The criminal trial against three former executives at the now defunct international firm Dewey & LeBoeuf has ended in a hung jury after three weeks of deliberations.

The firm's chair Steven Davis, former director Stephen DiCarmine and former chief financial officer Joel Sanders were accused of defrauding and stealing from the firm’s lenders, investors and others by adjusting the firm’s accounts to mask poor finances before the firm went bankrupt in 2012.

But after the jury in the New York State Supreme Court gave a partial verdict at the start of the month, it yesterday told the court for the third time that it remained deadlocked on the remaining charges. The judge, acting Supreme Court Justice Robert Stolz, declared a hung jury after he was told further instruction on the law would not help.

The remaining charges were scheming to defraud, grand larceny, violation of the Martin Act, and conspiracy. The jury previously had given a not-guilty verdict on 49 counts of falsifying business accounts.

The office for Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance, who prosecuted the case, said the lack of a verdict on more than 90 counts, including the most serious charges, may necessitate a retrial.

The statement added: ‘We continue to believe in the strength of the evidence and that the defendants’ actions broke state law.’ 

The criminal trial against the executives was first announced in March last year, following a two-year investigation into Dewey’s Chapter 11 bankruptcy.

Davis, DiCarmine and Sanders still face civil charges brought by the US Securities and Exchange Commission over an alleged a $150 (£90m) fraudulent bond offer.