CAR_Public/030328.mbx                C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R
  
                Friday, March 28, 2003, Vol. 5, No. 62

                           Headlines                            

ACAP CORPORATION: Request For Dismissal Remains Pending, Costs Mounting
ALPHARMA INC.: Plaintiffs Appeal Securities Suit Dismissal
ARGENTINA: State Tells Foreign Creditors Suing Is Futile, Negotiate!
ARVIDA JMB: Discovery in Hurricane Andrew-related Suit Ongoing
ATALANTA/SOSNOFF: DE Chancery Court Consolidates Shareholders Lawsuits

ATMEL CORPORATION: Sued in California for Misleading Investors
ATMEL CORPORATION: Derivative Action Accuses Directors of Mismanagement
BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT BANK: Faces Pension Suit in Canada
CYTYC CORPORATION: Faces Six Securities Lawsuits in Massachusetts
GRAPHIC PACKAGING: Only Case v. Directors and Shareholders Approved

INDIAN TRUST FUND: Congressional Study Found Only $61 Error In Accounts
MATTEL INC.: Settles Securities, Derivative Suits in CA for $120M
MCDONALD'S: Judge Siebel Awards $8.6 Million to Vegetarian Groups
METRIC PARTNERS: Suit for Illegal Distribution of Money Still Pending
MPOWER COMM: Settlement Hearing re Securities Litigation Set for Oct. 1

NATIONWIDE LIFE: Lower Court Upholds Firm, But Plaintiff Files Appeal
NATIONWIDE LIFE: Faces Suit in Connecticut Over Retirement Plans
PARADYNE NETWORKS: Court Certifies Class, But Modifies Period
PARADYNE NETWORKS: Faces Separate Suit in NY Alleging Different Period
PHILIP MORRIS: Attorneys Brush Off Bankruptcy Claim After Light Verdict

SCIENTIFIC GAMES: CA Lawsuits Allege Fraud, Deceptive Trade Practices
STARLINK: North Dakota Farmers Mull Over Proposed $110M Settlement
STERICYCLE INC.: Sued for Antitrust Violations in Arizona, Utah
TAUBMAN CENTERS: Faces Shareholders Suit in MI State, Federal Courts
TEXAS: Democrats' Action Delays Passage Of Bill Limiting Lawsuits

UNION CARBIDE: U.S. Judge Dismisses Suit Reviving Legal Action
UNITED STATES: Agriculture Nominee Vows To End Civil Rights Abuses
WESTERN GAS: Certification of Kansas Suit Remains Pending
WHITEHALL JEWELLERS: 'Wage Hour' Suit Filed in California

                         Asbestos Alert

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Lawyer Aims to Preserve Asbestos Victims' Rights
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: RSA Broker Voices Concerns on Asbestos Claims
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: ABB Names Scriven Gen. Counsel; Hess To Join Shell
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Saint Gobain Posts 2002 Asbestos Liabilities
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Former Crew Head Convicted for Dumping Asbestos

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Halliburton Asbestos Plaintiffs Extend Stay
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Judge Won't Recuse Self From Armstrong Case
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Harsco Says 2002 Asbestos Suits Hit 32,220
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Albany Lists 21,688 Asbestos Suits In February
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Courthouse Annex to Close For Asbestos Clean Up

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Senator Hatch to Write Asbestos Bill in April
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: NY Jury Awards $47M to Asbestos Victim
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Company to Be Sued over Asbestos Use
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: SA Asbestos Victims to Get Settlements By June
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Coca-Cola Asbestos Case Moving Forth in Court

ASBESTOS ALERT: Alleghany Has $2.9M in Asbestos Liabilities Reserves

                     New Securities Fraud Cases

ADC TELECOMMS: Emerson Poynter Files Securities Suit in Minnesota  
AFC ENTERPRISES: Holzer Holzer Commences Securities Lawsuit in N.D. GA
AFC ENTERPRISES: Brodsky & Smith Launches Securities Lawsuit in N.D. GA
AHOLD: Entwistle & Cappucci Launches Securities Fraud Suit in S.D. NY
BLACK BOX: Schiffrin & Barroway Commences Securities Suit in W.D. PA

BLACK BOX: Charles J. Piven Commences Securities Fraud Suit in W.D. PA
COLLINS & AIKMAN: Charles J. Piven Files Securities Lawsuit in E.D. MI
FIFTH THIRD: Milberg Weiss Commences Securities Suit in S.D. Ohio
FIFTH THIRD: Cauley Geller Launches Securities Fraud Suit in S.D. Ohio
HEALTHSOUTH CORPORATION: M. Clay Ragsdale Files Securities Suit in AL

KING PHARMACEUTICALS: Schatz & Nobel Launches Lawsuit in E.D. Tennessee
SPRINT CORPORATION: Wechsler Harwood Files Securities Fraud Suit in KS

                           *********

ACAP CORPORATION: Request For Dismissal Remains Pending, Costs Mounting
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
ACAP Corporation revealed in a recent SEC disclosure that a subsidiary
is currently facing a lawsuit seeking class action status.  The suit
was filed in 2001.  The company did not identify the unit subject of
the lawsuit.

"While we believe the subject claims are without merit, the Company
incurred significant legal fees in connection with the defense against
the lawsuit in 2002.   The Company has filed a motion for summary
judgment seeking to have the case dismissed," the SEC document said.  

"If the case is not dismissed, the Company will seek to have class
certification denied.  If class certification is not denied, the
Company will have to defend itself at a jury trial on the merits of the
case.

"The Company will incur progressively higher legal fees at each of the
above steps in the process.  While we believe the claims are without
merit, there can be no guarantee of the ultimate outcome.  To date, the
damages sought by the plaintiffs have not been quantified," said the
SEC document.

For more details, contact the company by Mail: 10555 Richmond Avenue,
2nd Floor, Houston TX 77042 or by Phone: 713-974-2242


ALPHARMA INC.: Plaintiffs Appeal Securities Suit Dismissal
----------------------------------------------------------
A class action lawsuit against Alpharma, Inc. is currently pending in
the United States District Court for the District of New Jersey.  This
class action has been brought on behalf of all persons who acquired the
Company's securities between April 28, 1999 and October 30, 2000.  

The Company is named as a defendant along with two of its board
members, one of whom is an officer, and two of its former officers.  
The class action complaint alleges that, among other things, the
plaintiffs were damaged when they acquired the Company's securities
because, as a result of (1) alleged irregularities in the Company's
Animal Health business in Brazil, (2) allegedly improper revenue
recognition practices and (3) the October 2000 revision of its
financial results for 1999 and 2000, the Company's previously issued
financial statements were materially false and misleading, thereby
artificially inflating the price of the Company's securities.  

The complaint alleges violations of Sections 10(b), 20(a) and Rule 10b-
5 of the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934.  The plaintiffs seek
damages in unspecified amounts.  The Company moved to dismiss the
complaint on legal grounds and the District Court granted its motion
with prejudice as to all defendants.  The plaintiffs filed a motion for
reconsideration with the District Court and the District Court affirmed
its earlier dismissal.  The plaintiffs have appealed the Court's
decision to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals.  

The Company intends to vigorously defend this appeal.  Additionally,
the Company has filed a claim on its own behalf and on behalf of each
of the named individual defendants under its directors' and officers'
insurance policies and believes that insurance coverage exists to the
extent of the policy limits for the costs incurred in defending the
claims and any adverse judgment or settlement, subject to the terms,
conditions and exclusions of the relevant insurance policy.  

Based upon the facts as presently known, the Company does not believe
that it is likely that the class action will result in liability which
will be material to the Company's financial position.  However, it is
not possible for the Company to conclude definitively that resolution
of the lawsuit will not be material to the Company's financial position
or its results of operations or cash flows in the quarter or year in
which it occurs.

For additional information, contact the company by Mail: One Executive
Drive, P.O. Box 1399, Fort Lee NJ 07024 or by Phone: 2019477774


ARGENTINA: State Tells Foreign Creditors Suing Is Futile, Negotiate!
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Argentina's Economy Minister Roberto Lavagna told foreign creditors
holding defaulted Argentine bonds not to sue to get their money back;
that the only way of getting repayment on their debt is by reaching an
agreement, reported Dow Jones International News.

Everyone "knows that when there is debt restructuring, the worst thing
to do is start a lawsuit, because it is sure that you are not going to
end up getting your money," said Minister Lavagna.

Argentine bond default amounting to about $141 billion in debt took
place in December 2001, in the midst of a severe financial and economic
crisis.  About $52 billion of the defaulted bonds were held by 700,000
foreign creditors, representing many countries in Europe, Asia and the
Americas.  The complex process of restructuring the debt has not yet
begun, although Argentina has begun talks with creditor groups in the
U.S., Japan and Europe.

A German regional court ordered Argentina to pay two private German
holders of defaulted Argentine debt worth about EUR1.5 million, and
German legal experts say the decision opens the door for more claims
from German holders of defaulted Argentine debt.  In Germany, around
300,000 retail investors hold defaulted Argentine bonds worth between
EUR6 billion and EUR9 billion.  Argentina has until mid-April to appeal
the German court's ruling, but has not yet made a decision.  If it does
appeal the ruling all the way to the Germany's highest court, the
Federal Court of Justice, the case may take five to six years to
resolve, say the lawyers.

Other lawsuits have been filed against the Argentine government in
Italy, and a class-action lawsuit was brought by bondholders in the
United States.


ARVIDA JMB: Discovery in Hurricane Andrew-related Suit Ongoing
--------------------------------------------------------------
Arvida JMB Partners L.P. has been named a defendant in a purported
class action entitled Lakes of the Meadow Village Homes, Condominium
Nos. One, Two, Three, Four, Five, Six, Seven, Eight and Nine
Maintenance Associates, Inc., v. Arvida/JMB Partners, L.P. and Walt
Disney World Company, Case No. 95-23003-CA-08, filed in the Circuit
Court of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit in and for Dade County, Florida.  
The original complaint was filed on or about November 27, 1995 and an
amended complaint, which purports to be a class action, was filed on or
about February 28, 1997.   In the case, plaintiffs seek unspecified
damages, attorneys' fees and costs, rescission of specified releases,
and all other relief that plaintiffs may be entitled to at equity or at
law on behalf of the 460 building units they allegedly represent for,
among other things, alleged damages discovered in the course of making
Hurricane Andrew repairs.  

Plaintiffs have alleged that Walt Disney World Company is responsible
for liabilities that may arise in connection with approximately 80% of
the buildings at the Lakes of the Meadow Village Homes and that the
Partnership is potentially liable for the approximately 20% remaining
amount of the buildings.   In the three count amended complaint,
plaintiffs allege breach of building codes and breach of implied
warranties.  In addition, plaintiffs seek rescission and cancellation
of various general releases obtained by the Partnership allegedly in
the course of the turnover of the Community to the residents.  
Plaintiffs have indicated that they may seek to hold the Partnership
responsible for the entire amount of alleged damages owing as a result
of the alleged deficiencies existing throughout the entire development.  

The Partnership has tendered this matter to The Walt Disney Company
("Disney") pursuant to the Partnership's indemnification rights and has
filed a third-party complaint against it pursuant to the Partnership's
rights of contractual indemnity.  The Partnership has also answered the
amended complaint and has filed a cross-claim against Disney's
affiliate, Walt Disney World Company, for common law indemnity and
contribution.  

Discovery in this litigation is proceeding with a discovery cut-off of
August 15, 2003, and a trial date to be set thereafter.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: c/o JMB Realty
Corporation, 900 N Michigan Avenue, Chicago IL 60611 or by Phone: 312
915 1987


ATALANTA/SOSNOFF: DE Chancery Court Consolidates Shareholders Lawsuits
----------------------------------------------------------------------
On December 6, 2002, Atalanta/Sosnoff Capital Corporation announced
that it had received a proposal from Martin Sosnoff (Chairman of the
Board and Chief Executive Officer) to acquire the approximately 17% of
the Common Stock of the Company that he does not own in a "going
private" transaction at a price of $12.50 per share, subject to
adjustment to reflect changes in the value of the Company's portfolio
of marketable securities from current levels.

The Company announced that a Special Committee of its Board of
Directors, composed of independent directors, would be formed to
consider Mr. Sosnoff's proposal.  The announcement was contained in a
press release dated December 6, 2002, which sets forth the general
terms of the proposal.  As announced, the transaction would also be
subject to negotiation of a definitive agreement and other customary
conditions to closing.

