Corporate Crime Update of the Week

Court throws out Microsoft $1.5 Billion fine (Agence France Presse via Raw Story)

British Petroleum fined after Texas blast (BBC)

$92,000 fine for killing 15 people and injuring 180. That’ll teach them.

Another batch of corporate conspirators get away (Washington Post)

EXCERPT: “A federal judge tossed out indictments against 13 former KPMG executives yesterday in the government’s largest criminal tax-fraud case ever, citing “intolerable” prosecutorial abuses that deprived the officials of their constitutional right to a defense.

The decision, by U.S. District Judge Lewis A. Kaplan, is a strong rebuke of federal prosecutors who exerted intense pressure on the giant accounting firm to stop paying legal bills for employees who refused to cooperate with the investigation.

The sanction, which Kaplan called “drastic,” averts a trial focused on whether the former KPMG executives knowingly helped wealthy clients avoid $2.5 billion in tax liabilities by selling them unlawful tax shelters.”

British Airways fined a record $246 Million over fuel surcharge price-fixing (Agence France Presse via Raw Story)

BA conspired with Virgin Atlantic, but Virgin Atlantic got immunity. Y’know, because corporations are people (ReclaimDemocracy & Project Censored)

Marathon to pay $1 Million fine for oil price manipulation (CNN)

ConAgra to pay $45 Million fraud settlement (CNN)

Amaranth sued for natural gas futures manipulation (CNN)

Too bad Amaranth has already folded.

Morgan Stanley to pay $6.1 Million for overcharges (USA Today)

Former Qwest CEO ordered to forfeit $52 Million (AP/Yahoo)

DR Horton, number 2 homebuilder, posts $823 Million loss (Reuters via MParent blog)

Fisher-Price recalls 1 Million toys because their paint contains excessive lead (CNN)

“Environmental Protection Agency” declined to stop British Petroleum from dumping more toxic chemicals in Lake Michigan (Chicago Tribune)

Chiquita has pled guilty to making $1.7 Million in payments to a Columbian terrorist group. Now they say that the U.S. government never clearly demanded that the payments stop. (Washington Post)

Banana Republic : Chertoff, Chiquita and Death Squads (Counterpunch)

Unilever unveils 20,000 job cuts, 11% of its’ workforce, over four years (BBC)

Most of the cuts will focus on European operations. Unilever includes Hellman’s Mayonnaise, Surf, Lipton, Knorr, Dove, Ponds, SlimFast, Country Crock, Bertolli and Ben & Jerry’s

Busting Telco Myths (SaveTheInternet.com)

EXCERPT: “A report released today decisively shoots down many of the myths that telecommunications lobbyists and shills have manufactured about the health of America’s Internet.”

Tech Industry well represented in Corporate Fraud Hall of Shame (Network World)

Wal-Mart reaches deal to enter India (USA Today)

BAE Systems completes takeover of military manufacturer Armor Holdings (BBC)

Carlyle Group to buy Goodyear after union approval (USA Today)

Shell makes over $1 Million per hour (Guardian, UK)


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