CAR_Public/000630.MBX                  C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

                  Friday, June 30, 2000, Vol. 2, No. 127

                                 Headlines

ALEXEI YASHIN: Fans Cheer over Arbitrator's Decision to Uphold Contract
AMERICAN BANK: ABHH Agrees to Settle Securities Litigation in NY
AMERICAN EMPIRE: Duties Differ for Insured and Insurer, CA Sp Ct Rules
AUTO INSURERS: MA Body Shop Alleges of Below Market Flat Rates
BRANCH DAVIDIAN SIEGE: Plaintiff Recalls Watching Destruction on TV

CITRIX SYSTEMS: Morris and Morris Files Securities Suit in Florida
DAIMLER CHRYSLER: Claim of Frivolous Suit Fires Back; Can Be Sued in PA
HARMONIC INC: Bernstein Liebhard Files Securities Lawsuit in California
HARMONIC INC: Milberg Weiss Files Securities Complaint in CA
HARMONIC INC: Schiffrin & Barroway Files Securities Lawsuit in CA

HMO: Aetna Pledges Better MD Relations Amid Skeptical Analysts
JACKSON NATIONAL: MI Ct Denies Cert for Lawsuit over Vanishing Premiums
LEND LEASE: Families Sue for Nervous Shock in Thredbo Landslide in Aust
MIAMI-DADE SCHOOL: Parents Open Door to Fd Ct By Asserting Civil Rights
NORTHBRIDGE EARTHQUAKE: Quackenbush Resigns Amid Controversy

RELIANCE GROUP: Stull, Stull Files Securities Lawsuit in New York
SOLOMON-PAGE: Agrees to Buyout Pact Revised after Lawsuit
TOBACCO LITIGATION: Lorillard CEO Says Co Believes Smoking Is Addictive

* California Court Limits Suits Under Unfair Competition Law
* Survey Finds Wide Support For Class Action Reforms

                                *********

ALEXEI YASHIN: Fans Cheer over Arbitrator's Decision to Uphold Contract
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Prominent Sens supporters applauded an arbitrator's decision to uphold
the final year of superstar centre Alexei Yashin's contract on June 28.
"I'm sure there's going to be a lot of smiles on a lot of fans faces
today," said Kanata Mayor Merle Nicholds.

After sitting out the entire season because the team wouldn't yield to
his contract demands, Yashin learned he will not be allowed to become a
free agent July 1. Instead, Yashin owes the Senators another year at his
$ 3.6 million salary.

Ottawa businessman Len Potechin -- the fan who initiated a class action
lawsuit against Yashin -- said he was proud of Senators owner Rod Bryden
for holding out in his fight with the discontented Russian sniper.

Potechin praised the decision, adding it will have a major impact in the
sports world. "This should have happened a long time ago," he said. "All
the times pro athletes and teams have walked away from contracts -- they
won't be able to do it anymore. Now there's something to hold onto,"
Potechin said.

Former Sens captain-turned-restaurateur Brad Marsh said he was surprised
when he heard the league had ruled against Yashin. "They kept a lid on
it until the very end and for that reason, everyone thought Alexei was
going to win," Marsh said. "It's great news for sports fans. It sets
ground rules for contracts that they're good until they're over," he
said.

Regional chair Bob Chiarelli said the decision was great news for Ottawa
hockey fans who were faced with an unfortunate situation when the team's
highest scorer wouldn't report. "It strikes a blow against greedy hockey
players who are not prepared to honour their contracts," he said.

NHL Fans Association co-founder Jim Boone agreed the decision was happy
news for the capital's cash-strapped ticket holders."The fans are always
the lowest guy on the totem pole," he said. "It's a great day and a
great ruling."

Boone said he hopes the Sens now ship Yashin off to an expansion team
for a collection of first round draft picks and money, securing the Sens
future while keeping Yashin from winning a Stanley Cup.

In the meantime, Potechin said he knows what he wants to see from
Yashin. "I want to hear him say he made a mistake and say ... 'I
apologize' and put the thing to bed," he said. (The Ottawa Sun, June 29,
2000)


AMERICAN BANK: ABHH Agrees to Settle Securities Litigation in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
American Bank Note Holographics, Inc. (OTC Bulletin Board:ABHH)
announced on June 28 that it and certain other defendants had reached
agreements in principle to settle all of the claims against it, its
former parent, American Banknote Corporation ("ABN"), certain former
officers and directors of the Company, certain current and former
officers and directors of ABN and certain other defendants in the
purported class actions, In Re American Bank Note Holographics, Inc.
Securities Litigation and In Re American Banknote Corporation Securities
Litigation filed in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York against those defendants.

The parties have signed a Memorandum of Understanding which is subject
to the execution of a definitive settlement agreement and the approval
of the Court as well as the approval of the Bankruptcy Court for the
Southern District of New York in which the Chapter 11 case of ABN is
pending.

The proposed settlement of the class action litigation provides for a
release of all claims that the plaintiffs in each action have and may
have against the Company and certain other defendants. The proposed
settlement calls for a cash payment of $12,500,000 to be funded entirely
by the Company's and ABN's insurance carrier. The Company will have no
cash payment obligation with respect to the settlement. In connection
with the settlement, the Company will issue and distribute 1,460,000
shares of the Company's Common Stock as well as warrants to purchase
863,647 shares of the Company's Common Stock, at an exercise price of $
6.00 per share. The warrants will be exercisable for a 30 month period
commencing with final settlement approval by the Court. ABN will also
issue and distribute certain of its securities as part of the
settlement. The settlement proceeds after expenses will be allocated and
distributed among the class members in the American Bank Note
Holographics action and the American Banknote Corporation action in
amounts to be determined in the settlement agreement and subject to the
approval of the Court.

