Ex-WorldCom CFO coughs in Mississippi court case

Securities fraud rap

The ex-CFO of WorldCom pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit securities fraud in front of a Mississippi court yesterday. Scott Sullivan's appearance before Hinds County Circuit Judge Bobby DeLaughter relates to the multi-billion dollar accounting scandal that led to the high-profile collapse of the telecoms giant.

Although the sentencing of Sullivan has been delayed, he faces up to five years in jail and a $5,000 (£2,700) fine, according to wire reports.

The Mississippi attorney general's office is working with authorities over the collapse of WorldCom. In March, Sullivan pleaded guilty to fraud and conspiracy charges and agreed to co-operate with investigators over the accounting scandal that rocked the corporate world.

Sullivan accepted a permanent bar on acting as an officer and director of a public company or practising as an accountant. He admitted he was guilty of "engaging in a fraudulent scheme to conceal WorldCom's poor financial performance."

In April, WorldCom emerged from Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after spending two years clearing up the mess left behind from the damaging accounting scandal. The US telco formally ditched the tainted name of WorldCom and is now known as MCI, Inc. ®

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