The plantation workers are yet to receive the just compensation for their mistreatment. But at least some justice has been served to the corrupt CEO of Dole.
A Delaware court ruled that the CEO of produce giant Dole, David Murdock, along with Chief Operating Officer C. Michael Carter, intentionally defrauded investors by undervaluing the company in order for Murdock to purchase the remaining shares at a discounted rate. The 92 year-old billionaire had already owned 40 percent of Dole’s stock prior to a management-led buyout that turned the company private in 2013. Laster believed that the executives fraudulently created grim sales forecasts, as well as drove the stock price down by understating the cost savings of Dole’s 2012 sale of its Asian operations, as well as cancelling a planned stock buyback. These activities led to Murdock purchasing the remaining shares for $13.50 each in a $1.2 billion purchase. Laster ruled that the executives undervalued the shares by $2.74 apiece, ordering that they pay the difference, a total of $148.2 million to the investors, many of them pension funds, that filed the class-action lawsuit.
Download the full case file on this post