Thursday, May 15, 2008
"The principal founder and former Chief Executive Officer of PurchasePro.com, Inc. . . . , a now-defunct internet company that specialized in business-to-business commerce ('B2B')" was found guilty after a bench trial of "conspiracy to commit securities fraud, securities fraud and witness tampering." The court noted that "PurchasePro established and promoted virtual 'marketplaces' in which buyers and sellers of goods could interact with one another." The opinion describes the relationship of this company with AOL.
In a press release issued by the US Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia it states:
"[the defendant] originally faced trial on the securities fraud and witness tampering charges in a jury trial that began in October 2006 before Judge Kelley. [The defendant’s] first trial ended after Judge Kelley granted a motion from [the defendant]’s defense attorney to withdraw from the case and a mistrial was declared. The remaining defendants were subsequently acquitted. In the retrial, which began in October 2007, an obstruction of justice charge was consolidated with the original securities fraud charges. In addition to the guilty verdict on the original charges, Judge Kelley also found [the defendant] guilty of obstructing a federal proceeding as a result of his conduct during his original trial."
The U.S. Attorney did not issue a press release when the initial defendants were acquitted and there is only one sentence of the acquittal in this press release. (see here)
The opinion - Download johnson_final_verdict_and_opinion_w_esig.pdf