Enron CFO Fastow Faces Hundreds of Years in Prison

The former chief financial officer of Enron, Andrew S. Fastow, was indicted Thursday on 78 charges relating to manipulation of a series of off-the-books partnerships which hid the actual financial performance of the energy giant and which enriched Mr. Fastow and his family with over $30 million.

The indictment, which was no surprise, was handed down by a grand jury in Houston. Mr. Fastow will be arraigned on November 6. Should Mr. Fastow ultimately be convicted of the charges, he faces hundreds of years in prison and millions of dollars in fines.

The indictment accuses Mr. Fastow of orchestrating an effort to conceal Enron's losses and debts and inflate the company's profits, ultimately defrauding investors and employees of over $1 billion dollars.

Mr. Fastow's attorneys claim the work performed by the former CFO had the full knowledge and approval of Enron executives and that Mr. Fastow does not believe he committed any crimes.

The Securities and Exchange Commission has also filed a civil lawsuit against Mr. Fastow alleging that he defrauded investors and violated securities laws.

Mr. Fastow surrendered to the Federal Bureau of Investigation on October 2 and is currently free on $5 million bond.

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