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News
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Lay agrees to appear
graphic February 5, 2002: 5:05 p.m. ET

Congressional committees subpoena ex-Enron chief to force him to show up.
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  • Berardino says Enron didn't talk to Andersen about internal probe - Feb. 5, 2002
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    NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - Former Enron Corp. Chairman Kenneth Lay has agreed to appear before Congress next week in response to a subpoena calling him to testify on the collapse of the energy trader, a top lawmaker said Tuesday. 

    A spokeswoman for Rep. Michael Oxley (R-Ohio), who chairs the House Financial Services Committee, said Lay has agreed to appear before the subcommittee on capital markets on Feb. 14, Valentine's Day. Lay will also appear before the Senate Commerce Committee, Lay's attorney, Earl Silbert, told CNN late Tuesday.

    Some lawmakers expect Lay will invoke his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination and not testify. Sen. Conrad Burns (R-Mont.), for example, expects Lay to refuse to testify when he comes before the Senate Commerce Committee next week at a date still to be determined,  a spokesman for Burns told CNN/Money.

    Those two panels voted Tuesday to subpoena Lay and compel him to appear before Congress.

    Lay declined Sunday to appear before the Senate panel Monday after his lawyer said there would be a "prosecutorial" tone to the proceedings following a report critical of Enron management. A subpoena would force Lay to appear but he still could invoke his Fifth Amendment rights and refuse to testify.

    The Senate panel is delivering their subpoena via fax and requesting the former CEO to appear before them Feb. 12, a spokesman said.

    Silbert, Lay's attorney, said his client will accept a subpoena that the Senate Commerce Committee had voted unanimously to issue earlier in the day.

    The report, issued Saturday by a special committee of Enron's independent directors, blasted how the company handled special partnerships that hid debts and enriched some of its executives.

    It also criticized Lay, saying, "he does not appear to have directed their (the directors') attention or his own" to proper oversight of the partnerships. graphic

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    Berardino says Enron didn't talk to Andersen about internal probe - Feb. 5, 2002





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