Saturday, March 15, 2008

The Falling of the Enron Case House of the Cards

The first card in the falling of the government's house of Enron cases occurred yesterday, as Jeffrey Skilling's supplemental brief was unsealed. And one finds within this brief a shocking display of alleged government misconduct. The brief and some commentary can be found over at Tom Kirkendall's Houston ClearThinkers here. For openers, here is but one example of what can be found in the introduction in the brief.  Commentary on this brief will follow in later posts.

Task Force prosecutors called the "Global Galactic"document "three pages of lies" and the "most incriminating document" in Skilling’s entire case. Op.Br.196; R:36538-39. At trial, Fastow testified Skilling knew about Global Galactic because Fastow "confirmed" it with him during a spring 2001 meeting. Skilling denied knowing anything about Global Galactic. Op.Br.32-36. To bolster Fastow’s testimony and impeach Skilling’s, the Task Force introduced a set of handwritten "talking points" that Fastow said he prepared in anticipation of his meeting with Skilling. R:22287-88. At trial, Fastow swore he "went over" the talking points with Skilling, including the crucial point "Confirmation of Global Galactic list." Id. In closing, the Task Force relied heavily on this document to corroborate Fastow’s testimony that he discussed Global Galactic with Skilling. Id.

The raw notes of Fastow's interviews directly impeach Fastow's testimony and the Task Force's closing arguments.  When shown and asked about the talking-points document in his pr-trial interview, Fastow told the Task Force he "doesn't think [he] discussed list w/ JS." AE-27-381. (footnote omitted).

This obviously exculpatory statement was not included in the Task Force's "composite" Fastow 302s given to Skilling.  Nor was it included in the "Fastow Binders" the Task Force assembled for the district court's in camera review of the raw notes.

See also Houston Chronicle here.


Addendum - Larry Ribstein's Ideoblog here; the Wall Street Jrl here

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