Within the first few moments of questioning, Hueston asked Lay if he had paid back the $7.5 million he owed Enron’s line of credit in January 2002; Lay had just finished testifying that he had paid back all but the debt he owed Enron. That sparked anger as Lay said he tried to pay that off in 2003 and 2004 but Hueston blocked his ability to do so.
As Hueston, in a cool voice, asked him again if he had tried to pay it off in January 2002, Lay leaned forward in his chair and in a clipped, angry voice responded “Mr. Hueston, when I was sworn in here I was sworn in here to tell the truth, the whole truth, not the partial truth…. No principal was paid because you blocked the settlement.”
Hueston, without missing a beat, shifted gears and accused Lay of trying to contact potential witnesses, as well as government witness Vince Kaminsky, during the course of the trial in an attempt to “get your stories straight.”
Lay said he only attempted to contact former executives at Goldman Sachs – despite being told repeatedly by Goldman Sachs attorneys to direct all contact to them – in order to make sure he had his facts straight about a meeting in which Lay said Goldman approached the company and warned that it was vulnerable to a hostile takeover in 2001 due to its low stock price.