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12/26/2002
02:55 PM
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Justice Department Won't File Charges In Global Crossing Probe

Source says no criminal charges will be filed in probe of bankrupt networking company.

LOS ANGELES (AP)--A Justice Department probe of accounting practices at Global Crossing Ltd., which is now in bankruptcy proceedings, will not lead to criminal charges, a law enforcement source confirmed Thursday.

"A decision has been made internally within the Justice Department not to bring any criminal charges," the source told The Associated Press on condition of anonymity, confirming published reports on the outcome of the probe.

The company is also under investigation by the Securities and Exchange Commission, and investors have filed dozens of lawsuits.

Global Crossing, a high-speed fiber-optic communications network, is based in Bermuda. It formerly had executive offices in Beverly Hills, Calif.

The company, crushed by $12.4 billion in debt, sought bankruptcy protection in January, claiming $22.4 billion in assets. By then senior executives had sold hundreds of millions of dollars of their stock options.

Gary Winnick, the founder and chairman, sold $734 million of stock between the time the company went public in 1998 and January.

A federal judge in New York City this month approved a Global Crossing reorganization plan that would leave investors with nothing and give debt holders pennies on the dollar, as well as a minority stake in the re-emerging firm.

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