Monday, July 18, 2005

Greenberg vs. Spitzer

Possibly emboldened by the Sihpol Verdict, AIG ex-chied Hank Greenberg is fighting back against Spitzer's attempts to try the case in the media by publicly commenting on the case himself. Houston lawyer and blogger Tom Kirkendall has covered this case well and reports the following:
In his comments -- which reportedly drew applause at least once -- Mr. Greenberg promised at least one "white paper" that will rebut AIG's restatement of five years worth of earnings and the allegations of accounting improprieties that Mr. Spitzer has made in a civil-fraud lawsuit against Mr. Greenberg and AIG. Mr. Greenberg stated that the white paper would be sent to regulators and then made available to the public.

Mr. Greenberg also advised his audience that AIG's previous accounting for the compensation that Starr International provided to AIG executives had been reviewed and approved by AIG's legal and accounting advisers. Moreover, when AIG board members raised questions about using Starr International as a compensation vehicle, Mr. Greenberg stated that he offered to put the issue to a vote of AIG shareholders, but that the AIG board declined to do so. Finally, Mr. Greenberg stated that a 2003 letter from an outside law firm advised AIG that its disclosure of the Starr International compensation plan in regulatory filings was appropriate.

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