The Association of U S West Retirees



Obituaries in the News
Washington Post
Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Denver (AP) -  Thomas W. Hall, a former Qwest Communications executive and the first person sentenced in the telecommunications company's accounting scandal, died Monday of brain cancer, his family and attorney said.  He was 55.

Hall died in Chicago, where he and his wife had moved after leaving a Denver suburb, attorney Jeffrey Springer said.

Halls' death came on the day prosecutors in Denver began their insider trading case against former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio.  The allegations against Hall and Nacchio were not directly related, but regulators accuse Qwest of massive accounting fraud.  Prosecutors brought criminal charges against seven former managers, including Hall.

Hall pleaded guilty in 2004 to a misdemeanor charge of falsifying documents stemming from allegations that he and three other former Qwest managers improperly booked nearly $34 million from a deal to connect Arizona schools to the Internet.

Springer said Hall pleaded guilty to end a long criminal case that had left him broke.

Hall had been a senior vice president in Qwest's global business unit.  He and three other former executives were originally charge with 12 felony counts.  In an April 2004 trial, the jury deadlocked on the charges against Hall and one other defendant and acquitted the other two.

Hall was re-indicted on four counts;  he agreed to plead guilty to the single misdemeanor count before his retrial.

Hall testified that he had trusted Qwest's finance, accounting and legal staff to execute the Arizona transaction properly.  He said he broke no laws but took responsibility for failing to keep himself and a subordinate from becoming involved.