Since the Company's announcement of Mr. Sosnoff's preliminary oral
proposal, in December 2002, three plaintiffs in three separate, but
virtually identical, purported class actions, have filed complaints in
the Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware [Berger v. Sosnoff, et
al. (C.A. 20068), Breakwater Partners, LP v. Sosnoff, et al. (C.A.
20073) and Schneider v. Atalanta/Sosnoff Capital Corp., et al. (C.A.
20088)].  These actions have been consolidated for all purposes under
the caption In re Atalanta/Sosnoff Capital Corp. Shareholder's
Litigation, Consolidated C.A. 20063.

In each action the Company and its directors, as well as Mr. Sosnoff,
are named as defendants.  Each of the plaintiffs seeks to enjoin a
transaction arising out of Mr. Sosnoff's proposal and alleges in
generalized form breaches of fiduciary duty by him and the directors.
The Company believes these actions are without merit and is vigorously
defending them.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: 101 Park Avenue, New
York, New York 10178 or by Phone: 2128675000


ATMEL CORPORATION: Sued in California for Misleading Investors
--------------------------------------------------------------
On February 7, 2003, a class action entitled Pyevich v. Atmel
Corporation, et al., was filed in the United States District Court for
the Northern District of California, against Atmel and certain of its
current officers and a former officer.

The Complaint, according to the firm's latest SEC filing, alleges that
Atmel made false and misleading statements concerning its financial
results and business during the period from January 20, 2000 to July
31, 2002 as a result of sales of allegedly defective product to a
customer and alleges that Atmel violated Section 10(b) of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

"Additional, virtually identical complaints were subsequently filed and
will be consolidated into this action.  The Complaints do not identify
the alleged monetary damages.  Atmel disputes plaintiffs' claims and
intends to defend the lawsuit vigorously," the SEC document reads.


ATMEL CORPORATION: Derivative Action Accuses Directors of Mismanagement
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
On February 19, 2003, a derivative class action entitled Cappano v.
Perlegos, et al., was filed in the Superior Court for the State of
California for the County of Santa Clara.  The Complaint, according to
the firm's SEC filing, names as defendants certain directors, officers
and a former officer of Atmel Corporation, and the company is also
named as a nominal defendant.

The Complaint alleges that between January 2000 and July 31, 2002,
defendants breached their fiduciary duties to Atmel by permitting it to
sell defective products to customers.  The Complaint alleges claims for
breach of fiduciary duty, mismanagement, abuse of control, waste, and
unjust enrichment.  The Complaint seeks unspecified damages and
equitable relief as against the individual defendants.

An additional, virtually identical complaint making the same
allegations also was filed.  Atmel disputes plaintiffs' claims and
intends to defend the lawsuit vigorously, the SEC document says.


BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT BANK: Faces Pension Suit in Canada
-------------------------------------------------------
A lawsuit recently was filed against the Business Development Bank of
Canada (the BDC) by plaintiffs who are pensioners of the Pension Plan
for Employees of the BDC (Plan), and who are asking the court to grant
class-action status on behalf of a class that includes all pensioners
and deferred vested members of the Plan, as well as their
beneficiaries.

The lawsuit alleges breach of fiduciary duty, unjust enrichment and
breach of contract by the BDC, which, says the lawsuit, used part of
the surplus assets in the Plan. An actuarial report prepared for the
Plan as of December 31, 2001, indicated that the Plan had well over
$100 million in surplus assets.

The Notice of Action filed by the plaintiffs alleges that the BDC
breached fiduciary duties as Plan administrator and unjustly enriched
itself by implementing amendments to the Plan, which had the effect of
improperly diverting trust fund assets held for the sole benefit of the
class members.

The Notice of Action further alleges that the BDC diverted pension
assets that should have been used for the benefit of the class to
reduce its own contributions to the Plan, and claims that the BDC has
failed to protect the interests and rights of the retirees, putting its
own corporate interests ahead of theirs.

And it is further alleged that the BDC breached its employment
agreements with the plaintiffs, in which the BDC had agreed that all
contributions made to the Plan by and on behalf of the class members
would be used solely for the benefit of the class members. However, the
lawsuit alleged the BDC implemented certain Plan amendments that
allegedly diverted the contributions made by or on behalf of the
plaintiffs to uses that benefited the BDC and its current employees
rather than the plaintiffs.

Michael Mazzuca and Kirk Bauer of the Toronto firm of Koskie Minsky are
representing the plaintiffs.


CYTYC CORPORATION: Faces Six Securities Lawsuits in Massachusetts
-----------------------------------------------------------------
On December 13, 2002, a purported federal securities class action
lawsuit was filed in the United States District Court for the District
of Massachusetts against Cytyc Corporation and two of its officers, on
behalf of a purported class of all persons who purchased the company's
common stock between July 25, 2001 and June 25, 2002.

The complaint, according to the company, alleges that the defendants
failed to disclose material facts and made materially misleading
misstatements about the company's historical and future financial
performance.  Since the initial suit was filed, five additional suits
were filed in the same court, making the same or substantially similar
allegations. Motions to consolidate the six actions into a single
proceeding have been filed with the court.

"We believe that the allegations are without merit and intend to defend
ourselves vigorously.  Given the early stage and current status of the
litigation, we are unable to reasonably estimate the ultimate outcome
of this case, and accordingly, minimal expense related to legal fees
has been recorded to date," the company said in its latest SEC filing.

For additional information, contact the company by Mail: 85 Swanson
Road, Boxborough MA 01719 or by Phone: 9782638000


GRAPHIC PACKAGING: Only Case v. Directors and Shareholders Approved
--------------------------------------------------------------------
On February 19, 2002, Chinyun Kim filed a putative class action claim
in District Court, Jefferson County, Colorado against Graphic Packaging
International Corporation and certain of its shareholders and directors
alleging breach of fiduciary duty in connection with the issuance on
August 15, 2000, of the Company's Series B Preferred Stock to the
Grover C. Coors Trust.

The Court dismissed plaintiff's claim against the company for breach of
fiduciary duty, but it allowed the plaintiff to proceed against the
named directors and shareholders, including certain Coors Family
Trusts, says the company's latest SEC filing.

"Currently, discovery is being conducted.  We believe that the
transaction was in the best interest of the Company and its
shareholders and that we acted appropriately.  We intend to continue to
provide a vigorous defense to this action," the SEC document reads.


INDIAN TRUST FUND: Congressional Study Found Only $61 Error In Accounts
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
A study of large amounts of records of government-managed American
Indian land found a single discrepancy of less than $61 between what
was owed and what was paid to landowners, using as a model land owned
by four American Indians from 1915 to 1999, according to a report by
Associated Press Newswires.

That amount is minute compared to that claimed by the Indians in a
federal class-action lawsuit, launched against the Interior Department
by some 300,000 American Indians who are alleging the mismanagement of
the royalties derived from their land. Their attorney, Dennis Gingold,
said the report, commissioned by Congress and which cost $20 million to
produce, is based on inaccurate documents.

The report summarizes royalty payments during the years 1915 to 1999,
from oil and gas mining, timber harvesting, grazing and other uses of
the land owned by four American Indians, who are leading the
class-action lawsuit. The plaintiffs' lawsuit claims the government
squandered in various ways as much as $137 billion through more than a
century of sloppy management.

Interior Department Daniel DuBray said the report, recently sent to
Congress, does not support the class action lawsuit's claims.

"The detection of this single error cost federal taxpayers $20 million,
so I think . . . this summary report serves as an example of how the
inflated public claims of the don't match up with reality," said Mr.
DuBray.

However, a disclaimer on the report says no efforts were made to verify
the accuracy of the documents. Dennis Gingold, attorney for the
plaintiffs, said the auditor relied on Interior Department records
which already have been found to be incomplete, erroneous and subject
to tampering.

"Tell me that this makes any sense," Mr. Gingold said.

The auditor, Joseph Rosenbaum of Ernst & Young, could not comment.


MATTEL INC.: Settles Securities, Derivative Suits in CA for $120M
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Following Mattel Inc.'s announcement in October 1999 of the expected
results of its Learning Company division for the third quarter of 1999,
various Mattel stockholders filed purported class action complaints
naming Mattel and certain of its present and former officers and
directors as defendants.

The complaints generally alleged, among other things, that the
defendants made false or misleading statements, in the joint proxy
statement for the merger of Mattel and Learning Company and elsewhere,
that induced Mattel's shareholders to vote to approve the merger and
artificially inflated the price of Mattel's common stock.

These shareholder complaints were consolidated into two lead cases:
Thurber v. Mattel, Inc., et al. (containing claims under 10(b) of the
1934 Securities Exchange Act (Act) and Dusek v. Mattel, Inc., et al.
(containing claims under 14(a) of the Act).  Both of these federal
lawsuits are pending in the United States District Court for the
Central District of California. In November 2002, the Court permitted
the actions to proceed as class actions.

Separately, several stockholders filed derivative complaints
purportedly on behalf of and for the benefit of Mattel, alleging, among
other things, that Mattel's directors breached their fiduciary duties,
wasted corporate assets, and grossly mismanaged Mattel in connection
with Mattel's acquisition of Learning Company and its approval of
severance packages to certain former executives.  Some of the
derivative suits were consolidated into one lawsuit filed in Los
Angeles Superior Court in California, which was dismissed for failure
to make pre-suit demand on the board of directors, and is currently on
appeal.

Another derivative suit was filed in the Court of Chancery in Delaware,
and was dismissed without prejudice in August 2002. A third derivative
suit, filed in federal court in the Central District of California, was
dismissed in July 2002, and re-filed in November 2002 as part of the
settlement described below.

In November 2002, with a court-appointed mediator acting as a neutral
facilitator, the parties negotiated and thereafter memorialized an
agreement in principle to resolve all of the federal lawsuits in
exchange for payment of $122 million and Mattel's agreement to adopt
certain corporate governance procedures.  Under the terms of the
settlement, Mattel and its directors and officers liability insurers
have deposited the settlement funds into an escrow account pending
completion of a final written settlement agreement and court approval
of the settlement.  The settlement is conditioned upon court approval
of the terms of the settlement, entry of final judgments dismissing the
federal lawsuits, and dismissal or withdrawal of the appeal in the
California state court derivative action.

At the time of the lawsuits, Mattel maintained directors and officers
liability insurance with a maximum coverage of $120 million through
several different carriers.  One of those carriers, Reliance Insurance
Company, had become insolvent, and was unable to meet its coverage
obligation for its $20 million excess layer.  As a result, Mattel
contributed this $20 million layer to the settlement fund, and has made
a claim against the California Insurance Guarantee Association (CIGA)
to recoup the full $20 million of the Reliance layer.  CIGA disputes
that it has to pay this amount, and has taken the position that it has
to pay only $0.5 million.

The total amount that Mattel expects to incur in connection with the
Learning Company litigation is $25.4 million on a pre-tax basis,
consisting of the uninsured portion of the settlement and legal and
professional fees in excess of insurance coverage.  Mattel recorded
this amount in its results of operations in the fourth quarter of 2002.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: 333 Continental
Boulevard, El Segundo CA 90245 or by Phone: 310-252-2000


MCDONALD'S: Judge Siebel Awards $8.6 Million to Vegetarian Groups
-----------------------------------------------------------------
In a partial ruling Tuesday, Judge Richard Siebel awarded 23
organizations a total of $8.6 million and class counsel slightly more
than $2 million in fees and costs in a settlement between McDonald's
and the vegetarian community. The remaining $1.4 million is to be re-
allocated by mid-May.

Reacting to the ruling, Michael B. Hyman, principal with Chicago law
firm Much Shelist stated "we still have a 'beef'." Hyman is weighing
options for a group of prominent members of the vegetarian community
who object to portions of the proposed distribution as violating the
terms of the settlement agreement.

The suit against fast food giant McDonald's attacked its disclosure
practices regarding the use of beef by-products in the preparation of
its french fries and hash browns.

The objectors assert that the distribution improperly directs funds to
non-vegetarian groups, groups hostile to vegetarianism and groups in
limited size and geographical reach.

"We're currently weighing our options," Hyman said. "The vegetarian
community has been closely following this case and we want to make sure
that appropriate organizations receive the funds."

