HealthSouth whistleblower to discuss ‘crossing the line’

Former accountant Weston Smith will talk the role he played in the 2003 HealthSouth Corporation scandal 7:30 a.m. Nov. 7 in the Century Rooms at the Millennium Student Center at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

Accounting fraud is nothing new in today’s corporate culture. One of the more memorable instances of the last decade was the 2003 HealthSouth Corporation scandal in which the company’s chief executive officers had instructed employees to “pad the numbers” to overstate the annual profit.

Former accountant Weston Smith participated in the company fraud. He ultimately became a whistleblower and served time in jail for his involvement.

Smith will discuss “Crossing the Line: An Insider’s Perspective of the HealthSouth Fraud” at 7:30 a.m. Nov. 7 in the Century Rooms at the Millennium Student Center at the University of Missouri–St. Louis.

HealthSouth, based in Birmingham, Ala., is the nation’s largest owner and operator of inpatient rehabilitative hospitals, operating in 26 states across the country and in Puerto Rico. In 2003, FBI agents executed a search warrant on the company, uncovering senior officers and accountants had falsified company earnings reports in order to meet investor expectations and control the price of the company’s stock.

The event is free and open to the public, but registration is required. Visit westonsmithatumsl.eventbrite.com to register for the event.

It’s sponsored by the KPMG, RubinBrown and Boeing, as well as UMSL’s Accounting Area, College of Business Administration, Accounting Advisory Board and Beta Alpha Psi.

Certified public accountants who attend the event will earn two hours of ethics professional education credit, a CPA licensure requirement.


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