A federal judge rejected a request to dismiss 10 counts of insider trading charges against former Enron Corp. chief executive Jeffrey Skilling.
Prosecutors have alleged that Skilling sold $62.6 million in stock when he had information about Enron's finances that was unknown to investors. One of the counts specifically refers to a stock trade he made after he resigned from the company.
Separately, the indictment accuses Skilling of leading Enron into a series of deals with off-the-books entities -- allowing the company to manipulate financial results. Skilling had argued that the indictment failed to identify what insider information he had when he made the targeted stock trades. U.S. District Judge Sim Lake said that the allegations were sufficient.
Skilling faces 35 counts of fraud, conspiracy, insider trading and lying to auditors for allegedly knowing about Enron's shaky financial situation. Both Skilling and founder Kenneth Lay have pleaded not guilty, and their trial is scheduled to begin Jan. 30.
Last week, Enron's former chief accounting officer Richard Causey pleaded guilty to securities fraud and agreed to testify against both Skilling and Lay in exchange for a seven-year prison term. Fifteen other former Enron executives have pleaded guilty to various crimes, including securities fraud and insider trading.
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