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Reuters reports this morning that the internal probe by Royal Ahold into the accounting "irregularities" that resulted in a $500 million overstatement of profits by its US Foodservice division will blame a few middle managers at the foodservice company.

The probe results are slated to released before the company's annual meeting next Tuesday.

The middle managers on whom the irregularities are being blamed currently are under suspension by the company. No word yet on whether they will be allowed to keep their jobs, or if they have legal culpability in the matter.
KC's View:
Sure, and Nixon didn’t know about Watergate…

If middle managers are solely to blame, how come their boss, company president James Miller, isn’t held responsible for not knowing what is going on at his company?

How come Royal Ahold CEO Cees van der Hoeven lost his job, and the middle managers to blame are only under suspension?

Are we really expected to believe that these irregularities are just isolated incidents, and not the result of a warped corporate culture?

We are perfectly willing to accept the notion that these issues aren't in play at Ahold USA and its retailing entities. But limited to a few lone gunmen…er, middle managers at US Foodservice?

Doesn't pass the smell test here.