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Enron Exec Free After Serving Less than 2/3 of Sentence

There are many lesson here. Here’s one: It pays to commit a big big financial crime if you cooperate, and do it first.

By Houston Chronicle
HOUSTON — Michael Kopper, a former Enron Corp. executive convicted of helping ex-Chief Financial Officer Andrew Fastow skim millions of dollars from the energy trader, was released Friday from federal custody after serving less than two-thirds of his sentence.
Kopper, 43, was the first Enron executive to cut a deal, pleading guilty to two conspiracy counts and cooperating with prosecutors pursuing other company officials. In 2006, a federal judge who heard Kopper testify sentenced him to 37 months, compared with the 15-year maximum term he agreed to in his plea.
He was released from a Houston halfway house, where he had been since late October, said Linda Thomas, spokeswoman for the U.S. Bureau of Prisons. Kopper served about 23 months of his sentence, mostly in low-security prisons in Texarkana and Big Spring.
Kopper was Fastow’s top lieutenant and managed daily operations and negotiations for LJM2, a Fastow-controlled partnership the two men used to steal millions from Enron. Prosecutors said Kopper’s assistance was crucial in obtaining charges against Fastow, who also pleaded guilty and is serving a six-year sentence in Oakdale, La.


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