For more details, contact Jay Dinwoodie, Marketing Manager, Much
Shelist Freed Denenberg Ament & Rubenstein, P.C., by Phone:
(312) 521-2122 by E-mail: jdinwoodie@muchshelist.com


METRIC PARTNERS: Suit for Illegal Distribution of Money Still Pending
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Metric Partners Growth Suite Investors L.P. faces a purported class
action filed by GP Credit Co.  Also named in the suit are Metric
Realty, SSR Realty Advisors, Inc. (SSR) and certain of SSR's affiliates
and current and former employees (collectively, the SSR Parties) and a
class of all limited partners of the Partnership (LPs)

The plaintiff alleges, among other things, that the SSR Parties
fraudulently caused GSI to distribute $16.8 million to the LPs. No
party has taken any material actions in this case and it remains
pending, said the Company in its latest SEC filing.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: One California St.,
Suite 1400, San Francisco CA 94111-5415 or by Phone: 4156782000


MPOWER COMM: Settlement Hearing re Securities Litigation Set for Oct. 1
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
A hearing with regards to the securities litigation against Mpower
Communications Corp will be held before the Honorable Michael A.
Telesca, United States District Judge, on October 1, 2003, at 9:00 a.m.
in Courtroom 2720 of the United States District Court for the Western
District of New York, 100 State Street, Rochester, New York 14614.

This hearing will determine whether an order should be entered:

     (i) finally approving the proposed settlement of the claims
         asserted by plaintiffs in this action against defendants Rolla
         P. Huff, Michael R. Daley, Linda M. Sunbury, Maurice J.
         Gallagher, Jr., Timothy P. Flynn, David Kronfeld, Thomas
         Neustaetter and Paul Salem, on the terms set forth in the
         Stipulation of Settlement dated February 6, 2003;

    (ii) dismissing this action with prejudice;

   (iii) awarding attorneys' fees and reimbursement of expenses to
         counsel for plaintiffs and the Class; and

    (iv) awarding reasonable costs and expenses to Lead Plaintiff.

Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP serves as Mpower
Communications Corp.'s counsel in this matter.

For a copy of the "Notice of Class Action, Proposed Settlement and
Hearing Thereon," which more completely describes the terms of the
proposed Settlement and the claimants' rights thereunder, contact:

     In re Mpower Communications Corp. Securities Litigation
     c/o The Garden City Group, Inc.
     Claims Administrator
     P.O. Box 9000 #6050
     Merrick, New York 11566
     888/212-5517


NATIONWIDE LIFE: Lower Court Upholds Firm, But Plaintiff Files Appeal
---------------------------------------------------------------------
On October 29, 1998, Nationwide Life Insurance Co. was named in a
lawsuit filed in Ohio state court related to the sale of deferred
annuity products for use as investments in tax-deferred contributory
retirement plans (Mercedes Castillo v. Nationwide Financial Services,
Inc., Nationwide Life Insurance Company and Nationwide Life and Annuity
Insurance Company).

On May 3, 1999, the complaint was amended to, among other things, add
Marcus Shore as a second plaintiff.  The amended complaint asks to
bring a class action on behalf of all persons who purchased individual
deferred annuity contracts or participated in group annuity contracts
sold by the Company and the other named Company affiliates, which
plaintiff contends were used to fund certain tax-deferred retirement
plans.  The amended complaint seeks unspecified compensatory and
punitive damages.

On June 11, 1999, the Company and the other named defendants filed a
motion to dismiss the amended complaint. On March 8, 2000, the court
denied the motion to dismiss the amended complaint filed by the Company
and the other named defendants.  On January 25, 2002, the plaintiffs
filed a motion for leave to amend their complaint to add three new
named plaintiffs. On February 9, 2002, the plaintiffs filed a motion
for class certification.

On April 16, 2002, the Company and the other named defendants filed a
motion for summary judgment on the individual claims of plaintiff
Mercedes Castillo.  On May 28, 2002, the Court denied plaintiffs'
motion to add new persons as named plaintiffs, but granted Marcus
Shore's request to withdraw as named plaintiff, so the action is now
proceeding with Mercedes Castillo as the only named plaintiff.

On November 4, 2002, the Court issued a decision granting the Company's
and the other defendants' motion for summary judgment on all of
plaintiff Mercedes Castillo's individual claims, and ruling that
plaintiff's motion for class certification is moot. Judgment for the
Company was entered on November 15, 2002.

On December 16, 2002, plaintiff Mercedes Castillo filed a notice of
appeal from the Court's orders (a) granting the defendants' motion for
summary judgment; and (b) denying plaintiff's motion for leave to amend
the complaint to add three new named plaintiffs.  The Company's
responsive brief is due by April 23, 2003 and plaintiff's reply brief
is due by May 12, 2003.  

The Company intends to defend this lawsuit vigorously, said its latest
SEC disclosure.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: One Nationwide
Plaza, Columbus OH 43215 or by Phone: 6142497111


NATIONWIDE LIFE: Faces Suit in Connecticut Over Retirement Plans
----------------------------------------------------------------
On August 15, 2001, Nationwide Life Insurance Co. was named in a
lawsuit filed in Connecticut federal court titled Lou Haddock, as
trustee of the Flyte Tool & Die, Incorporated Deferred Compensation
Plan, et al v. Nationwide Financial Services, Inc. and Nationwide Life
Insurance Company.

On September 6, 2001, the plaintiffs amended their complaint to include
class action allegations.  Plaintiffs seek to represent a class of
retirement plans that purchased variable annuities from NLIC to fund
qualified ERISA retirement plans.  The amended complaint alleges that
the retirement plans purchased variable annuity contracts from the
Company that allowed plan participants to invest in funds that were
offered by separate mutual fund companies. In addition, it claims the
Company was a fiduciary under ERISA, that the Company breached its
fiduciary duty when it accepted certain fees from the mutual fund
companies that purportedly were never disclosed by the Company, and
that the Company violated ERISA by replacing many of the funds
originally included in the plaintiff's annuities with "inferior" funds
because the new funds purportedly paid higher fees to the Company.

The amended complaint seeks disgorgement of the fees allegedly received
by the Company and other unspecified compensatory damages, declaratory
and injunctive relief and attorney's fees.  On December3, 2001, the
plaintiffs filed a motion for class certification. The Company is
opposing that motion. The Company's Motion to Dismiss was denied on
September 11, 2002.

On January 14, 2003, plaintiffs filed a motion to file a second amended
complaint and the motion was granted on February 21, 2003. The second
amended complaint removes the claims asserted against the Company
concerning a violation of ERISA through the replacement of many of the
funds originally included in the plaintiffs' annuities with "inferior"
funds that purportedly paid higher fees to the Company.

"The Company intends to defend this lawsuit vigorously.  There can be
no assurance that any such litigation will not have a material adverse
effect on the Company in the future," said the firm's latest SEC
disclosure.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: One Nationwide
Plaza, Columbus OH 43215 or by Phone: 6142497111


PARADYNE NETWORKS: Court Certifies Class, But Modifies Period
-------------------------------------------------------------
Following a September 28, 2000 press release regarding contemplated
third quarter results, several securities class action suits
(collectively, the Securities Actions) against Paradyne Networks, Inc.;
Andrew May, Paradyne's Chief Executive Officer and President at the
time; Patrick Murphy, Paradyne's Chief Financial Officer and Senior
Vice President and Thomas Epley, Paradyne's then Chairman of the Board
(collectively, the Defendants), were filed in October 2000 in the
United States District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa
Division.

Sean E. Belanger, the Company's current President, Chief Executive
Officer and Chairman of the Board, was added as a Defendant in the
litigation in April 2001.  These actions were later consolidated into
one case and the Court appointed Frank Gruttadauria and Larry
Spitcaufsky as the lead plaintiffs and the law firms of Milberg Weiss
Bershad Hynes & Lerach LLP and Barrack Rodos & Bacine as the lead
counsel.

The amended consolidated complaint alleges violations by the Defendants
of the securities anti-fraud provisions of the federal securities laws,
specifically Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as
amended, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder.  The Securities Actions
further allege that the individual defendants May, Murphy and Epley are
liable under Section 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act as "control
persons of Paradyne."  

The plaintiffs purport to represent a class of investors during a
purported class period of September 28, 1999 through September 28, 2000
and include the following stockholders: Steven Barrios, Hayes Ho,
Jacob Turner, Robert Preston, Ron Walker, Jerold B. Hoffman and Amy K.
Hoffman.  The plaintiffs allege, in effect, that the Defendants during
that time, through material misrepresentations and omissions,
fraudulently or recklessly inflated the market price of Paradyne's
stock by allegedly erroneously reporting that Paradyne was performing
well, that its inventories were properly stated, and that its customer
base and product demand were solid.

The Securities Actions seek damages under the fraud-on-the-market
theory in an unspecified amount for the purported class for the alleged
inflated amount of the stock price during the class period.  The
Defendants filed a motion on May 25, 2001, asking the court to dismiss
the complaint, with prejudice, after which the Plaintiffs filed a
memorandum of law in opposition to Defendant's dismissal motion on July
2, 2001.  This motion was denied on April 4, 2002.  By order dated
October 24, 2002, the Court granted the plaintiffs' motion to certify a
class, but certified that the class should begin no earlier than March
20, 2000, instead of September 28, 1999 as the plaintiffs had proposed.  
The class certified consists of purchasers of Paradyne stock from March
20, 2000 through September 29, 2000.  

The Defendants believe the claims are without merit and intend to
vigorously defend them, although they cannot predict the outcome.  The
company has engaged the law firm of Holland and Knight, LLP as legal
counsel in this litigation.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: 8545 126th Avenue,
P.O. Box 2826, Largo FL 33773 or by Phone: 7275302000


PARADYNE NETWORKS: Faces Separate Suit in NY Alleging Different Period
----------------------------------------------------------------------
A separate stockholder purported class action suit was filed in
December 2001 in the federal court in the Southern District of New York
against Paradyne Networks, Inc., some of its executive officers and the
former Chairman of the Board, and the underwriters of its initial
public offering (collectively, the Defendants).

This action alleges that defendants, during the period from July 15,
1999 through December 6, 2000, violated federal securities laws by
allocating shares of its initial public offering to favored customers
in exchange for their promise to purchase shares in the secondary
market at escalating prices.  The Securities Actions seeks damages in
an unspecified amount for the purported class for the losses suffered
during the class period as a result of an alleged inflated stock price.

The IPO Defendants believe the claims are without merit and intend to
vigorously defend them, although they cannot predict the outcome.  One
of the company's directors, Keith B. Geeslin, is employed by the
successor to an affiliate of DLJ Capital Corporation, one of the
underwriters of the company's initial public offering.  

The company has engaged the law firm of Holland and Knight, LLP as
legal counsel in this litigation.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: 8545 126th Avenue,
P.O. Box 2826, Largo FL 33773 or by Phone: 7275302000


PHILIP MORRIS: Attorneys Brush Off Bankruptcy Claim After Light Verdict
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Legal experts are questioning the validity of claims made by Philip
Morris USA that the $12 billion dollar appeal bond ordered last week by
Judge Nicholas Byron in the first consumer fraud judgment on light
cigarettes would bankrupt the company. The lead attorney in the case
(Miles v. Philip Morris), Stephen Tillery of Korein and Tillery, says
Philip Morris's claim of going broke is an attempt to shift the focus
from the real issue at hand.

"Philip Morris would like the world to focus on their financial woes
rather than the court finding that more than a million consumers of
light cigarettes were defrauded, many of whom will pay with their
lives," Tillery said.

Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan was quoted in published reports
pointing out that "the bankruptcy threat is hollow and that the
proposed change to state law would unfairly privilege the company."

"I think Philip Morris is doing all that they can to prevent paying out
money in verdicts and to the State of Illinois," Madigan said. "If you
look at the stock market and you look at the stock price for Philip
Morris, you'll see that they are not on the verge of bankruptcy, and
they continue to be a healthy company -- although {it is} not healthy
for us to use their products."

Legal experts also doubted that the posting of the appeal bond would in
any way jeopardize payment of master tobacco settlement (MSA) funds to
the state of Illinois. Special interest legislation currently pending
before the Illinois General Assembly would seek to limit the size of
such bonds, and the impact would place Illinois behind other states for
financial recovery if Philip Morris did file for bankruptcy.

