Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling for his high profile economic crime.
He was among the corporate executives who were found guilty for the corporate
crimes that they were accused of. Ebbers of WorldCom was sentenced 25 years in
prison and John Rigas of Adephia Communications, 15 years with appeal.
The excerpt fo the news below.
HOUSTON, Oct. 24 -- The sentencing Monday of former Enron Corp. chief executive Jeffrey K. Skilling ended the saga of the scandal-ridden Houston energy company and effectively closed the book on an era of high-profile corporate malfeasance.
Skilling's sentence capped a string of lengthy prison terms handed down to top executives for economic crimes, including WorldCom Inc. founder Bernard J. Ebbers, now serving 25 years, and Adelphia Communications Corp. founder John J. Rigas, facing 15 years pending appeal.
But Enron remains that period's signature scandal. The company's December 2001 breakdown ushered in a wave of corporate collapses that roiled investor confidence and prompted the government to enlist a special band of prosecutors and FBI agents to mount the most complex business fraud investigation in history. Their pursuit of top Enron officials helped change the way corporate wrongdoing is prosecuted and spurred companies to more aggressively police themselves.
Hours after a judge sentenced Skilling to more than 24 years in prison, the leaders of the Enron Task Force announced that they would close up shop, saying their mission was mostly complete. But even as officials packed their files and prepared for other jobs in government and the private sector, there were fresh signals about the direction post-Enron corporate crime enforcement would take.
A new wave of investigations is targeting executive greed, insider trading and investment pools known as hedge funds. On Tuesday, the former finance chief of Comverse Technology Inc. pleaded guilty to covering up a scheme to trigger big paydays for employees by changing the grant dates on stock options. Meanwhile, federal prosecutors charged the former finance chief of Refco Inc. for his role in a $1 billion accounting scandal that hurled the commodities brokerage into bankruptcy proceedings.
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