Thursday, December 29, 2005
In the finest end-of-the-year tradition of various media outlets, we have decided to honor individuals and organizations for their work this year in the white collar crime arena by bestowing "The Collar" on those who deserve our praise, scorn, acknowledgment, blessing, curse, or whatever else you can think of that would be appropriate. Comments are open if any readers would like to suggest additional categories or winners (or losers?), remembering to keep any offerings reasonably mature and somewhat well-meaning, at least to the extent ours meet those criteria (and do not open us up to a libel suit).
With the appropriate fanfare, we present The Collars for 2005:
The Collar for Best Parent goes to Bill Olis for all his work on behalf of his son Jamie.
The Collar for Best Suspense goes to the 2nd Circuit for sitting on both the Martha Stewart and Frank Quattrone appeals.
The Collar for the Government's Biggest Bust goes to Martha for getting busted for attending a yoga class without permission, resulting in having to spend an extra three weeks wearing an ankle bracelet.
The Collar for Put Me In The Headline goes to -- who else -- Eliot Spitzer.
The Collar for Not Beating a Dead Horse goes to the DOJ group that decided not to re-prosecute Arthur Andersen after the Supreme Court ruling.
The Collar for Best Public Appearance by an Accused was a tie this year, going to Richard Scrushy, who was found not guilty despite not testifying, and Ken Lay, who set forth his defense in a public speech barely a month before trial.
The Collar for Best Cooking the Books goes to the DOJ for failing to include corruption cases in its reporting of white collar crimes.
The Collar for Best Singing by a Cooperating CFO goes to Scott Sullivan for his performance at the trial of former WorldCom CEO Bernie Ebbers (easily beating out the Five Guilty CFOs of HealthSouth).
The Collar for Ruining a Reputation Through Bribery goes to former Rep. Randy (Duke) Cunningham, a Viet-Nam ace pilot and eight-term Congressman who traded it all in for a few hundred thousand dollars and some cheesy antique furniture.
The Collar for Worst Affidavits goes to Morgan Stanley for submitting questionable affidavits about producing e-mails that cost the firm $850 million in punitive damages.
The Collar for the Best United Front That Is Not a Conspiracy goes to all the groups that aligned together to try and convince the government that the attorney-client privilege really is important.
(ph & esp)