Three former Tesco executives have pleaded not guilty to fraud charges following the £263m accounting scandal that rocked the retailer two years ago.

Chris Bush, 50, Carl Rogberg, 49, and John Scouler, 48, denied the charges put to them at a hearing at Westminster Magistrates Court today, on the second anniversary of the news breaking of the black hole in Tesco’s accounts.

They face charges of fraud by abuse of position and false accounting, which carry maximum sentences of 10 years and seven years respectively.

Tesco’s former UK managing director Bush, ex-UK finance director Rogberg and food commercial director Scouler were all released on bail and ordered to appear at Southwark Crown Court for a plea hearing on 20 October.

All three stepped aside from the company in the wake of the accounting scandal, with the Serious Fraud Office launching its investigation in October 2014. It said its investigation into the company continued.

Bush, of Green End Road, Radnage, High Wycombe, and Rogberg of Church Farm, Chiselhampton, Oxford, have issued separate statements through their lawyers denying any wrongdoing.

Scouler, of The Park, St Albans, Hertfordshire, went on to become commercial director of TalkTalk but is on sabbatical until the criminal case concludes.