Ex-Qwest exec settles suit
Casey to pay $2.1 million, cooperate with SEC probe
By Sandy Shore, The Associated Press
Denver Post
Thursday, September 8, 2005

A federal judge in Denver on Wednesday approved a $2.1 million civil settlement for a former Qwest Communications executive accused of participating in a conspiracy that forced the phone company to restate billions of dollars in revenue.

Gregory M. Casey, who admitted no wrongdoing under the settlement, will pay the money and will be prohibited from acting as a director or an officer of a public company for five years.

He also will cooperate with Securities and Exchange Commission investigators looking into accounting irregularities at the Denver-based telephone provider.

Casey was absent from a brief court hearing during which U.S. District Judge Marcia Krieger made some minor wording changes before approving the settlement. Both sides agreed to the changes.

Attorneys for Qwest and Casey left the courthouse without comment.

The former top sales executive was one of seven former Qwest executives, including former chief executive Joe Nacchio, named in the SEC's lawsuit alleging accounting schemes that eventually forced the company to erase revenue. Nacchio has denied wrongdoing.

The SEC said the executives' actions allowed Qwest to improperly report approximately $3 billion in revenue that helped clear the way for its 2000 acquisition of regional phone company US West. It is seeking compensation from the former executives and civil penalties.

Casey, the only defendant who has reached a final settlement, was accused of backdating contracts to allow Qwest to immediately recognize revenue it was to receive later. He earned $34.9 million from Qwest from 1999 to 2001, the suit said.