Just over four years after Enron became the largest bankruptcy in corporate history, costing employees and investors billions of dollars, the company’s founder and its former chief executive will finally get their day in court.
Jeffrey Skilling’s role in the collapse of the former energy giant is examined in the documentary film “Enron: Smartest Guys in the Room” from Magnolia Pictures.
CNN’s Chris Huntington talks to a former Enron employee as two Enron bosses prepare to go to trial on Monday.
Jury selection in the long-awaited Enron trial began Monday in Houston after last-minute efforts by defense attorneys to delay the trial or change the venue were rejected.
Former Enron CEO Jeffrey Skilling and founder Kenneth Lay arrived at the federal courthouse looking relaxed and poised just after it opened at 9:30 a.m. ET.
They were joined by a pool of 96 potential jurors made up of 54 women and 42 men. About 400 people were originally called to jury duty, with at least 150 dropped for hardship or bias.
During the arrivals, Lay told CNN, “I’m feeling fine. All we’re hoping for today is to pick a fair jury that will give me a fair shake, and the outcome will be fine.”
Daniel Petrocelli, Skilling’s attorney told reporters, “We’re really looking forward to this.”
As of 1 p.m. ET Monday, attorneys for both sides had screened 48 of the 96 potential jurors. Once they have gone through all 96 candidates, then they will pick 12 jurors and 4 alternates. During this process, the judge will remove rejected jurors for cause, then the attorneys will analyze who is left and narrow the field further. The first 16 candidates chosen will serve as the jurors and alternates