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SEC drops case against Google director Mather

The Securities and Exchange Commission has dropped its stock option backdating case against Ann Mather, a Google Inc. board member since November 2005 and former chief financial officer of Pixar Animation Studios.
/ Source: The Associated Press

The Securities and Exchange Commission has dropped its stock option backdating case against Ann Mather, a Google Inc. board member since November 2005 and former chief financial officer of Pixar Animation Studios.

Her spokesman, Paul Kranhold, said the SEC sent a letter last week saying it was no longer pursuing the case, which it began in April 2008.

The SEC's Los Angeles office had said last year that it would recommend a civil complaint be filed against her for alleged stock option abuses that occurred during her five-year stint overseeing Pixar's books.

Emeryville-based Pixar was acquired by Walt Disney Co. for $7.4 billion in 2006.

The alleged practice, known as "backdating," involves retroactively setting the value of a stock option grant to the recipient's advantage.

If it's not properly disclosed, backdating options can exaggerate a company's profits and result in an underpayment of taxes.

A Google spokeswoman declined to comment. The SEC's Los Angeles office did not immediately respond to a request for comment.