PSP News: Take-Two Cleared For Lawsuit Against Former Executives - PSP News

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Take-Two Cleared For Lawsuit Against Former Executives

Where there's big money, there's crime. Or alleged crime. Or whatever. It just makes me want to take a shower.

Take-Two may have shown solid results in their latest financial report, but it still wants to go after four former executives who helped lead the company through the past decade. According to a recent Reuters report, New York federal judge Laura Taylor Swain has given the green light for the publisher to sue its former leaders "for securities fraud related to backdating stock options." The ruling was that the "company specifically identified the alleged improperly backdated option grants and sufficiently alleged the defendants had an intent to deceive or defraud." Named in the suit: ex-Take-Two CFOs Larry Muller and James David, and former CEOs Kelly Sumner and Ryan Brant. Back in February 2007, Brant issued a guilty plea in response to first-degree felony charges of "falsifying business records" during the company's stock-option backdating scandal. The SEC found that between the years 1997 to 2003, Brant had given himself (and other employees) stock options, and then changed the records concerning when the options were granted. Why? For more profit, of course.

In August of 2007, he decided to broker a deal that would allow him to avoid jail; he paid $6.3 million to settle the SEC's civil suit against him and another $1 million to New York state and local authorities. And now, he's back in the limelight for all the wrong reasons, and three former executives are coming along with him. Guess it's just another example of money corrupting.

4/1/2010 9:08:59 PM John Shepard

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