The Company also entered into an agreement in principle with ABN to
resolve all claims between the parties. This agreement includes, among
other things, mutual general releases of the parties including a release
from any obligations under the Separation Agreement between the parties
dated July 20, 1998 as well as a release of all sums allegedly owing to
the other party. ABN shall be responsible for and indemnify the Company
for all income and franchise tax liabilities of the Company up to the
date of the IPO. The Company will withdraw its claim against ABN in
ABN's Chapter 11 case. The Company will receive 25,000 shares of stock
of reorganized ABN as part of ABN's Chapter 11 plan. This agreement is
subject to the execution of definitive agreements, the Court approval of
the settlement of the class action litigation and approval of the
Bankruptcy Court in which the Chapter 11 case of ABN is pending.

Kenneth Traub, President and Chief Executive Officer of American Bank
Note Holographics, commented, "The agreements in principle that we have
reached to settle the securities litigation as well as all issues with
the former parent are a significant milestone. The new management of the
Company has been determined to resolve these issues and remove the
uncertainties, expense and distraction of continuing litigation. We are
enthusiastic about the increased flexibility this will give us to focus
on operations, and to extend our leadership position in the security
holography industry."

The Company also announces agreement in principle to settle all claims
with its former parent, American Banknote Corporation.


AMERICAN EMPIRE: Duties Differ for Insured and Insurer, CA Sp Ct Rules
----------------------------------------------------------------------
A liability insurance company charged with bad faith for refusing to
settle a product liability lawsuit cannot use the defense that its
policyholder showed bad faith when it failed to reveal previous
judgments involving the same product, the California Supreme Court ruled
June 22.

A lower court's ruling to the contrary "is grounded on the faulty
premise that the obligations of insurer and insured - and thus their bad
faith - are comparable," Justice Marvin R. Baxter wrote for the 5-2
majority in Kransco v. American Empire Surplus Lines Insurance Co. "They
are not. The parties are bound by a reciprocal obligation of good faith
and fair dealing, but the particular duties differ given the differing
performance due under the contract of insurance," he wrote.

"A fundamental disparity exists between the insured, which performs its
basic duty of paying the policy premium at the outset, and the insurer,
which hopes never to perform its basic duties of defense and
indemnification. . .

"An insurer's tort liability for breach of the covenant is thus
predicated upon special policy factors inapplicable to the insured."

The case arose from a personal injury lawsuit filed in Wisconsin by a
man who jumped headfirst onto a neighbor's backyard water slide toy
known as a Slip'N Slie and broke his neck, leaving him a partial
quadriplegic.

He sued Kransco, which made the toy, and Kransco turned over its defense
to American Empire Surplus Lines (AES), which had written a policy
calling for it to pay damages between $ 100,000 and $ 1 million. Kransco
also had three layers of excess coverage for a total of $ 5 million.

The plaintiff's lawyer offered to settle for $ 750,000, and Kransco
agreed to put up its $ 100,000. But AES said it would pay only $
250,000, and the case went to a jury.The jury found Kransco liable for
some $ 2.3 million in compensatory damages and $ 10 million in punitive
damages.While post-verdict motions were pending, Kransco and its
insurers settled for $ 7.5 million. Kransco and one of the excess
insurers then sued AES in California, where Kransco is based, charging
bad faith.

In its defense, AES in turn charged bad faith. It said Kransco had hurt
itself in the personal injury case by failing initially to divulge
previous injuries like the one in Wisconsin - an omission pointed out by
the plaintiff's lawyer with obvious effect upon the jury.

California appellate courts have divided on that issue, and AES put its
principal reliance on a 1985 appellate decision saying there was such a
thing as "comparative bad faith," along lines of the tort defense of
comparative fault.

The California Supreme Court said that decision overlooked the fact that
while an insurer's breach of the covenant of good faith and fair dealing
is governed by tort principles, a policyholder's breach of the covenant
is not a tort but is governed by the "express contractual provisions of
the policy."

Baxter said AES "was duty bound under the insurance policy to protect
Kransco from an excess judgment, whether that judgment be the result of
Kransco's negligence in marketing Slip'N Slide or its conduct as a
litigant in the underlying third party personal injury action, or both."
(Federal & State Insurance Week, June 26, 2000)


AUTO INSURERS: MA Body Shop Alleges of Below Market Flat Rates
--------------------------------------------------------------
Auto insurers face another lawsuit in Massachusetts, this one filed by
an auto body shop charging a conspiracy to set hourly repair rates below
the fair market value. Brian J. Tennyson, doing business as Wayside Auto
Body, filed a lawsuit May 12 against Aetna and 33 other insurers -
including Allstate, ITT Hartford, Fireman's Fund, Travelers,
Metropolitan and State Farm - in Hampshire County Superior Court in
Northampton. The lawsuit claims the insurers set a "flat rate" for
policyholder auto repairs that is "considerably under the fair market
value for such services."

And because the defendants control nearly all the insurance work
assigned to auto body repair shops in the state, body shops have to
accept it, resulting in a restraint of trade violating Massachusetts
law, the suit alleges.

Tennyson seeks more than $ 270,00 in compensatory damages for
insurance-related repairs he carried out over the past four years.

Gerald L. Zimmerman, associate counsel for the National Association of
Independent Insurers, said he is concerned that the lawsuit will be
turned into a class action.

"More than 50 cents of every auto insurance premium dollar is spent on
repairs," Zimmerman said.

"Auto body repair is a very competitive market. If one body shop doesn't
want to do the work for a given rate, there's another one down the
street that will. This competition is what's keeping auto body rates
fairly flat, not an insurer conspiracy." (Federal & State Insurance
Week, June 5, 2000)


BRANCH DAVIDIAN SIEGE: Plaintiff Recalls Watching Destruction on TV
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Sheila Martin had been living at the Branch Davidian complex with her
husband and seven kids when she saw a truck pull up Feb. 28, 1993 and
then heard someone yell, "Go away, leave us alone. We haven't done
anything."

Gunfire soon erupted between Davidians and federal agents, who had
arrived to serve search and arrest warrants on sect leader David Koresh.
Martin pulled her children from their bedroom to a safer place in the
compound. When the raid was over, four agents with the Bureau of
Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms and six Davidians were dead, and a 51-day
standoff between sect members and the government had begun. When it
ended weeks later, on April 19, some 80 Davidians had died.