"This is ill-considered special interest legislation. Philip Morris
made millions deceiving Illinois smokers and now wants the Illinois
legislature to bail it out," said Donald W. Garner, a professor at the
Southern Illinois University School of Law. "I do not believe that
Illinois MSA payments are endangered by the Miles suit and in all
events the legislature has no business protecting the tobacco industry
from the consequences of their fraud and deceit. The legislature should
note that there is strong Illinois Supreme Court constitutional
precedent against such legislation," Garner added.

"If it is a struggle for them to raise the bond, perhaps they should
have thought of that before they deceptively marketed light
cigarettes," Dr. Garner said.


SCIENTIFIC GAMES: CA Lawsuits Allege Fraud, Deceptive Trade Practices
---------------------------------------------------------------------
On December 4, 2002, a class action lawsuit [Allard v. Autotote /
Scientific Games Corporation, and Does 1-10 (L. A. Superior Court No.
BC 286382)] was filed against Scientific Games Corporation in state
court in California by a professional Pick Six bettor on behalf of
pari-mutuel bettors in the U.S., alleging, among other things,
negligence, breach of contract and deceptive trade practices arising
from its handling of multiple-race wagers.

"We removed the case to federal court, and moved to dismiss the
lawsuit," said the company in its latest SEC disclosure.  "In response,
the plaintiff agreed to file an amended complaint in an attempt to
address some of the deficiencies that were the subject of our motion.  
That amended complaint has not yet been filed."

Also on December 4, 2002, a second class action lawsuit [Cheldin v.
Scientific Games Corporation, Autotote Systems, Inc., and Does
1-20 (L. A. Superior Court No. BC 286417)] was filed against the
company in state court in California by a bettor of the Breeders' Cup
Pick Six wager, on behalf of all bettors of such Pick Six wagers.

The lawsuit alleged negligence and fraud with respect to the company's
wagering systems in connection with the Breeders' Cup Pick Six.

"We removed the case to federal court, and our motion to dismiss the
complaint is currently pending.  We believe that the lawsuits lack
merit, and we intend to contest the suit vigorously," the company said.

For more details, contact the company by Mail: 750 Lexington Avenue,
New York NY 10022 or by Phone: 3027374300


STARLINK: North Dakota Farmers Mull Over Proposed $110M Settlement
------------------------------------------------------------------
A federal judge in Chicago has given preliminary approval to the $110
million settlement between Midwest farmers and the biotech company
StarLink Logistics Inc., makers of a genetically engineered variety of
corn that contaminated other corn a few years ago, Associated Press
Newswires reported.

The North Dakota corn producers are deciding whether it is worth their
time to fill out paperwork for the proposed settlement in a class
action against Starlink Logistics Inc., a subsidiary of StarLink. Any
farmer who grew corn in 2000, StarLink or otherwise, would likely
receive about $1 per acre, certainly not more than $2 per acre,
according to a University of Illinois study. What a farmer decides to
do will probably depend on the amount of acreage. "One hundred acres is
a hundred bucks. Is your time worth it? And how complicated is it
[making the claim, etc.]?"

StarLink was approved only for animals to eat because of fears it could
cause allergic reactions in people. But it was found in taco shells and
chips about three years ago, prompting food recalls and an expensive
grain recovery effort.

The lawsuit, filed by corn farmers who did not grow Starlink, alleged
that the entire corn market was affected by the contamination,
especially exports. Any farmer who planted corn in 2000, the last year
StarLink corn was sold in the United States, is eligible for a full
payment from the settlement, said Paul Carr, spokesman for the
University of Minnesota Extension Service. Mr. Carr also said that
farmers who did not plant corn in 2000, but did in 1998, 1999 or 2001,
also would be eligible for a payment, but at much lower levels.

"Many farmers believe this lawsuit only applies to farmers who planted
StarLink corn, but just the opposite is true," said Mr. Carr. The
lawsuit addresses the contamination of the fields of non-StarLink corn.


STERICYCLE INC.: Sued for Antitrust Violations in Arizona, Utah
---------------------------------------------------------------
Stericycle, Inc., in a latest SEC filing, disclosed that in January
2003 a private plaintiff lodged a suit in federal court in Arizona,
alleging anti-competitive conduct in Arizona, Colorado and Utah from
November 1997 to the present and seeking certification of the lawsuit
as a class action on behalf of all customers of Stericycle and BFI in
the three-state area during the period in question.

In March 2003, according to the company, a separate suit filed in a
Utah federal court similarly alleged anti-competitive conduct in
Arizona, Colorado and Utah from November 1997 to the present and
seeking similar class action certification.

"We believe that both lawsuits' allegations are without merit," the
company said.

Separately, the company revealed that certain of its officers and
directors are parties to a lawsuit filed in July 2002 by a shareholder
of 3CI.  The lawsuit, which is filed on behalf of the minority
shareholders of 3CI and derivatively on behalf of 3CI itself, alleges,
among other things, that the company and 3CI's directors (who, a
majority of whom are also officers and directors of the company)
unjustly enriched Stericycle at the expense of 3CI and its other
shareholders. The plaintiff seeks, among other relief, damages and an
order requiring the buyout of 3CI's minority shareholders.  

"The lawsuit is still at a very early stage.  We believe that the
plaintiff's allegations are without merit," the SEC document reads.


TAUBMAN CENTERS: Faces Shareholders Suit in MI State, Federal Courts
--------------------------------------------------------------------
On November 14, 2002, Lionel Z. Glancy, as plaintiff, commenced a civil
action against Taubman Centers, Inc. and its directors, as defendants,
in the State of Michigan Circuit Court for the Sixth Judicial Circuit
Court (State Court).  The action, according to the company's latest SEC
filing, purports to assert individual claims as well as class action
claims on behalf of all persons (other than defendants) who own
securities of the Company.

The complaint alleges that the defendants have breached their fiduciary
duties by refusing to negotiate a sale of the Company to Simon.  The
action seeks class certification, injunctive relief, compensatory
damages in an unspecified sum, and costs, expenses, and attorneys'
fees.

On December 6, 2002, Mr. Glancy amended its complaint to add claims
that the Company's 1998 issuance of Series B Non-Participating
Convertible Preferred Stock (the Series B Stock) to members of the
Taubman family was a "control share acquisition" under the Michigan
Control Share Acquisitions Act (the Control Share Act), and that voting
agreements entered into by Robert S. Taubman and others were an
unreasonable defensive action and a "control share acquisition" under
the Control Share Act.

Separately, on November 15, 2002, Joseph Leone, as plaintiff, filed a
civil action against the Company and its directors, as defendants, in
State Court.  The action purports to assert individual claims as well
as class action claims on behalf of all other similarly situated
shareholders of the Company.

The complaint alleges that (i) the Series B Stock issued to Robert S.
Taubman and A. Alfred Taubman was issued without proper disclosure and
without a necessary shareholder vote, and (ii) the directors of the
Company have failed to seriously evaluate the benefits of the Simon
offer or other alternatives, such as negotiating with Simon or other
potential suitors.  The action seeks class certification, declaratory
and injunctive relief, damages in an unspecified sum, and costs,
expenses, and attorneys' fees.

Judith B. Shiffman Revocable Living Trust, as plaintiff, also filed on
November 19, 2002 a separate civil action against the Company and its
directors, as defendants, in State Court.  The action purports to
assert individual claims as well as class action claims on behalf of
all other similarly situated shareholders of the Company. The complaint
alleges that the directors breached their fiduciary duties and are
depriving the plaintiff and other class members of the true value of
their investment in the Company, by among other things, refusing to
negotiate with Simon.  The action seeks class certification, injunctive
relief, and costs, expenses, and attorneys' fees.

On December 5, 2002, Simon, as plaintiff, filed a civil action against
the Company, its directors, and A. Alfred Taubman, as defendants, in
the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan,
Southern Division (Federal Court).  The complaint alleges that (i) the
Company's 1998 issuance of Series B Stock to members of the Taubman
family was a "control share acquisition" under the Control Share
Act, (ii) that the rights granted to Robert S. Taubman by the voting
agreements was a "control share acquisition" under the Control Share
Act, (iii) the Series B Stock should not be permitted to vote, and (iv)
the defendants breached their fiduciary duties by, inter alia, issuing
the Series B Stock.  The action seeks declaratory and injunctive
relief.  

On December 27, 2002, Simon amended its complaint to add a claim that
Robert S. Taubman, the other members of the Taubman family, and the
persons who entered into the voting agreements with Robert S. Taubman
had formed a "group" in response to the Simon offer, that the "group"
had acquired all of the shares of stock held by each alleged member of
the "group" and that the "group's" acquisition of those shares was a
"control share acquisition" subject to the Control Shares Act.

On January 31, 2003, Simon filed a second amendment to its complaint,
adding as a plaintiff, Randall J. Smith, an executive officer of
Westfield America, Inc., a company that joined with Simon in connection
with Simon's tender offer.

Meanwhile, on December 24, 2002, Glancy filed a second civil action
against the Company, its directors, and A. Alfred Taubman, as
defendants, in Federal Court.  The action purports to assert individual
claims as well as class action claims on behalf of all persons (other
than defendants) who own securities of the Company.

The complaint alleges (i) that the Series B Stock was improperly issued
in violation of the Company's articles of incorporation, (ii) that the
voting rights given to Robert S. Taubman under the voting agreements
was a "control share acquisition" subject to the Control Share Act,
(iii) members of the Taubman family should not be permitted to vote
their Series B Stock, and Robert S. Taubman should not be permitted to
exercise the voting rights conveyed by the voting agreements, (iv) a
breach of fiduciary duty in response to the Simon offer, and (v)
breaches of fiduciary duty in connection with the issuance of the
Series B Stock.

The action seeks class certification, declaratory and injunctive
relief, damages in an unspecified sum, and costs, expenses, and
attorneys' fees.  On January 31, 2003, Glancy again amended its
complaint, to add additional claims of breach of fiduciary duty
relating to the Simon offer.

"Neither the Company, its subsidiaries, nor any of the joint ventures
is presently involved in any material litigation, except as described
in the preceding paragraphs, nor, to the Company's knowledge, is any
material litigation threatened against the Company, its subsidiaries,
or any of the properties," reads the company's SEC report.  

"Except for routine litigation involving present or former tenants
(generally eviction or collection proceedings) and the matters noted in
the preceding paragraphs, substantially all litigation is covered by
liability insurance," the document adds.


TEXAS: Democrats' Action Delays Passage Of Bill Limiting Lawsuits
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Action by Democrats in the Texan House recently forced Texas House
Speaker Thomas Craddick to delay passage of his favored lawsuit-
limitation bill, as the Democrats charged the legislation had been
railroaded onto the House floor, The Fort Worth Star-Telegram reported.

The complaint was a technical one: The Democrats alleged in a point of
order that the bill had been improperly crafted in a secret committee
meeting that violated open-meeting rules.  House Speaker Craddick
upheld Democratic Rep. James Dunnam's point of order and sent the bill
back to the House Civil Practices Committee, which then met hastily to
approve the controversial bill again. The measure will now be
rescheduled for another floor debate within two weeks.

The bill would limit Texans' ability to sue doctors and corporations,
stiffen restrictions on class-action lawsuits.  Some of the ways the
bill would accomplish its purposes are by holding plaintiffs liable for
unsuccessful lawsuits; protecting manufacturers of unsafe products that
live up to government standards; and by capping medical-malpractice
awards for pain and suffering at $250,000.

The bill is supported by doctors, businesses and insurance companies,
who say the bill will drive down the number of frivolous lawsuits that,
they say, are driving up malpractice rates and court expenses.  Many
trial lawyers, victims and patient advocates say it is unfair and tilts
the scales in favor of special interests.

Mr. Dunnam said it was his purpose to make sure that the public had
access to the system in which the laws that govern them are enacted, by
his standing up and insisting on open government in Texas.  Now, said
Mr. Dunnam, the bill, which had been rushed through and not discussed
or debated, will receive a thorough hearing.  "We should not, in the
interest of haste, ignore open government for Texas citizens."

Mr. Craddick was praised by deciding himself that the point of order
would prevail, thereby preventing members from having to decide whether
a fellow legislator(s) had violated House rules or constitutional
rules, or had done anything wrong at all.


