Friday, January 19, 2007

Former Monster GC the Focus of Options-Timing Investigation

It's not much fun being a general counsel when your company gets caught up in one of the myriad options-timing investigations.  Media reports (see CNNMoney here) are that former Monster Worldwide GC Myron Olesnyckyj is squarely in the sights of federal prosecutors.  Olesnyckyj was put on leave by the company and then terminated in November 2005 (see earlier post here).  The company's former CEO also stepped down, and then resigned from the board when he would not meet again with the law firm conducting an internal investigation of Monster's options issuance practices.  Among the items being reviewed by prosecutors are e-mails that may indicate Olesnyckyj's knowledge of the accounting issues involved in backdating options, a key to showing intent for any securities fraud charges.  Whether Olesnyckyj might cooperate in an investigation and become the second GC -- after Comverse's William Sorin -- to plead guilty in an options case remains to be seen. The heat is certainly on for lawyers involved in any practices related to falsifying corporate records.  (ph)

Investigations, Securities | Permalink

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