Enron trial begins: some tough choices ahead

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The lawyers have presented their opening arguments in the long-awaited trial of Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling but for all the opprobrium heaped on the pair and the public outrage over Enron's collapse, this trial is no slam dunk.

Houston Chronicle business columnist Loren Steffy argues that Enron's culture of lies is on trial. But the trial is no slam dunk, says Pennsylvania State University accounting professor J. Edward Ketz. He presents an outline of just how powerful the defence arguments are going to be. Remember, Richard Scrushy convinced a jury that he was not guilty.

Enron's workings were hellishly complex. Just one reason why the media went along as cheer leaders. The trial will be long and messy, and that can an advantage for the defence.


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