Spanish court widens fraud investigation to Abengoa and Deloitte

MADRID, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Spain’s High Court said on Monday it had widened a fraud investigation into Abengoa to include the Spanish renewable energy and engineering company and accountants Deloitte.

The court has been investigating allegations of account-rigging by former Abengoa executives attempting to avoid bankruptcy in 2014-16. It said in a statement it has now widened this investigation to include the company itself, Deloitte, two Abengoa board members and a Deloitte associate.

Abengoa declined to comment, while a spokesman for Deloitte said it work was “in line with the regulations and we’re confident that it will be solved satisfactorily for Deloitte”.

Seville-based Abengoa avoided becoming Spain’s largest-ever corporate bankruptcy in 2016 after striking a refinancing deal on debts of 9 billion euros ($10 billion), which handed creditors control of the company.

The court said that it had sufficient evidence to suggest “a possible accounting alteration that had had detrimental effects on partners, shareholders and perhaps even third parties” and which had taken place between 2014 and 2016. (Reporting by Emma Pinedo, editing by Andrei Khalip and Alexander Smith)