[JURIST] A federal appeals court Friday affirmed [ruling, PDF] the securities fraud conviction and 25-year prison sentence [JURIST report] handed down for former WorldCom [MCI/WorldCom website] CEO Bernard Ebbers [JURIST news archive]. Ebbers appealed the 2005 district court determinations, saying the prosecution unfairly blocked three former WorldCom employees from testifying on Ebbers' behalf because, at the time, they were the subject of a criminal probe. Ebbers also argued on appeal before the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit [official website] that the 25-year sentence was unreasonably long for a non-violent conviction.
Ebbers was convicted of fraud and conspiracy [JURIST report] in March 2005 in connection with an $11 billion fraud scheme which drove WorldCom into bankruptcy. On Thursday, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) [official website] announced it had reached a settlement [JURIST report] with former WorldCom accountant Scott Sullivan and six others for their roles in fraudulent adjustments and entries in WorldCom's books and records. AP has more.