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Enron's former top accountant admits guilt

Dec. 28, 2005 at 4:16 PM

HOUSTON, Dec. 28 (UPI) -- The former Enron Corp. chief accounting officer pleaded guilty Wednesday in a coup for prosecutors taking aim at the company's former leaders.

Richard Causey owned securities fraud in a plea deal that calls for a sentence of seven years in prison that could be reduced to five years if he cooperates "fully" with prosecutors, the Houston Chronicle said.

He also agreed to forfeit $1.25 million. His sentencing is set for April 21.

Causey's lawyer said his client was also working on a settlement agreement with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Causey is expected to be an essential link between the government's star witness and former Chief Financial Officer Andrew Fastow, and Enron's founder, Ken Lay, and its president, Jeff Skilling.

The judge who heard Causey's plea Wednesday agreed to delay the start of the trial of Lay and Skilling from Jan. 17 to Jan. 30 so their lawyers could adjust their clients' defense.

Causey is the government's 16th cooperating witness in the Enron case.

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