Before resigning in 2002:
Arrest mug shot in 2003:
Leaving court after sentencing in 2005:
Given that a settlement of civil charges will take away virtually all of his assets, I have some empathy for Mr. Ebbers and real sympathy for his family due to the criminal sentencing. Aeschylus would write about this if he had a weblog.
Mr. Ebbers’ actions contributed to knee-jerk legislation that has a daily impact on the 99+% of companies that were already operating within the law. But that’s also an indictment of Congress–and they have immunity.
This 25 year prison term for corporate criminal liability seems disproportionate. I agree with Professor Ribstein that a loathing of capitalism is part of the story; I see Mr. Ebbers as a cause as well as a victim. Tom Kirkendall and Professor Podgor weigh in with excellent observations on the sentencing angle as well.