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US: Ex-Enron Executive Sentenced to Prison

by Bloomberg NewsThe New York Times
June 19th, 2007

The former chief of the Internet unit at Enron has been sentenced to 27 months in prison for helping mislead investors in the fraud that sent Enron, the world's largest energy trader, into bankruptcy.

Kenneth D. Rice, 48, onetime chief of the unit, Enron Broadband Services, was sentenced yesterday in Houston by Judge Vanessa D. Gilmore of Federal District Court. The sentence includes a $50,000 fine and two years of supervision after prison.

Mr. Rice is the 15th and last former executive to be sentenced after pleading guilty to crimes at Enron, which was based in Houston.

His voice breaking, Mr. Rice expressed sorrow to the judge.

''What got me here is, I lied over about a two-year period, on a number of occasions, to the investing community,'' he said. ''I wasn't raised that way, and I'm ashamed of that.''

Mr. Rice pleaded guilty in 2004 to one count of securities fraud and agreed to serve 10 years in prison.

He also agreed to pay as much as $1 million in fines and forfeit $13.7 million in cash and assets. Mr. Rice testified he earned $40 million to $50 million in his last 10 years at Enron.

Mr. Rice, once a close friend of Jeffrey K. Skilling, testified against the former chief executive.

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