Thursday, April 19, 2007

The Fight Over Ken Lay's Assets

While the Supreme Court denied certiorari challenging the abatement of Ken Lay's convictions (see earlier post here), the fight over his assets continues in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas.  According to a Houston Chronicle report (here), Lay's widow, Linda, filed papers in the government's civil asset forfeiture case claiming that she is entitled to the assets the government is seeking, including the couple's Houston condominium worth $2.5 million and $10 million held by a partnership.  The article indicates that the parties are negotiating a settlement of the civil proceeding.  The conviction would have supported a criminal forfeiture, which would have allowed the government to pursue any assets owned by Lay to satisfy the amount ordered by the court, including "substitute" assets.  His death and the subsequent abatement of the conviction means that only the civil asset forfeiture avenue is open, which requires the government to trace any assets it claims to the fraud.  That is a more difficult standard to meet, and probably means that it will have to settle for less than it would have gotten in a criminal forfeiture action.  (ph)

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Question: Has Enron's Kenneth Rice (head of the Broadband debacle) been sentenced yet?

Posted by: Dan | Apr 24, 2007 9:30:22 PM

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