Thursday, September 7, 2006

Government Recommends 12 1/2 Years for Olis

The snail-like pace of the resentencing of former Dynegy financial executive Jamie Olis may be getting closer to resolution as the government has recommended that the district court find the loss from Olis' fraud was approximately $79 million.  Prosecutors continue to make the perfunctory argument that the diminution in the value of Dynegy's stock -- a figure well over $100 million -- after the disclosure of the transactions in which Olis participated is the proper measure, but that simplistic assessment which triggered the original 24-year sentence was overturned by the Fifth Circuit.  The Department of Justice now offers another, somewhat less substantial, loss figure based on the tax revenue loss the Treasury would have suffered from the tax-related transactions designed to pump up Dynegy's income.  The $79 million figure offered by the government would put the potential sentence under the Guidelines at over 10 years, and the government recommends 12 1/2 years for Olis.  One initial problem with the government's theory is that the conviction was not for defrauding the Treasury, although the Sentencing Guidelines contain some flexibility in determining the amount of loss through alternative measures when a simple calculation cannot be made.  An interesting question will be how far U.S. District Judge Sim Lake wants to go in coming up with a loss figure, or whether he will view the 2+ years Olis has been in jail as sufficient punishment.  A Houston Chronicle article (here) notes that the hearing on the loss determination will take place on Sept. 12, but a sentencing date has not yet been set.  For all concerned, that decision should be made sooner rather than later in a case that has dragged on for quite a while. (ph)

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The sentence should be time served if fairness is applied. He did not gain anything financially. His boss and his associate received sentences amounting to "nothing". Why should he be the scapegoat? He was just a midlevel employee who pleaded not guilty...shame on him for trying to defend himself.

Posted by: pjb | Sep 7, 2006 8:51:46 AM

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