Judge Drops Enterprise Corruption Charge Against Kozlowski

The weight of justice got a little lighter for former Tyco ( TYC) CEO Dennis Kozlowski Friday, as a judge dismissed one of the most serious charges facing him, according to published reports.

New York State Supreme Court Justice Michael Obus threw out charges of enterprise corruption against Kozlowski and his co-defendant, former CFO Mark Swartz, the Associated Press reported. Kozlowski and Swartz still face a host of other charges, including grand larceny and falsifying business records. The charges relate to accusations that the two looted Tyco of some $600 million in illicit stock sales, unauthorized compensation, and abuse of an employee loan program.

If convicted of the enterprise corruption charges, Kozlowski and Swartz would have faced up to 25 years in prison, according to the AP. But the two still face the possibility of a lengthy jail term; grand larceny carries a similar maximum prison sentence as enterprise corruption.

The trial against Kozlowski and Swartz, which has lasted five months, could go to jurors as early as next week. Attorneys in the case are slated to deliver closing arguments starting Monday.

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