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Ex-Ahold Official Gets 46 Months in Prison for Securities Fraud

Mark Kaiser, the ex-marketing chief of Koninklijke Ahold NV’s former U.S. Foodservice unit, was sentenced to three years and 10 months in prison for securities fraud.

“The details are of serious fraud involving many different aspects and activities involving hundreds of millions of dollars,” U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa said in court yesterday in Manhattan before imposing the sentence. “I really feel that I must impose a sentence which gives due regard for the extent of that criminal conduct.”

Kaiser pleaded guilty in August to one count of conspiracy to commit securities fraud in connection with a scheme to inflate U.S. Foodservice’s financial results by about $800 million from 2000 to 2003 by booking promotional rebates as income. The higher profit earned Kaiser and others “substantial year-end bonuses,” the prosecutors said.

The federal sentencing guidelines in his plea agreement called for prison time from 46 months to 57 months. Dan Brown, Kaiser’s lawyer, asked the judge to issue a probationary sentence.

“I hope you will agree the past bad decisions that bring me before you today are in my past,” Kaiser told the judge yesterday.

Kaiser was convicted in 2006. After that trial, Griesa sentenced him to seven years in prison.

In 2010, the U.S. Court of Appeals in New York threw out his conviction and ordered a new trial because the lower-court judge had allowed some improper evidence to come into the case. Kaiser entered his plea on Aug. 15.

Ahold, the Amsterdam-based food company, sold U.S. Foodservice in 2007 to Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co., and Clayton Dubilier & Rice Inc.

The case is U.S. v. Kaiser, 04-cr-00733, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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