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Apple Board Backs Jobs

Independent directors snipe right back at Fred Anderson.
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board said Wednesday it has "complete confidence" in CEO Steve Jobs in the wake of backdating claims by a former executive.

A statement by independent board members shrugged off Tuesday's comments from former finance chief Fred Anderson, who accused Jobs of participating in a scheme to boost the value of his stock options by changing grant dates.

Anderson's comments put Jobs back under media scrutiny after a

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Securities and Exchange Commission

probe had seemingly cleared Jobs and the company, while charging Anderson and another former Apple executive.

Anderson agreed Tuesday to pay back more than $3 million and to submit to a $150,000 civil penalty to settle the case, while not admitting any wrongdoing.

"We are not going to enter into a public debate with Fred Anderson or his lawyer," reads the statement issued by directors Bill Campbell, Millard Drexler, Albert Gore Jr., Arthur D. Levinson, Eric Schmidt and Jerry York.

"Steve Jobs cooperated fully with Apple's independent investigation and with the government's investigation of stock option grants at Apple," they say. "The SEC investigated the matter thoroughly and its complaint speaks for itself, in terms of what it says, what it does not say, who it charges, and who it does not charge. We have complete confidence in the conclusions of Apple's independent investigation, and in Steve's integrity and his ability to lead Apple."