Enron Scandal Essay

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The Enron scandal has far-reaching political and financial implications. BBC News Online reviews the key facts to help you make sense of developments. In just 15 years, Enron grew from nowhere to be America's seventh largest company, employing 21,000 staff in more than 40 countries. But the firm's success turned out to have involved an elaborate scam. Enron lied about its profits and stands accused of a range of shady dealings, including concealing debts so they didn't show up in the company's accounts. As the depth of the deception unfolded, investors and creditors retreated, forcing the firm into Chapter 11 bankruptcy in December. More than six months after a criminal inquiry was announced, the guilty parties have still not been brought to justice. The investigators A chorus of outraged investors, employees, pensionholders and politicians are demanding to know why Enron's failings were not spotted earlier. And the US Justice Department is thought to be trying to charge several executives for fraud and money laundering. Prosecutors have come to a deal with one insider, Michael Kopper, who will plead guilty and spill the beans about Enron's murky finances. There is no date for a trial yet. There has already been a far-reaching investigation into the scandal by a number of congressional committees. Three key players appeared involuntarily and then refused to speak in order to avoid incriminating themselves:  Andrew Fastow: Former chief financial officer, sacked as the scandal unfolded, and alleged author of the deceptive accounting practices.  Kenneth Lay: Enron's former chief executive and chairman since 1986 refused to testify at the last moment after saying he had been pre-judged.  David Duncan: Enron's chief auditor at Andersen who shredded key documents relating to the case. It was his job to check Enron's accounts. Three

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