The Securities and Exchange Commission on Monday sued three former top executives of Gemstar-TV Guide International Inc. as part of its investigation of accounting irregularities at the Los Angeles firm.
The suit, filed in U.S. District Court in Los Angeles, named Peter Boylan, Gemstar's former co-president; Jonathan Orlick, its former general counsel; and Craig Waggy, a former chief financial officer of TV Guide, the magazine owned by Gemstar. All three were charged with securities fraud violations for allegedly participating in a "widespread and complex scheme" to inflate revenue and mislead investors about the company's financial performance.
Lawyers for the executives denied the charges.
In addition, Boylan's attorney, Patricia Glaser, said she was frustrated by the SEC's decision to sue her client because he had been cooperating with the agency for the last 14 months. She also said the SEC had information that vindicates Boylan.
The SEC is seeking unspecified civil penalties and wants any ill-gotten gains to be returned to shareholders. It also wants each of three to be barred from serving as an officer or director of a public company.