Apple takes $84 million charge, defends Steve Jobs in options scandal

While Apple's surely enjoying the perks of having a monumental amount of iPods unwrapped just days ago, everything's not exactly kosher in Cupertino. Aside from the mysterious mouse the firm just patented, the company is facing another bevy of off-the-wall lawsuits, all while trying to fish its CEO out of potentially hot water. After the Securities and Exchange Commission found that ole Steve was granted 7.5 million stock options without the proper authorization of Apple's board of directors in 2001, there was widespread speculation that Mr. One More Thing may suffer the same fate as Apple's former CFO Fred Anderson, who resigned after a similar debacle in 2004. It seems, however, that things just might work out okay after all, as Apple finally filed its required forms with SEC, recognizing a "total additional non-cash, stock-based compensation expense of $84 million after tax, including $4 million and $7 million in fiscal years 2006 and 2005, respectively." Aside from taking the lofty charge, the company also stated that while Jobs was "aware of the favorable grant date recommendations, he did not financially benefit from these grants or appreciate the accounting implications." So all those out there holding your breath to see if Macworld would ever be the same if this went south, it looks like we'll be seeing jeans and a black shirt all over again in just a few weeks.