The Securities and Exchange Commission is going to bring its first legal action in the Apple options backdating probe, according to the San Jose Mercury News.
The bottom line: The SEC is targeting Nancy Heinen, Apple's former general counsel. Former CFO Fred Anderson may also face scrutiny. There is no sign of damaging information against Apple CEO Steve Jobs.
Heinen resigned last May, as Apple started to investigate allegations
that stock options had been improperly backdated. Based on interviews with people knowledgeable about the Apple probe, Heinen played a central role in two instances of alleged backdating being examined by both the SEC and federal prosecutors. The first involves a grant to Jobs. The second - which has not previously been reported in detail - involves grants to top executives, including Heinen, who faces SEC allegations she profited herself from backdating.
There are no signs criminal charges from federal prosecutors are looming, but that separate probe continues. The U.S. Attorney's Office has declined comment.
Perhaps most significant, two people familiar with Heinen's defense say she has no damaging information against Jobs, further evidence Apple's leader may avoid legal repercussions from the company's backdating problems. The SEC could still sue Jobs, but has not signaled it intends to do so.