CAR_Public/031106.mbx            C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R
  
          Thursday, November 6, 2003, Vol. 5, No. 220

                        Headlines                            

AMAZON NATURAL: SEC Institutes Penny Stock Bar V. Ex-President
BELL CANADA: Investors Drop Punitive Damages Claim in Stock Suit
BELL CANADA: To Ask Canadian Court To Dismiss Two Investor Suits
CALIFORNIA: Jury Clears State Highway Patrol in Race Bias Suit
CARESCIENCE INC.: PA Dismisses In Part Securities Fraud Lawsuit

CHARTER COMMUNICATIONS: Seeks Dismissal of MO Securities Lawsuit
CHARTER COMMUNICATIONS: Faces Shareholder Derivative Suits in MO
DAIMLERCHRYSLER AG: Hearing For $300M Settlement Set Dec. 2003
EASYHOME LTD.: Parties Attempt To Settle Consumer Fraud Lawsuit
EASYHOME LTD.: Trial in Ontario Investor Suit Set February 2004

EXTENSITY INC.: Awaiting Court Approval For Securities Suit Pact
FAO INC.: Plaintiffs File Amended Consolidated Stock Suit in PA
HEALTHSOUTH CORPORATION: Former Exec Indicted in Securities Suit
HENRY BLODGET: SEC Commences, Settles Administrative Proceedings
ICT GROUP: WV Court Refuses To Grant $11.3M Surety Bond Motion

INVESTMENT FIRMS: Judge Tosses Two IPO Allocation Fraud Suits
INVESTMENT FIRMS: SEC Reveals Details of $1.4B Global Settlement
IOWA: Federal Court Considers Dismissal For Stuttering Lawsuit
JACK GRUBMAN: SEC Commences, Settles Administrative Proceedings
KRAFT FOODS: Faces Race Discrimination Lawsuit Filed in PA Court

LANDERS AUTO: Salespersons Launch Fraud Lawsuit Over Commissions
LINK EXPRESS: FL Jury Returns Guilty Verdict V. Former President
MASSACHUSETTS: Whites Sue Boston Over Fire Dept. Hiring Policy
MASSACHUSETTS: Lawyers Launch Lawsuit In Tobacco Settlement Row
MICHIGAN: Court Approves Pact in 15-year-old Prison Rights Suit

MICROSOFT CORPORATION: Judge Won't Require Major Windows Changes
MITUSI & CO.: Settles U.S. Vitamin Antitrust Case For $53M
MUTUAL FUNDS: Breakpoint Discount Problems Might Spur Lawsuits
MUTUAL FUNDS: SEC Enforcement Head Sees More Possible Lawsuits
NEW YORK: 40 Claims Lodged Over October Staten Ferry Accident

PRUDENTIAL SECURITIES: Ex-Workers Charged With Improper Trading
PUTNAM INVESTMENTS: CEO Resigns As More Investors Pull Out Funds
PUTNAM FUNDS: NYC Pensions Withdraw Assets Amid Flurry of Suits
QUOVADX INC.: Reaches Settlement For Securities Fraud Suit in NY
SPORT-HALEY INC.: SEC Files Civil Fraud Suit V. Former Auditor

SUNLINE: Coachella Taxi Drivers Launch Suit Over Regulatory Fees
THIMEROSAL: Study States No Link Between Vaccines and Autism
UNITED STATES: Federal Agency Rejects Arsenic-Treated Lumber Ban
WASHTENAW MORTGAGE: Trying to Settle GA Mortgage Brokers' Suit
WASHTENAW MORTGAGE: Trying To Settle MI Consumer Fraud Lawsuit

WASHTENAW MORTGAGE: Faces Predatory Lending Lawsuit in WV Court
XEROX CORPORATION: Trial in CT Employee Suit Set For Early 2004
XEROX CORPORATION: To Seek For Writ of Certiorari by  Dec. 2003
XEROX CORPORATION: Ask CT Court To Dismiss Securities Law Suit
XEROX CORPORATION: Oral Arguments For Dismissal Set Nov. 6, 2003

ZANDRIA CORPORATION: SEC Files, Settles Insider Trading Lawsuit

                   New Securities Fraud Cases

ALLIANCE CAPITAL: Schiffrin & Barroway Files Fraud Lawsuit in NY
MORGAN STANLEY: Cohen Milstein Lodges Securities Suit in S.D. NY
PUTNAM FUNDS: Milberg Weiss Launches Securities Fraud Suit in MA
TITAN PHARMACEUTICALS: Milberg Weiss Files Stock Suit in N.D.CA

                        *********

AMAZON NATURAL: SEC Institutes Penny Stock Bar V. Ex-President
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission issued an order
instituting public administrative proceedings pursuant to
Section 15(b) Of the Securities Exchange Act Of 1934 against
Michael A. Sylver of Las Vegas, Nevada.

The order alleges that between that between 1997 and 2000, Mr.
Sylver, formerly the president of Amazon Natural Treasures, Inc.  
(Amazon), participated in an offering of Amazon, which was at
relevant times a penny stock.  The order institutes public
administrative proceedings to determine what, if any, remedial
action is appropriate in the public interest against Mr. Sylver.  
The Order is based upon the entry of a permanent injunction
against Mr. Sylver.
     
On June 5, 2003, the US District Court for the District of
Nevada entered a final judgment permanently enjoining Mr. Sylver
from violations of Sections 5(a), 5(c), and 17(a) of the
Securities Act of 1933 and Sections 10(b), 13(a), 13(b)(2)(A)
and (B) of the Exchange Act and Rules 10b-5, 12b-20, 12b-25,
13a-1, 13a-13, 13b2-1 and 13b2-2 thereunder.  Mr. Sylver
consented to the issuance of the injunction without admitting or
denying the allegations of the complaint.
     
A hearing will be held at a time and place to be scheduled to
determine whether a penny stock bar against Mr. Sylver is
appropriate in the public interest.  The Order provides that the
Administrative Law Judge shall issue an initial decision no
later than 210 days from the date of service of this Order,
pursuant to Rule 360(a)(2) of the Commission's Rules of
Practice.   


BELL CANADA: Investors Drop Punitive Damages Claim in Stock Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Plaintiffs dropped their claim for punitive damages and one
defendant from the lawsuit filed against Bell Canada,
International, BCE, Inc. and certain current and former members
of the Company's Board of Directors on behalf of certain former
holders of BCI's $250 million 6.75% convertible unsecured
subordinated debentures, in Canadian Court.

The plaintiffs seek damages up to an amount of $250 million in
connection with the settlement, on February 15, 2002, of the
debentures through the issuance of common shares, in accordance
with BCI's recapitalization plan completed on February 15, 2002.

In accordance with an agreement reached among the parties to
this lawsuit, the court has ordered that this lawsuit be
certified as a class action within the meaning of applicable
legislation.  The certification order does not constitute a
decision on the merits of the class action, and the Company
continues to be of the view that the allegations contained
in the lawsuit are without merit and intends to vigorously
defend its position.

As part of the agreement among the parties, the plaintiffs in
the class action have abandoned their claim for punitive damages
(the statement of claim originating the lawsuit sought $30
million in punitive damages).  The plaintiffs have also agreed
to the dismissal of the class action against BMO Nesbitt Burns
Inc., one of the original defendants in the proceeding.


BELL CANADA: To Ask Canadian Court To Dismiss Two Investor Suits
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bell Canada International and BCE, Inc. will ask Canadian court
to dismiss two shareholder suits filed against them.

On September 27, 2002, Mr. Wilfred Shaw, a holder of the
Company's Common stock, filed the suit on behalf of all persons
who owned the Company's common shares on December 3, 2001.  The
lawsuit sought $1 billion in damages from the Company and BCE,
in connection with the issuance of the Company's common shares
on February 15, 2002 pursuant to the Recapitalization Plan and
the implementation of the Plan of Arrangement.  On May 9, 2003,
the court dismissed the plaintiff's motion for certification of
the lawsuit as a class action and struck out the original
statement of claim as disclosing no reasonable cause of action.