Testimony from Martin was expected to continue Thursday in the $675
million wrongful death lawsuit filed by survivors and family members
against the government.

Before that final day, Martin left the complex March 21 and ended up
living at a Salvation Army halfway house in Waco. Her three youngest
kids had gotten out March 2, while her husband, Wayne, and four older
children remained at the Mount Carmel site. On April 19, Martin
testified she was watching television and saw the Davidian complex erupt
in smoke and flames, not knowing if her husband and four children still
were alive. "I saw a tank on the left side of the building ... I saw
smoke coming out of what I thought was my bedroom window," Martin told
jurors Wednesday. Her husband and four children were among the sect
members who died from either fire or gunshots when the government
started a tear-gassing operation to force the Davidians from the
complex. She is the second plaintiff in the case called by former
Attorney General Ramsey Clark, who represents Martin and several other
survivors. Lead plaintiffs' attorney Michael Caddell wrapped up his case
Tuesday.

The first witness, sect member Clive Doyle, testified Wednesday that
Davidians believed Koresh was a manifestation of "God, made flesh."

Doyle said that meant if God asked someone do to something, even sin,
then it would be acceptable. "We gave ourselves, totally, to God," Doyle
said. "We believe that God was speaking through him." He denied pouring
fuel inside the building or lighting a fire, but said he regularly
helped refill lanterns for women and children living in the complex. The
government has said sect members are to blame for the fire.

The plaintiffs say federal agents fired indiscriminately during the
raid; violated a preapproved plan when they had tanks punch holes in the
building to spray tear gas; contributed to or caused at least some of
the three fires that engulfed the compound; and failed to have
firefighting equipment at the scene.

Government lawyers say ATF agents were ambushed during the siege and
were defending their lives.

A five-member jury will act only as an advisory panel to U.S. District
Judge Walter Smith, who will deliver the verdict. Separately, Smith will
consider the question of whether federal agents shot at Davidians during
the siege's fiery end. (The Associated Press State & Local Wire, June
29, 2000)


CITRIX SYSTEMS: Morris and Morris Files Securities Suit in Florida
------------------------------------------------------------------
A class action lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for
the Southern District of Florida seeking to pursue remedies under the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934 on behalf of all purchasers of the
common stock of Citrix Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: CTXS) between October 18,
1999, and June 9, 2000, inclusive (the "Class Period").

The Class Action Complaint alleges a fraudulent scheme and deceptive
course of conduct by certain individuals, officers and/or directors of
Citrix who disseminated materially false and misleading statements
regarding the Company during the Class Period. More specifically,
Plaintiff alleges these individuals caused Citrix to issue false and
misleading statements concerning, among other things, the Company's
record financial results and phenomenal growth and expansion prospects.
These false and misleading statements caused the price of Citrix stock
to be artificially inflated throughout the Class Period until the truth
was revealed. As a result, the Company's stock fell from a Class Period
pre-split high of nearly $182 per share to close at about $22 on June
12, 2000. Plaintiff is represented by the law firm of Morris and Morris.
Morris and Morris concentrates on litigating class actions on behalf of
investors and shareholders under the federal securities laws.

Contact: Morris and Morris Seth D. Rigrodsky, Esquire, or Jacqueline L.
Green, Esquire, toll free 1-800-296-0410 Fax (302) 426-0406
firm@morrisandmorrislaw.com


DAIMLER CHRYSLER: Claim of Frivolous Suit Fires Back; Can Be Sued in PA
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Both sides get to keep their swords in the court battle between auto
giant DaimlerChrysler Corp. and its Philadelphia nemesis, the law firm
of Greitzer & Locks, now that a federal judge has refused to dismiss the
law firm's counterclaim for defamation against the auto maker's general
counsel.

In the suit, DaimlerChrysler claims that Greitzer & Locks violated the
Dragonetti Act by filing a frivolous products liability lawsuit.
Greitzer & Locks filed counterclaims of defamation and interference with
prospective contracts against DaimlerChrysler and its associate general
counsel, Lew Goldfarb, alleging that the suit and the publicity
DaimlerChrysler sought when it was filed was designed to disparage the
law firm and discourage others from suing the automaker.

The law firm's lawyers, John H. Lewis Jr. and David D. Langfitt of
Montgomery McCracken Walker & Rhoads, argue that the real purpose of the
DaimlerChrysler suit was revealed in the publicity campaign, including a
press release that said G&L "abuses" the legal system by filing
"unwarranted and baseless" claims. Goldfarb was quoted in the press
release as saying that G&L uses class action lawsuits as "a form of
legalized blackmail" and that the suit it filed against DaimlerChrysler
in Philadelphia "belongs in the class action hall of shame."

In a Nov. 11, 1999, article in the Wall Street Journal, Goldfarb was
quoted as saying that he hoped DaimlerChrysler's suit against G&L "will
discourage prospective litigants from signing on" to the pending class
actions against DaimlerChrysler.  G&L had filed a series of class
actions against DaimlerChrysler and Ford in Maryland, New Hampshire, New
Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania alleging defects in the seats of
several makes of cars. But the Pennsylvania suit was dismissed when a
Philadelphia Common Pleas judge ruled that the lead plaintiff did not
have standing to sue because he owned a GM car. DaimlerChrysler filed
suit under the Dragonetti Act against G&L and Maryland attorney William
F. Askinazi, as well as the lead plaintiff, Brian Lipscomb, alleging
that the suit was frivolous and had harmed DaimlerChrysler's
reputation.When the law firm counterclaimed, it added Goldfarb as a
defendant. DaimlerChrysler's lawyers Abraham C. Reich and Theodore H.
Jobes of Fox Rothschild O'Brien & Frankel in Philadelphia, along with
Charles A. Newman, Kathy A. Wisniewski, Jerome H. Block and R. Jeffrey
Harris of Bryan Cave in St. Louis moved to have the Goldfarb dismissed
for lack of personal jurisdiction. Now, in a 15-page opinion, U.S.
District Judge William H. Yohn Jr. has ruled that Goldfarb must remain a
defendant.

