Wednesday, March 15, 2006

The Gilligan Defense

Good stuff for anyone following the Enron trial:


Controversial ‘Gilligan Defense’ Makes Debut at Enron Trial

In what many experts are calling a high stakes legal strategy, former Enron CEO Ken Lay testified at his trial today that a coconut fell on his head while he was running the Texas energy company, causing amnesia that wiped out all memory of anything that happened during his tenure there.

While most trial watchers expected Mr. Lay’s defense team to use inventive tactics to secure an acquittal for the embattled former CEO, few expected the coconut-falling-on-head explanation for Mr. Lay’s claim that he was out of the loop for the entirety of Enron’s multibillion-dollar fall from grace.

As the trial resumed this morning, Mr. Lay’s defense attorney used a diagram, a pointer, and a coconut itself to dramatize the incident in what legal experts are already calling “The Gilligan Defense.”

“As you can see, a coconut that Mr. Lay kept on a high shelf of his office bookcase rolled off the shelf, landing squarely on his head, and causing total amnesia,” said Mr. Lay’s attorney to a stunned courtroom.

Moments after the coconut landed on the former CEO’s head, Mr. Lay claimed that Andrew Fastow, Enron’s former chief financial officer, ran into Mr. Lay’s office, concerned, and asked, “Are you all right, little buddy?”

But under cross examination, Mr. Lay’s story appeared to fray somewhat, especially when the prosecutor asked, “If you had total amnesia, how could you remember that a coconut fell on your head?”

“Oops,” Mr. Lay replied.

Elsewhere, President Bush expressed confidence about Iraq’s future, and added that he thought that Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston would get back together.


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