FBI Houston Marks 10-Year Anniversary of Enron Case

Today, May 25, 2016 marks 10 years since the convictions of Enron Corporation’s Kenneth Lay and Jeffrey Skilling. Lay was chairman and chief executive officer of Enron; Skilling was the chief executive officer and chief operations officer.

Video Transcript

FBI Houston Assistant Special Agent in Charge Michael E. Anderson: Ten years ago today, Enron’s former chief executive officer and chairman Kenneth Lay and former president and chief executive officer Jeffrey Skilling were convicted by a jury here in Houston.

Ken Lay was convicted on all counts, and Jeffrey Skilling was convicted on 19 of 28 counts.

With their convictions, we convicted nearly the entire senior executive management team at Enron from the chairman to the CEO to the president, the chief accounting officer, the chief financial officer, the treasurer. And I think we sent a strong message to business executives around the country that the FBI and the Department of Justice will hold executives accountable for their actions regardless of their position in a company or any political affiliations.

Enron was a company where it was OK to lie; it was OK to cheat as long as you were making money for the company. And that attitude was permissible up to the top levels of the company. Both Skilling and Lay, they agreed with that, and they allowed employees, they tolerated transgressions as long as employees were making money for the company.

I opened this case immediately after Enron filed bankruptcy in December of 2001. I knew it would be a big case because of who Enron was, so initially I assigned two agents to work the investigation. I look back now and think I was a little naive because we went from two agents working the case at the beginning of December to over 25 agents working the case within 45 days. We go from the Houston squad working the case to an Enron Task Force with both agents in Houston and Washington, D.C. working on the investigation.

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