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Report: Sealed Air faces DOJ investigation into auditor selection, CFO departure

The U.S. Department of Justice launched an investigation into Sealed Air Corp.'s firing of CFO Bill Stiehl and its auditor hiring process, The Wall Street Journal reported Aug. 3, citing a regulatory filing.

Sealed Air reportedly fired Stiehl in June in relation to the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission's current probe into the Charlotte, N.C.-based company's accounting practices and how it selected Ernst & Young LLP as auditors in 2015.

According to the regulatory filing, the bubble wrap manufacturer reportedly has received a new subpoena asking it to submit information regarding the firing of Stiehl and its selection process for an audit firm.

The subpoena came from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Western District of North Carolina and signals that Sealed Air may face criminal charges in addition to the SEC's inquiry, the Journal reported.

"EY performed its audit work with rigor, objectivity, impartiality and skepticism, in full compliance with all applicable professional standards. We stand by the quality of our work," Ernst & Young reportedly said in a statement.

Meanwhile, a spokeswoman for the U.S. attorney's office declined to comment on the matter, the report said. Stiehl could not be immediately reached for comment and his lawyer did not return a message seeking comment, the Journal said.

In an Aug. 2 regulatory filing, the company said it is fully cooperating with the SEC and the U.S. Attorney's Office and cannot predict the outcome or duration of either of those investigations.