There is no evidence that Tesco's former finance chief bullied staff into falsifying the company's accounts, a court has heard.
Carl Rogberg's lawyer Nicholas Purnell said prosecution allegations were wide of the mark.
Three former executives were investigated over their alleged role in a £246m Tesco accounting scandal.
They are accused of fraud by abuse of position and false accounting between February and September 2014.
Mr Purnell said: "What witness from the case of the prosecution has described being directed by Mr Rogberg to behave in one way or another?"
"These propositions that the prosecution would set out to show a group of people set out to coerce and bully people into behaving in a particular way, are simply not reflected in the evidence that you have heard."
'Circle of knowledge'
In September 2014 Tesco said it had over-estimated profits by about £246m.
Mr Rogberg was "outside the circle of knowledge" of a report prepared in the run-up to this announcement, known as the legacy paper, Mr Purnell said.
Mr Purnell described Tesco's management as being a similar size to the "civil service of a medium-sized country".
He said Mr Rogberg received more than 2,000 reports every month and was in charge of 250 to 300 people in the UK finance team.
His office was in a completely different location to the accounting department and he did not attend meetings or see documents relating to the investigation, Mr Purnell added.
"The way in which Tesco was organised at this time was to place various different functions in various different geographical areas," he told jurors at Southwark Crown Court.
Mr Rogberg, Chris Bush, Tesco's former UK managing director, and John Scouler, its food commercial head, all deny the charges.