Nortel Networks restatements due next week

Nortel Networks restatements due next week

Nortel Networks will provide preliminary, unaudited results for the first and second quarters of 2004 on Aug. 19, it said Tuesday in the latest of a series of biweekly progress reports requested by the Ontario Securities Commission. On that date it will also provide an update on the impact of the restatement of its results for earlier quarters.

The company is under investigation by the Ontario Securities Commission and the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission regarding the restatement of its financial results as far back as 2001. An internal investigation of the matter at Nortel has already led to former chief executive officer Frank Dunn, chief financial officer Douglas Beatty, and former controller Michael Gollogly losing their jobs.

Nortel also said that on July 12 it received a letter claiming to be from certain of its shareholders, asking the company to recover damages arising from unlawful conduct by certain of its directors and officers, and certain former directors and officers. The company replied on July 20 that its board of directors would consider the allegations, and it has also set up a committee to investigate the matter, it said.

The July 12 letter asked Nortel to begin legal action against the named persons within 14 days, but "Given the nature and the extent of the allegations, the company stated it was not realistic to respond within the 14 days," Nortel spokeswoman Tina Warren said. She would not give further details of those named in the complaint.

Meanwhile, however, a complaint making substantially the same allegations as those made in the letter was filed July 30 in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, presumably by the authors of the letter, Warren said.

Nortel is still working on the restatement of results for each quarter of 2003, and periods back as far as 2001. It expects to file statements for 2003 and the first half of 2004 by the end of September, with reports for earlier periods following as soon as possible after that, it said.

"We remain focused on completing the restatement as soon as possible," Warren said.

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