.

In 2021, high-profile figures including Suffolk’s Lord Deben signed a letter opposing the tech entrepreneur’s extradition to the US. However, the extradition went ahead in 2022 after former home secretary Priti Patel gave the green light for it.

Dr Lynch still faces the resolution of a civil case in London which went largely against him.

HP is seeking damages, but the judge has said it would be significantly less than the $5bn initially sought by HP.

The judgment is expected soon and Dr Lynch is expected to appeal.