On June 27, 2003, the plaintiff filed an amended statement of
claim in connection with the lawsuit.  The plaintiff again seeks
court approval to proceed by way of class action, on behalf
of the same class of persons and continues to seek $1 billion of
damages from the Company and BCE.

On August 31, 2003, Mr. Cameron Gillespie, a common shareholder
of the Company, filed a proof of claim with the Monitor and a
lawsuit against the Company and BCE.  This plaintiff is seeking
court approval to proceed by way of class action on behalf of
all persons who owned BCI common shares on December 31, 2001.
This plaintiff's lawyer is the same lawyer representing Mr.
Wilfred Shaw.  

Except with regard to the identity of the plaintiff, Mr.
Gillespie's statement of claim is substantially identical in all
respects to Mr. Shaw's amended statement of claim, including the
allegations made, the class of shareholders purported to be
represented and the $1 billion in damages sought.  As such, the
Company is of the view that the filing of the Gillespie action
does not increase BCI's potential liability beyond that relating
to the initial filing of the Shaw action in September 2002.  The
Company is also of the view that the allegations contained in
both such claims are frivolous and entirely without merit and
intends to take all appropriate actions, including contesting
the certification of both actions as a class action, and also
intends to request its costs incurred as a result of the defense
of these lawsuits.


CALIFORNIA: Jury Clears State Highway Patrol in Race Bias Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
A federal jury ruled on Monday in favor of the California
Highway Patrol (CHP) in a class action brought by lead plaintiff
and black former lieutenant Jeff Paige, who alleged the Agency
turned him down four times for promotion to captain because of
his race, AP Newswire reports.

The jury did find that the Highway Patrol retaliated against Mr.
Paige for complaining about alleged discrimination by denying
him job assignments.  Jurors must now decide the amount of
damages Mr. Paige will receive on the retaliation claim.

Mr. Paige, 60, and who retired in 1996, had no comment on the
verdict, AP states.  He had argued that since 1993, only 102 of
the 1,119 minority officers on the 5,675-person force held a
rank above traffic officer.  The CHP contended Mr. Paige wasn't
promoted because he did poorly on the oral examination during
the selection process.

"We're very grateful that the jury found no evidence of
promotional discrimination within the California Highway
Patrol," W. Randolph Teslik, an attorney representing the CHP,
told AP.

Another phase of the class action will occur later this month,
when a judge will decide whether a statistical analysis of CHP
data shows white employees were promoted more often than blacks
and other minorities.  The judge does not have to find an intent
to discriminate, only a pattern of hiring that favors whites.

"The case is still essentially undecided," Della Bahan, Mr.
Paige's attorney, told AP.  She said the damages in the next
phase of the case could lead to damages "well into the millions"
for the plaintiffs.


CARESCIENCE INC.: PA Dismisses In Part Securities Fraud Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania granted in part CareScience, Inc.'s motion to
dismiss the consolidated securities class action filed against
it and certain of its present and former officers.

The suit alleges violations of federal securities laws, and
seeks compensatory and other damages, and costs and expenses
associated with litigation. The suit purports to bring claims on
behalf of all persons who allegedly purchased CareScience common
stock between June 29, 2000 and November 1, 2000, for alleged
violation of the federal securities laws, including Sections 11,
12(a)(2) and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933 by issuing a
materially false and misleading Prospectus and Registration
Statement with respect to the initial public offering of
CareScience common stock.

Specifically, the complaints allege, among other things, that
the CareScience Prospectus and Registration Statement
misrepresented and omitted to disclose material facts concerning
its competitors, two of its prospective products and its
contract with the California HealthCare Foundation.

On July 25, 2003, the Judge granted CareScience's motion to
dismiss the claims under Section 12(a)(2) of the Securities Act,
but denied its motion to dismiss the claims under Sections 11
and 15 of the Securities Act.  

CareScience has filed an answer denying all allegations of
wrongdoing.  Discovery has not yet commenced.  The company does
not believe that the outcome of this action will have a material
adverse effect on its financial position, results of operations
or liquidity; however, litigation is inherently uncertain and
the Company can make no assurance as to the ultimate outcome or
effect.


CHARTER COMMUNICATIONS: Seeks Dismissal of MO Securities Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Charter Communications, Inc. and certain of its former and
present officers have filed motions to dismiss the consolidated
securities class action filed against them in the United States
District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri.

Fourteen lawsuits were initially filed on behalf of all
purchasers of Charter's securities during the period from either
November 8 or November 9, 1999 through July 17 or July 18, 2002.  
Unspecified damages are sought by the plaintiffs.

In general, the lawsuits allege that Charter utilized misleading
accounting practices and failed to disclose these accounting
practices and/or issued false and misleading financial
statements and press releases concerning Charter's operations
and prospects.

In October 2002, Charter filed a motion with the Judicial Panel
on Multidistrict Litigation (JPMDL) to transfer the suits to the
United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Missouri.  On March 12, 2003, the Panel transferred the six
suits not filed in Missouri court to that district for
coordinated or consolidated pretrial proceedings with the eight
suits already pending there.  The Panel's transfer order
assigned the federal suits to Judge Charles A. Shaw.  By virtue
of a prior court order, StoneRidge Investment Partners LLC
became lead plaintiff upon entry of the Panel's transfer order.  
StoneRidge subsequently filed a consolidated suit.

On June 19, 2003, following a pretrial conference with the
parties, the court issued a Case Management Order setting forth
a schedule for the pretrial phase of the consolidated class
action.


CHARTER COMMUNICATIONS: Faces Shareholder Derivative Suits in MO
----------------------------------------------------------------
Charter Communications, Inc. and its then current directors face
two shareholder derivative suits filed in Missouri state and
federal courts.

On September 12, 2002, a shareholders derivative suit was filed
in Missouri state court against Charter and its then current
directors, as well as its former auditors.  The plaintiffs
allege that the individual defendants breached their fiduciary
duties by failing to establish and maintain adequate internal
controls and procedures.  Unspecified damages, allegedly on
Charter's behalf, are sought by the plaintiffs.

Separately, on February 12, 2003, a shareholders derivative suit
was filed against the Company and its then current directors in
the United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Missouri.  The plaintiff alleges that the individual defendants
breached their fiduciary duties and grossly mismanaged Charter
by failing to establish and maintain adequate internal controls
and procedures.  Unspecified damages, allegedly on Charter's
behalf, are sought by the plaintiffs.


DAIMLERCHRYSLER AG: Hearing For $300M Settlement Set Dec. 2003
--------------------------------------------------------------
Fairness hearing for the settlement of the securities class
action filed against DaimlerChrysler AG in the United States
District Court for the District of Delaware is set for December
5, 2003.

The suit was filed on behalf of all persons who exchanged shares
of Chrysler corporation for shares of DaimlerChrysler AG in
connection with the November 1998 business combination of the
two companies or who acquired or purchased shares of
DaimlerChrysler AG in the open market from November 13, 1998
through November 17, 2000.

A hearing will be held on December 5, 2003 at 1 pm before the
Honorable Joseph J. Farnan, at the United States District Court
for the District of Delaware to determine whether the proposed
settlement should be approved by the Court as fair, reasonable,
and adequate, and to consider the application of Plaintiff's
Counsel for attorney's fees and reimbursement of expenses.

For more information, contact Vincent R. Cappucci, or Johnston
de F. Whitman, Jr., of Entwistle & Cappucci, LLP, by Mail:
299 Park Ave., 14th Floor, New York, NY 10171, or by Phone:
(212) 894-7200, or contact Daniel L. Berger, Darnley D. Stewart,
or Rochelle Feder Hansen, of Bernstein, Litowitz, Berger, &
Grossmann, LLP, by Mail: 1285 Ave. of the Americas, New York, NY
10019, or by Phone: (212) 554 1400

Parties can also contact Jay W. Eisenhofer, or Geoffrey C.
Jarvis, of Grant & Eisenhofer, PA, by Mail: 1201 N. Market
Street, Suite 2100, Wilmington, DE 19801, or by Phone:
(302) 622-7000 or contact Jeffrey W. Golan, Jeffrey A. Barrack,
or David E. Orbinson, of Barrack, Rodos, & Bacine, by Mail:
3300 Two Commerce Square, 2001 Market Street, Philadelphia, PA
10103, or by Phone: (215) 963-0600


EASYHOME LTD.: Parties Attempt To Settle Consumer Fraud Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Parties in the class action filed against easyhome Ltd. in
Montreal Superior Court in the Province of Quebec are
negotiating for a suit settlement.

