U.S. prosecutors on Tuesday will announce civil and criminal charges against four former executives of U.S. Foodservice in connection with an accounting scandal that battered its parent company, Ahold NV.
Securities fraud, conspiracy and other charges will be unveiled against former marketing manager Mark Kaiser, former Chief Financial Officer Michael Resnick and former Vice President William Carter and a former purchasing executive, Timothy Lee, according to a source close to the investigation.
An executive from one of U.S. Foodservice’s suppliers will also be charges separately with insider trading, the source said.
The Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s office is due to announce the charges at a news conference that will be held with representatives from the FBI and the Securities and Exchange Commission later on Tuesday.
Ahold, the world’s third-largest food retailer and food services group after Wal-Mart Stories Inc. (WMT.N: Quote, Profile, Research) and Carrefour (CARR.PA: Quote, Profile, Research) , is slowly recovering from an accounting scandal that shook markets in February 2003.
The accounting problems centered on the Dutch company overstating profit by nearly one billion euros, mainly because of inflated figures at its U.S. Foodservice unit.
U.S. Foodservice was not immediately available for comment.
The charges against the four executive are the first brought by U.S. authorities in connection with the scandal, and highlight efforts by prosecutors to investigate questionable accounting practices in the food industry.
Ahold, which also faces shareholder lawsuits, owns Stop & Shop and Giant in the United States and Dutch market leader Albert Heijn, among other chains. The accounting irregularities have led to about 40 senior dismissals or resignations at the company.