Andrew Fastow

Andrew Fastow
Andrew Stuart Fastow

(1961-12-22) December 22, 1961 (age 58)
EducationTufts University, Northwestern University
Criminal statusReleased December 17, 2011
Spouse(s)Lea Fastow
Criminal chargeConspiracy, wire fraud, securities fraud, false statements, insider trading, and money laundering
PenaltySix years, followed by two years of probation

Andrew Stuart "Andy" Fastow (born December 22, 1961) is a convicted felon and former financier who was the chief financial officer of Enron Corporation, an energy trading company based in Houston, Texas, until he was fired shortly before the company declared bankruptcy. Fastow was one of the key figures behind the complex web of off-balance-sheet special purpose entities (limited partnerships which Enron controlled) used to conceal Enron's massive losses in their quarterly balance sheets. By unlawfully maintaining personal stakes in these ostensibly independent ghost-entities, he was able to defraud Enron out of tens of millions of dollars. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission subsequently opened an investigation into his and the company's conduct in 2001. Fastow was sentenced to a six-year prison sentence and ultimately served five years for convictions related to these acts. His wife, Lea Weingarten, also worked at Enron, where she was an assistant treasurer; she pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, money laundering conspiracy and filing fraudulent income tax returns, and served jail time before early release to a halfway house.[1]

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Early life and education

Fastow was born in Washington, D.C. He grew up in New Providence, New Jersey, the son of middle class Jewish[4][5][6] parents, Carl and Joan Fastow, who worked in retail and merchandising. Fastow graduated from New Providence High School, where he took part in student government, played on the tennis team, and played in the school band.[7] He was the sole student representative on the New Jersey State Board of Education.[8]

Fastow graduated from Tufts University in 1983 with a B.A. in Economics and Chinese. While there, he met his future wife, Lea Weingarten, daughter of Miriam Hadar Weingarten (a former Miss Israel 1958), whom he married in 1984. Fastow and Weingarten both earned MBAs at Northwestern University and worked for Continental Illinois bank in Chicago.[9][10] Both he and his wife attended Congregation Or Ami, a conservative synagogue in Houston where he taught Hebrew School.[6]

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