The suit, filed on behalf of all persons residing in Quebec who
have leased or purchased personal property destined for personal
use in their home from the Company, alleges that the Company's
rental contracts do not properly comply with the requirements of
the Consumer Protection Act (Quebec).  They are seeking the
cancellation of their contracts, or the reduction of their
obligations and the reimbursement of all or a portion of the
amounts paid by the members of the class to the Company, as well
as exemplary damages in the amount of $200 per contract.

If this class action proceeds to trial, the Company believes it
has substantive defenses to the plaintiffs' allegations.


EASYHOME LTD.: Trial in Ontario Investor Suit Set February 2004
---------------------------------------------------------------
Trial in a proceeding filed against easyhome Ltd. is set for
February 2004 in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice.

952304 Ontario Ltd., Philip Jamieson, Gregory J. Peebles, 953954
Ontario Inc. and 953953 Ontario Inc. filed the proceeding in the
Superior Court of Ontario, seeking payment of $500,000 held in
escrow, pursuant to a share purchase transaction whereby the
Company acquired all of the outstanding shares of Granada Canada
Holdings Inc. from the Plaintiffs.  

The Company defended the suit on the basis that the escrow funds
belong to it by virtue of several misrepresentations that were
made by the Plaintiffs.  The Company claimed in its Statement of
Defence and Counterclaim damages in the amount of $4,600,000
from the Plaintiffs.  The principal element of the Counterclaim
is misrepresentation by the Plaintiffs in a cash flow forecast.  
The Company has also filed, as an alternative means of relief, a
$4,600,000 negligence claim against the solicitors which
represented it in connection with the Granada share purchase
transaction.  


EXTENSITY INC.: Awaiting Court Approval For Securities Suit Pact
----------------------------------------------------------------
Extensity, Inc. reached a settlement for the consolidated
securities class action filed against it, certain of its
officers and directors and the underwriters of its initial
public offering in January 2000, alleging violations of the
federal securities laws of the United States.  The suit is
pending in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York.

The parties have submitted a settlement proposal and are
awaiting court approval of the proposal.  Such approval is
expected in late 2003 to early 2004.  If the proposed settlement
is not approved, in view of the fact that Extensity is a
corporate defendant, this action may divert the efforts and
attention of the Company's management and, if determined
adversely, could have a material impact on its business,
financial position, results of operations and cash flows.


FAO INC.: Plaintiffs File Amended Consolidated Stock Suit in PA
---------------------------------------------------------------
Plaintiffs filed an amended consolidated securities class action
against FAO, Inc.'s directors Jerry R. Welch, Fred Kayne and
Richard Kayne in United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Pennsylvania.

The suit alleges violations of Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5 promulgated
thereunder based on alleged misrepresentations made by the
defendants.  Mr. Steele has filed a proof of claim on behalf of
himself and others for $50.0 million in our bankruptcy case.

The Company has not been named as a defendant nor has there been
any claim made for indemnity though the defendants did file
proofs of claim on the Company's indemnification obligations set
forth in its articles and bylaws.  The Company's directors and
officers insurance carrier has acknowledged coverage with a
reservation of claims.

An amended consolidated complaint was filed which added certain
claims related to the Company's accounting and added its former
Chief Financial Officer, Raymond Springer, as a defendant.  The
defendants must respond to the amended complaint by October 1,
2003.

Management currently does not believe this claim will result in
a material adverse effect on the Company's business or
operations, financial position or results of operations;
however, new issues may arise that could have such an effect or
management's initial evaluation may prove inaccurate.


HEALTHSOUTH CORPORATION: Former Exec Indicted in Securities Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------

Former HealthSouth Corporation chief executive Richard Scrushy
was indicted on Tuesday on 85 criminal counts for a scheme that
added $2.7 billion in fictitious income to the healthcare
company he founded, Reuters reports.

Mr. Scrushy, 51, the latest top executive to face criminal
charges in a series of recent corporate scandals, surrendered to
the FBI office and appeared in court in Birmingham, Alabama.  
The charges included conspiracy to commit fraud, filing false
financial statements, money laundering and securities and wire
fraud while he headed up the Birmingham-based operator of
rehabilitation and outpatient surgery centers.

Federal prosecutors told Reuters they would seek more than $278
million in forfeitures from Mr. Scrushy, including a plantation,
a yacht, two airplanes, four luxury cars, a diamond ring,
antique rugs and paintings by famous artists.  He faces up to
650 years in prison and more than $36 million in fines if
convicted.

"As alleged, instead of telling the public the truth, Scrushy
and his accomplices lied to cover up their scheme," Assistant
Attorney General Christopher Wray told a news conference.

Donald Watkins, Mr. Scrushy's lead attorney, said his client
"will not be pleading guilty in this lifetime."

A federal judge in Birmingham has set a trial date of January 5,
2004.  Mr. Scrushy is expected to be released on $10 million
bond and as part of the agreement, he must put up all four of
his Alabama properties and all 297,000 shares of HealthSouth he
still owns.  Mr. Scrushy is not allowed to travel outside
Alabama and must wear an electronic monitoring device on his
ankle.

While serving as HealthSouth's CEO, Mr. Scrushy enforced
discipline among members of the conspiracy through threats,
intimidation and payoffs, Mr. Wray said.  "Scrushy also
eavesdropped on HealthSouth employees' telephone calls and e-
mails and tried to buy their silence," he added.

Prosecutors said Mr. Scrushy and his accomplices devised a
scheme, starting in 1996, to inflate the company's earnings by
making false and fraudulent entries in its books and records.
Even after the scheme began to unravel in August 2002, Mr.
Scrushy continued to boast that HealthSouth had an outstanding
balance sheet.

In early 2003, he told a meeting of company managers that
HealthSouth did not have the same type of problems as two other
companies hit by accounting scandals -- Tyco International Ltd.
and WorldCom, now MCI.  That same year, Mr. Scrushy offered to
take care of an accomplice's family if the co-conspirator would
take the blame for HealthSouth's financial statements,
prosecutors said.

Mr. Scrushy has repeatedly denied he had any part in the fraud
that left the company battling to avoid bankruptcy, and has
blamed his underlings.  US officials said 16 individuals have
been charged in the HealthSouth investigation, which began in
March.  Fourteen former HealthSouth executives, including five
former chief financial officers, have entered guilty pleas and
are cooperating with the federal investigation, they said.

Mr. Scrushy is the first chief executive to be accused of
violating the Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002, which includes a
requirement that top executives at publicly traded companies
certify the accuracy of financial results.  That law was enacted
following the Enron and WorldCom scandals.  Mr. Scrushy, who
sold three-quarters of his HealthSouth stock last year, was
ousted as chief executive in March.


HENRY BLODGET: SEC Commences, Settles Administrative Proceedings
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission instituted
and simultaneously settled public administrative proceedings
against Henry M. Blodget of New York, New York based upon a
permanent injunction entered against him on October 31, 2003 in
the suit, styled "Securities and Exchange Commission v. Henry M.
Blodget, Civil Action No. 03 Civ. 2947 (WHP)," pending in the US
District Court for the Southern District of New York.  

The Commission filed a civil action against Mr. Blodget, who was
formerly a managing director and senior research analyst at
Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, alleging
that Mr. Blodget issued research reports on one Internet company
that were materially misleading.  The Commission's action
further alleged that Mr. Blodget issued research reports on six
Internet companies that were not based on principles of fair
dealing and good faith, did not provide a sound basis for
evaluating facts, contained exaggerated or unwarranted claims
about the companies, and/or contained opinions for which there
was no reasonable basis.  All of the reports were issued under
Merrill Lynch's name.  

The Commission's complaint alleged that, as a result of this
conduct, Mr. Blodget aided and abetted Merrill Lynch's
violations of Section 15(c) of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934 and Rule 15c1-2 thereunder, antifraud provisions of the
federal securities laws governing broker-dealers, and violated
Conduct Rules of NASD Inc. and the New York Stock Exchange, Inc.  

