U.S. billionaire Warren Buffett tried Saturday to end the controversy that has sullied his hitherto impeccable image, calling to its shareholders of “inexcusable” the actions of his ex-protégé David Sokol. The most respected investor in the United States, which has vowed 20 years ago to show no mercy to any employee who tarnish the image of his Berkshire Hathaway holding company, told shareholders in general meeting in Omaha, as David Sokol had “violated” the laws of the corporation, but abstained from accusing him of violating the law.
David Sokol, who was considered a possible successor to Mr. Buffett, has resigned in late March after having bought and sold shares of Lubrizol took shape when the possibility that the U.S. chemical company was bought by the holding of Mr. Buffett. “The fact that this is inexcusable no doubt. He violated ethics rules. He violated our regulations on stock purchases. He violated the principles that I reaffirm biennially” , said Mr. Buffett, 80 years, tens of thousands of shareholders of Berkshire Hathaway meeting in Omaha stage for what has become over the years the annual Mass of his great fans.
the “sage of Omaha” said David Sokol’s behavior could be explained by the simple lure of money, noting that his former deputy had once denied fees of $ 50 million, preferring share with a colleague. He also noted that Mr. Sokol had not tried to hide the transactions controversial, performing in his own name.
Buffett’s comments were not enough to appease the ire of some shareholders, who applauded loudly when one of them took the microphone to ask why Mr. Sokol was not returned on the field, judging the response from Mr. Buffett “inadequate” . Mr. Buffett acknowledged that his response to the crisis could have been better, but he explained that he wanted to balance the work done so far by his former deputy and “overwhelming evidence” finally presented to stock market authorities. A response was also applauded. But what the American press now calls “Case Sokol has cast doubt on a company that has always taken pride in its honesty, and reignited the debate over the estate of Warren Buffett.