Kozlowski Says He's "Absolutely Not Guilty" - CBS
Former Tyco International Chief Executive Dennis Kozlowski, who is serving a prison sentence of up to 25 years for looting the conglomerate, told CBS television he is "absolutely not guilty," according to excerpts from an interview to be broadcast Sunday.
"I am absolutely not guilty of the charges .... There was no criminal intent here," Kozlowski told the CBS News program '60 Minutes.'
Kozlowski said he believes he was convicted because jurors assumed that someone making $100 million a year must have done something wrong. His case was also confused with accounting scandals at WorldCom and Enron, instead of being treated as a dispute over pay, he said.
Kozlowski and former finance chief Mark Swartz were convicted in June 2005 of stealing more than $150 million from Tyco. The case came to symbolize corporate excess after Kozlowski used company money for a lavish birthday party and home decorations like a $6,000 shower curtain.
The shower curtain was picked by a decorator, Kozlowski told '60 Minutes.' "To this day, I wouldn't know [the shower curtain] if it fell on me."
Kozlowski -- who is serving a sentence of 8-1/3 to 25 years at the Downstate Correctional Facility in Fishkill, New York, an hour from Manhattan -- served as Tyco CEO from 1992 to June 2002, when he was indicted for dodging New York State income taxes.
Last year, he settled the New York tax case, agreeing to pay $21.2 million in taxes, fines and penalties.
Tyco, which has been led by CEO Ed Breen since 2002, is planning to split into three publicly traded companies in coming months.