The Order bars Mr. Blodget from association with any broker,
dealer, or investment adviser.  Mr. Blodget consented to the
issuance of the Order without admitting or denying any of the
allegations in the civil injunctive action.  


ICT GROUP: WV Court Refuses To Grant $11.3M Surety Bond Motion
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Circuit Court of Berkeley County, West Virginia refused
plaintiffs' motion seeking to induce ICT Group, Inc. to pay a
$11.3 million surety bond relating to the class action filed
against it for violations of the West Virginia Wage Payment and
Collection Act   

The Company allegedly failed to pay promised signing and
incentive bonuses and wage increases, failed to compensate
employees for short breaks or "transition" periods and imposed
improper deductions for the cost of purchasing telephone
headsets.  The complaint also included a count for fraud,
alleging that the failure to pay for short break and transition
time violated specific representations made by the Company to
its employees.

The Company filed a response denying liability.  In 2001, the
court granted the plaintiffs' motion to expand the class to
include all current and former hourly employees at all four of
the Company's West Virginia facilities and to add twelve current
and former executives of the Company as defendants.

The plaintiffs then asserted a new allegation that, in addition
to not paying employees for breaks and "transition time," the
Company failed to pay employees for production hours worked.  
The Court has entered two separate orders granting partial
summary judgment against the Company and, in the case of one of
the orders, against three of the individual defendants, finding
that employees were not paid for all hours attributable to short
breaks and idle time of less than 30 minutes in duration.

In addition to compensatory claims for unpaid wages, the
plaintiffs are seeking liquidated damages under the Act and
punitive damages for allegedly fraudulent conduct on the part of
the Company and the individual defendants.  The method of
calculating liquidated damages under the Act is one of the
matters in dispute between the parties, and there is a
significant difference in the amount of potential liquidated
damages using the methods the plaintiffs and the Company contend
apply.  The potential amount of the liquidated damages is
affected by such things as the hours a person worked per day,
the hourly rate of pay and the number of class members included
in the calculation.

On April 16, 2003, the court entered an order granting the
plaintiffs' motion for summary judgment on the method of
calculation of liquidated damages under the Act.  The court
ruled that, under the Act, every class member who was not paid
transition time, short breaks or other wages is owed liquidated
damages equal to a day's wages for every day the amounts due
remain unpaid up to 30 days.

On October 11, 2002, the plaintiffs filed a Motion For Sanctions
requesting the Court to find certain evidentiary presumptions
and to order the defendants to obtain a surety bond in the
initial amount of approximately $11,300,000, reflecting the
plaintiffs' contention of the amount of compensatory and
liquidated damages due.  The plaintiffs subsequently amended
their request that the Company post a surety bond by asking the
Court to increase the amount of the bond to approximately
$21,000,000, alleging that the number of class members had
increased and, therefore, the potential amount of compensatory
and liquidated damages also had increased.  


INVESTMENT FIRMS: Judge Tosses Two IPO Allocation Fraud Suits
-------------------------------------------------------------
U.S. District Judge William H. Pauley threw out two class
actions that leveled price-fixing allegations against 10
investment banks that took technology stocks public during the
Internet boom, AP newswire reports.  In his ruling, Judge Pauley
said that the charges made by investors in the suits are immune
from antitrust law and fall to federal securities regulators to
decide.

The lawsuits, filed in 2001, accused the banks of conspiring to
drive up the prices of initial public offerings by requiring
investors to buy the stocks at higher prices than their issue
price, a process called laddering.  The suits also accused the
banks of illegal "tie-ins" requiring investors to purchase
shares of less attractive stocks to get in on some of the hot
new technology issues.  Defendants in the lawsuits included
leading Wall Street banks such as Bear Stearns, Credit Suisse
First Boston, Lehman Brothers, Morgan Stanley and Merrill Lynch.

Last week, the same judge approved a settlement under which the
nation's biggest brokerage firms will pay $1.4 billion to
resolve charges they gave biased stock ratings during the stock
boom.

Another Federal Judge, Shira A. Scheindlin, is considering
hundreds of similar lawsuits brought under federal securities
laws by investors who say the banks cheated them out of billions
of dollars during the IPO process.


INVESTMENT FIRMS: SEC Reveals Details of $1.4B Global Settlement
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC)
revealed in its News Digest the details of the US$1.4 billion
global settlement approved by the Honorable William H. Pauley
III, U.S.  District Judge for the Southern District of New York,
for the SEC enforcement actions against ten of the nation's top
investment firms and two individuals alleging undue influence of
investment banking interests on securities research at brokerage
firms.

In addition to the Order, which applies to all 12 actions that
are part of the global settlement, the Court also entered
separate Final Judgments as to each of the 12 defendants, Orders
Regarding Distribution Fund Plan as to nine of the investment
firms and Orders Regarding Investor Education as to seven of the
firms.   The Orders Regarding Distribution Fund Plan provide
further details as to investors who may be eligible to receive
proceeds from the Distribution Funds to be created as part of
the global settlement.  The Orders Regarding Investor Education
set forth a framework and guidelines for the formation of a non-
profit grant administration organization to fund worthy and
cost-efficient programs designed to equip investors with the
knowledge and skills necessary to make informed investment
decisions.
     
The SEC filed its Complaints, the defendants' consents and
proposed judgments on April 28, 2003.  In its Complaints, the
allegations of which the defendants neither admit nor deny, the
SEC alleged that, from approximately mid-1999 through mid-2001
or later, all of the firms engaged in acts and practices that
created or maintained inappropriate influence by investment
banking over research analysts, thereby imposing conflicts of
interest on research analysts that the firms failed to manage in
an adequate or appropriate manner.  The Complaints also alleged
supervisory deficiencies at every firm.
          
In addition to these allegations, the Complaints included
additional charges specific to each firm.  According to the
Complaints:
          
     (1) Salomon Smith Barney (now known as Citigroup Global  
         Markets) (SSB), Credit Suisse First Boston (CSFB) and
         Merrill Lynch issued fraudulent research reports in
         violation of Section 15(c) of the Securities Exchange
         Act of 1934 and Rule 15c1-2 thereunder as well as
         various state statutes;
          
          
     (2) Bear Stearns, CSFB, Goldman, Lehman, Merrill Lynch,
         Piper Jaffray, SSB and UBS Warburg (now known as UBS
         Securities) (UBS) issued research reports that were not
         based on principles of fair dealing and good faith and
         did not provide a sound basis for evaluating facts,
         contained exaggerated or unwarranted claims about the
         covered companies, and/or contained opinions for which
         there were no reasonable bases in violation of New York
         Stock Exchange (NYSE) Rules 401, 472 and 476(a)(6), and
         NASD, Inc., Rules 2110 and 2210 as well as state ethics
         statutes;
       
     (3) UBS and Piper Jaffray received payments for research
         without disclosing such payments in violation of
         Section 17(b) of the Securities Act of 1933 as well as
         NYSE Rules 476(a)(6), 401 and 472 and NASD Rules 2210
         and 2110.  Those two firms, as well as Bear Stearns,
         J.P. Morgan and Morgan Stanley, made undisclosed
         payments for research in violation of NYSE Rules
         476(a)(6), 401 and 472 and NASD Rules 2210 and 2110 and
         state statutes; and
          
     (4) SSB and CSFB engaged in inappropriate spinning of "hot"
         Initial Public Offering ("IPO") allocations in
         violation of NYSE and NASD rules requiring adherence to
         high business standards and just and equitable
         principles of trade, and the firms' books and records
         relating to certain transactions violated the broker-
         dealer record-keeping provisions of Section 17(a) of
         the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, NYSE Rule 440 and
         NASD Rule 3110.
  
The Complaint against Jack Grubman alleged that Mr. Grubman, a
former SSB research analyst covering the telecommunications
sector, issued research reports that were fraudulent,
misleading, or that were not based on principles of fair dealing
and good faith and did not provide a sound basis for evaluating
facts, contained exaggerated or unwarranted claims about the
companies, and/or contained opinions for which there was no
reasonable basis under SSB's name.  As a result, the Complaint
alleges, Mr. Grubman aided and abetted SSB's violations of
Section 15(c) of the Exchange Act and Rule 15c1-2 thereunder,
which are antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws
relating to broker-dealers, and violated NASD and NYSE rules as
well as New York State law.
     
