Closing arguments begin in Enron trial

May 15, 2006 at 12:22 PM
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HOUSTON, May 15 (UPI) -- Prosecutors in the Houston fraud and conspiracy trial of Enron Corp.'s former leaders began closing arguments Monday in U.S. federal court.

U.S. District Judge Sim Lake gave U.S. prosecutors six hours to summarize their case against Ken Lay, 64, Enron's former chairman, who faces six charges, and Jeffrey Skilling, 52, Enron's former chief executive, who faces 28 charges, the Houston Chronicle reported.

Convictions could result in both men spending the rest of their lives in prison.

The 14-week trial has featured wildly divergent testimony and two different defense strategies. Lay and his lawyers have portrayed the former chairman as a well-intentioned idea person who was unaware of financial details, while Skilling has said that -- except for a few minor accounting issues -- there was no chicanery.

Both defense teams have agreed, however, that their clients are the victims of wrongdoing by former financial chief Andrew Fastow, who has cooperated with prosecutors.

Jurors are expected to get the case this week.

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