Coca-Cola has been accused by a former employee of running an “illegal racketeering enterprise” and using a slush fund to boost sales.
The press reports that a lawsuit filed by Matthew Whitley, an executive who lost his job as director of finance-supply management in March, alleges a “culture of dishonesty” at Coke.
Whitley alleges that Coke recorded phantom sales in its quarterly results, inflating sales by tens of millions of dollars. It also manipulated a trial project with Burger King by hiring consultants to buy drinks from the burger chain to exaggerate demand, it is claimed.
Coke has described Whitley as a “disgruntled former employee” and alleged he had first demanded $44.4m in return for his silence.

German brewer Brau & Brunnen is said to have put 51% of the company up for sale.
Possible buyers includes Scottish & Newcastle, SABMiller, Carlsberg Breweries and another German brewer, Binding Brauerei, according to German business paper Handelsblatt.