The complaint against Henry Blodget alleged that Mr. Blodget
issued fraudulent research under the name of his former
employer, Merrill Lynch, as well as research in which he
expressed views that were inconsistent with privately expressed
negative views.  As a result, the Complaint alleges, Mr. Blodget
aided and abetted Merrill Lynch's violations of the broker-
dealer antifraud provisions of the federal securities laws as
well as NASD and NYSE rules.
     
The Final Judgments, Orders Regarding Distribution Fund Plan and
Orders Regarding Investor Education entered today are
substantially similar to the final judgments originally
submitted to the Court.  In particular, they impose the
identical injunctive relief and monetary sanctions, and they
impose the same requirements regarding separation of research
and banking, disclosure, transparency and independent research.
     
Under the terms of the Final Judgments and Orders that Judge
Pauley approved, the ten firms, Mr. Grubman and Mr. Blodget will
pay a total of $894 million in penalties and disgorgement,
consisting of $397 million in disgorgement and $497 million in
penalties (which includes Merrill Lynch's previous payment of
$100 million in connection with its prior settlement with the
states relating to research analyst conflicts of interest).   
Half of the $775 million payment by the firms other than Merrill
Lynch will be paid in resolution of actions brought by the SEC,
NYSE and NASD and will be put into Distribution Funds to benefit
customers of those firms.  Half of Mr. Grubman's $15 million
total payment will be added to the SSB Distribution Fund.  The
SEC will in the future propose a plan of distribution for Mr.
Blodget's $4 million payment; that plan must be approved by the
Court.  The remainder of the funds has been paid or will be paid
to the states.
     
In addition, the Final Judgments require the firms to make
payments totaling $432.5 million to fund independent research.  
Further, seven of the firms will make payments of $80 million to
fund and promote investor education.  $52.5 million of these
funds will be put into an Investor Education Fund that will
develop and support programs designed to equip investors with
the knowledge and skills necessary to make informed decisions.  
The remaining $27.5 million will be paid to state securities
regulators and used for investor education purposes.
     
In addition to the monetary payments, the firms are required to
undertake dramatic reforms to their future practices, including
separating their research and investment banking departments and
making independent research available to investors.  Among other
significant reforms included in the Final Judgments as to the
firms are:
     
     (i) To ensure that stock recommendations are not tainted by
         efforts to obtain investment banking fees, research
         analysts will be insulated from investment banking
         pressure.  The firms will be required to sever the
         links between research and investment banking,
         including prohibiting analysts from receiving
         compensation for investment banking activities, and
         prohibiting analysts' involvement in investment banking
         "pitches" and "roadshows."
  
    (ii) To ensure that individual investors get access to
         objective investment advice, the firms will be
         obligated to furnish independent research.  For a five-
         year period, each of the firms will be required to
         contract with no fewer than three independent research
         firms that will make available independent research to
         the firm's customers.  An independent consultant for
         each firm will have final authority to procure
         independent research.
       
   (iii) To enable investors to evaluate and compare the
         performance of analysts, research analysts' historical
         ratings will be disclosed.  Each firm will make its
         analysts' historical ratings and price target forecasts
         publicly available.
  
There are four primary differences between the Final Judgments
and Orders entered at present and the original proposed
judgments.   First, the Orders Regarding Distribution Fund Plan
provide further details as to investors who may be eligible to
receive proceeds from the Distribution Funds.   The Final
Judgments for each firm (other than Merrill Lynch) state that,
to be an eligible recipient from that firm's Distribution Fund,
a person must have purchased "equity securities in question"
through that firm during the "relevant period of purchase."  

The Orders Regarding Distribution Fund Plan list the specific
"equity securities in question" for each firm and the "relevant
period of purchase" for each such equity security.  The Orders
state that the identification of "equity securities in question"
and "relevant periods of purchase" is solely for the purpose of
facilitating the efficient administration of the Distribution
Fund Plans, is not a judicial or Commission finding, and is not
intended to have precedential effect in other actions.
     
Second, the Orders Regarding Investor Education call for the
establishment of a new Investor Education Entity, which may
remain in existence for an indefinite period.  As mentioned
above, the Investor Education Entity will fund worthy and cost-
efficient programs from the Investor Education Fund created as a
result of the firms' investor education payments.  These
programs will be designed to equip investors with the knowledge
and skills necessary to make informed investment decisions.  The
Investor Education Entity will be organized as a tax exempt
organization pursuant to Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue
Code and will be structured so that it can receive additional
money from sources other than the investor education payments
that the firms are required to make under the Final Judgments.  

The Entity will have a Chairman, a Board of Directors and an
Executive Director, who will oversee its day-to-day operations.  
Within the next 90 days, the Commission will propose an Investor
Education Plan that will, among other things, provide further
details on the structure and operation of the Investor Education
Entity.
          
Third, the Final Judgments require the defendants to make their
Distribution Fund and investor education payments to accounts
established at the Federal Reserve Bank of New York (FRB-NY).  
The original proposed judgments had called for those payments to
be made to the Court Registry Investment System (CRIS).  As the
Court pointed out in its June 2, 2003 Order in these actions,
however, an affiliate of one of the defendants manages the CRIS
accounts for the US Courts and derives certain fees for its
activities, thus creating a potential conflict of interest.  
Accordingly, the Court suggested, and the parties agreed to, the
establishment of accounts at the FRB-NY.
     
Fourth, the Final Judgments call for a smaller administrative
fee to be paid to the Court Clerk than did the original proposed
judgments.  This will allow more money to be provided to
investors.  Federal law requires court registry funds, such as
the Distribution Funds, to pay a fee usually equal to ten
percent of the income earned on the funds to the Court Clerk.   
The Court suggested that the Commission petition the
Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts (AOUSC) for a reduction
in the fee.  The Commission did so, and the AOUSC approved a
reduction in the fee for the Distribution Funds to four percent
of the income earned on the funds.  The Final Judgments reflect
this reduction.
     
The suits are styled:

     (a) SEC v. Bear, Stearns & Co. Inc., No. 03 Civ. 2937
         (WHP);

     (b) SEC v. Jack Benjamin Grubman, No. 03 Civ. 2938 (WHP);

     (c) SEC v. J.P. Morgan Securities Inc., No. 03 Civ. 2939
         (WHP);

     (d) SEC v. Lehman Brothers, Inc., No. 03 Civ. 2940 (WHP);

     (e) SEC v. Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith
         Incorporated, No. 03 Civ. 2941 (WHP);

     (f) SEC v. U.S. Bancorp Piper Jaffray, Inc., No. 03 Civ.
         2942 (WHP);

     (g) SEC v. UBS Securities LLC, f/k/a UBS Warburg LLC, No.
         03 Civ. 2943 (WHP);

     (h) SEC v. Goldman, Sachs & Co., No. 03 Civ. 2944 (WHP);

     (i) SEC v. Citigroup Global Markets Inc., f/k/a Salomon
         Smith Barney Inc., No. 03 Civ. 2945 (WHP);

     (j) SEC v. Credit Suisse First Boston LLC, f/k/a Credit
         Suisse First Boston Corporation, No. 03 Civ. 2946
         (WHP);

     (k) SEC v. Henry McKelvey Blodget, No. 03 Civ. 2947 (WHP);

     (l) SEC v. Morgan Stanley & Co. Incorporated, No. 03 Civ.
         2948 (WHP);


IOWA: Federal Court Considers Dismissal For Stuttering Lawsuit
--------------------------------------------------------------
District Judge Thomas Horan is considering whether to dismiss a
lawsuit filed against the state by six former orphans who took
part in a University of Iowa stuttering experiment more than 60
years ago, AP Newswire reports.

The lawsuit seeks compensation for lifelong emotional and
psychological problems the plaintiffs say were partly due to
their unwitting participation in the study.  Judge Horan heard
arguments Thursday on whether the suit should be dismissed.  He
did not say when he would issue a ruling.

