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Top 5 Infamous Business Crimes That Shook the Corporate World

Top 5 Infamous Business Crimes That Shook the Corporate World

The corporate world, often seen as the epitome of success and progress, has its share of dark tales. From billion-dollar frauds to criminal schemes, these top five business crimes reveal the underbelly of the business world.

1. The Theranos Scandal: A Billion-Dollar Deception

Elizabeth Holmes, once a Silicon Valley wunderkind, and her company Theranos became synonymous with one of the biggest corporate frauds in recent history. Convicted of defrauding investors with false claims about her blood-testing technology, Holmes' downfall was as dramatic as her meteoric rise, revealing a staggering level of deceit in the tech startup world.


2. Hydrogen-Fuel Fabrications at Nikola™

Trevor Milton, the founder of Nikola, a hybrid semi-truck technology company, was found guilty of fabricating the capabilities of his hydrogen-fuel technology. His lies, aimed at personal gain, resulted in three counts of criminal fraud, highlighting the precariousness of investor trust in emerging tech sectors.

3. Purdue Pharma® and the Opioid Crisis

Top 5 infamous businesss crimes -2 An avalanche of pills for profit: The opioid crisis unfolds.


The Sackler family, owners of Purdue Pharma, faced the brunt of the opioid crisis as their company's role in fueling the epidemic came to light. With a $6 billion settlement, this case underscored the devastating impact of corporate negligence on public health.

4. FTX Crypto Empire Collapses

Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and CEO of FTX, saw his crypto empire crumble, leading to his arrest and criminal charges. The sudden bankruptcy of FTX, with a staggering $32 billion loss, brought to light the vulnerabilities and criminal risks in the burgeoning crypto industry.


5. Green Investment Schemes Fraud

A global fraud involving green investment schemes defrauded 2,000 investors of about £37 million. This case exemplifies the increasing complexity and international scope of financial crimes, with multiple countries' regulatory bodies collaborating for successful prosecution.

These cases highlight the broad spectrum of corporate crimes. As the corporate landscape evolves, so do the challenges in maintaining ethical and lawful operations.

References: Here are 2022's top legal cases in business | Corporate crime and investigations: What now for 2023

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