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Skilling Files Motion Seeking Acquittal or New Trial

Former Enron Corp. CEO Jeffrey Skilling, who was convicted last month on 19 counts of conspiracy, fraud and insider trading, filed a motion last week seeking a new trial or acquittal on all of the criminal counts.

The motion, filed in U.S. District Court in Houston, stated that the evidence presented at Skilling's joint trial with Enron founder Kenneth Lay was "insufficient to sustain a conviction" on all 19 charges. According to the motion, the government never established that Skilling made an agreement with anyone to commit securities fraud. And in charges related to Enron's 1999 financial results, the motion indicated there is a "material variance" between the allegations and the trial evidence.

Skilling's motion also stated that the government failed to establish that Skilling committed any insider trading after he left Enron because the government never proved Skilling was "an insider," that he possessed nonpublic information about the company, or that his stock sales in September 2001 were an attempt to defraud investors.

"The evidence presented at trial was legally insufficient as to every element of every count," the motion stated. U.S. District Judge Sim Lake, who presided over the trial, was asked to set aside the jury's verdict or to vacate the judgment and order a new trial.

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