Researchers used 22 children from an orphanage as test subjects,
badgering some of them about imperfections in their speech to
try to induce stuttering.  According to the study, none became
stutterers, but some became reluctant to speak or self-conscious
about their speech.

Craig Kelinson, assistant attorney general, told AP the state
cannot be held liable for something that happened in 1939.  Even
assuming the allegations are true, "at the time this matter
arose you could not sue the state," Mr. Kelinson said.

Attorneys for the plaintiffs say it's not a question of when the
act occurred, but when the damage was discovered by the victims.  
"The party's right to sue begins when they find out about (the
damage)," Curt Krull, an attorney for the plaintiffs, told AP.

Mr. Krull says it wasn't until 2001, when the study was made
public in a series of stories in the San Jose Mercury News, that
test subjects realized what had been done to them.  The 1939
experiment was led by Dr. Wendell Johnson, a pioneer in the
field of speech pathology. Mr. Johnson, who himself had
stuttered as a child, dismissed prevailing theories that
stuttering had genetic roots. Instead, he believed it was a
learned behavior tied to external influences, such as parental
criticism and pressure.

The lawsuit claims the university and researchers withheld their
findings, lied to the orphanage about the research and did
nothing to reverse the damage that had been done to the
children.

The stuttering lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for
the Sixth Judicial District in Johnson County, Iowa and the
motion for its dismissal was refused by Judge Thomas M. Horan.  
Plaintiffs in this action are represented by Curt Krull of
Roehrick Hultin Krull & Blumberg P.C., and defendants by
Assistant Attorney General Craig Kelinson.


JACK GRUBMAN: SEC Commences, Settles Administrative Proceedings
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission instituted and
simultaneously settled public administrative proceedings against
Jack B. Grubman of New York, New York based upon a permanent
injunction entered against him on October 31, 2003, in the suit,
styled "Securities and Exchange Commission v. Jack Benjamin
Grubman, Civil Action No. 03 Civ. 2938 (WHP)," pending in the
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.  

The Commission's Order finds that the Commission filed a civil
action against Mr. Grubman, who was formerly a managing director
of Salomon Smith Barney Inc. (SSB) and SSB's lead research
analyst for the telecommunications sector, alleging that Mr.
Grubman issued research reports on two telecommunications
companies that were fraudulent.  The Commission's action further
alleged that Mr. Grubman issued research reports on six
telecommunications companies that were not based on principles
of fair dealing and good faith, did not provide a sound basis
for evaluating facts, contained exaggerated or unwarranted
claims about the companies, and/or contained opinions for which
there was no reasonable basis.  

The Commission's action also alleged that Mr. Grubman issued a
research report upgrading a telecommunications company that did
not disclose that his objectivity had been compromised.  All of
the reports were issued under SSB's name.

The Commission's complaint alleged that, as a result of this
conduct, Mr. Grubman aided and abetted SSB's violations of
Section 15(c) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule
15c1-2 thereunder, antifraud provisions of the federal
securities laws governing broker-dealers, and violated Conduct
Rules of NASD Inc. and the New York Stock Exchange, Inc.   

The Order bars Mr. Grubman from association with any broker,
dealer, or investment adviser.  Mr. Grubman consented to the
issuance of the Order without admitting or denying any of the
allegations in the civil injunctive action.  


KRAFT FOODS: Faces Race Discrimination Lawsuit Filed in PA Court
----------------------------------------------------------------
Former Kraft Foods Inc. employee, Debra Davis, has filed a
purported class action against the company alleging racial
discrimination at a Nabisco bakery in Philadelphia, the Dow
Jones Business News reports.

In a press release Tuesday, the law firm of Berger & Montague
P.C., which is representing Ms. Davis, said the complaint
alleges that Kraft discriminates against its African-American
employees.  Ms. Davis claims that Kraft disciplined black
employees more severely than white employees for similar
offenses, denied equal compensation and retaliated against black
employees who opposed Kraft's alleged discriminatory practices.

Ms. Davis also alleged that Kraft engaged in racial profiling
following an incident in which a white employee claimed to be
assaulted at work, and terminated Ms. Davis "as an example" to
other black employees.

A Kraft spokeswoman told Dow Jones Business News the company
can't comment on the specifics of pending litigation and hasn't
been able to review the complaint.  The spokeswoman said,
though, that Kraft believes there was no discrimination in this
case against any individual or a purported class of individuals.


LANDERS AUTO: Salespersons Launch Fraud Lawsuit Over Commissions
----------------------------------------------------------------
Landers Auto Sales, Inc. and its affiliates face a class action
in the Circuit Court of Washington County, Arkansas,
Fayetteville Division, on behalf of all similarly situated
salespersons of the Company and its affiliates, which are:

     (1) United Auto Group Inc. (NYSE: UAG),

     (2) Landers United Auto Group No. 6, Inc.,

     (3) UAG Landers Springdale, LLC,

     (4) UAG Fayetteville I, LLC,

     (5) UAG Fayetteville II, LLC,

     (6) UAG Fayetteville III, LLC,

     (7) Landers United Auto Group No. 2, Inc.,

     (8) Landers Ford North, Inc., and

     (9) Landers Buick-Pontiac, Inc.

The defendants allegedly perpetrated an illegal scheme of
bilking their salespersons of the commission compensation
rightfully due them.  This scheme was admitted by an officer and
agent of the Defendants in the presence of over 50 of the Class
Members.

For more information, contact Kandie Gibson of Cauley Geller
Bowman & Rudman LLP, Tort Department by Mail: P.O. Box 25438,
Little Rock, AR 72221-5438, by Phone: (toll free)
1-888-551-9944, by E-mail: kibson@cauleygeller.com, or visit the
firm's Website: http://cauleygeller.com.


LINK EXPRESS: FL Jury Returns Guilty Verdict V. Former President
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission revealed in its News
Digest that a jury returned a guilty verdict in a criminal case
against Paul R. Johnson.  The SEC had previously brought a civil
case against Mr. Johnson, alleging that he and other defendants
had illegally raised over $15.5 million from nearly 400
investors for Link Express Delivery Solutions, Inc.  During the
time of his misconduct, Mr. Johnson was the president and CEO of
Link Express.
     
The U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of Florida  
(USAO) brought criminal charges against Mr. Johnson, and another
defendant John Cook, following a coordinated investigation with
the SEC, the FBI, the IRS, the Florida Department of Law
Enforcement and the Florida Department of Banking and Finance.  

Among other things, the indictment charged Mr. Johnson with
conspiracy to commit securities fraud, securities fraud, and
money laundering.  The indictment also charged Mr. Johnson with
perjury for making false declarations during a hearing to freeze
assets in the SEC's case against him.
     
The indictment charged Mr. Johnson with fraudulently raising
funds for Link Express, and charged him with inducing investors
to purchase stock by falsely representing that all funds raised
would be used for operating, acquisition, and administrative
expenses associated with Link Express' package delivery service.  
Instead, Mr. Johnson actually used the money for himself, his
close friends and relatives, and his own personal ventures.
     
The SEC's complaint in "Securities and Exchange Commission v.  
Paul R. Johnson, et al., Case No. 01-7874-CIV-Hurley, filed
December 12, 2001 in the United States District Court for the
District of Florida, is based on the same misconduct described
in the USAO's indictment.  The jury found Mr. Johnson guilty
after an eight-week trial conducted by the USAO with assistance
from the SEC.  The jury acquitted co-defendant, John Cook.
The Attorney's Office suit is styled "U.S. v. Paul R. Johnson
and John Cook, Criminal Action No. 02-60012-CR-Ferguson," also
pending in the Southern District of Florida.


MASSACHUSETTS: Whites Sue Boston Over Fire Dept. Hiring Policy
--------------------------------------------------------------
Five white Boston men who were passed over for firefighter jobs
in favor of minorities in 2002 have filed a federal lawsuit
against the city, alleging that their constitutional rights were
violated and seeking jobs and back pay, AP Newswire reports.  

Thomas P. Flaherty Jr., Kevin Williams, Edward Ferent, Edward J.
Walsh Jr. and Richard M. Proia all scored 99 out of 100 on the
April 2000 civil service exam, but were bypassed for minority
hires with lower scores.  Three of the five plaintiffs are now
over age 32 - the cutoff age for an entry-level fireman - but
were eligible when they took the exam.

