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Last Updated: Wednesday, 1 March 2006, 06:37 GMT
Enron dealing 'lacked integrity'
Former Enron executive David Delainey
Mr Delainey said he came under pressure to improve earnings
Enron regularly used money from its reserves to manipulate profits, a former senior executive at the US energy firm has testified.

David Delainey told the trial of former Enron bosses Ken Lay and Jeffrey Skilling that hiding losses was "standard operating procedure".

"At Enron, we tended to be pretty fast and loose with its rules," he said.

Mr Lay and Mr Skilling deny they presided over a multi-billion dollar fraud at the Houston-based business.

'Loss adjusting'

They face a total of 38 counts of conspiracy, fraud and insider trading.

There was no business purpose to this other than to hide the loss and I knew that was not proper
David Delainey, former Enron executive

Mr Delainey said he told Mr Skilling, Enron's former chief executive, in 2001 that a proposal to subsume losses at its retail arm within its profitable wholesale business "lacked integrity".

"There was no business purpose to this other than to hide the loss and I knew that was not proper," Mr Delainey, the former head of Enron's wholesale trading business, told jurors.

"(Skilling) looked at me and said 'what do you want to do?'," Mr Delainey added.

When asked by prosecutors what he believed Mr Skilling meant, Mr Delainey said: "Get in line."

However, despite feeling under constant pressure to put a gloss on Enron's financial position, Mr Delainey said that he was never actually told by either Mr Skilling or Mr Lay to break the law.

Denial

Mr Delainey, who pleaded guilty to insider trading in 2003, is the second senior Enron executive to testify that Enron dipped into its reserves to improve the picture of its finances.

Wesley Colwell, a former chief accountant at a large Enron unit, testified on Monday that he moved $14m from one account to another so that the firm could beat Wall Street profit targets.

Mr Skilling and former chairman Ken Lay maintain that they were unaware of the huge accounting fraud which took place at the company.

They claim it was perpetrated by people underneath them.


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