Another former Homestore executive was sentenced last week in connection with a scheme to inflate the online real estate company’s ad revenues.
John Giesecke, 45, was sentenced to one year in federal prison, followed by six months detention, according to an Associated Press report.
Giesecke cooperated with prosecutors in the case and is among a number of former employees who entered guilty pleas under deals with the attorneys. Giesecke pleaded guilty to charges of conspiracy and wire fraud, and after sentencing, apologized to investors who were harmed, the AP reported.
Giesecke testified against former Homestore CEO Stuart Wolff, who last month was sentenced to 15 years in prison for his role in the scheme that cost shareholders more than $100 million when the company’s stock plummeted amidst the scandal.
In June, U.S. District Court Judge Percy Anderson found Wolff guilty of conspiracy, filing false statements with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, lying to accountants, fraudulent insider trading, and falsification of corporate books and records. Wolff is appealing the conviction and sentencing.
During Wolff’s trial, Giesecke, Homestore’s former chief financial officer and then chief operating officer, testified about the company’s Wall Street-focused culture from 1998 through 2001, the year of an alleged criminal conspiracy among a number of the company’s senior executives. Giesecke said Wolff closely followed fluctuations of Homestore’s stock price and was involved in the company’s initial public stock offering, reports filed with the SEC, press releases that announced quarterly financial results and conference calls with stock analysts.
Earlier this month, Peter Tafeen, another former Homestore executive who pleaded guilty to one count of securities fraud for his participation in the fraudulent advertising scheme, was sentenced to serve 30 months in federal prison.
Homestore this year rebranded under the name Move Inc.