"What really drives these guys is they want to be firefighters,"
their attorney, Edward C. Cooley, said Monday.  "It's not show
me the money.  They want to be on the force."

Seth Gitell, spokesman for Mayor Thomas M. Menino, said the city
has not yet received a copy of the lawsuit, and had no comment.  
The suit, filed Friday, follows a successful challenge to the
fire department's affirmative action policy by another group of
white applicants.

Last March, the First Circuit Court of Appeals reversed US
District Court Judge Richard Stearns and found the city has
achieved racial balance for entry-level firefighters.  Rookie
minority firefighters now make up 31.5 percent of the
department, while minorities in Boston are 38 percent of the
population.

Lawyers for the National Association for the Advancement of
Colored People, whose 1972 lawsuit led to the affirmative action
program, said the upper ranks of the Boston Fire Department
remain predominantly white, with only 6.2 percent minority.

The four who appealed Mr. Stearn's 2001 decision are set to
start work November 17, but still are suing for back pay and
seniority.


MASSACHUSETTS: Lawyers Launch Lawsuit In Tobacco Settlement Row
---------------------------------------------------------------
The private attorneys who helped Massachusetts win $8.3 billion
as part of the 1998 tobacco settlement have sued the state in
court this week, seeking the full 25 percent contingency fee
included in their original contract, AP newswire reports.

"This is a breach of contract," said Karen Schwartzman, an
independent public relations consultant representing the two law
firms - Brown Rudnick Berlack & Israels, and Lieff, Cabraser,
Heimann & Bernstein.  "They achieved a spectacular result for
the commonwealth, resulting in a huge settlement.  There are
matters of principle here."

Three other firms that worked for the state have not joined the
suit, but could stand to benefit if the court rules in their
favor.  Although attorneys in every other state have agreed to
accept less than what they were contractually owed from the
massive tobacco settlement, the two law firms are trying to
force the state to live up to the full terms of their $2 billion
contingency fee agreement.  As such, they stand to win an
additional $1.25 billion, on top of the $775 million that was
already awarded them through arbitration.  However, they also
risk becoming poster children for attorney greed at a time when
the profession is already under attack for high damage awards.

"This lawsuit is about greed and it's about selfishness.  They
should be ashamed of themselves," former Maine Attorney General
James Tierney, who worked with attorneys general from around the
country to help negotiate the $246 billion master settlement,
told AP.  "All the other firms in all the other states waived
their underlying contracts, but these people just want more."

Massachusetts Attorney General Tom Reilly, who will represent
the state in Suffolk Superior Court this week, declined to
comment, AP stated.  Jury selection began last week and opening
statements could begin as early as Tuesday.

Within the profession, there has been a conflicted response to
the litigation.  "On the one hand, lawyers believe that
contingency fees should be upheld. They put a lot of work into
it at a time when no one thought they would get anything," said
Paul Martinek, editor-in-chief of Lawyers Weekly USA, AP states.  
"On the other hand, they realize that making a stand here could
be bad news for them in terms of their public image . Maybe this
is a case where the law firm ought to suck it up and realize
they are going to have to settle for less, as every other firm
did."

In 1995, at a time when the tobacco companies had lost few
lawsuits and few thought the states had much chance of success
holding the industry liable for health costs for tobacco-related
illnesses, the five firms agreed to represent Massachusetts in
the multistate litigation against the industry in return for 25
percent of whatever the state won.

After the 1998 settlement, the states entered arbitration with
the tobacco companies over the amount owed to the states'
private attorneys.  At the end of this process, it was
determined that the tobacco companies would pay Massachusetts'
attorneys $775 million over 25 years.

Mr. Tierney, who now teaches a course in multistate litigation
at Columbia Law School, said there was a clear agreement at the
time that the amount determined through arbitration would be the
full amount that the lawyers for each state would receive.  
Massachusetts' law firms have argued, however, that the state is
responsible for the difference between the $775 million in fees
they were awarded during arbitration, which will be paid by the
tobacco companies, and the full $2 billion they are owed as a
contingency fee.

Mr. Reilly has blasted this as an "absolutely disgraceful"
request that would deplete the state's settlement fund, which
has been used for children's health programs and tobacco
cessation.  Mr. Reilly told AP at the time that state law
entitles attorneys to "fair and reasonable fees, but not
excessive fees."

The breach of contract lawsuit against the State of
Massachusetts was filed in the Superior Court of Suffolk in
Massachusetts and the trial is presided over by Judge Allan van
Gestel.  Plaintiffs in this action are represented by R. Robert
Popeo of Mintz Levin Cohn Ferris Glovsky & Popeo P.C., and
defendant by Assistant Attorney General Dean Richlin and
Assistant Attorneys General David Kerrigan and Ronald Kehoe.


MICHIGAN: Court Approves Pact in 15-year-old Prison Rights Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Ingham County (Michigan) Circuit Judge James Giddings, in
agreeing to ratify a settlement reached between inmates and
corrections officials over a 15-year-old state prison-rights
lawsuit, effectively put to a close a long and often memorable
case that, among other incidents, prompted general outrage,
attempts to remove the judge from the bench and, perhaps most
memorably, the sitting governor's comment that the judge was a
"lunatic" who must have gotten a mail-order law degree, the
Detroit Free Press reports.

State officials said they were glad it's over.  Neither side
claimed victory in the settlement, although a lawyer for the
prisoners acknowledged that the original claims have mostly been
dismissed.

Lawyer Sandra Girard told the Detroit Free Press the litigation
accomplished a lot for the inmates and for the state.  "I think
the Department of Corrections is operating in a less arbitrary
manner than it did" in 1988, she said.  The case cost taxpayers
millions of dollars over the years in staff and legal expenses.

Assistant Attorney General Peter Govorchin told the Free Press
that "the important thing is that it's over, and that's really a
good thing for the department."

Mr. Govorchin said little could be gained by rehashing now
ancient disputes.  Prisoner rights violations were never
substantiated, he said, but the settlement shows that the
department is "willing to look at creative solutions."

Under the agreement, state officials and prisoner
representatives will continue to work on issues regarding the
classification and treatment of some prisoners.  The 1988
lawsuit was filed when state officials attempted to enact new
restrictions on inmate clothing and personal possessions, and a
new disciplinary system for problem prisoners.  Judge Giddings
blocked the new regulations, and things went downhill from
there.

The lawsuit touched dozens of significant issues over the years
but was best known for occasional outbursts from state officials
over Judge Giddings' rulings on various smaller considerations.  
The most memorable came in 1993 when Judge Giddings ordered the
state to pay witness fees to inmates testifying in the case and
then-Gov. John Engler unleashed the "lunatic" epithet.  The
judge also came under withering criticism by lawmakers and
editorial writers for intruding into decisions about whether
inmates were entitled to black-and-white or color televisions,
and whether the department should be allowed to substitute
freeze dried for frozen chili.

At one point, an appeals court panel ordered him removed from
the case, but that order was reversed.  Earlier this year, the
Michigan Supreme Court ordered Judge Giddings to complete work
on the case by November 1.   

In the final court session, Judge Giddings lashed out at his
critics and the news media for trivializing the important issues
at stake.  He singled out for praise inmate Ray Walen Jr., who
is serving a pair of life sentences for murder.  He acted as the
plaintiffs' attorney throughout much of the litigation.  "The
(end) to the seemingly endless lawsuit was a sign that our
system of justice is reasonably healthy", he said, the Free
Press reports.  Judge Girard also closed the case with a tribute
to the inmates, whom she said had not filed the lawsuit "for
sport" but as "an act of bravery."


MICROSOFT CORPORATION: Judge Won't Require Major Windows Changes
----------------------------------------------------------------
Federal Judge Douglas Ginsburg, of the U.S. Court of Appeals for
the DC Circuit, appeared to deal a blow to challengers of
Microsoft's antitrust settlement, when he agreed that the court
had never required the software giant to make some of the major
changes competitors sought on the Windows operating system,
Reuters reports.

