I haven't read enough on this one to know much, but I'm with Andy. Looking at that original article it shows that people were aware of the accounting discrepancies even before the purchase. Curious to say the least.
Here's more details about the Fast [webguild.org] one pulled on Microsoft.
Fast had booked $50 million in fake revenue, $20 million in fictional contracts, a company director purchased an unprofitable company called Hercules Communications and sold it to Fast for $6 million. The company’s executives siphoned millions from the company to luxury homes and fancy cars (see below - Former President in a Audi R8) and worst Microsoft was aware of all this prior to the purchase.
[edited by: incrediBILL at 9:35 pm (utc) on July 9, 2008]
That's had me scratching my head the whole time. You really have to wonder just how much of this they knew, and how much of it is new information. You'd think that this sort of stuff would come up during due diligence unless Fast was covering it all up.
The people who wrote that article don't think much of MS's purchases of aQuantive or Powerset either.