Log in
Login
Password
Remember
Forgot password ?
Become a member for free
Sign up
Sign up
Settings
Settings
Dynamic quotes 

4-Traders Homepage  >  News

News

Latest NewsCompaniesMarketsEconomy & ForexCommoditiesInterest RatesHot NewsMost Read NewsRecomm.Business LeadersCalendar 
The feature you requested does not exist. However, we suggest the following feature:

Swisher Hygiene : SEC files civil charges against former Swisher Hygiene executives

share with twitter share with LinkedIn share with facebook
share via e-mail
0
05/28/2016 | 12:04am CEST

May 27--The Securities and Exchange Commission has filed civil charges against three former executives of Swisher Hygiene, the Charlotte-based cleaning company that has been embroiled in a long-running investigation of its accounting practices.

The SEC case filed this week is the latest legal action taken against the company and its former executives, including criminal charges brought last fall. Swisher last year sold its U.S. operations to Minnesota-based Ecolab.

Michael Kipp, Swisher's former chief financial officer, and Joanne Viard, Swisher's former director of external reporting, face multiple charges of violating securities laws for alleged accounting manipulations designed to meet profit targets, the SEC said Tuesday.

A third former executive, John Pierrard, who was Swisher's director of financial planning, settled SEC claims filed against him by agreeing not to violate securities laws in the future or to serve as an officer or director of a company that issues securities. The SEC did not impose a civil penalty on Pierrard in return for his cooperation in the investigation, according to court filings.

In October, the U.S. Attorney's Office in Charlotte announced that Pierrard, of Delray Beach, Fla., had agreed to plead guilty to his role in Swisher's scheme to manipulate its books and inflate reported earnings. Later that month, a grand jury indicted Kipp, of Charlotte, and Viard, of Santa Rosa Beach, Fla., on securities fraud and obstruction of justice charges.

In a deferred prosecution agreement announced in October, the company itself accepted responsibility for the conduct of its former employees and agreed to a $2 million penalty.

Kipp and Viard have pleaded not guilty in the criminal case, according to court records. A sentencing date has not been set for Pierrard.

Brian Cromwell, a Parker Poe attorney representing Pierrard, declined to comment because of the ongoing criminal case. Cromwell said it can be assumed that his client is cooperating in the criminal case because of his cooperation in the SEC case.

An attorney for Viard declined to comment and an attorney for Kipp could not immediately be reached.

Swisher, a provider of janitorial and cleaning-supply services, has been dogged by allegations of financial wrongdoing since 2012, when the fast-growing company said that it was conducting an internal investigation of its accounting practices after a former employee raised concerns. Swisher's stock plunged and investors filed suit.

According to the SEC complaint, Kipp, taking advantage of Swisher's weak internal controls, "directed his accounting group to aggressively reevaluate and manipulate various acquisition-related reserves and expenses" to meet predetermined earnings targets. Viard, according to the complaint, "identified potential acquisition-related entries that could be reclassified to meet earnings targets."

At the direction of Kipp, Pierrard manipulated Swisher's allowance for doubtful accounts, "knowing or consciously disregarding" that the actions were not in accordance with proper accounting practices, according to the complaint. Staff researcher Maria David contributed.

Rick Rothacker: 704-358-5170, @rickrothacker

___

(c)2016 The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C.)

Visit The Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, N.C.) at www.charlotteobserver.com

Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

© Tribune Content Agency, source Regional News

share with twitter share with LinkedIn share with facebook
share via e-mail
0
React to this article
Latest news
Date Title
12:04a SWISHER HYGIENE : SEC files civil charges against former Swisher Hygiene executives
12:03a Goodman & Nekvasil, P.A. Law Office Announces a $204,867.98 FINRA Arbitration Award Against Legend Securities, Inc., a New York Broker-Dealer
12:01a PHOSAGRO : Included in Forbes Global 2000 for 2016
12:01a NATUZZI : Margins Continue to Improve
12:01a CELANESE : Announces Acetic Acid Price Increase in China
12:01a GeneNews Announces Full Year 2015 Financial Results
05/28 Fed reaction to data barrage is focus for stocks
05/27 NEW YORK TIMES : What Silicon Valley's billionaires don't understand about the first amendment
05/27 ECLAC ECONOMIC COMMISSION FOR LATIN AMERICA AND : Authorities Establish the Forum of the Countries of Latin America and the Caribbean on Sustainable Development
05/27 ECOSOC UNITED NATIONS ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCI : Inclusive Dialogue Key to Resolving Crisis in Burundi, Secretary-General Stresses, Commending Arusha Meetings, President’s Decision to Hold More
Latest news
Advertisement
Hot News 
BOXHILL TECHNOLOGIES : Swings To Profit As Shares Resume Trading (ALLISS)
MAY 31 DEADLINE ALERT : GPM Reminds Investors of the Looming Deadline in the Class Action Lawsuit Against DS Healthcare Group, Inc.
PURICORE : To Stop Selling ProduceFresh Until Registered As Pesticide
DGAP-ADHOC : DO Deutsche Office AG: The Executive Board and the Supervisory Board set
UBISENSE : Notice of AGM
Most Read News
06:01p NATUZZI : Margins Continue to Improve
06:01p GeneNews Announces Full Year 2015 Financial Results
06:01p PHOSAGRO : Included in Forbes Global 2000 for 2016
06:03p Goodman & Nekvasil, P.A. Law Office Announces a $204,867.98 FINRA Arbitration Award Against Legend Securities, Inc., a New York Broker-Dealer
06:01p CELANESE : Announces Acetic Acid Price Increase in China
Most recommended articles
06:00p Fed reaction to data barrage is focus for stocks
05:56pDJPHILIPPE DAUMAN : Judge Grants Request by Viacom Chairman, Board Member for Hearing Over Ouster From Trust
05:36pDJINDUSTRIAL AND COML BANK OF CHINA : ICBC Standard Bank Gets OK to Operate as U.S.-Registered Swap Dealer
05:31pDJGRAIN HIGHLIGHTS : Top Stories of the Day
04:58pDJVERIZON COMMUNICATIONS : Unions Reach 'Agreement in Principle' -- 2nd Update