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Monday, 4 February, 2002, 19:08 GMT
Enron: corporate meltdown
Enron building and logo
Enron building and logo
In just 15 years, Enron grew to be America's seventh largest company but it is now at the centre of a scandal with far-reaching political and financial implications. BBC News Online chronicles the fall of the collapsed US energy giant.

26 February 2002: Skilling denies wrongdoing

Jeffrey Skilling, former chief executive of Enron
Mr Skilling appeared distressed but defiant

Enron's former chief executive Jeffrey Skilling has outraged Senators by insisting that he had not done anything wrong. His comments that Enron's collapse was caused by a "classic run on the bank" created such anger that the hearing degenerated into a slanging match at times.

 The BBC's Stephen Evans reports

14 February 2002: Enron witness: 'Lay was duped'

Sherron Watkins
Ms Watkins' testimony has been eagerly awaited

Speaking before a congressional committee, Former Enron employee and "whistle blower" Sherron Watkins says she discovered a $700m (489m) hole in Enron's finances and urged former chief executive Kenneth Lay to find out who was responsible.

 The BBC's Patrick O'Connell reports

 Enron Corporation executive Sherron Watkins testifies on Capitol Hill

12 February 2002: Lay invokes fifth amendment

Kenneth Lay
Kenneth Lay

The ex-chairman of the failed energy giant appeared before the Congressional hearing, but exercised his right not to incriminate himself. In a brief statement, he expressed his sadness at the impact of the firm's collapse on staff and shareholders.

 The BBC's Stephen Sackur reports

4 February 2002: Enron inquiry kicks off

The Senate says it will subpoena Mr Lay to force him to appear
Anti-Enron feeling is running high

As Congress begins a week of hearings into the collapse of Enron, aiming to discover how to protect against similar disasters, a key witness - Enron's former chief executive and chairman Kenneth Lay - refuses to be cross-examined at the last moment.

 The BBC's Stephen Evans reports

28 January 2002: Savings lost

Many Enron workers have lost hundreds of thousands of dollars in the company's collapse
More than 5,000 employees lost their jobs

Hundreds of current and former employees of Enron seek damages for losses they suffered by investing in the company's share plan. They allege Enron encouraged its employees to invest their savings in its shares despite senior executives knowing about the firm's real plight.

 Lawyer for Enron workers Ron Kilgaard

25 January 2002: Top Enron executive commits suicide

Clifford Baxter
Mr Baxter's role in the Enron affair is unclear

Clifford Baxter, a former senior executive of Enron, is found in his car in his hometown of Sugar Land, a suburb of Houston, Texas. A source close to the police investigation into Mr Baxter's death says he had written in a suicide note that he could not stand the pain of the scandal.

 Washington Post journalist Dana Milbank

23 January 2002: Was Mr Lay 'Mr Enron'?

Mr Lay has a close relationships with the US government
Enron's former chief executive and chairman Kenneth Lay

Enron chairman and chief executive Kenneth Lay resigns. Mr Lay ran Enron since it was founded in 1986 and is close to senior members of the Bush administration. Meanwhile, Enron shares are delisted on New York stock market.

 The BBC's Stephen Evans reports

10 January 2002: Enron documents 'disposed of'

Andersen audit executives
Andersen audit executives face a tough grilling

Enron's auditors, Andersen, reveal that some of its employees destroyed a number of documents related to its handling of Enron's accounts. Andersen says it had suspended its current records management policy and told all employees to keep all existing documents.

 The BBC's Nick Bryant reports

2 December 2001: Enron files for bankruptcy

Enron power station at Redcar, Teeside, UK
Enron has power stations throughout the world

Enron files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. The move comes after Enron admits it lost $586m, instead of the massive profits claimed previously. The company bars its employees from selling the company shares locked into their retirement plans.

 The BBC's Stephen Evans

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