UNION CARBIDE: U.S. Judge Dismisses Suit Reviving Legal Action
--------------------------------------------------------------
U.S. District Court Judge John Keenan recently dismissed attempts to
revive the lawsuit seeking class action status against Union Carbide
and its former chief executive Warren Anderson, over the 1984 chemical
disaster in Bhopal, India, by ruling that Union Carbide, now owned by
Dow Chemical, "has met its obligation to clean up the contamination in
and near the plant," The Daily Telegraph has reported.  Additionally,
in refusing to grant the class-action status, Judge Keenan said the
plaintiffs should have filed a lawsuit within three years of becoming
ill.

Judge Keenan said that a $470 million settlement, in 1989, barred new
claims, even though the plaintiffs said their health problems stemmed
from hazardous waste that contaminated the drinking water, not the gas
leak.

Three years ago, Judge Keenan threw out another part of the lawsuit,
which accused Union Carbide of illegally evading prosecution in India.
Union Carbide sold itself to the Indian government in 1994 and used the
proceeds to build a hospital in Bhopal.


UNITED STATES: Agriculture Nominee Vows To End Civil Rights Abuses
------------------------------------------------------------------
Vernon Parker, President Bush's nominee for heading the Department of
Agriculture's (USDA) civil rights office, has pledged to end alleged
civil rights abuses at USDA, according to a report by The Charlotte
Observer.

"This is a practice which must be abolished," said Vernon Parker to the
Senate's Agriculture Committee. Mr. Parker was referring to complaints
by black farmers, who say they have been denied loans and farm program
benefits because of their race. The Senate is expected to confirm Mr.
Parker, a black lawyer from Arizona.

Five years ago, black farmers filed a class-action lawsuit, alleging
the department routinely denied them loans because of their race. As
part of a settlement of the lawsuit, the department agreed to pay
farmers who could document such cases up to $50,000 each. Thus far, the
government has paid more than $634 million to claimant farmers, but is
still resolving cases, and farmers say the discrimination continues.

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission also has said in a recent
interview that the department has mishandled discrimination complaints
by its employees and has taken too long to process them.


WESTERN GAS: Certification of Kansas Suit Remains Pending
---------------------------------------------------------
Western Gas Resources, Inc. disclosed in a recently SEC filing that it
is a defendant in Price, et al. v. Gas Pipelines, Western Gas
Resources, Inc., et al., District Court, Stevens County, Kansas, Case
No. 99-C-30.

According to the company, Mr. Price is claiming an under measurement of
gas and Btu volumes throughout the country.  The Company along with
other natural gas companies filed a motion to dismiss for failure to
state a claim.  The court denied these motions to dismiss.  On January
13, 2003, a hearing was held to determine whether this matter could be
certified as a class action.  The Company is awaiting the court's
decision on the class certification.

The Company believes that Mr. Price's claims are baseless and without
merit and intends to vigorously contest the allegations in this case.
At this time, the Company is unable to predict the outcome of this
matter.

For more details, contact the company by Mail: 12200 North Pecos St.,
Denver, Colorado 80234-3439 or by Phone: 3034525603


WHITEHALL JEWELLERS: 'Wage Hour' Suit Filed in California
---------------------------------------------------------
Whitehall Jewellers, Inc., in a recent SEC filing, disclosed that two
former store managers have named it as defendant in a wage hour class
action suit filed in California on August 5, 2002.  

The case is based principally upon the allegation that store managers
employed by the Company in California should have been classified as
non-exempt for overtime purposes.  The plaintiffs seek recovery of
allegedly unpaid overtime wages for the four-year period preceding the
filing date, along with certain penalties, interest, and attorneys
fees. The purported class includes all current and former store
managers employed by the Company in California for the four-year period
preceding the filing of the complaint.  During that four-year period
the Company operated 19 to 49 stores in California.

"The Company is currently evaluating the complaint and intends to
defend the case vigorously," the SEC document says.

For more information, contact the company by Mail: 155 No. Wacker,
Chicago, IL. 60606 or by Phone: 312/782-6800


                           Asbestos Alert

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Lawyer Aims to Preserve Asbestos Victims' Rights
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Attorney Roger Sullivan said a proposed amendment would retain the
rights of asbestos victims in Libby to sue for compensation.

"The measure would recognize the specific pattern of disease unique to
those exposed to tremolite asbestos in Libby," Sullivan said.

The current proposal before Congress would exclude "a very significant
portion" of Libby asbestos victims from seeking medical compensation,
according to Dr. Alan Whitehouse, a Spokane pulmonologist who has
treated hundreds of these patients.

The ABA's plan, supported by some business groups, would set medical
standards for people who have been exposed to asbestos, but do not have
cancer.

The ABA plan parallels legislation offered by a senior Senate
Republican, Don Nickles of Oklahoma, that would require those seeking
compensation to meet certain medical criteria. His plan would remove
the statute of limitations so those who do not have asbestos-related
illnesses yet will retain their rights of legal action.

Asbestos, a fibrous mineral once commonly used for insulation and
fireproofing in goods and buildings, causes respiratory diseases, lung
cancer, and numerous other ailments.

Sullivan said the ABA is considering an amendment that would offer the
most equitable solution yet for those exposed to the rare type of
asbestos fiber mined near Libby. Vermiculite ore from the now-closed
W.R. Grace & Co. mine in Libby contained tremolite asbestos, which has
been linked to the deaths of more than 200 Libby-area residents and the
illnesses in hundreds more.

Sullivan said the ABA "indicated interest in working with us" on
language that would ensure Libby residents could recover damages from
Grace.

Sullivan, whose firm represents more than 400 Libby residents claiming
personal injury, and Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., have been working with
the ABA to include a single-paragraph "fairness provision."

Such an addition would allow Libby victims to sue even if they don't
meet the medical criteria set by the bar association.

"There have been no firm commitments at this point, but the ABA has
expressed a sincere desire to find a common ground," Sullivan said.

Baucus testified at a March 5 Senate Judiciary hearing at which two
asbestos liability reform bills were presented.

While the bar association's bill sets "low-bar" medical standards for
interstitial diseases caused by more common forms of asbestos, doctors
have criticized the stringent criteria set for pleural diseases
associated with exposure to tremolite asbestos.

Tremolite asbestos is a natural contaminant in the vermiculite mined
near Libby. Many experts believe tremolite is one of the most toxic
types of asbestos.

Baucus and Rep. Denny Rehberg, R-Mont., have indicated they would not
support the bar association's bill unless it is amended. Sen. Conrad
Burns, R-Mont., also has indicated he will oppose legislation that does
not consider Libby.

A bill with a different proposal on asbestos liability was introduced
in Congress March 5. Backed by the Asbestos Study Group and endorsed by
Sen. Pat Leahy, D-Vt., the bill would call for establishment of a
national trust fund for asbestos patients.

The Asbestos Study Group consists mainly of companies facing asbestos-
related lawsuits. To date, more than 600,000 asbestos suits have been
filed nationwide.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: RSA Broker Voices Concerns on Asbestos Claims
------------------------------------------------------------------
Goldman Sachs has raised concerns about the exposure of Royal & Sun
Alliance's Australian operations to asbestos claims. The bank has also
warned about the weak position of RSA's life and funds management
businesses.

Goldman, one of the float's global coordinators, expressed its
misgivings in a research note to institutional clients on RSA's
Australian business, recently re-branded as Promina.

It said the asbestos situation 'warrants close attention' due to
increases in the volume and size of related claims in recent years. The
company has recently increased its asbestos provisions to
AUD126,000,000 (GBP44.500,000). It is exposed to potential claims
through workers' compensation and other policies.

"Claims primarily relate to workers' compensation cover, but public and
product liability claims have also become significant," Goldman said.

The note is a blow to Promina, which is hoping to raise GBP700,000,000
and already faces an uphill battle in the face of negative market
sentiment.

Goldman said the company was receiving around 50 asbestos-related
claims each year, but no class actions like the ones in the US.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: ABB Names Scriven Gen. Counsel; Hess To Join Shell
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Swiss power and automation company ABB Ltd. (ABB) said that it has
appointed John Scriven as its new general counsel.

Scriven, 60, will succeed Beat Hess, 54, who has accepted an offer to
join Royal Dutch Shell Group (RD, SC) as group legal director on June
16.

For the past 10 months, Hess has focused on resolving the asbestos-
related exposure of Combustion Engineering, a U.S. subsidiary of ABB,
the company said.

Scriven has been working closely with Hess on the asbestos issue for
the past several months.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Saint Gobain Posts 2002 Asbestos Liabilities
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Saint Gobain reports that the number of new claims filed against
CertainTeed in 2002 was slightly higher than in 2001 (67,000 compared
with 60,000). This increase was due to an exceptional surge in the
number of claims filed in Mississippi at the end of the year following
the introduction of a new law more favorable to defendants as from
January 1, 2003. 44,000 claims were settled during the year, leaving
around 107,000 outstanding claims at December 31, 2002.

At December 31, 2002 the Group's total cover for asbestos-related
claims against CertainTeed amounted to EUR426,000,000 ($447,000,000),
comprised of insurance policies and provisions, including the
EUR100,000,000 charge booked in 2002. This cover represents about 4 to
5 years of indemnity payments at the current rate.

In 2003, several factors may have a positive impact on the number of
new claims filed, particularly newly introduced or expected amendments
to legislation in certain states.

In 1988, CertainTeed became a wholly owned subsidiary of Saint-Gobain.
Renowned for its expertise in glass technology, Saint-Gobain is the
world's largest building materials company. Today, with the full
support of this industrial leader, CertainTeed's financial and
technological resources are stronger than ever.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Former Crew Head Convicted for Dumping Asbestos
--------------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Department of Justice and the United States Attorney for the
District of Columbia announced that a federal jury has convicted the
individual responsible for illegally dumping trash bags full of
asbestos into the Gulf of Mexico and elsewhere.

Ronald Cook, 64, had been hired to lead a demolition crew on an old
ferryboat, the Muskegon Clipper, as it sailed from San Diego,
California, through the Panama Canal to Mobile, Alabama. The ship was
eventually to be transformed into a riverboat gambling casino. In order
to save time and costs, the crew bagged up the demolition debris,
including plastic garbage bags full of asbestos, and threw it overboard
into the Pacific Ocean, Gulf of Mexico and Caribbean Sea at the
direction of Cook. Dissenting crewmembers photographed the others as
they threw the asbestos and trash into the sea.

The exact amount of asbestos that was removed from the Muskegon
Clipper, a U.S. registered vessel, and dumped overboard is unknown.
Witnesses reported that "hundreds" of bags were dumped. It is assumed
that a significant amount was discharged, as the asbestos removal
contract was estimated to cost between $600,000 and $1,700,000.

"Those who perpetrate crimes in violation of our environmental laws
will be tracked down and prosecuted," said Tom Sansonetti, Assistant
Attorney General for the Justice Department's Environment and Natural
Resources Division. "I'm pleased to see criminals like this brought to
justice."

Cook, a Canadian citizen from Victoria, British Columbia, was
extradited from Canada in November 2002. He has been convicted on all
three counts of an indictment, which charged him with conspiracy, and
substantive counts filed under the Ocean Dumping Act and the Act to
Prevent Pollution from Ships. Cook's trial was held in the District of
Columbia because the dumping occurred in international waters and Cook
is not a citizen of the United States.

In announcing the conviction, Assistant Attorney General Tom Sansonetti
and United States Attorney Roscoe C. Howard, Jr. commended the work of
Resident Agent in Charge Lisa Wild Desiderio of the Environmental
Protection Agency, Special Agent Brad Godshall of the Federal Bureau of
Investigation, and Corporal Donald Southern of the Royal Canadian
Mounted Police. They also praised Assistant United States Attorney
Wendy Wysong and Department of Justice Trial Attorney Mark Kotila.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Halliburton Asbestos Plaintiffs Extend Stay
----------------------------------------------------------------
Halliburton Co. (NYSE:HAL) and certain asbestos dispute plaintiffs
agreed to extend the stay of pending asbestos claims against its DII
Industries LLC unit to July 21.

Halliburton reached the agreement with Harbison-Walker Refractories Co.
and the Official Committee of Asbestos Creditors in the Harbison-Walker
bankruptcy, the company said in a press release on Mar. 21.

Halliburton said its DII Industries and Kellogg Brown & Root Inc. units
plan to submit their prepackaged Chapter 11 bankruptcy petitions by
July 14, as part of the asbestos settlement reached in December.