                        Sufficient Contacts to PA

"The court concludes both that Goldfarb's contacts with Pennsylvania are
sufficient to give the court constitutionally proper specific personal
jurisdiction over him and that a substantial part of the events giving
rise to Greitzer & Locks's claims occurred in this district," Yohn
wrote. The issue of whether a defendant has sufficient minimum contacts
with a forum state "is a fact-based inquiry that will vary from case to
case," Yohn said. But Yohn said courts also have no duty to determine
the best or most logical place for personal jurisdiction. Instead, he
said, courts must simply ensure that, consistent with the requirements
of due process, a defendant is subjected to personal jurisdiction only
if the defendant "purposefully directed its activities toward the
residents of the forum state" or purposefully "invoked the benefits and
protections of the forum state's laws."

Goldfarb's lawyers argues that it was improper for the court to consider
his corporate contacts with Pennsylvania in deciding whether it has
personal jurisdiction over him in his individual capacity.

Yohn disagreed, holding instead that the "corporate shield doctrine"
provides only "a degree of protection" for officers and directors by
limiting the extent to which actions they performed in a corporate
capacity may be used to exercise jurisdiction over them individually.
The rationale for the doctrine, Yohn said, is the concern over forcing
officers and directors to choose either to disassociate themselves from
the corporation or defend the propriety of their conduct in a distant
forum.But in recent years, Yohn said, judges in the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania have held that the protections of the corporate shield
doctrine "are not absolute." As a result, he said, courts have sometimes
refused to permit a corporate officer to invoke the shield when the
officer was involved in tortious conduct for which he could be held
personally liable.

                              Three-Factor Test

In 1987, Yohn said, then-U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Scirica, who is
now on the 3rd Circuit, crafted a three-factor test for deciding whether
it is proper to consider the defendant's corporate contacts in the
jurisdictional inquiry. In Rittenhouse & Lee v. Dollars & Sense Inc.,
Scirica said courts should consider (1) the defendant's role in the
corporate structure; (2) the nature and quality of the defendant's forum
contacts; and (3) the extent and nature of the defendant's personal
participation in the allegedly wrongful conduct.

Yohn said the first factor weighed against considering Goldfarb's
corporate contacts with Pennsylvania, "but only slightly." As
DaimlerChrysler's associate general counsel, Yohn said Goldfarb had no
control over DaimlerChrysler's preparation or issuance of the press
release containing his comments, but that it was unclear whether anyone
other than Goldfarb played a role in determining what exactly he would
say in his statements.

But the second factor, he said, weighed in favor of considering
Goldfarb's corporate contacts with Pennsylvania."Considering his
participation in interviews with reporters representing Reuters, the
Wall Street Journal, and the American Lawyer, it should have been
abundantly clear to Goldfarb that his remarks would be distributed
nationwide, including Pennsylvania," Yohn wrote. "Moreover, Goldfarb's
statements appear to have been made in part to 'discourage prospective
litigants from signing on' with Greitzer & Locks to replace the Lipscomb
class representative, whose claims were dismissed due to a lack of
standing. ... Because the principal office of Greitzer & Locks is
located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where Lipscomb was brought, any
discouragement would necessarily be directed toward Pennsylvania." Yohn
said Goldfarb "should have been aware that the effects of his actions
would be felt in Pennsylvania, and there is evidence suggesting that
this was his intent."

On the third factor, Yohn found that "Goldfarb's personal involvement in
the allegedly tortious conduct weighs in favor of considering his
corporate contacts with Pennsylvania." After considering all three
Rittenhouse & Lee factors, Yohn concludes that it was proper to consider
Goldfarb's corporate contacts with Pennsylvania in deciding whether it
may exercise personal jurisdiction over him. "Goldfarb should have known
that his statements would both be reported in Pennsylvania and damage
Greitzer & Locks's reputation there. The court also found that there is
evidence to suggest that Goldfarb directed his remarks to Pennsylvania.
Therefore, the court concludes that it was reasonably foreseeable that
Goldfarb would be haled into court in Pennsylvania as a result of his
conduct," Yohn wrote. (The Legal Intelligencer, June 29, 2000)


HARMONIC INC: Bernstein Liebhard Files Securities Lawsuit in California
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
A securities class action lawsuit was commenced on behalf of purchasers
of the publicly-traded securities of Harmonic Inc.(Nasdaq: HLIT),
between March 27, 2000 and June 26, 2000, inclusive (the "Class
Period"), in the United States District Court for the Northern District
of California.

The complaint charges Harmonic and certain of its directors and
executive officers with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934 and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder. The complaint alleges that
the defendants misled the market by projecting 2000 EPS of at least
$1.19. These projections were materially false and misleading because,
among other things, they were based on unreasonable and false
assumptions of the revenues Harmonic would receive from its largest
customer, AT&T, and its newly acquired C-Cube division. Defendants were
aware that revenues from AT&T and C-Cube were declining rapidly, yet
they failed to disclose this information in order to permit Harmonic to
complete its acquisition of C-Cube's Divicom business with inflated
stock. When the truth was revealed, Harmonic's stock dropped to
$22-11/16 from a Class Period high of $102.

Contact: Dani Kirshner, Director of Shareholder Relations of Bernstein
Liebhard & Lifshitz, LLP, 800-217-1522, or 212-779-1414, or
HLIT@bernlieb.com


HARMONIC INC: Milberg Weiss Files Securities Complaint in CA
------------------------------------------------------------
Milberg Weiss (http://www.milberg.com/harmonic/)announced on June 28
that a class action has been commenced in the United States District
Court for the Northern District of California on behalf of purchasers of
Harmonic Inc. (NASDAQ:HLIT) common stock during the period between March
27, 2000 and June 26, 2000 (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Harmonic and certain of its officers and directors
with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Harmonic
designs, manufactures and markets digital and fiber optic systems for
delivering video, voice and data services over cable, satellite,
telephone and wireless networks. The company's solutions enable cable
television and other network operators to provide a range of broadcast
and interactive broadband services that include high-speed Internet
access, telephony and video on demand.

