Enron founder Kenneth Lay had severely clogged arteries when he died in Colorado in early July, according to an autopsy report.
The autopsy showed that three of Lay's arteries were 90 percent blocked. The examination was performed by forensic pathologist Robert Kurtzman, who previously said that Lay died of cardiovascular disease.
Lay, 64, along with former Enron chief executive Jeffrey Skilling, was convicted in May in a Houston court of conspiracy, securities fraud and wire fraud stemming from the mammoth 2001 collapse of the energy-trading concern. Both men were scheduled for sentencing in October.
During the four-month trial, both Lay and Skilling maintained their innocence claiming that the company's collapse was due to negative publicity and a jittery stock market. .
Lay's will, signed in August 2003, was also filed in Harris County Probate Court this week, according to published reports. Lay left all of his assets to his wife, Linda, though an exact dollar-figure was not placed on his estate. She will have discretion over how to pass on any assets, though those are likely to be the target of civil lawsuits.
The standard practice when a defendant dies before sentencing is for prosecutors to drop all criminal proceedings. Legal experts say Lay's untimely death could possibly save his family's assets from creditors.
According to court documents, Lay's peak net worth was some $400 million before Enron came crashing down, and early this year, the fallen businessman claimed his worth had dropped to just $650,000 with weighty legal bills topping $25 million. Federal prosecutors have argued that Lay should also be held liable for another $33 million in bad loans, as well as his $10 million Enron bonus and a $6.3 million Goldman Sachs account.
Previously on WebCPA:
Inside Views: The Other Side of Midnight (July 10, 2006)
Enron's Kenneth Lay Dead at 64 (July 6, 2006)
Jury Finds Lay, Skilling Guilty (May 25, 2006)
Register or login for access to this item and much more
All Accounting Today content is archived after seven days.
Community members receive:
- All recent and archived articles
- Conference offers and updates
- A full menu of enewsletter options
- Web seminars, white papers, ebooks
Already have an account? Log In
Don't have an account? Register for Free Unlimited Access