Congressional committees want Andersen's Enron records

By the OGJ Online Staff

HOUSTON, Dec. 13 -- Two congressional committees Thursday called on Enron auditors Andersen LLP to turn over audit records and permit their staffs to interview the partner in charge of the Houston energy company's account.

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Billy Tauzin (R-La.) and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman James Greenwood (R-Pa.) also want to interview former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling.

The committee staff asked to interview David Duncan, the Andersen partner-in-charge of the Enron account, and other Andersen employees who worked on Enron audits from 1997 to present. Tauzin and Greenwood also asked for work papers relating to proposed financial adjustments by Andersen that were not recorded in Enron�s financial statements since 1997.

The committee said it would look into Enron�s decision announced in November 2001 to restate its financial statements for the years 1997 to the present and asked for records relating to Andersen�s recommendation to Enron to restate its financial statements.

The committee also wants an accounting of Enron�s off-balance sheet debt from 1997 to 2001 and the role Andersen played in terms of consultations or opinions with respect to Enron's Special Purpose Entities (SPE), partnerships, subsidiaries, or affiliates.

It specifically requested information about LJM Cayman LP, LJM2 Co-Investment, LP, Joint Energy Development Investments LP, Chewco Investments LP, the Raptor entities, the Marlin Water Trust, Osprey Trust, Whitewing Associates LP, and Big Doe partnerships, and any transactions by these entities with Enron officers, employees, and directors.

The Securities and Exchange Commission is investigating related-party transactions between Enron employees and some of its off-balance sheet entities. The company reported a $1 billion write down in shareholder equity in the third quarter, resulting from losses associated with its off-balance sheet transactions.

Enron has said it did nothing wrong and is cooperating with the SEC investigation. The company filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection Dec. 2, and laid off more than half its work force. The crippled energy giant's relation with its accountant has since come under intense scrutiny.

The committee also asked for copies of all Andersen presentations made to the audit committee since 1997 and management letters issued by Andersen to Enron since 1997. The staff requested Andersen's audit team�s final memorandum summarizing any sensitive accounting, disclosure, and/or auditing issues.

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