U. S. SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Litigation Release No. 18372 / September 29, 2003
Securities and Exchange Commission v. Kenneth L. Lay,
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION FILES
Former Enron Chairman and Chief Executive Officer
The Securities and Exchange Commission today announced the filing of a subpoena enforcement action in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia against Kenneth L. Lay, the former Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Enron Corp. Lay has refused to produce documents lawfully subpoenaed by the Commission on the grounds that his act of producing certain documents responsive to the subpoena would violate his Fifth Amendment rights. The Commission seeks a court order requiring Lay to comply with the subpoena and requiring him to produce the requested documents.
The Commission alleges that Lay was Chairman and CEO of Enron during a period when certain fraudulent activities were carried out by Enron and its employees. The Commission's investigation includes whether Lay had knowledge of, or was involved in, fraudulent activities at Enron. The Commission further alleges that documents in Lay's possession that are related to Enron, and generated during his tenure at Enron, are relevant to matters under investigation and within the scope of the Commission's investigative authority. According to the Commission, the documents being withheld by Lay appear to be corporate records, which Lay may not withhold from production based on any personal rights he may have under the Fifth Amendment.
The Commission has requested that the Court order Lay to show cause why he should not comply with the subpoena, and, if appropriate, order Lay to produce the withheld documents for in camera review by the Court. The Commission also seeks such other and further relief as may be necessary and appropriate to achieve compliance with the subpoena.