Former Enron executives face fresh charges
Friday 02 May 2003
New charges of criminal fraud, insider trading and money laundering were brought yesterday against nine former senior Enron executives. They include the chief financial officer Andrew Fastow and his wife, and virtually the entire top management of the group's short-lived internet broadband services unit.
The counts, formally unveiled in a Houston court, are the latest batch of charges brought by the US government in its inquiry of the $76bn (£48bn) energy group's collapse in 2001, at the time the largest corporate bankruptcy in US history.
The indictments, a Justice Department statement said, "are a significant milestone in our unabated efforts to expose and punish the vast array of criminal conduct related to the collapse of Enron Corporation". That investigation has already led to the conviction – and effective disappearance – of Enron's former auditor, Arthur Andersen.
For the first time the criminal focus has switched to the internet concern, Enron Broadband Services (EBS), a failure egregious even by Enron's standards. EBS, prosecutors say, never generated any revenue during its existence, terminated just before the parent company unravelled in autumn 2001.
Yet the indictments, paralleled by a separate civil complaint filed here yesterday by the Securities and Exchange Commission, accuse five top executives of EBS of netting $186m by unloading Enron stock, even as they knew the subsidiary they ran was on the brink of failing.
But the moves that will attract the most notice are those against Mr Fastow and his wife Lea. Even before yesterday, Mr Fastow was already the most senior Enron officer in criminal trouble, facing 78 counts of embezzlement, fraud and insider trading. A further 31 charges have now been brought.
At the same time Mrs Fastow, a former assistant Enron treasurer, is being charged on six counts, including conspiracy to money launder, failing false tax returns and conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Mrs Fastow yesterday turned herself in at the Houston offices of the Internal Revenue Service.
Her husband is due to appear at a hearing in Houston on 19 May which will decide whether to extend his current freedom on bail of $5m. It was unclear last night whether the latest indictments will bring closer criminal action against Enron's two most senior executives, the former chairman Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling, who quit as chief executive months before the final collapse.
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 5 Men behaving badly: Urinating while standing, 'manspreading' and the gendering of selfishness
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
Ellen DeGeneres leads Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Paul Bettany in revealing game of Never Have I Ever
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
iJobs Money & Business
Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Tax Assistant is required to join a leading ...
£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£45000 - £47000 per annum + bonus + benefits: Ashdown Group: Java Developer / ...
£35000 - £38000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Marketing Manager - Marke...