The complaint alleges that defendants' false and misleading statements
concerning the revenues to be derived from Harmonic's largest customer,
AT&T, and from its newly acquired C-Cube division (DiviCom), which would
result in 2000 EPS of $1.19+, artificially inflated the price of
Harmonic stock to a Class Period high of $ 102. This upsurge in
Harmonic's stock caused by defendants' false and misleading statements
enabled Harmonic to complete the $1.7 billion acquisition of the
C-Cube's DiviCom business. After the acquisition was completed, on
6/26/00, Harmonic revealed that it was in fact suffering a huge drop in
revenues and exposed the problems Harmonic had been experiencing during
the Class Period in attempting to grow its business. This announcement
caused its stock price to drop to as low as $22-11/16 on record volume
of 21.9 million shares on 6/27/00 causing hundreds of millions of
dollars in damages to members of the Class.

Contact: Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach LLP William Lerach,
800/449-4900 wsl@mwbhl.com


HARMONIC INC: Schiffrin & Barroway Files Securities Lawsuit in CA
-----------------------------------------------------------------
A class action lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for
the Northern District of California on behalf of all purchasers of the
common stock of Harmonic Inc. (Nasdaq: HLIT ) from March 27, 2000
through June 26, 2000 inclusive (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Harmonic Inc. and certain of its officers and
directors with issuing false and misleading statements concerning
Harmonic Inc.'s business and revenue. Specifically, the complaint
alleges that the revenues derived from Harmonic's largest customer,
AT&T, and its newly acquired C-Cube Division (DiviCom) artificially
inflated the price of Harmonic Inc.'s stock price during the Class
Period.

Contact: Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP Marc A. Topaz, Esq. Robert B. Weiser,
Esq. 888/299-7706 (toll free) or 610/667-7706 info@sbclasslaw.com


HMO: Aetna Pledges Better MD Relations Amid Skeptical Analysts
--------------------------------------------------------------
Aetna Inc. took a baby step last week toward improving its physician
relationships, with a promise to ease some contracting and utilization
management hassles for Connecticut providers. But some analysts fear
that loosening such controls may lead to increased medical costs, even
as physicians are pushing for more reforms.

In a move that echoed the public relations coup pulled off last year by
UnitedHealth Group, new Aetna CEO William Donaldson promised specific
policy changes in a speech before the Connecticut State Medical Society
-- his first public appearance since being named CEO in February. Aetna
was waist-deep in provider contracting disputes, class-action lawsuits
and consumer backlash for much of former CEO Richard Huber's tenure.

Last fall, UnitedHealth promised to eliminate utilization management at
a time when it seemed a tenth ring of hell was being constructed for
managed care firms. The move earned the praise of physicians, consumers
and the Clinton Administration (MCW 11/15/99, p. 1).

Aetna will allow some Connecticut physicians to opt out of all-products
clauses, institute fee-for-service payments for provider groups with
fewer than 100 Aetna U.S. Healthcare patients and guarantee 90 days'
notice of administrative changes. The insurer also promised that
enrollees would get expanded external review rights and fewer referral
requirements. Changes will go into effect Jan. 1.

Analysts have long urged Aetna to repair its tenuous provider
relationships. "I think a lot of what we're seeing is the elimination of
unnecessary hassle to consumers," Credit Suisse First Boston's Joe
France told MCW. He believes any increased utilization would be offset
by higher member satisfaction.

But as Merrill Lynch noted in a recent report, "like any other
relationship, provider relationships develop -- and change -- over time,
not overnight." It warned that Aetna may see higher utilization if it
reconfigures provider contracts at the same time it moves to products
with more member choice.

Is Aetna finally getting it? Physicians, on the other hand, still plan
to work for other reforms. "I look at it as a rather historic first
step, recognizing that a lot of work has to go on from here," said
Connecticut State Medical Society executive director Tim Norbeck.

He said his group would work to extend fee-for-service payments to all
physicians, not just those with 100 or fewer Aetna patients, and push
for a better definition of medical necessity.

But he noted physicians were relieved. "I think for the first time that
Aetna now really believes it is not only in the best interest of
physicians and patients for Aetna to partner with physicians," he said.
"Aetna now understands it's in their interests as well."

The agreement comes just a few weeks after Aetna negotiated a settlement
with the Texas Attorney General that loosens some restrictions for
providers and patients in that state as well (MCW 4/17/00, p. 1). The
insurer has indicated that it plans to address provider issues on a
market-by-market basis. (Managed Care Week, May 15, 2000)


JACKSON NATIONAL: MI Ct Denies Cert for Lawsuit over Vanishing Premiums
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
A federal judge in Michigan has denied class action certification for
plaintiffs accusing Jackson National Insurance Co. of deceptive sales
practices by promising "vanishing premiums" on life insurance policies,
and the company's lawyer says it's a pattern.

"We are the only insurance company in America that has achieved three
separate class certification denials for the same proposed class
members," said Jackson National's lead counsel, Joel S. Feldman of
Sachnoff & Weaver in Chicago.

The life insurance industry has been hit by a series of lawsuits over
sales practices of the 1980s and 1990s in which agents indicated - some
say promised - that buyers would have to pay premiums for only a short
time, after which investment returns would take over. When those returns
fell short, however, policyholders were told they would have to keep
paying.

Prudential and Metropolitan Life have each agreed to settle such
lawsuits for more than $ 1 billion apiece.

In dismissing the latest proposed class action against Jackson Life,
however, U.S. District Judge David W. McKeague of the Western District
of Michigan ruled that class certification was inappropriate because the
plaintiffs' claims were fundamentally monetary and dependent upon
individualized facts.

He noted that Jackson Life sold its coverage through independent agents
who didn't follow a uniform script, he said, and illustrations of how
premiums might vanish carried a warning that projections were "neither
guarantees nor estimates." (Federal & State Insurance Week, June 5,
2000)


LEND LEASE: Families Sue for Nervous Shock in Thredbo Landslide in Aust
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Jill McArthur joins seven other families in mounting a class action
against the New South Wales government representing the National Parks
and Wildlife Service and Roads and Traffic Authority, Lend Lease and
Kosciuszko Thredbo Pty Ltd.

