Afshin Mohebbi

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Afshin Mohebbi is an Iranian-born United States businessman, best known as the former President and Chief Operating Officer of Qwest Communications International.

A US citizen,[1][2] he was born in Iran and raised in California. Mohebbi received his Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering with an emphasis on communications systems from the University of California, Irvine, in two years when he was only 18 years old. He followed this up with a Telecommunications Engineering Certificate from the University of California, Los Angeles. He also has an MBA (dean's scholar) from the University of California

From 1983, Mohebbi undertook a series of posts in sales and marketing with Pacific Bell, including vice president-business markets; and later with SBC Communications. He then became President and Managing Director of British Telecom's United Kingdom Markets division, an $18 billion business unit serving 20 million consumers and 1.5 million businesses in the UK. At 34, he was the youngest BT Managing Director to lead a major division.

After 20 months Mohebbi left to join Qwest Communications International, managing Qwests line operations, including market-facing business units; network engineering and operations; information technology and staff support functions.[3] At age 36, Mohebbi became the youngest ever president of a major telecommunication company in the United States. He was appointed as co-chairman of merger integration for Qwest's merger with telephone company US West. Later he also joined the board of BearingPoint, when it signed a deal with Qwest to sell professional services.[4]

Allegations of fraud at Qwest[edit]

In June 2002, Joseph Nacchio resigned as Chairman and CEO from Qwest, amidst allegations of insider trading and accounting fraud. Mohebbi was thought not to be involved, but correspondence before congressional hearings in October 2002 suggested Mohebbi had created side agreements with Qwest customers that, if known by the company's accountants Arthur Andersen, would have wiped out hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue. These allegations were later proven to be baseless. Seven weeks after testifying, Mohebbi had resigned.[5][6]

In January 2004, Mohebbi was among a dozen former Qwest executives who had received "Wells notices," written statements from the SEC that say it intended to sue. On March 15, 2005, Nacchio, Mohebbi and six other former Qwest executives were sued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.[7] They were accused of a $3 billion financial fraud between 1999 and 2002 and of benefiting from an inflated stock price. Mohebbi testified in the former Chairman's trial on insider trading.[8]

Nacchio was convicted of 19 counts of insider trading in Qwest stock on April 19, 2007.[9] On July 27, 2007, Nacchio was sentenced to six years in federal prison.

Federal Ruling in Mohebbi's Favor[edit]

In March 31, 2011, United States Federal Judge Marcia Krieger issued a summary judgement denying all SEC's claims and ruling in Mohebbi's favor, citing that the regulatory agency had failed to produce necessary evidence to support its lawsuit.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Bryer, Amy (November 20, 2002). "Qwest president Mohebbi quitting". 
  2. ^ "Encyclopaedia Iranica". 25 (8). Columbia University Record. 1999-11-12. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  3. ^ [1] Archived January 17, 2006, at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ https://web.archive.org/web/20030823021956/http://nocache.corporate-ir.net/ireye/ir_site.zhtml?ticker=be&script=411&layout=-6&item_id=169862. Archived from the original on August 23, 2003. Retrieved August 11, 2006.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ [2] Archived December 30, 2005, at the Wayback Machine.
  6. ^ David Milstead (March 23, 2005). "Up and Down 17th Street: Qwest figure quietly leaves BearingPoint". Rocky Mountain News. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  7. ^ "Litigation Release No. 19136". Sec.gov. 2005-03-15. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  8. ^ PATRICK BARNARD (December 20, 2005). "Nacchio Indicted on 42 Counts of Investor Fraud". TMC News. Retrieved 2014-02-22. 
  9. ^ Frosch, Dan (20 April 2007). "Ex-Chief At Qwest Found Guilty". The New York Times. p. 1. 

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