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FBI Significant Corporate Fraud Cases – Beazer Homes

Beazer Homes (Charlotte): A subprime-related corporate fraud investigation conducted by the Charlotte Field Office recently culminated in the trial conviction of the former chief accounting officer of Beazer Homes USA (Beazer). Executives at Beazer, a former Fortune 500 company located in Charlotte, North Carolina, encouraged the use of false information to finance and sell homes and to manipulate corporate earnings to meet specific goals. This manipulation of earnings, referred to as cookie jar accounting, allowed Beazer to reduce its net income during strong financial periods and provide it with excess balances and reserves, allowing it to “smooth earnings” during times of underperformance. On July 1, 2009, Beazer entered into a deferred prosecution agreement (DPA) acknowledging corporate culpability in this complex fraud scheme. As part of the DPA, Beazer agreed to pay restitution of $50 million and continued to cooperate with the government’s criminal investigation of former Beazer executives. On October 28, 2011, Michael Rand, the former chief accounting officer of Beazer, was convicted on seven of 11 counts after a three-week trial. Sentencing is planned for 2012.

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