Ms McArthur still talks to her son Andrew every night. It's the
56-year-old receptionist's way of dealing with the Thredbo landslide,
which killed Andrew and 17 others three years ago. Bernard Collaery, the
former ACT attorney-general and lawyer now handling the Thredbo civil
action compensation, said Ms McArthur still hadn't cleaned out Drew's
room. "More to the point she works for a doctors' surgery in Melbourne,
as the front office receptionist, and she's been given her first warning
under the Industrial Relations Act for dismissal because she looks
unhappy all the time and that's no good for the front desk," he said.
"So I warned them that if they run with that I'll run them all over the
front page of the newspapers. "So now she's all stressed about losing
her job ... she's 56, she's a single parent and Drew used to regularly
send money home to his mother."

The class action, presently before the New South Wales Supreme Court,
centres around the relatives' nervous shock as a result of the tragedy.

Canberra-based lawyer Mr Collaery said the law did not allow claims for
"mere grief". "I know the expression itself does not sound very kind,
but you can't claim for grief itself. You have to have a recognised
psychiatric reaction," he said. He said Australian courts were known to
award compensation for nervous shock, albeit small settlements, even
though people had lost a loved one in quite traumatic circumstances.
"But money doesn't seem to have been the motivation for the families."

Mr Collaery said today's coronial report confirmed what the families had
known all along - that the landslide was not an act of nature but
something preventable. "It was a man-made catastrophe and it could have
been avoided and that's the worst possible way to be for a loved one,"
he said. "I'm hopeful that the coroner's findings will result in a
swifter resolution of the parties' claims." He said Coroner Derrick
Hand's findings confirmed the tragedy could have been avoided if the
road and water main had been fixed after previous landslips. Mr Collaery
said he had always argued that the cause of the tragedy was a burst pipe
under the road. (AAP Newsfeed, June 29, 2000)


MIAMI-DADE SCHOOL: Parents Open Door to Fd Ct By Asserting Civil Rights
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
When a group of parents filed suit against the Miami-Dade School Board
for failing to correct fire safety violations, school officials reacted
predictably. They're working on the problem, but it takes time and
money, they said.

Now the boards attorney has gotten the class action moved from
Miami-Dade Circuit Court to federal court, figuring the federal
standards for such suits will be tougher for the parents to meet. The
plaintiffs opened that door for the board, by alleging that the failure
to repair code violations amounted to breaches of civil rights,
violations of constitutional rights to due process and to equal
protection.

School Board attorney Joseph DeMaria says the board is shocked at the
lawsuit, considering how hard it has been working to remedy the problems
over the past several years, at a cost of millions of dollars.

He insists he knows why parents attorney Henry Adorno added civil rights
allegations to the mix: They filed that way because if they win on civil
rights, they get attorney fees. Somebodys trying to make a buck here.
Thats what this is all about. DeMaria says hes cut his hourly rate in
half, as a public service for the School Board.

Now, DeMarias an experienced attorney and a nice guy to boot, so
ordinarily I wouldnt go out of my way to second-guess him. But I suggest
that a better defense would be to admit what the schools own maintenance
records and recent fire marshal inspections make shamefully obvious:
Over a period of years, the school leadership has been letting
conditions deteriorate to the point where life-threatening fire safety
code violations are rampant.

The board must react to this as the crisis that it is, rather than
accept the calming tones of charming administrators who kept quiet for
way too long.

We just got a report from the fire marshal from Miami-Dade County that
shows 87 percent of Dade County schools are failing to comply with
fire-safety code requirements, says Adorno. Thats what the issue is. I
want an agreement that is enforceable by the contempt power of a, now
federal, judge. Were not looking to shut the schools down. Were looking
for prompt, corrective action for those problems the fire marshals have
identified as life-threatening violations.

Frankly I dont know why the School Board is defending itself at all. A
quick look at the facts says the board ought to be filing a friend of
the court brief against itself.

In sworn affidavits placed into the court record this month, two
municipal fire marshals side squarely with the parents.

>From July 1999 through June 2000, my staff and/or I inspected all seven
public education facilities within the jurisdiction of the city of Coral
Gables, Gables Fire Marshal Thomas Allison said in his June 16
affidavit. None of the schools complied with the school fire code, he
said. Violations included padlocked or blocked exits, missing or
defective smoke and heat detectors, nonfunctional fire extinguishers and
hazardous electrical problems.

The vast majority of violations, including some that are defined as
serious life safety hazards, have not been corrected, Allison said.

Miami-Dade Fire Marshal Alfredo Suarez, who also signed an affidavit in
the case, both said that he and other fire marshals within the county
were told by school officials that the board doesnt have enough money to
enter into a long-term compliance plan to correct all violations, even
some that are described as life-threatening.

Suarez said his staff had, through June 12, inspected 175 of the 209
public schools within their jurisdiction. Only 30 of those complied with
the state fire code for public schools, he said; Sixty-six failed to
properly maintain their fire alarms. Suarez wrote that his staff
notified the School Board of the violations, issued notices and final
notices of violations and yet, upon re-inspection his staff found, as
Allison had, that even many life-threatening violations were not
corrected.

Because public schools are protected by state law in a way that private
schools are not, the municipal fire marshals have no power to enforce
the code only to inspect and point out violations. Many of the
violations are such that if they were in a privately owned building I
would either impose substantial fines or order the building closed,
Suarez wrote.

The affidavits of both Allison and Suarez, obtained by the parents law
firm, end with the same statement: There are over 6,000 school fires in
the United States each year.

Florida Education Commissioner Tom Gallagher last week issued a memo to
superintendents, saying his department has become aware of incidents
where deficiencies noted on fire safety inspections have not been
corrected in a timely manner. Its a joke of a memo issued by a
professional politician, in the worst sense of the term.

Ive lost track of what Toms running for this week. Whatever, keep in
mind when you enter the voting booth that its under his watch, as the
official in charge of seeing public school fire laws enforced, that
conditions in Miami-Dade and other counties have deteriorated to
potentially disastrous proportions.

