Diamond Foods Settles Accounting Fraud Case for $5M

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San Francisco-based snack food company Diamond Foods Inc will pay $5 million to settle civil charges that the company and two former top executives misled investors by lying about walnut costs to boost earnings, U.S. regulators said Thursday.

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In addition to the settlement with the company, Diamond's former Chief Executive Officer Michael Mendes also agreed to pay a $125,000 penalty and settle without admitting or denying the charges, the Securities and Exchange Commission said.

The company's former Chief Financial Officer, Steven Neil, is still fighting the SEC's charges.