Ebbers To Be Sentenced Today After Judge Rejects New Trial Request

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Former WorldCom Chief Executive Officer Bernard Ebbers is supposed to receive his sentence today after having his request for a new trial rejected yesterday.

Back in March, Ebbers was convicted on charges of securities fraud and other similar charges. His conviction was in relation to a huge accounting fraud scandal that took place within WorldCom and led to its bankruptcy back in 2002.

The reason that Ebbers gave for his request of a new trial was that three witnesses should have been granted immunity, which could have helped his case. The judge didn’t agree with Ebbers’ reason.

“I find that none of these new grounds requires a new trial,” wrote Judge Barbara Jones in a ruling. “Defendant fails to show that the government has used immunity to gain a tactical advantage over him, or that the testimony of Beaumont, Lomenzo or Scott would be exculpatory” According to Erin McClam of AP,

For his part, the former 63-year-old CEO has asked for a term “substantially below” life in prison, citing his poor health and a history of charitable works. More than 100 people have also written to Jones on his behalf.

The sentencing will be the back end of an extremely damaging week for Ebbers, once known as a swaggering and successful CEO as WorldCom grew ever larger in the late 1990s.

“The enormity of the crimes that Ebbers committed cannot be overstated: The fraud at WorldCom was the largest securities fraud in history,” prosecutors wrote, noting the name WorldCom is now “synonymous with fraud.”

Ebbers is not the only one taking the fall in this case. He may be the first to be sentenced, but five other former executives who pleaded guilty have sentencing coming before the end of the summer.

Chris is a staff writer for WebProNews. Visit WebProNews for the latest ebusiness news.

Ebbers To Be Sentenced Today After Judge Rejects New Trial Request
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