His memo directs the superintendents to message him in a couple of
months that any serious problems have been cleared up. That should take
care of things.

A better solution would be to change Florida law to put the state and
local fire marshals in charge of fire safety enforcement, and not rely
on Gallagher and school boards brand of self-enforcement. A bill to
effect that change failed to clear committees in time for passage during
this years legislative session, but it should get another go next April.

Meanwhile, if Miami-Dades school board wants to save on attorney fees, I
have an interim solution:

Instead of accusing the parents of trying to micro-manage the
construction and operation of the Miami-Dade County Public School
system, as the board does in court filings, the board and Superintendent
Roger Cuevas this week should sign a consent decree agreeing to repair,
within 30 days, every violation the marshals consider life-threatening
and to set out a strict schedule to repair the rest in a timely fashion,
while establishing a maintenance program sufficiently funded to keep up
with, rather than to defer, safe conditions for our children. Enough lip
service, already. (Miami Daily Business Review, June 22, 2000)


NORTHBRIDGE EARTHQUAKE: Quackenbush Resigns Amid Controversy
------------------------------------------------------------
Insurance Commissioner Chuck Quackenbush, the focus of investigative
hearings into alleged misappropriation of insurer fines, has resigned,
effective July 10. (BestWire, June 29, 2000)


RELIANCE GROUP: Stull, Stull Files Securities Lawsuit in New York
-----------------------------------------------------------------
A class action lawsuit was filed on June 28, 2000, in the United States
District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf all
persons who purchased the securities of Reliance Group Holdings, Inc.,
(NYSE:REL) between February 8, 1999, and May 10, 2000 (the "Class
Period").

The Complaint charges that defendants violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a)
of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated
thereunder, by issuing a series of material misrepresentations to the
market between February 8, 1999, and May 10, 2000.

For example, as alleged in the Complaint, on March 31, 1999, defendants,
in their financial statement filed with the SEC for its fiscal 1998
operations, stated that the Company's reinsurance contracts were valid,
and that it expects to recover the full amount of such coverage. This
statement was false and misleading, and defendants knew, or recklessly
disregarded its falsity, because the Company was notified, prior to
making the statement, that several reinsurance companies terminated
their obligations to the Company. Because the Company's obligations to
its insureds remained intact, the Company's expected losses exceeded
$150 million. Furthermore, this$150 million loss should have been
reflected as a charge to income, under Generally Accepted Accounting
Principles, and was not, thereby masking the Company's true, and
impaired, financial condition and prospects.

On May 10, 2000, the Company reported that its first fiscal 2000 quarter
would see an operating loss of $.31 per diluted share, which represented
a greater loss than the comparable 1999 quarter. That day the price of
Reliance Group stock closed at $2.625- a decline of over 400% from the
class period high of $11 per share.

Contact: Stull, Stull & Brody, New York Tzivia Brody, Esq.,
1-800-337-4983 Fax: 212/490-2022 E-mail: SSBNY@aol.com


SOLOMON-PAGE: Agrees to Buyout Pact Revised after Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------
The Solomon-Page Group, Ltd. (Nasdaq: SOLP) announced on June 28 that it
has entered into an amended and restated agreement under which a
management group consisting of the three principal executive officers of
Solomon-Page, Lloyd Solomon, Scott Page and Herbert Solomon, is to
acquire all of the outstanding publicly held shares of Common Stock of
Solomon-Page at a price of $5.25 per share.

Previously, Solomon-Page had announced its entry into a similar
agreement under which the price to have been paid for the publicly held
shares of Common Stock was to be $4.25 per share.

Following the announcement of the original merger agreement, a
stockholder of Solomon-Page, on behalf of a purported class of
Solomon-Page's stockholders, initiated litigation against Solomon-Page
and its directors in the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware. The
plaintiff in the litigation sought, among other things, to enjoin the
Solomon-Page directors from proceeding with the previously announced
merger agreement. In light of additional financial data that became
available to the Special Committee of the Board of Directors subsequent
to the execution of the original agreement, the Special Committee
consulted with its financial advisor and requested that negotiations be
reopened in respect of the $4.25 merger consideration. After
negotiations between the management group and the Special Committee, the
management group agreed to increase to $5.25 per share the price to be
paid for the publicly held shares.

The revised transaction, which is structured as a one-step cash merger,
was approved by Solomon-Page's Board of Directors (whose members include
the management group), acting upon the unanimous recommendation of a
Special Committee of the Board comprising two independent, unaffiliated
directors. In reaching its decision, the Special Committee was advised
by its financial advisor, Legg Mason Wood Walker, Incorporated, which
rendered a written opinion that the increased merger consideration is
fair from a financial point of view to the holders of common stock
(other than the members of the management group). As set forth more
fully in the merger agreement, the Special Committee is able to receive
inquiries from any other parties interested in a possible acquisition of
Solomon-Page.

It is expected that the proposed merger will be voted upon by
Solomon-Page's stockholders at a meeting of stockholders expected to be
held in the third or fourth quarter of the calendar year 2000. Under the
amended and restated agreement, the merger requires approval both by the
holders of 66 2/3% of the outstanding Common Stock and by the holders of
a majority of the outstanding Common Stock not owned by the management
group. In addition, completion of the merger is subject to the receipt
by the management group of financing to consummate the transaction and
other customary conditions. The management group has received a
commitment letter to provide all of the funds necessary to complete the
proposed merger.

Based upon the increase in the merger consideration and the requirement
that the merger be conditioned on the approval of the holders of a
majority of the outstanding Common Stock not owned by the management
group, the parties to the stockholder litigation have reached an
agreement in principle to settle such litigation. Solomon-Page and its
directors have vigorously denied any wrongdoing or liability in
connection with the allegations made in the litigation and have entered
into the agreement in principle solely to eliminate the distraction,
burden and expense of further litigation. Final settlement of the
litigation is conditioned upon, among other things, the consummation of
the merger, the completion of confirmatory discovery, the execution of a
stipulation of settlement and court approval.

