BOSTON (AP) _ A trial that promised to spotlight the high-flying lifestyle of a Swedish executive fizzled Monday when the former drug company chief pleaded guilty to simple tax evasion in an agreement with prosecutors.

Lars Bildman, the former president and chief executive of Astra USA, had been charged with defrauding the Swedish company of more than $1 million in personal expenses, then lying about them on his taxes and conspiring with a company consultant to cover it up.

In opening arguments at Bildman's federal fraud trial last week, prosecutors described him as a renegade executive who tricked Astra into paying for family vacations, home renovations and X-rated cruises.

They pledged to detail everything from lavish bathroom improvements in his homes to company-sponsored trysts with $1,500-a-day prostitutes in Florida.

In the end, the government dropped 32 counts of fraud after a weekend of negotiations. Bildman pleaded guilty to failing to report more than $1 million in income between 1993 and 1995. He agreed to go to prison for 21 months, with no parole.

``I feel very good about what happened today,'' Bildman said. ``Even if I am happy, you still feel pain from what I have been forced to go through.''

Prosecutors said the plea agreement was an ``appropriate resolution.'' The heart of the case, they said, was the false tax charge _ not Bildman's alleged embezzlement of company dollars.

Consultant Lars Magnusson pleaded guilty Monday to a felony charge relating to lies he told about destroying documents. He will likely serve probation after sentencing, scheduled for April 8 for both men.

Bildman ran Astra USA, the American subsidiary of Astra AB, for 15 years before he was fired in 1996 amid accusations of sexual harassment and fraud.