Judith Lautner (judith) wrote,
Judith Lautner

Maybe there is justice?

Enron's Lay and Skilling guilty
Former Enron bosses
Ken Lay and Jeffrey Skilling have both been found guilty on fraud, conspiracy
and other charges.

The two presided over the spectacular collapse of the energy giant in 2001
and were also accused of lying to investors about its financial problems.

The two former chief executives faced 34 counts relating to Enron's collapse.

The energy trading firm went from being the US's seventh largest company to
bankruptcy, amid allegations of accounting irregularities.

In October 2001, it had to announce huge losses as its shares dived.


1985: Enron formed

Oct 2001: Enron reports $638m third quarter loss and
$1.2bn fall in shareholder equity

Oct 2001: Securities and Exchange Commission begins
inquiry into firm

Nov 2001: Enron shares sink to 10-year lows as buyout
deal falls through and further losses are revealed at the firm

Dec 2001: Enron files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy

2002: Criminal investigation launched

2004: Skilling and Lay charged over Enron collapse Former
finance chief Andrew Fastow pleads guilty to criminal charges and agrees a
10-year jail term

Jan 2006: Enron trial begins

May 2006: Enron trial ends with guilty verdicts for
Skilling and Lay on 25 out of 34 charges

Two months later, it filed for bankruptcy as allegations began to emerge that
it had used off-the-books offshore firms to hide losses.

The firm's auditor, Arthur Andersen, was forced out of business following the
collapse of Enron, as it was seen as having colluded in the accounting

In a separate case, Lay has also been found guilty by a District Court judge
of four charges of bank fraud totalling $75m.

USA Inc in the dock

The Enron case is the culmination of a string of high-profile cases involving
corporate misbehaviour.

Among them was the conviction of Worldcom chief executive Bernie Ebbers for
fraud and conspiracy, and homecare queen Martha Stewart for insider trading.

Andrew Fastow, Enron's former chief finance officer, pleaded guilty to his
part in the scandal in 2004 having agreed to testify against his former bosses.

He paid fines totalling $23m and received a sentence of 10 years in jail.

Blockbuster trial

The trial of Lay and Skilling in Houston follows four years of investigation
by the Department of Justice's Enron Task Force. It lasted for 15 weeks, with 54
witness called by the two sides.

The verdict came on the jury's sixth day of deliberations.

In all, Skilling has been found guilty on 19 of the 28 counts he faced - with
the "not guilty" verdicts coming on some of the charges of insider trading.

If he had been found guilty on all counts, his total tariff could have been
as much as 275 years in jail.

Lay, however, has been found guilty of all six fraud and conspiracy charges
that he faced. He could face as much as 45 years behind bars.


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