Solomon-Page is a specialty niche provider of staffing services
organized into two primary operating divisions: temporary
staffing/consulting and executive search/full-time contingency
recruitment.


TOBACCO LITIGATION: Lorillard CEO Says Co Believes Smoking Is Addictive
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
The split in a once-united front on smoking and health has widened with
testimony from the last of five tobacco executives whose companies are
fighting punitive damages in a landmark smokers' lawsuit.

Martin Orlowsky, the chief executive of Lorillard Tobacco Co., said
publicly for the first time that his company, the fourth-largest
cigarette maker, believes smoking is addictive and causes lung cancer
and other diseases.

His testimony on Wednesday was similar to that of Brown & Williamson
Tobacco Corp. CEO Nicholas Brookes but does not go as far as Liggett
Group Inc. owner Bennett LeBow.

About 300,000 to 700,000 Florida smokers are seeking a
multibillion-dollar verdict against the nation's five biggest cigarette
makers for decades of industry misconduct in the first smokers'
class-action case to go to trial.

The jury already has ruled the industry conspired to make a deadly
product and awarded $12.7 million in compensatory damages to three
smokers. Orlowsky was to resume his testimony Thursday.

The jury is expected to get the case in about two weeks.

Orlowsky said Lorillard had not previously said anything about smoking's
health effects because of a 1997 industry agreement that public health
officials should be the only public voice on the issue. That was part of
a $368.5 billion regulatory agreement that died in Congress.

Lorillard agrees that smoking caused illnesses in some of the Florida
smokers and intends to acknowledge in future trials that cigarette
smoking causes disease, Orlowsky testified.

Andrew Schindler, CEO of R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., said smoking may
cause disease, and Philip Morris Inc. CEO Michael Szymanczyk considers
smoking unhealthy, but also said that while it is addictive smokers can
break the habit if they choose. (AP Online, June 29, 2000)


* California Court Limits Suits Under Unfair Competition Law
------------------------------------------------------------
Ruling in two closely watched cases June 5, the California Supreme Court
has limited the recovery by groups of individuals with small losses who
sue under the state's Unfair Competition Law instead of in class
actions.

Aimed at supplementing the efforts of law enforcement and regulatory
agencies, the Unfair Competition Law allows private plaintiffs to obtain
restitution and an order prohibiting the challenged practice.

In Vickey Kraus et al. v. Trinity Management Services, a group of
tenants claimed a firm managing residential rental properties in the San
Francisco area collected security deposits that are illegal under state
law.

A judge found for the plaintiffs and directed Trinity to disgorge the
illegally collected money, some for restitution to tenants who could be
found and the rest into a "fluid recovery fund" to be used for
"providing financial assistance for the advancement of legal rights and
interests of residential tenants in the City and County of San
Francisco."

Defendants challenged the ruling, saying courts couldn't set up fluid
recovery funds outside of a class action - which this wasn't - and their
right to due process was violated when they were ordered to make
restitution to individuals who weren't plaintiffs.

The state Supreme Court held that the defendants were right about fluid
recovery but that they hadn't been denied due process.

The majority said that although the Legislature authorized fluid
recovery remedies in class actions, it hasn't done so for the Unfair
Competition Law.

"Inasmuch as the Legislature has spoken, any further extension of the
fluid recovery remedy should come from the Legislature" rather than from
the courts' inherent powers to fashion equitable remedies, Justice
Baxter wrote for the majority.

The court ruled similarly in a companion case, Rosalda Cortez v.
Purolator Air Filtration Products Co., in which the plaintiffs sought
unpaid overtime.

John H. Sullivan, president of the Civil Justice Association of
California, said "some of the wind has been taken out of the sails of
private lawyers trying to use the Unfair Competition Law to fund their
enterprises." (Federal & State Insurance Week, June 12, 2000)


* Survey Finds Wide Support For Class Action Reforms
----------------------------------------------------
The Insurance Research Council reported June 6 that 70 percent of
respondents to a nationwide survey of households agreed that significant
reform is needed in the way class action lawsuits are handled.

The findings from a telephone survey of 1,000 respondents by Roper
Starch Worldwide are published in the latest issue of the group's Public
Attitude Monitor 2000. The survey found that although 76 percent agreed
class action lawsuits give average people the ability to act against big
corporations with large legal resources, 73 percent also believe that
class action lawsuits generate a lot of money in legal fees but produce
little monetary benefit for the people suing. It found that 44 percent
of respondents agreed the number of class action lawsuits today is too
high and 41 percent agreed the average size of awards in class action
lawsuits is too large.

"Americans have mixed views about class action lawsuits," said Elizabeth
A. Sprinkel, head of the insurer-funded Insurance Research Council.
"While they show concern about individuals' ability to seek compensation
from large organizations, they worry about the number and size of awards
of class action lawsuits as well as the share of settlements that
attorneys claim."

The findings pleased the Alliance of American Insurers, which is waging
an effort to achieve class action reform through state legislatures.
"Seventy percent is strong stuff," said Ann Spragens, senior vice
president and general counsel for the Alliance. "Most consumers are
ahead of policymakers in seeing the need for an overhaul of this
component of the nation's legal system. Reform is long overdue."

One class action reform promoted by the Alliance would create a
rebuttable presumption in favor of practices and activities that have
been approved by the responsible regulatory authority, such as an
insurance commissioner. Others would require a court to dismiss a
proceeding or return it to a state agency with the appropriate
jurisdiction; recognize that relief awarded to a claimant by an
administrative agency may be adequate even if it does not include
exemplary damages, multiple damages, attorney fees or court costs; stay
discovery in class actions while a motion to dismiss is pending.
(Federal & State Insurance Week, June 12, 2000)


                              *********


S U B S C R I P T I O N  I N F O R M A T I O N

Class Action Reporter is a daily newsletter, co-published by Bankruptcy
Creditors' Service, Inc., Princeton, NJ, and Beard Group, Inc.,
Washington, DC. Theresa Cheuk, Managing Editor.

Copyright 1999.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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