Former Cisco accountants sentenced for $7.9 million

The Associated Press
Tuesday November 27, 2001

SAN JOSE — Two former Cisco Systems Inc. accountants were sentenced to two years and 10 months in prison Monday for illegally transferring $7.9 million in Cisco stock to themselves. 

Geoffrey Osowski and Wilson Tang also were ordered to pay a total of $7.9 million in restitution to Cisco. Both men, who pleaded guilty to computer fraud in August, declined to make statements at their sentencing hearings in U.S. District Court in San Jose. 

Osowski and Tang forged documents and gained an unauthorized amount of access to Cisco’s internal computer system to order that 230,550 shares of stock be transferred to brokerage accounts in their names. 

The government has seized a Mercedes-Benz, diamond rings, Rolex watches and other luxuries the men bought with money they made on the scheme, prosecutor Joseph Sullivan said. It unraveled after a clearinghouse that handles stock-option transactions for Cisco got suspicious and alerted the Internet equipment company, Sullivan said.