Cognos reassigns new exec after indictment

Cognos has announced that Andrew Cahill, who was a senior vice-president at the company, has been reassigned to other duties after being indicted by the US Department of Justice (DOJ) in connection with activities at his previous employer.

Cahill was indicted in connection with activities that led to financial restatements at Peregrine Systems for the period of April 1999 through the end of December 2001, Cognos said.

In the interim, Cognos senior vice-president of worldwide operations, Tony Sirianni, will assume Cahill's duties. Cahill joined Cognos in May. He has held leadership positions at IBM, Candle Software and Peregrine.

The DOJ announced that a federal grand jury in San Diego had handed up an indictment charging eight former executives of Peregrine, one former outside auditor, and two outside business partners with conspiracy to commit a multi-billion dollar securities fraud involving the company's performance.

Additionally, a former Peregrine sales executive pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice, joining several others who agreed to cooperate in the government's ongoing investigation.

The indictment alleges that during its IPO from 1997 to 2002, Peregrine reported 17 consecutive quarters of revenue growth that met or exceeded Wall Street analysts' expectations.

In May 2002, the company announced it was conducting an internal investigation into potential misstatements in its prior reports, and then filed for bankruptcy in September 2002, eventually cancelling its common stocks leading to the loss of more than $US4 billion in shareholder equity.

"These indictments stem from historical events that took place nearly two-and-a-half years ago, and none of the individuals indicted are current employees of the company," Peregrine president and CEO, John Mutch, said. "The company has fully cooperated with the government in its investigations and will continue to do so.

"In the last two-and-a-half years, we have completed our reorganisation, streamlined operations, retained customer loyalty, and accelerated product innovations. Our immediate priorities are to become current on our financial filings, so that all stockholders can have access to the company's progress, and to build stockholder value by strengthening our leadership in the asset and service management market."

Among those also named in the indictment were former Peregrine CEO, Stephen Parker Gardner, and former president and COO, Gary Lee Lenz.

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