updated 09:25 am EST, Fri December 21, 2007
Backdating lawsuit expands
Shareholders suing Apple on the basis of its backdating scandal have refiled their case, expanding it considerably, Reuters says. US District Judge Jeremy Fogel stated, recently, that wrongdoings from before June 2001 could no longer be considered in the plaintiffs' case; the new suit though has grown from 86 pages to 153, and introduces four new allegations of options backdating by Apple management. With these included, the proceeds from the scandal are said to have been over $1 billion, the value of shares given to CEO Steve Jobs in exchange for options rated at just under the $1 billion mark.
Removed from the suit are securities fraud charges predating June 2001; it still accuses Apple of breaching fiduciary duties before that date however, as it is argued the fraud was concealed by company management until much more recently.
The suit targets 13 current and former Apple directors and executives, hoping to recover any illicit profits from the options. Backdating stocks is not necessarily illegal, but companies are required to record an expense for options granted below a stock's contemporary value. In December of last year, Apple attempted to do just that, restating finances as far back as 2002.