SEC charges kids' apparel exec with cooking books

WASHINGTON (AP) - Federal market regulators are charging a former executive of a kids' clothing marketer with fraud and insider trading after he lied about the company's financial picture.

The Securities and Exchange Commission says Joseph Elles understated the expenses and overstated the net income of Carter's Inc., based in Atlanta. It says Elles gave the company's largest customer deep discounts that were not reflected in financial disclosures.

The agency says Elles made $4.7 million from the fraud between 2004 and 2009.

It says it will not charge Carter's because the incident was isolated and the company cooperated fully. It is the first time the SEC has used such an agreement. The agency announced in January a plan to improve incentives for people and businesses that cooperate with its probes.

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