A Confederacy of Criminals

From Holden:

Looks like Lester Crawford was forced from his post as head of the EPA FDA because he hid assets from the government, assets in the form of stock in corporations his agency regulated.

Dr. Lester M. Crawford, the former commissioner of the Food and Drug Administration, or his wife sold shares in companies regulated by the agency in 2004, according to financial disclosure forms.

The sales may have played a role in Dr. Crawford’s sudden resignation from the agency last month after only two months as its leader.

The latest disclosure form, signed by Dr. Crawford on June 28, shows that he or his wife sold shares in 2004 in companies including the Sysco Corporation, a large food supplier; Kimberly-Clark and Teleflex Inc., which have medical-products divisions; PepsiCo Inc. and Wendy’s International, which sell food products; Wal-Mart Stores Inc., which includes pharmacies; and Embrex, an agriculture biotechnology company where Dr. Crawford was once a board member.


Embrex, Kimberly-Clark, Pepsico and Wendy’s are not on a form listing the Crawfords’ 2003 holdings, although that form states that the Crawfords sold shares that year in Wendy’s and Sysco valued at $1,001 to $15,000.

Dr. Crawford was quoted by Forbes.com last month as saying that he had sold all of his interest in Embrex before he went to work for the F.D.A.


The Senate Health Education Labor and Pensions Committee asked the inspector general of the Department of Health and Human Services to examine the circumstances surrounding Dr. Crawford’s resignation. It specifically asked that his financial reporting be examined.

Dr. Crawford’s wife, Catherine W. Crawford, has disputed reports that his resignation was related to his not fully disclosing information about his finances to the Senate. But her brother, William W. Walker III, said she had told relatives that an unintentional failure to disclose financial holdings led to the resignation.