Enron Trial: Skilling Cross Examination Continues

The cross examination of former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling continues this morning. Houston Public Radio's Ed Mayberry reports. Aired 4/18/06 during the KUHF Morning Business report.

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Prosecutor Sean Berkowitz noted that Skilling has had two years to "tailor" his testimony to fit documents, recordings and other evidence, and has had the advantage of listening to weeks of evidence presented by government witnesses. Skilling denied having to tailor or rehearse his testimony, saying he has nothing to hide.

Skilling said he did not have insider information when he sold stock shortly after leaving Enron as CEO in the summer of 2001. He did meet with Enron founder Ken Lay about a week after leaving, but said he was not told of problems at Enron at the meeting. That was on the same day Lay was to meet with Sherron Watkins, who had sent a memo warning of accounting irregularities.

The former CEO admitted there may have been a conflict of interest when he invested in a start-up internet company in 1998 that allowed people to upload photos for sharing. The company had contracts with Enron, and he had dated the firm's owner. Enron's Code of Ethics would have required disclosure of the potential conflict of interest to the Board of Directors.

The overflow room on the fourth floor of the Federal Courthouse, which has a closed-circuit link to the trial on the ninth floor, has been filled to capacity by onlookers.

Ed Mayberry, Houston Public Radio News.

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