Late last year, Halliburton agreed to pay up to $2,780,000,000 in cash
and nearly $1,260,000,000 in stock, or 59,500,000 shares, to settle
more than 300,000 asbestos claims.

Halliburton, Harbison-Walker and the asbestos creditors' previously
extended the temporary restraining order to March 21 from mid-February.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Judge Won't Recuse Self From Armstrong Case
-----------------------------------------------------------------
U.S. Bankruptcy Judge Randall Newsome won't recuse himself from the
Armstrong World Industries Inc. bankruptcy case, an order filed with
the bankruptcy court in Wilmington, Del., said.

Liberty Mutual Insurance Co. wants Judge Newsome off the case because
he represented the insurance company as an attorney in litigation
against Armstrong World in the 1980s over asbestos insurance coverage.

Judge Newsome denied Liberty Mutual's request, saying, "In short, my
involvement in the Armstrong cases was marginal and my responsibilities
were few, in keeping with my unexalted status as a third-year
associate." The judge described his involvement in the cases as
"peripheral or 'third chair'."

Prior to being appointed to the bench, Newsome was an associate at
Dinsmore Shohl Coates & Deupree, and worked on insurance coverage
litigation, the court papers said. Newsome said he was only one of a
team of associates assisting attorney Gerald Weigle on the case and
that he never had "any contact or involvement with asbestos property
damage issues, the methodology for measuring asbestos contamination, or
asbestos consultants and experts."

Armstrong World, the main operating unit of Armstrong Holdings Inc.
(ACKHQ) filed for Chapter 11 protection in December 2000 to manage
asbestos liabilities from products it manufactured.

Judge Newsome said in the order - denying motions from Liberty Mutual
and the official committee of asbestos-related property damage
claimants asking that he recuse himself - that he disclosed his
representation of Liberty on the record at a hearing in the Armstrong
World case in January 2002, but inadvertently didn't do so at a
subsequent hearing.

Separately in the order, the judge called Liberty Mutual's motion
untimely, saying the company could have filed the motion in the summer
of 2002, when its counsel first brought the issue to the court's
attention. By filing a motion just prior to a hearing on Armstrong
World's disclosure, Liberty Mutual "effectively waived (its) rights,"
to do so, the order said.

Should the case reach a point when he must interpret Liberty Mutual's
insurance policies, Judge Newsome said, he would choose not to do so.

He chose to step back previously in the case. During the summer of
2002, Armstrong World filed an insurance coverage suit against Liberty
Mutual in a Pennsylvania district court, and Liberty, in turn, filed
for relief from the automatic stay protecting Armstrong World, seeking
to file counterclaims. Newsome recused himself from hearing that
motion, "in an excess of caution," the order from Thursday said.

However, the judge said he doesn't feel he needs to repeat that at the
moment. "... The facts and circumstances presented here do not require
my recusal from this case," the order said. "Given the mundane nature
of the work I performed for Liberty in the Armstrong litigation, as
well as the passage of over 20 years, no reasonable person could find
even an appearance of bias or prejudice."

More than $1,000,000,000 in asbestos-related personal injury claims and
property damage claims have been filed against Armstrong World.
Armstrong World ceased manufacturing products containing asbestos in
the early 1980s. Exposure to asbestos, a fire-retardant material, can
lead to fatal respiratory disease.

During the fourth quarter of 2002, Armstrong recorded a non-cash charge
of $2,500,000,000 to increase the Company's estimated asbestos-related
liability. This charge was the result of progress in the Chapter 11
proceedings, including the filing of a Plan of Reorganization and
proposed Disclosure Statement with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court during the
fourth quarter of 2002.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Harsco Says 2002 Asbestos Suits Hit 32,220
---------------------------------------------------------------
Harsco Corp. (HSC) said it had about 32,220 asbestos-related personal
injury cases open at Dec. 31, 2002.

Of that total, 7,520 cases were filed during the fourth quarter,
according to the company's annual report filed with the Securities and
Exchange Commission.

Harsco said it was named as one of many defendants in legal actions
alleging personal injury from exposure to airborne asbestos.

In the lawsuits, the plaintiffs have named as defendants many
manufacturers, distributors and repairers of numerous types of
equipment or products that involved any asbestos, the filing said.

The company said that about 24,995 of these cases are filed in the New
York state court for New York County and almost all of these complaints
contain a standard claim for damages of $20,000,000 or $25,000,000
against the about 90 defendants, regardless of the individual's alleged
medical condition, and without identifying any of the company's
products.

Harsco also said that around 6,925 of these cases are filed in the
state courts of counties in Mississippi, and most of these complaints
contain a standard claim for an unstated amount of damages against
numerous defendants, without identifying any of the company's products.

The other roughly 300 or so claims are filed in counties in a number of
state courts, and in U.S. Federal District Court for the Eastern
District of Pennsylvania, and the plaintiffs assert lesser amounts than
the New York County cases or don't state any amount claimed, the filing
said.

The company maintains it has never been a producer, manufacturer or
processor of asbestos fibers.  Any component within Harsco's products
that might be alleged to cause asbestos exposure would have been
purchased from a supplier.

Harsco said it plans to continue vigorously defending itself in these
cases as they are listed for trial and expects its insurance carriers
to continue to pay the legal costs and expenses.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Albany Lists 21,688 Asbestos Suits In February
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Albany International Corp. (AIN) said it was defending about 21,688
asbestos-related lawsuits as of Feb. 28, according to its annual
report.

This compares with 22,593 claims as of Dec. 31, 2002, and 7,922 claims
as of Oct. 31, 2002.

The company said the lawsuits assert a variety of lung and other
diseases based on alleged exposure to asbestos-containing products
previously manufactured by Albany International and related companies.

Although it believes it has meritorious defenses to these claims,
Albany International has settled some of these cases for amounts it
considers reasonable. Liberty Mutual, its insurer, says the company has
defended each case under a standard reservation of rights.

As of Feb. 28, Albany International had resolved, through settlement or
dismissal, 4,348 claims and has reached tentative agreement to resolve
an additional 4,563 claims reported above as pending.

The total cost of resolving all 8,911 such claims is about $4,800,000.
Of this amount, the company said its insurance carrier paid for 99%. It
has more than $130,000,000 in confirmed insurance coverage that should
be available with relation to current and future asbestos claims, as
well as additional insurance coverage that it should be able to get.

The lawsuits usually involve claims against defendants ranging from 20
to more than 200. Most of the time, the suits fail to identify the
plaintiffs' work history or the nature of the plaintiffs' alleged
exposure to its products, Albany International said.

Roughly 18,700 of the claims pending against the company have been
filed in various counties in Mississippi. It expects that only a
portion of these claimants will be able to demonstrate time spent in a
paper mill during a period in which its asbestos-containing products
were in use.

Albany International and the other paper machine clothing defendants
named in many of these cases believe that there was insufficient
exposure to asbestos from any paper machine clothing products to cause
asbestos-related injury to any plaintiff.

Asbestos contained in its synthetic products was encapsulated in a
resin-coated yarn woven into the interior of the fabric, further
reducing the likelihood of fiber release.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Courthouse Annex to Close For Asbestos Clean Up
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Volusia County officials announced the Courthouse Annex will close for
90 days to clear asbestos workers found in the building's ceiling and
that they will move court operations and about 20 employees to DeLand
starting April 7.

Asbestos was discovered last month after workers uncovered wrapped
pipes under the roof while preparing for a new air-conditioning system,
said Fred Schwenck, director of facilities services.

"As soon as we suspected asbestos, we called Universal (Engineering
Sciences, a South Daytona testing company)," he said.

The inspection found the potentially cancer-causing material in
insulation around several pipes, in air-conditioning ducts sealing
components and in the popcorn ceiling in the main courtroom. However,
air quality tests showed no airborne asbestos, he said.

"Ninety-nine percent of it is above the suspended ceiling," Schwenck
said, adding there was no danger to building occupants.

Despite reassurances, some workers at the Riverside Drive courthouse
built in the 1960s are worried.

"I don't believe the county is being totally honest with us," said
Teresa Melton, a supervisor in the Clerk of the Court's civil division.
"A lot of us are concerned."

Health issues are not the only matter being raised. County Judge Mary
Jane Henderson said the closing will disrupt court operations
significantly.

"This is going to be a lot of trouble," she said. "It is going to
affect people's ability to pay child support and deal with traffic
tickets."

Henderson said she plans to announce the relocation during pre-trial
hearings slated for next week. She said she will work with the state
attorney and public defender offices to mail notices to defendants
informing them of the change before her April 7 trial week docket.

However, she believes some people will not have the financial resources
to travel to DeLand.

"I am going to have to agonize whether to issue arrest warrants (for
people failing to appear in court) or reschedule their trials,"
Henderson said. "What they could have done during the lunch hour here
will now require them to take a day off from work and spend all day in
court."

Clerk of the Court Diane Matousek said the move will be a minor
inconvenience for her staff, but could have a larger impact on the
public. Southeast Volusia residents wanting to file a lawsuit, get a
marriage license or conduct any other business with her office will
have to travel to DeLand or Daytona Beach.

However, the public has to realize that the move was not her idea, she
said.

"We are just tenants. We were told (the county) had to close the
building."

Matousek said in addition to the public, her biggest concern is working
with displaced employees to ensure their needs are met.

Schwenck said the asbestos removal by DeLand-based A&L Remediation will
cost about $15,000. He estimated the cost for the new air-conditioning
system, a new drop ceiling and lighting fixtures at about $109,000.

There may be another benefit to the renovation, Henderson said.

"It will help people realize how important the courthouse is to
Southeast Volusia County," she said.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Senator Hatch to Write Asbestos Bill in April
------------------------------------------------------------------
Senate Judiciary Chairman Orrin Hatch intends to start drafting a bill
on the asbestos litigation crisis by April 10, he told defendant
companies and insurers on March 26, an insurance industry spokesman
said.

The reported comments by Hatch gave feuding parties to the asbestos
problem a little more time to try and unite behind a proposed
legislative solution.

Earlier this month Hatch had ordered the warring lobbyists from
companies, insurers, unions and legal groups to help produce a bill on
how asbestos claims should be paid by the end of March.

Hundreds of thousands of asbestos claims are blamed for clogging U.S.
courts and driving over 60 U.S. companies into bankruptcy.

Gary Karr, a spokesman for the American Insurance Association, said
Hatch made the comments about a timetable for a bill at a meeting on
Mar 26 on Capitol Hill. Hatch's spokeswoman could not be immediately
reached for comment.

"The chairman set the deadline of April 10 to begin drafting a bill,
and said his committee will begin marking up the bill when Congress
returns from the Easter recess," Karr said. Lawmakers plan to be in
recess from April 14 to 25.

"Marking up" a bill means taking committee action to send it to the
Senate floor. Hatch has said he wants Congress to pass a bill solving
the asbestos problem this year.

Hatch stressed that it was important to have bipartisan support, Karr
said.

He said representatives of the American Insurance Association, as well
as companies ranging from manufacturers of asbestos to those who have
been pulled into the litigation crisis because they sold products
containing the material attended the meeting with Hatch.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: NY Jury Awards $47M to Asbestos Victim
-----------------------------------------------------------
New York jury on Mar 26 awarded more than $47,000,000 to a 54-year-old
man diagnosed with cancer caused by exposure to asbestos, attorneys for
the plaintiff said.

A boilermaker who worked as a contractor for two New York utilities,
Consolidated Edison Inc. (ED) and KeySpan Corp. (KSE) unit Long Island
Lighting Co. (LILCO), Robert Crouteau was diagnosed with mesothelioma
in May of 2001.

The jury found both Con Edison and LILCO negligent and "reckless in
their actions and for failing to warn workers of the dangers of
asbestos," plaintiff attorneys at the law firm of Weitz & Luxenberg
said in a statement.

A spokesman for Con Edison called the award "grossly excessive" and
said the company will appeal if the judge allows the verdict to stand.

A KeySpan spokesperson could not immediately be reached.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Company to Be Sued over Asbestos Use
---------------------------------------------------------
Irwin Mitchell Solicitors is trying to track down people who might have
been exposed to potentially deadly asbestos dust while working at
Heatrae Sadia Heating - formerly known as Heatrae Limited.

They believe those people working for the company between 1955 and 1965
might have come in contact with the material and are entitled to
compensation.

David Cass, a spokesman for the firm, said he was not at liberty to
discuss individual cases, but was hoping to gauge the number of people
exposed and make a claim for compensation.

