1. Kenneth Lay
It’s hard to believe Enron Corporation was once a humble energy company when it’s remembered now as the embodiment of corporate greed and deception. American businessman Kenneth Lay, born in April 15, 1942, may look unassuming but his guidance took Enron all the way to the bank. They stole from the elderly, their own company and even the State of California. Make no mistake, Lay was the architect of the planet’s biggest fraud.
Enron’s simple con was to decide their own worth without ever revealing their books. Amazingly it went unchallenged and they grew into a $68 billion corporation. Enron’s callous greed went to new lows when they orchestrated the California energy crisis, even publicly joking the only difference between California and the Titanic is “At least when the Titanic went down the lights were on”. Just like every other entry on this list Enron got too big for its boots and soon the authorities were clamping down.
Enron filed for bankruptcy, costing employees their jobs and life savings, while investors lost billions of dollars. Kenneth Lay single handily ruined the lives of hundreds of thousands of people.
In 2006, Lay died from a heart attack before his appeals expired. His conviction was vacated so he never saw the inside of a prison cell. That said his guilt is unquestionable and he has rightfully earned his place as one of the Most Crooked Business Leaders of All Time.
Currently under investigation:
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