Archive for Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Former Enron CEO Skilling given 24 years in prison

October 24, 2006

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— Former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling was ordered Monday to serve 24 years and four months in prison, the harshest punishment by far in Enron's scandalous collapse and one that capped a string of tough sentences for top executives in corruption cases.

U.S. District Judge Sim Lake denied Skilling's request for bond and ordered him to home confinement, wearing an ankle monitor. Lake, who told the U.S. Bureau of Prisons to recommend when Skilling should report to prison, suggested the 52-year-old be sent to the federal facility in Butner, N.C., for his role in a case that came to symbolize corporate fraud in America.

"His crimes have imposed on hundreds if not thousands a life sentence of poverty," Lake said.

The former chief executive officer will be eligible to shave up to 54 days a year off his sentence for good behavior in prison. Lake also ordered Skilling to undergo alcohol and mental-health counseling. A successful completion of that treatment would take a year off his sentence.

Skilling, insisting he was innocent yet remorseful in a two-hour hearing, was the last top former official to be punished for the accounting tricks and shady business deals that led to the loss of thousands of jobs, more than $60 billion in Enron stock and more than $2 billion in employee pension plans after the company imploded in 2001.

His remaining assets, about $60 million, will be liquidated, according to an agreement among lawyers for Enron employees, the company's savings and stock ownership plans, prosecutors and Skilling's legal team.

Former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling, left, and his attorney Daniel Petrocelli, right, leave the federal courthouse after Skilling was sentenced to 292 months in federal prison. Skilling was convicted in May of 19 counts of fraud, conspiracy, insider trading and lying to auditors.

Former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling, left, and his attorney Daniel Petrocelli, right, leave the federal courthouse after Skilling was sentenced to 292 months in federal prison. Skilling was convicted in May of 19 counts of fraud, conspiracy, insider trading and lying to auditors.

About $45 million will be put in a restitution fund for victims. The remaining $15 million will go to Skilling's legal fees, said Lynn Sark, attorney for the Enron Corp. Savings Plan and Stock Ownership Plan. The Justice Department allowed Skilling to set aside $23 million for his defense when he was indicted; he still owed his lawyers $30 million as of Monday.

Skilling had stood with his hands clasped below his waist, with his attorney Daniel Petrocelli at his side while being sentenced. He gave no visible reaction. After court adjourned, Skilling hugged Petrocelli.

Skilling's term is the longest received by any Enron defendant; former Chief Financial Officer Andrew Fastow was given a six-year term after cooperating with prosecutors and helping them secure Skilling's conviction.

It falls just shy of the sentence imposed on WorldCom CEO Bernard Ebbers, who received 25 years for his role in the $11 billion accounting fraud that toppled the company he built from a tiny telecommunications firm to an industry giant. Another CEO, Dennis Kozlowski of Tyco International Ltd., received a sentence of eight and one-third to 25 years in prison in another fraud case.

Skilling's co-defendant, Enron founder Kenneth Lay, died from heart disease on July 5. Lay's convictions on 10 counts of fraud, conspiracy and lying to banks in two separate cases were wiped out with his death.

Comments

acg 8 years, 8 months ago

Skilling, may you rot in that prison cell a little more each day. Hopefully, every once in a while, a very large, angry inmate will trap you in your cell or in the laundry facilities or something and make you his b****.

BOE 8 years, 8 months ago

" by adky October 24, 2006 at 11:55 a.m

Another victory for jealousy! "

====

Jealous of someone who ran a multi-billion $ company into the ground and faces years of jail time for his dishonest schemes?

What an odd thing to say.

ForThePeople 8 years, 8 months ago

Wonder if he'll kick the bucket too....prior to having to report to his new permanant home?

prioress 8 years, 8 months ago

This is so sad for so many; the TEACHER and many others warned us about greed.

jonas 8 years, 8 months ago

ForThePeople: That's an. . . interesting conspiracy theory.

Ken Lay: Who do these tax people think they are?! I'll just. . . Die! That's it, I'll die! That'll show them.

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