Asbestos was widely used in the building and heating trade until the
dangers of exposure to it were discovered. Inhalation of asbestos dust
can lead to serious lung problems, often causing death.

A legal loophole has prevented Olive Ellis, 83, a Norwich grandmother,
who used to work for Heatrae, adding her name to list because she was
exposed to asbestos before 1955. Ellis found it impossible to find any
solicitors to take up her case against Heatrae.

Heatrae Sadia Heating is the UK market leader in storage water heating
and is based in Hurricane Way, on the Norwich Airport Industrial
Estate.

David Hayhurst, a spokesman for the company, said it was worried about
the claims because it was a responsible company, which looked after its
staff.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: SA Asbestos Victims to Get Settlements By June
-------------------------------------------------------------------
The London-based Leigh Day Company, which represents more than 6 000
South African asbestosis victims, says it expects Gencor and Cape PLc
to pay out about GBP10,000,000 in compensation by the end of June.

Richard Meeran, a company spokesperson, says the monies from both
Gencor and Cape Plc will be paid into the lawyers' trust fund before
being distributed among the victims in the Limpopo Province and Prieska
in the Northern Cape.

Meeran has warned however that only victims registered with his company
will be eligible for compensation.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Coca-Cola Asbestos Case Moving Forth in Court
------------------------------------------------------------------
A lawsuit in which its former subsidiary, Aqua-Chem Inc., from 1970 to
1981, is seeking to hold The Coca-Cola Co. liable for millions of
dollars in asbestos claims is moving into the discovery phase.

Cleaver Brooks, an Aqua-Chem subsidiary, manufactured boilers, some of
which contained asbestos gaskets. Coke says it purchased over
$400,000,000 of insurance to cover Aqua-Chem for certain product
liability and other claims. It sold Aqua-Chem to Lyonnaise American
Holding Inc. in 1981.

According to the annual report filed by Coke with the Securities and
Exchange Commmission, Aqua-Chem was first named as a defendant in
asbestos lawsuits in or around 1985.  To date, it has more than 100,000
claims pending against it. Aqua-Chem has demanded that Coke reimburse
it for $10,000,000 in expenses and also demanded that Coke acknowledge
continuing obligations to Aqua-Chem for any future liabilities and
expenses not covered by insurance.

In December last year, Coca-Cola filed a lawsuit in Fulton Superior
Court in Atlanta seeking a ruling that it has no obligation to Aqua-
Chem for any past, present or future liabilities or expenses in
connection with any claims or lawsuits against it.

On the same day, Aqua-Chem sued Coca-Cola in Milwaukee, Wisconsin,
seeking a judgment stating Coca-Cola is responsible for all liabilities
and expenses in connection with certain of Aqua-Chem's general and
product liability claims arising from occurrences before the company's
sale of Aqua-Chem in 1981, and a judgment for breach of contract in an
amount exceeding $9 million for defense costs, expenses and settlements
incurred by Aqua-Chem to date.

The companies have agreed to stay the Wisconsin case pending final
resolution of the Georgia case, according to Coca-Cola's filing. The
companies have further agreed to a six-month discovery schedule in the
Georgia case. Coca-Cola says it believes it has substantial legal and
factual defenses to Aqua-Chem's claims and intends to vigorously
prosecute the Georgia case and defend the Wisconsin case.


ASBESTOS ALERT: Alleghany Has $2.9M in Asbestos Liabilities Reserves
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Alleghany Corp. said that it has reserves of about $2,900,000 for
asbestos liabilities and about $4,400,000 reserved for environmental
impairment claims.

For the year ended Dec. 31, 2002, the company recorded loss payments
for asbestos and environmental impairment exposures of $751,200,
according to the company's annual report filed with the Securities and
Exchange Commission.

COMPANY PROFILE
Alleghany Corporation (NYSE: Y)
375 Park Ave.
New York, NY 10152    
Phone: 212-752-1356
Fax: 212-759-8149

Employees   : 1,584 (as of December 31, 2001)
Revenue     :   $576,900,000
Net Income  :    $54,800,000
Assets      : $2,134,400,000
Liabilities :   $755,000,000
(As of December 31, 2002)

Description: Alleghany Corporation is an unregenerate diversified
conglomerate with interests ranging from nuts and bolts to financial
services. Its insurance arm consists of Capitol Transamerica, which
provides property & casualty, fidelity, and surety insurance. Its other
units are Heads and Threads (imports and distributes steel fasteners)
and World Minerals (the #1 producer of diatomite, used in industrial
filtration systems). Alleghany also has commercial and residential real
estate interests in California.


                     New Securities Fraud Cases


ADC TELECOMMS: Emerson Poynter Files Securities Suit in Minnesota  
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Emerson Poynter LLP initiated a securities class action in the United
States District Court for the District of Minnesota on behalf of all
purchasers of the common stock ADC Telecommunications Inc.,
(Nasdaq:ADCT), from November 2, 2000 through March 28, 2001, inclusive.

The complaint charges that on November 2, 2000, ADC announced in a
press release that the Company would meet or exceed published fiscal
expectations, and that despite the expected overall decrease in telecom
spending, shifts in Internet carrier spending would continue to benefit
the Company especially in broadband access and optical components. The
Company echoed these bullish predictions throughout the Class Period.
ADC's true financial performance and business prospects were revealed
at the end of the Class Period in a March 28, 2001 press release. In
the press release, the defendants acknowledged that the Company was in
fact performing below the projections issued earlier in the Class
Period and as a result, the Company lowered its fiscal 2001 earnings
guidance.

For more information, contact John G. Emerson, Esq. or Scott E.
Poynter, Esq. by Phone: (toll free) 1-800-663-9817 by E-mail:
shareholder@emersonfirm.com.


AFC ENTERPRISES: Holzer Holzer Commences Securities Lawsuit in N.D. GA
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Holzer Holzer & Cannon, LLC initiated a securities class action in the
United States District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, on
behalf of purchasers of AFC Enterprises, Inc. (Nasdaq:AFCE) publicly
traded securities during the period between March 2, 2001 and March 24,
2003, inclusive.

The complaint alleges that, during the Class Period, AFC and certain of
its officers violated the federal securities laws by disseminating
materially false and misleading statements and/or concealing material
adverse facts, thereby artificially inflating the price of AFC
securities.

Specifically, the complaint alleges that defendants failed to disclose
and/or misrepresented the following material adverse facts that were
then known to defendants or recklessly disregarded by them:

   (a) that the Company was improperly accounting for the value of
       certain long-lived assets, thereby artificially inflating its
       operating results;

   (b) that the Company was improperly accounting for the sale of
       corporate-owned stores to franchisees, thereby artificially
       inflating its operating results;

   (c) that the company was improperly accounting for cooperative
       advertising costs, thereby understating its advertising expenses
       and artificially inflating its operating results;

   (d) that the Company's Seattle Coffee Company was improperly
       accounting for inventory, sales allowances and slotting fees;  
       and

   (e) as a result of the foregoing, the Company's financial statements
       published during the Class Period were not prepared in
       accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and,
       therefore, it was not true that the Company's financial
       statements were a "fair presentation" of the Company's financial
       position.

On March 24, 2003, as alleged in the complaint, after the close of the
market, AFC shocked the investing public by announcing that it would be
restating its financial statements for fiscal year 2001 and the first
three quarters of 2002. Additionally, the complaint alleges, AFC also
reported that it was examining whether its financial statements for
fiscal year 2000 should be restated as well. The complaint alleges that
in response to this negative announcement, the price of AFC common
stock dropped precipitously - falling to as low as $12.30 per share -
on extremely high trading volume.

For queries, contact Michael I. Fistel, Jr., Esq. by Mail: 1117
Perimeter Center West, Suite E-107, Atlanta, Georgia 30338 by Phone:
(888) 508-6832 by E-mail: info@holzerlaw.com


AFC ENTERPRISES: Brodsky & Smith Launches Securities Lawsuit in N.D. GA
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
The Law offices of Brodsky & Smith, LLC initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Northern District of
Georgia on behalf of all purchasers of the common stock of AFC
Enterprises, Inc. (Nasdaq:AFCE) from March 2, 2001 through March 24,
2003, inclusive.

The Complaint alleges 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 March 2, 2001 and March 24, 2003, thereby artificially
inflating the price of AFC securities.

The Complaint alleges that these statements were materially false and
misleading because they failed to disclose and misrepresented the
following adverse facts, among others:

   (a) that the Company was improperly accounting for the value of
       certain long-lived assets, thereby artificially inflating its
       operating results;

   (b) that the Company was improperly accounting for the sale of
       corporate-owned stores to franchisees, thereby artificially
       inflating its operating results;

   (c) that the Company was improperly accounting for cooperative
       advertising costs, thereby understating its advertising expenses
       and artificially inflating its operating results;

   (d) that the Company's Seattle Coffee Company was improperly
       accounting for inventory, sales allowances and slotting fees;
       and

   (e) as a result of the foregoing, the Company's financial statements
       published during the Class Period were not prepared in
       accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles and,
       therefore, it was not true that the Company's financial
       statements were a ``fair presentation' of the Company's
       financial position.

Indeed, by announcing its intention to restate its financial
statements, AFC has admitted that its prior financial statements were
materially false and misleading when issued.

On March 24, 2003, after the market closed, AFC shocked the market by
announcing that it would be restating its financial statements for
fiscal year 2001 and the first three-quarters of 2002. The Company also
reported that it was examining whether or not its financial statements
for fiscal year 2000 should be restated. In response to this negative
announcement the price of AFC common stock dropped precipitously,
falling to as low as $12.30 per share, on extremely heavy trading
volume.

For more details, contact Marc L. Ackerman, Esquire or Evan J. Smith,
Esquire by Mail: Two Bala Plaza, Suite 602, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004 by
Phone: (toll free) 877.534.2590 by E-mail: clients@brodsky-smith.com or
visit the firm's Web site: http://www.brodsky-smith.com.


AHOLD: Entwistle & Cappucci Launches Securities Fraud Suit in S.D. NY
---------------------------------------------------------------------
New York law firm Entwistle & Cappucci LLP initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Southern District of
New York on behalf of all persons who purchased American Depositary
Receipts ("ADRs") of Koninkiljke Ahold NV (NYSE:AHO) between May 15,
2001 and February 24, 2003. Aside from the company, named defendants
are:

   (1) Henny de Ruiter,
   (2) Cees van der Hoeven, and
   (3) Michiel Meurs

The complaint alleges that defendants violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a)
of the Exchange Act by improperly recording revenues during the Class
Period in order to artificially inflate the price of Ahold's ADRs. The
defendants failed to inform investors that the Company's "excellent"
sales and revenue figures which the Company reported during the Class
Period were allegedly the product of improper accounting procedures.
During the Class Period, defendants utilized the Company's inflated
stock value to consummate acquisitions of major supermarket chains
around the world.

On February 24, 2003, the Company disclosed to the investing public a
series of accounting irregularities that will force the Company to
erase a total of at least $500 million for 2001 and 2002. As a
consequence of the matters referred to above, the Company deferred the
announcement of its full year financial results, originally scheduled
for March 5, 2003. In addition, Standard & Poor's ("S&P") rating agency
cut the Company's debt rating to junk status following the Company's
announcement. S&P said in a statement that it had downgraded Ahold's
long-term corporate credit rating by two notches, to BB+, its highest
"junk" grade, from BBB, also placing the rating on Credit Watch with
negative implications. S&P also lowered Ahold's short-term rating to B
from A-2. In response to these announcements, the price of Ahold ADRs
plummeted over 61%, to close at $4.16 per share on February 24, 2003.

Also on February 24, 2003, the Company announced that its Chief
Executive Officer, defendant van der Hoeven, and its Executive Vice
President and Chief Financial Officer, defendant Meurs, had resigned
from their positions with Ahold. During the Class Period, Ahold's ADRs
traded as high as $31.59 per share.

For more details contact Stephen D. Oestreich, Esq. or Robert N.
Cappucci, Esq. by Mail: Entwistle & Cappucci LLP, 299 Park Avenue, 14th
Floor, New York, New York 10171 by Phone: 212/894-7200 or visit the
firm's Web site: http://www.entwistle-law.com


BLACK BOX: Schiffrin & Barroway Commences Securities Suit in W.D. PA
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP initiated a securities class action in the
United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania
on behalf of all purchasers of the common stock of Black Box
Corporation (Nasdaq:BBOX) from October 15, 2002 through March 11, 2003,
inclusive.

