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Charges Dismissed Against Former DENA Executive

The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Texas on Thursday filed a motion to dismiss charges against a former Duke Energy North America LLC (DENA) trading executive whose case ended in a mistrial in December (see NGI, Dec. 12, 2005).

Last month, a Houston jury had dismissed seven counts but deadlocked on 12 other counts against Timothy Kramer, an ex-DENA vice president. At the time, Judge Nancy Atlas declared a mistrial and gave federal prosecutors until mid-January to decide if the case would be retried.

In a prepared statement, prosecutors said, "We have the responsibility to follow the law coupled with the luxury of doing the right thing. Our decision not to retry Mr. Kramer was made after careful consideration and thoughtful deliberation consistent with that precept." The Enron Task Force had no other comment.

Kramer's attorney Jim Lavine said the decision was a relief to his client. Kramer has "been fighting" for more than three years, Lavine said. "He certainly feels vindicated; humbled but vindicated."

Todd Reid, another former DENA vice president, ex-energy trader Brian Lavielle and Kramer had been accused of making illegal roundtrip natural gas and power trades beginning in 2001 to receive larger bonuses (see NGI, April 22, 2004).

Reid, who was tried with Kramer, last month was found not guilty on all 19 counts for conspiracy, fraud and falsifying records. Lavielle had earlier pleaded guilty to falsifying DENA's books, and he is said to be cooperating with the prosecution (see NGI, Feb. 14, 2005). Lavielle has not been sentenced.

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