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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
Before The
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION

SECURITIES ACT OF 1933
Release No. 7987 / June 19, 2001

SECURITIES EXCHANGE ACT OF 1934
Release No. 44446 / June 19, 2001

ACCOUNTING AND AUDITING ENFORCEMENT
Release No. 1407 / June 19, 2001

ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDING
File No. 3-10514


In the Matter of

EDWARD G. MAIER, CPA,

Respondent.

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ORDER INSTITUTING PUBLIC
ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDINGS, MAKING
FINDINGS AND IMPOSING REMEDIAL
SANCTIONS PURSUANT TO RULE 102(e)
OF THE COMMISSION'S RULES OF PRACTICE

I.

The Securities and Exchange Commission ("Commission") deems it appropriate and in the public interest to institute public administrative proceedings against Respondent Edward G. Maier ("Maier" or "Respondent") pursuant to paragraph (3) of Rule 102(e) of the Commission's Rules of Practice [17 C.F.R.§ 201.102(e)].1

II.

In anticipation of the institution of these proceedings, Maier has submitted an Offer of Settlement ("Offer"), which the Commission has determined to accept. Solely for the purpose of these proceedings and any other proceeding brought by or on behalf of the Commission or to which the Commission is a party, and without admitting or denying the findings, except as to the Commission's jurisdiction over the subject matter of these proceedings and as to the entry of the injunction set forth in Section III, which are admitted, Maier consents to the entry of this the Order Instituting Public Proceedings, Making Findings and Imposing Remedial Sanctions Pursuant to Rule 102(e) of the Commission's Rules of Practice ("Order").2

III.

The Commission finds the following3:

A. Maier, age 54, is a certified public accountant licensed in Texas, Florida, and Illinois and was, during the relevant period covered by this Order, a partner at Arthur Andersen LLP. Maier was the concurring partner for the audits of the financial statements of Waste Management, Inc. for the years 1993 through 1996.

B. Arthur Andersen LLP is a national public accounting firm and, during the relevant period covered by this Order, served as the independent public accountant for Waste Management, Inc.

C. Waste Management, Inc. was, during the relevant period covered by this Order, a Delaware corporation with its principal place of business in Oak Brook, Illinois. At all times pertinent to the period covered by this Order, the common stock of Waste Management was registered with the Commission pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 ("Exchange Act") and traded on the New York Stock Exchange.

D. On June 19, 2001, the Commission filed a complaint against Maier and others in the United States District Court for the District of Columbia. SEC v. Arthur Andersen LLP, et al., No. 1:01CV01348 (JR) (D.D.C.). The Commission's complaint alleged, among other things, that (1) Maier, as concurring partner, knowingly or recklessly caused the issuance of materially false and misleading audit reports on Waste Management's financial statements for the period 1993 through 1996, (2) those false and misleading audit reports were incorporated into registration statements Waste Management filed with the Commission pursuant to the Securities Act of 1933 ("Securities Act"), and (3) as a result of his conduct, Maier violated Section 17(a) of the Securities Act, Section 10(b) of the Exchange Act, and Exchange Act Rule 10b-5.

E. On June 19, 2001, the United States District Court for the District of Columbia entered a final judgment permanently enjoining Maier from violating Section 17(a) of the Securities Act, Section 10(b) of the Exchange Act, and Exchange Act Rule 10b-5. Maier consented to the entry of the final judgment without admitting or denying the allegations of the Commission's complaint.

IV.

Based on the foregoing, the Commission deems it appropriate and in the public interest to accept Maier's Offer of Settlement and accordingly,

IT IS HEREBY ORDERED, effective immediately, that Maier is denied the privilege of appearing or practicing before the Commission as an accountant, and

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED that, after three (3) years from the date of this Order, Maier may request that the Commission consider his reinstatement by submitting an application (attention: Office of the Chief Accountant) to resume appearing or practicing before the Commission as:

  1. a preparer or reviewer, or a person responsible for the preparation or review, of any public company's financial statements that are filed with the Commission. Such an application must satisfy the Commission that Respondent's work in his practice before the Commission will be reviewed either by the independent audit committee of the public company for which he works or in some other acceptable manner, as long as he practices before the Commission in this capacity; and/or

  2. an independent accountant. Such an application must satisfy the Commission that: (a) Maier, or the firm with which he is associated, is a member of the SEC Practice Section of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants Division for CPA Firms ("SEC Practice Section"), (b) Maier, or the firm, has received an unqualified report relating to his firm's most recent peer review conducted in accordance with the guidelines adopted by the SEC Practice Section, and (c) as long as Maier appears or practices before the Commission as an independent accountant, he will remain either a member of the SEC Practice Section or associated with a member firm of the SEC Practice Section, and will comply with all applicable SEC Practice Section requirements, including all requirements for periodic peer reviews, concurring partner reviews, and continuing professional education.

IT IS FURTHER ORDERED, that the Commission's review of an application by Maier to resume appearing or practicing before the Commission may include consideration of, in addition to the matters referenced above, any other matters relating to Maier's character, integrity, professional conduct, or qualifications to appear or practice before the Commission.

By the Commission.

Jonathan G. Katz
Secretary


Footnotes

1 Rule 102(e) provides, in pertinent part:
(3)(i) The Commission, with due regard to the public interest and without preliminary hearing, may, by order . . . suspend from appearing or practicing before it any . . . accountant . . . who . . . has been by name:
(A) Permanently enjoined by any court of competent jurisdiction by reason of his or her misconduct in an action brought by the Commission, from violating or aiding and abetting the violation of any provision of the Federal securities laws (15 U.S.C. §§ 77a-80b-20) or of the rules and regulations thereunder . . .

(iv) . . . A person who has consented to the entry of a permanent injunction . . . without admitting the facts set forth in the complaint shall be presumed for all purposes under this paragraph (3) to have been enjoined by reason of the misconduct alleged in the complaint.

2 This matter is related to SEC v. Arthur Andersen LLP, et al., No. 1:01CV01348 (JR) (D.D.C.) [Release No. LR-17039] (June 19, 2001), In the Matter of Arthur Andersen LLP [Release No. 34-44444] (June 19, 2001), and In the Matter of Robert G. Kutsenda, CPA, [Release No. 34-44448 ] (June 19, 2001).
3 The findings herein are made pursuant to the Respondent's Offer and are not binding on any other person or entity in this or any other proceeding.

http://www.sec.gov/litigation/admin/33-7987.htm
Modified: 06/19/2001