Thursday, April 24, 2008, 11:00 am
Apple's Jobs summonsed over latest backdating chargesApple chief executive Steve Jobs and other members of the company's leadership have been summonsed to appear before a court as part of a new lawsuit regarding the electronics maker's long-running options backdating scandal.
The latest claim come by way of the Boston Retirement Board, which is seeking to prove the company's directors wasted more than $105 million on the extra value of backdated stock options granted to Jobs, according to FindLaw.com.
The pension fund alleges that it now has specifics to back up its charges, which it reportedly gathered from a records inspection action initiated earlier in the Santa Clara County Superior Court.
It has yet to disclose those details, however, because the court has not yet ruled on how the confidential information should be treated. As such, the suit says, those specifics might have to go into an amended or sealed version of the complaint to be filed later this year.
Over the past two years, various other Apple shareholder groups have seen their lawsuits over the backdating issue dismissed or stalled for lack of evidence. This was most recently the case with a suit brought about by the the New York City Employees' Retirement System.
A California judge granted Apple's motion for dismissal in that case back in November, allowing the investors leave to refile an amended complaint as part of a derivative suit.
As part of his ruling, the judge noted that Apple's stock price didn't fall as a result of the backdating, which is somewhat of a prerequisite for most shareholder claims against corporations in similar matters.
That suit, the new complaint filed this week, and all those similar, have concern the Apple Board's approval of hundreds of millions of stock options for Jobs and other top-level executives from 1997 to 2001, which the company admitted to in October of 2006.
"The documents Apple has produced provide critical details about Apple's backdating practices and confirm that all of Apple's directors were aware of and participated in the backdating scheme," the latest complaint says.
Among those other members of Apple's leadership summonsed as part of the suit are William Campbell, Millard Drexler, Arthur Levinson, Jerome York, Gareth Chang, Edgar Wollard, Fred Anderson and Nancy Heinen.
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