The New York Post: Enron fraud architect Jeff Skilling released from prison

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Jeff Skilling, whose financial fraud fueled the 2001 collapse of Enron, was released from a minimum-security “prison camp” in Alabama on Thursday and will spend the next six months in a halfway house in Houston, according to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons.

A lawyer for Skilling wasn’t immediately available for comment.

Skilling, 64, was one of the masterminds of the giant fraud at the center of the giant Texas energy company, which collapsed amid growing questions about the complexity of its financial business.

Skilling is nearing the end of a 14-year prison sentence. He was originally sentenced to 24 years, but had his punishment reduced by 10 years five years ago as part of a deal to end appeals.

Skilling was convicted in 2006 of 19 counts of conspiracy, securities fraud, insider trading, and lying to auditors.

Houston-based Enron’s 2001 collapse threw thousands out of work, sparked federal probes and prompted Congress to crack down on corporate accounting abuses.

From the MarketWatch archives: From Enron to Occupy and back again

And: Learning the lessons of Enron

The collapse of the company was also one of the factors contributing to the prosecution of giant auditor Arthur Anderson, though it was eventually overturned by the Supreme Court.

Enron founder Kenneth Lay also was found guilty of multiple counts of conspiracy and fraud. He died of heart failure six weeks after the trial ended, prompting a federal judge to throw out the conviction.

Skilling had been serving his time in a minimum-security facility in Montgomery, Ala., according to a federal database. He was set for release in 2019.

This report previously appeared at NYPost.com.