Email Trails Suggests Gatekeepers Tasted Forbidden Fruit and SEC Files Charges Against Apple’s Former General Counsel and Chief Financial Officer

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Based on an apparently inculpatory email trail discovered in an ongoing SEC investigation, the government has filed new charges against two former senior executives of Apple, Inc. in a matter involving improper stock option backdating.

The SEC accused former General Counsel Nancy R. Heinen of participating in the fraudulent backdating of options granted to Apple’s top officers that caused the company to underreport its expenses by nearly $40 million. The Commission’s complaint alleges that Heinen, of Portola Valley, California, caused Apple to backdate two large options grants to senior executives of Apple — a February 2001 grant of 4.8 million options to Apple’s Executive Team and a December 2001 grant of 7.5 million options to Apple Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs — and altered company records to conceal the fraud.

For more on this development, see SEC v. Heinen et al.

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