|[Photo from wikipedia]|
Have you heard the news this week? She's back! Yes, according to various news reports, multi-media mogul Martha Stewart is back on the board of her own company, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia. According to reports, Ms. Stewart has now completed a five-year ban from participating as an executive or board member of a public company.
The five-year ban had reportedly been part of a settlement with the Securities and Exchange Commission, based upon, or related to, her alleged complicity in insider trading of ImClone stock. You will recall that Ms. Stewart was never actually convicted of insider trading. She was only convicted, in 2004, of essentially lying to investigators about the facts related to the ImClone stock transaction. She served 5 months in prison.
I still maintain, as a former federal prosecutor, (and currently, as an Augusta, Georgia criminal defense lawyer), that, if I had been her criminal defense attorney back in 2004, I could have possibly helped her avoid a criminal conviction. In short, as I have written here previously, I believe that, in some grand jury investigations, targets could avoid prosecution if they would avoid making false statements to government agents.
But now, she is back -- on the board of her own company! Don't you agree that she has paid her debt to society? Doesn't she deserve a chance, once again, to rule her multi-media empire? What do you think?