The Complaint alleges 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 October 15, 2002 and March 11, 2003, thereby
artificially inflating the price of Black Box securities.

Throughout the Class Period, as alleged in the Complaint, defendants
failed to disclose and misrepresented the following material adverse
facts:

   (a) that the Company's European operations were not performing well
       and would have to be scaled down significantly and staffing
       levels reduced accordingly;

   (b) that the Company was improperly delaying the write down of a
       material amount of uncollectible receivables, thereby
       overstating its financial results; and

   (c) that the Company was experiencing declining demand for its
       products and services and was not performing according to its
       internal plans.

The Class Period ends on March 11, 2003. On that date, Black Box
shocked the market when it announced that it expects earnings for the
fourth quarter, the period ending March 31, 2003, to be between 53
cents and 54 cents, prior to one-time charges -- as compared to
analysts earnings estimates of 74 cents per share. The Company further
reported that it would be recording a $9 to $10 million one-time pre-
tax charge, or 29 cents to 32 cents per share. In response to this
announcement, the price of Black Box common stock dropped from $39.14
per share to $26.78 per share, a decline of 31%, on extremely heavy
volume. During the Class Period, Black Box insiders sold their
personally held shares of Black Box common stock generating proceeds of
more than $5 million.

For more information contact Marc A. Topaz, Esq. or Stuart L. Berman,
Esq. by Phone: toll free at 1-888-299-7706 or 1-610-667-7706 by E-mail:
info@sbclasslaw.com


BLACK BOX: Charles J. Piven Commences Securities Fraud Suit in W.D. PA
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Western District of
Pennsylvania on behalf of shareholders who purchased, converted,
exchanged or otherwise acquired the common stock of Black Box
Corporation (Nasdaq:BBOX) between October 15, 2002 and March 11, 2003,
inclusive.

The action charges that defendants violated federal securities laws by
issuing a series of materially false and misleading statements to the
market throughout the Class Period which statements had the effect of
artificially inflating the market price of the Company's securities.

For more information, contact Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. by
Mail: The World Trade Center-Baltimore, 401 East Pratt Street, Suite
2525, Baltimore, Maryland 21202 by E-mail: hoffman@pivenlaw.com by
Phone: 410/986-0036.


COLLINS & AIKMAN: Charles J. Piven Files Securities Lawsuit in E.D. MI
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a securities class
action on behalf of shareholders who purchased, converted, exchanged or
otherwise acquired the common stock of Collins & Aikman Corp.
(NYSE:CKC) between August 7, 2001 and August 2, 2002, inclusive. The
case is pending in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Michigan against defendants CKC and:

   (1) Heartland Industrial Partners, L.P.

   (2) ten senior officers and/or directors of CKC.

The action charges that defendants violated federal securities laws by
issuing a series of materially false and misleading statements to the
market throughout the Class Period which statements had the effect of
artificially inflating the market price of the Company's securities.

For more information, contact Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. by
Mail: The World Trade Center-Baltimore, 401 East Pratt Street, Suite
2525, Baltimore, Maryland 21202 by E-mail: hoffman@pivenlaw.com by
Phone: 410/986-0036.


FIFTH THIRD: Milberg Weiss Commences Securities Suit in S.D. Ohio
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach LLP initiated a
securities class action on behalf of purchasers of the securities of
Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq:FITB) between September 21, 2001 to January
31, 2003 inclusive. The action is pending in the United States District
Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Western Division, against the
Company and:

   (1) George A. Schaefer, Jr. (CEO and President)

   (2) Neal E. Arnold (CFO) and

   (3) David J. DeBrunner (Controller)

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 materially false and misleading
statements to the market between September 21, 2001 to January 31,
2003.

The Complaint alleges, among other things, that Fifth Third issued
press releases and filed financial reports with the SEC which
represented that the Company had successfully and seamlessly integrated
a large corporate acquisition (Old Kent) into its operations and
further represented that its business was stronger than ever and that
the Company would continue to grow and provide investment-safety.

According to the complaint, these statements were materially false and
misleading because they failed to disclose that the Old Kent (and
other) merger(s) seriously strained the Company's infrastructure,
causing deficiencies in its internal controls and other business-
critical systems. The alleged motive in this action was the Company's
plan to acquire a Tennessee-based bank using FifthThird stock as
currency.

On September 10, 2002, the Company announced that it would be taking a
$54 million after-tax ($81.8 million pre-tax) charge for impaired
funds, resulting from a botched accounting reconciliation. According to
the complaint, the Company played down the incident as a one-time
immaterial event, which was false and misleading because, according to
the complaint, it was symptomatic of material, company-wide
infrastructure deficiencies.

On November 14, 2002 the Company revealed that the write-off had
triggered investigations by banking regulators and the SEC. According
to the Complaint, the Company continued to insist, falsely, that its
controls were adequate.

On January 31, 2003, the Company reported that banking regulators would
likely take formal action against the Company, which would likely
require Fifth Third to improve its internal controls by, among other
things, adding personnel and processes.

On February 3, 2003, the first trading day following the announcement,
the price of Fifth Third common stock closed at $52.21 per share, a
decline of 15% from the closing price on November 14, 2002 close of
$62.53, the day that Fifth Third first revealed that it was being
investigated by banking regulators and the SEC.

For more information, contact: Steven G. Schulman by Mail: One
Pennsylvania Plaza, 49th fl., New York, NY, 10119-0165 by Phone:
800/320-5081 by E-mail: fifththirdcase@milbergNY.com or visit the
firm's Web site: http://www.milberg.com


FIFTH THIRD: Cauley Geller Launches Securities Fraud Suit in S.D. Ohio
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Firm of Cauley Geller Bowman Coates & Rudman, LLP initiated a
securities class action in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of Ohio, Western Division, on behalf of purchasers of
Fifth Third Bancorp (Nasdaq: FITB) publicly traded securities during
the period between September 21, 2001 to January 31, 2003, inclusive.
Aside from the company, named defendants are:

   (1) George A. Schaefer, Jr. (CEO and President),
   (2) Neal E. Arnold (CFO) and
   (3) David J. DeBrunner (Controller)

The complaint charges that the 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 materially false and
misleading statements to the market between September 21, 2001 to
January 31, 2003.

The Complaint alleges, among other things, that Fifth Third issued
press releases and filed financial reports with the SEC which
represented that the Company had successfully and seamlessly integrated
a large corporate acquisition (Old Kent) into its operations and
further represented that its business was stronger than ever and that
the Company would continue to grow and provide investment-safety.

According to the complaint, these statements were materially false and
misleading because they failed to disclose that the Old Kent (and
other) merger(s) seriously strained the Company's infrastructure,
causing deficiencies in its internal controls and other business-
critical systems. The alleged motive in this action was the Company's
plan to acquire a Tennessee-based bank using Fifth Third stock as
currency. On September 10, 2002, the Company announced that it would be
taking a $54 million after-tax ($81.8 million pre-tax) charge for
impaired funds, resulting from a botched accounting reconciliation.

According to the complaint, the Company played down the incident as a
one-time immaterial event, which was false and misleading because,
according to the complaint, it was symptomatic of material, company-
wide infrastructure deficiencies. On November 14, 2002 the Company
revealed that the write-off had triggered investigations by banking
regulators and the SEC. According to the Complaint, the Company
continued to insist, falsely, that its controls were adequate.

On January 31, 2003, the Company reported that banking regulators would
likely take formal action against the Company, which would likely
require Fifth Third to improve its internal controls by, among other
things, adding personnel and processes.

On February 3, 2003, the first trading day following the announcement,
the price of Fifth Third common stock closed at $52.21 per share, a
decline of 15% from the closing price on November 14, 2002 close of
$62.53, the day that Fifth Third first revealed that it was being
investigated by banking regulators and the SEC.

For queries, contact Samuel H. Rudman, Esq. or David A. Rosenfeld, Esq.
by Mail: P.O. Box 25438, Little Rock, AR 72221-5438 by Phone: (Toll
Free) 1-888-551-9944 by E-mail: info@cauleygeller.com or visit the
firm's Web site: http://www.cauleygeller.com


HEALTHSOUTH CORPORATION: M. Clay Ragsdale Files Securities Suit in AL
---------------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of M. Clay Ragsdale initiated a securities class action
in the Federal District Court in Birmingham, Alabama on behalf of
investors who purchased HealthSouth Corporation (NYSE: HRC) securities
between February 25, 1998 to March 18, 2003.

The complaint against HealthSouth and certain of its officers and
directors charges that the defendants violated the Securities Exchange
Act of 1934.

The complaint alleges that the defendants issued false and misleading
statements that artificially inflated the value of HealthSouth stock.

For more information, contact Clay Ragsdale by Mail: 1929 Third Ave.
North, Suite 550, The Farley Building, Birmingham, Alabama 35203 by
Phone: (205) 251-4775 or (877) 704-1487 (toll free).


KING PHARMACEUTICALS: Schatz & Nobel Launches Lawsuit in E.D. Tennessee
-----------------------------------------------------------------------
Schatz & Nobel, P.C. initiated a securities class action in the United
States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee on behalf
of all persons who purchased the publicly traded securities of King
Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (NYSE: KG) from April 26, 1999 through March 10,
2003, inclusive. Also included are all those who acquired Kings's
shares through its acquisitions of Medico Research, Inc. and Jones
Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

The Complaint alleges that King, a vertically integrated pharmaceutical
company that develops, manufactures, markets and sells primarily
branded pharmaceutical products, and certain of its officers and
directors issued materially false and misleading financial statements
that inflated the prices of King's securities.  Specifically, King
recognizing revenue from the government that it was not entitled to,
thereby overstating its financial results.  While the stock was
inflated, King completed two secondary stock offerings, raising more
than $900 million in proceeds.  

On March 11, 2003, King disclosed an SEC investigation into the
Company's rebates to distributors in prior years.  On this news, the
Company's stock plummeted from $15.90 per share to $12.17 per share, a
decline of 73% from the class period high of $46.05.

For more details, contact attorneys Andrew M. Schatz or Nancy A. Kulesa
by Phone: (800) 797- 5499 by E-mail: sn06106@aol.com or visit the
firm's Web site: http://www.snlaw.net.


SPRINT CORPORATION: Wechsler Harwood Files Securities Fraud Suit in KS
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Wechsler Harwood LLP initiated a securities class action on behalf of
those individuals who purchased or otherwise acquired the common stock
of Sprint FON Group (NYSE:FON) and PCS Group (NYSE:PCS) between August
11, 2000 and February 13, 2003, inclusive. The Complaint was filed in
the United States District Court for the District of Kansas against the
Company and:

   (1) Ernst & Young LLP,

   (2) William Esrey and

   (3) Ronald Lemay

The Complaint charges that defendants violated Sections 10(b), 14(a)
and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder, by issuing a series of materially false and
misleading statements to the market. Specifically, the Company's press
releases and SEC filings overstated the Company's earnings and net
assets by failing to reserve for the likely reversal of over $100
million in tax benefits attributable to highly questionable tax
shelters used by Sprint's executive officers. The Complaint further
alleges that defendants failed to reveal that these tax shelters caused
a conflict of interest between the executives, Sprint and Sprint's
accountants, Ernst & Young.

For more information, contact Ramon Pinon by Mail: 488 Madison Avenue,
8th Floor, New York, New York 10022 by Phone: (877) 935-7400 ext. 283
by E-mail: rpinon@whesq.com or visit the firm's Web site:
http://www.whesq.com



                             *********


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., Trenton, New Jersey, and
Beard Group, Inc., Washington, D.C.  Enid Sterling, Aurora Fatima
Antonio and Lyndsey Resnick, Editors.

Copyright 2002.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

This material is copyrighted and any commercial use, resale or
publication in any form (including e-mail forwarding, electronic re-
mailing and photocopying) is strictly prohibited without prior written
permission of the publishers.

Information contained herein is obtained from sources believed to be
reliable, but is not guaranteed.

The CAR subscription rate is $575 for six months delivered via e-mail.  
Additional e-mail subscriptions for members of the same firm for the
term of the initial subscription or balance thereof are $25 each.  For
subscription information, contact Christopher Beard at 240/629-3300.

                  * * *  End of Transmission  * * *