Take-Two blames ex-CEO for abusing stock option grants.

A month ago, an investigation committee at Take-Two Interactive (TTWO) uncovered various problems with the company’s stock options and financial statements. Yesterday, representatives revealed what they claim were the causes of the fiscal improprieties.

The company claims that ex-CEO Ryan Brant “controlled and dominated” the stock issuing process and created a series of backdated options from April 1997 to August 2003. During Ryan Brant’s reign, Take-Two did not maintain control of the options granting process. In a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission, Take-Two said “the compensation committee abdicated its option granting responsibilities.”

Current management was exonerated of all suspicion, and there was no proof that CEO Paul Eibeler and CFO Karl Winters “engaged in any misconduct with respect to the company’s option granting practices.” Tax and additional expenses will be incurred, and an internal auditing team will be restating financial statements dating back to 1997.

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