ANNOUNCEMENT: UK Adviser is now PA Adviser. Read more.

UK fund manager ‘lunged’ at junior female banker, court told

He accepts he made a proposition but says there was no physical assault


Hedge fund boss Crispin Odey has acknowledged propositioning a junior female banker but denied “lunging at” and groping her, during the first day of his two-day trial for indecent assault at Hendon Magistrates’ Court.

The alleged incident occurred in 1998. The woman was a junior employee at a City investment bank when she attended a client meeting at Odey Asset Management and was later invited to meet privately with the eponymous fund manager at his home in Chelsea.

The court heard that she hoped the meeting might “further her career”.

Odey, who was 39 at the time, invited the woman, aged 26, first to a pub then back to his house where he suggested changing into something more comfortable. He reappeared, having showered, wearing a bathrobe.

The prosecutor, Kerry Broome, told the court: “He lunged at her and put his hand on her breast down her shirt. His other hand was on her back, then he put a hand up her skirt. This is the physical contact the Crown says constituted an assault.”

Physical assault or not?

The woman reportedly struggled and managed to leave his house, catching a taxi and going to her then boyfriend’s home.

The prosecutor told the court: “She remembers being frightened but she also remembers wondering what would happen to her career.”

Odey was charged with indecent assault in July last year and in September, pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Odey, who is married to Jupiter chairwoman Nichola Pease, acknowledges propositioning her but denies allegations of physical assault. The fund manager accused the woman of “exaggerating what happened”.

Broome said: “He accepts he made the proposition but said there was no physical assault and for whatever reason she is exaggerating.”

She added: “There is therefore a single issue to be resolved – did Crispin Odey physically assault [the complainant] as she alleged, or is it simply an ill-judged and unwanted sexual invitation which was verbal and nothing more?”

The woman did not register a complaint with the bank but allegedly complained to three senior colleagues.

Timeline of events

More than 10 years later, in 2013, the woman emailed Odey her account of events to which Odey replied, accepting he had met her but denying any assault.

The complainant reported the incident to police overseas in 2018. The case was taken up by the Metropolitan Police who interviewed her in January 2018.

Odey, however, was not interviewed until 2019.

Odey stepped down as co-chief executive of Odey Asset Management in November 2020, leaving Timothy Pearey as the sole boss.

The firm also announced it would rebrand itself and the fund range under the Brook Asset Management moniker.

Should Odey be found guilty of indecent assault, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) would have the power to ban him from working in the industry for improper conduct.

The trial continues.

For more insight on UK wealth management, please click on

Latest Stories