In July 2000 I left my Cincinnati law firm for the fast pace and potential rewards of an in-house position with PurchasePro.com Inc., a Nasdaq-listed provider of procurement technology that had recently announced a strategic relationship with America Online Inc. Two years later I resigned my position as general counsel and PurchasePro was in bankruptcy. Both the Securities and Exchange Commission and the U.S. Department of Justice were investigating the company and its dealings with AOL during the fourth quarter of 2000 and the first quarter of 2001.
In January 2005, I was indicted, along with three other former PurchasePro executives and two former AOL employees, on charges of conspiracy, securities fraud and making false statements to auditors and government agents. Six former PurchasePro senior executives have pled guilty to various felony charges over the past few years, while the other five defendants await trial later this year.
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