Care homes company Orpea: legal authorities contacted over possible wrongdoing
PARIS (Reuters) – French care homes company Orpea said on Wednesday that legal authorities had been contacted after evidence had emerged of possible wrongdoing involving the company, with shares in the company plunging by more than 10 percent.
Orpea was responding after Investigate Europe published an article on its website which probed Orpea’s financial structure, which the website said involved the use of Luxembourg.
Orpea added that the facts alluded to in the article published by Investigate Europe did not concern how Orpea’s care home residents were treated.
Orpea shares have plunged nearly 70 percent since the start of 2022 after a book by a French investigative journalist in January alleged there had been severe failings in care in an Orpea nursing home in a wealthy Paris suburb.
Earlier this month, Orpea – which faces criminal complaints over how treats its elderly residents – said it would pay no dividend on its 2021 earnings and disclosed an emergency deal with banks to handle major debt repayments.
In March, the French government said it planned to file a criminal complaint against Orpea.
Orpea responded at the time by saying that while the government report “does shed light on certain dysfunctions”, it also “allows us to conclude that there is no organised ‘system’ that would lead to widespread abuse”.
Orpea has repeatedly denied systemic shortcomings and denies “several particularly serious allegations” in the book published in January.
(Reporting by Diana Mandia; Editing by Sudip Kar-Gupta)