The Case Of The Sarbanes-Oxley Act

2270 Words 9 Pages
As the seventh biggest company in the United States at the time, Enron’s downfall in 2001 sent seismic shocks through corporate America. A week before Enron disclosed charges for bad investments totaling more than $1 billion, Arthur Andersen, Enron’s accounting firm, started shredding documents as well as emails that connected them to Enron’s crime. After Enron’s bankruptcy announcement, Congress turned its attention to the regulatory and legal aspect that enabled Enron’s façade to go on for years. As a result, Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002. The act was meant to protect investors from fraudulent accounting activities by corporations. The Sarbanes-Oxley Act mandated strict reforms to improve financial disclosures from corporations …show more content…
The paper further presents and explains A Brief for Petition and an Amicus Brief for the Honorable Michael Oxley to show a contrasting opinion to the Court of Appeals’ decision. It elucidates that the different conclusions reached hung on the interpretation of “tangible object.” The paper concludes that, in deciding Yates v. US, the Supreme Court should follow the reasoning of the two …show more content…
The legislative record shows that Section 1519 was meant to serve in the particular context of corporate financial fraud. In this case, the Supreme Court will have to determine the scope of a “tangible object.” In turn, this will determine the scope of Section 1519. The phrase either derives it’s meaning from a linguistic or statutory context. If the phrase depends on context, as it should, the Supreme Court will examine the surrounding terms and undoubtedly overturn Yates’ conviction because fish are not items for record keeping. Words are not independent; they derive their significance only from the context in which they exist. While John Yates may be liable for catching undersized fish, prosecuting him for Section 1519 of the Sarbanes-Oxley Act completely oversteps the purpose of the provision. Congress’ intention was not to create a new, all encompassing provision. Yet, this is what would result from even the most rudimentary application of the Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit’s

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