Blogs & Comment

Drabinsky Final Argument - 2: Eckstein Did It.

The False Accusations:
Okay, heres the gist of the defence argument: Eckstein did it all without the knowledge or permission of Drabinsky or Gottlieb. Eckstein was a flawed individual who lacked integrity and was not a particularly competent accountant. He was hired to do relatively simple accounting when Livent was a private partnership, not the more complex accounting the company required in later years. Which begs the question, why was he hired in the first place? Why was he not replaced later?
Eckstein gave Livent accountants and presumably Livents senior executives – plausible rationales for his illegal accounting moves.
The accounting house of cards came crashing down in April 1998 when former Hollywood mogul Michael Ovitz agreed to invest U$20 million in the company a move that would see Drabinsky and Gottlieb hand over day-to-day control of the company to new managers brought in by Ovitz.
Members of Livents accounting department realized Ecksteins rationales would not save them and their complicity in the fraud would be revealed. Knowing that the facts would not implicate Drabinsky or Gottlieb, Livent CFO Maria Messina decided to create a complex and dramatic story that would implicate Drabinsky in the fraud.