During arguments on the challenge by Massachusetts and two
computer industry groups, Judge Ginsburg, Chief Judge in a six-
judge panel, said an earlier ruling by the court did not mean
that Microsoft had to be held liable for commingling features
like the Internet Explorer browser with Windows.  "I think this
is a very powerful answer and I didn't see any response to that"
from the other side, he said.

During a four-hour session on Tuesday, the appeals judges
aggressively pushed the Justice Department and Microsoft
Corporation to defend the landmark settlement.  Some of the
judges asked them to explain how the government's settlement
with Microsoft had denied the company the "fruits" of its
antitrust violations, and whether it would really do anything to
stop Microsoft from crushing other potential competitors in the
future.  "How do we know that?" Judge David Tatel asked Justice
Department lawyer Deborah Majoras.  "We should just accept
that?"

The settlement was endorsed by District Judge Colleen Kollar-
Kotelly a year ago and gives computer makers greater freedom to
feature rival software on their machines by allowing them to
hide some Microsoft icons on the Windows desktop.  

Massachusetts and the other dissenters argued that allowing
computer makers to hide Microsoft icons was not enough.  They
said the court should force Microsoft to redesign Windows and
stop commingling programs like Internet Explorer with Windows.  
Another lower-court judge had concluded that the commingling had
contributed to the demise of the rival Netscape Navigator
browser.

In its 2001 ruling, the appeals court concluded that Microsoft's
decision to commingle the computer code of Windows with the
Internet Explorer browser was anti-competitive, but it also said
some integration was legitimate in designing Windows.

Judge Ginsburg said on Tuesday that in allowing Microsoft to
continue commingling programs in Windows, Judge Kollar-Kotelly
was simply following instructions that the appeals court laid
out in its previous ruling.  "How could (Kollar-Kotelly) now say
it could no longer keep that part of its product design?" Judge
Ginsburg asked Massachusetts' lawyer.

The appeals court moved the case to Judge Kollar-Kotelly in June
2001 after ruling that Microsoft had illegally maintained its
Windows operating system monopoly, but rejected another lower
court judge's proposal to break the company in two, Reuters
states.

Lawyers for Massachusetts and two computer industry trade groups
have challenged the settlement, saying it is ineffective and
should be overturned and replaced with stricter sanctions.  In
court proceedings last year, Judge Kollar-Kotelly heard 32 days
of testimony to determine what sanctions should be imposed on
Microsoft, with Massachusetts and eight other states seeking
stricter sanctions.  Judge Kollar-Kotelly approved the
settlement with minor changes.  Eight of the nine hold-out
states have since joined the settlement.

Microsoft argued successfully during last year's remedy hearings
that more stringent sanctions would benefit only rivals like
Oracle Corporation and Sun Microsystems, while hurting
consumers.


MITUSI & CO.: Settles U.S. Vitamin Antitrust Case For $53M
----------------------------------------------------------
Mitsui & Co. and two of its U.S. subsidiaries, Mitsui & Co.
(U.S.A.) in New York and the Ohio-based Bioproducts Inc., have
agreed to pay a combined $53 million (5.8 billion yen) to settle
a class action in the United States in connection with alleged
vitamin price-fixing, the Knight-Ridder/ Tribune Business News
reports.

A jury in the case, filed by consumers of the vitamin with the
US District Court for the District of Columbia, ordered Mitsui &
Co., Bioproducts and two non-Mitsui group firms in June to pay a
total of $49 million in damages.  The jury found that the four
firms plotted to fix the price of vitamin B-4, used as an animal
feed supplement, between 1988 and 1998, the plaintiffs said.

The settlement is substantially less than the maximum amount of
fines from the case.  The June verdict, which would have
resulted in $147 million in damages as fines, can be tripled
under U.S. antitrust law.

A Mitsui official told the Knight-Ridder the trading house
acknowledges no guilt despite settling the damages suit.  "We
have agreed to settle out of court in order to avoid the
prolongation of the lawsuit," the official said.

Mitsui said the payment will be reflected in a group financial
statement for the year ending March 31 but will have no effect
on the already released business estimate for the year.


MUTUAL FUNDS: Breakpoint Discount Problems Might Spur Lawsuits
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and NASD announced
a series of actions in connection with overcharges to customers
on their mutual fund purchases.   

NASD is directing almost 450 securities firms to notify
customers who purchased Class A mutual fund shares since January
1, 1999, that they may be due refunds as a result of the firms'
failure to provide breakpoint discounts.  NASD is also directing
almost 175 of those firms with poor records of providing
breakpoint discounts to complete a comprehensive review of
transactions since the beginning of 2001 for possible missed
discount opportunities, and a number of those firms may be the
subject of enforcement actions by NASD and the SEC.
     
Breakpoint discounts are volume discounts applied to the front-
end load charged to investors who purchase Class A mutual fund
shares.  The extent of the discount depends upon the amount the
customer invested in a particular mutual fund family.
     
The actions follow examinations that revealed many investors
were not receiving correct breakpoint discounts on their mutual
fund purchases.  The exam findings were outlined in the Joint
Report of Examinations of Broker-Dealers Regarding Discounts on
Front-End Sales Charges on Mutual Funds, available at:
http://www.nasdr.com/pdf-text/bp_joint_exam.pdfand at  
http://www.sec.gov/news/studies/breakpointrep.htm.  

As a result, NASD directed securities firms to conduct an
assessment of their mutual fund transactions, using a
statistically significant sample of the 2001 and 2002
transactions, from which overall performance was determined.
     
The assessments showed that most firms did not uniformly deliver
appropriate breakpoint discounts to customers.  Overall,
discounts were not delivered in about one of five eligible
transactions.  The average amount overcharged per transaction
was $243, and ranged up to $10,000.  NASD estimates that at
least $86 million is owed to investors for 2001 and 2002 alone.  
NASD notified firms in August that they must make appropriate
refunds, plus interest, owed to their customers.
     
SEC Chairman William H. Donaldson said, "It is essential that
mutual fund investors receive the correct sales charges on their
investments.  Broker-dealers who process fund transactions on
behalf of investors simply must do so in a way that ensures that
all available discounts are given to the investor.  The actions
we announce today are another step we are taking to ensure that
fund investors are protected in our markets."
     
"We found that a large number of investors did not receive the
discounts they deserved when they made these investments," said
Mary Schapiro, NASD Vice Chairman and President of Regulatory
Policy and Oversight.  "While NASD has already told firms to
make refunds of identified overcharges, we are now directing
firms to specifically notify their customers, alerting them to
this problem so that the appropriate refund can be made
promptly."
     
Earlier this year, NASD led an industry task force that explored
and recommended ways that the mutual fund and broker-dealer
industries could prevent breakpoint problems and errors in sales
load calculations in the future.  The Task Force issued a report
that recommends a number of operational enhancements, disclosure
requirements and regulatory changes, which is available at
http://www.nasdr.com/breakpoints_report.asp. Industry working  
groups are in the process of implementing the Task Force's
recommendations.
     
The SEC and NASD have alerted investors to the breakpoint issue
and placed additional information on their Web sites.  Investors
can learn more about reduced front-end sales loads by going to
the Website: http://www.sec.gov/answers/breakpt.htmand  
http://www.nasd.com/Investor/alerts/alert_breakpoint_refund.htm.


MUTUAL FUNDS: SEC Enforcement Head Sees More Possible Lawsuits
--------------------------------------------------------------
Stephen Cutler, the head of the Securities and Exchange
Commission's enforcement division told Congress Tuesday that
more firms are likely to be charged in the burgeoning scandal
surrounding the mutual fund industry, AP Newswire reports.

Mr. Cutler, who was testifying about the wide-ranging
investigations into the management of the $7 trillion mutual
fund business, said the SEC plans to send notification to some
firms this week that SEC investigators intend to file charges.  
He said they had already sent notification to one firm regarding
possible abuses, and said more than 100 others were being
scrutinized to see if they gave the proper volume discounts to
customers.  He did not name any of the companies.

Mr. Cutler's remarks came in testimony before the House
Subcommittee on capital markets, insurance and government
sponsored enterprises, which also heard testimony from New York
Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, who has launched several
investigations of misdeeds on Wall Street, AP reports.

Mr. Spitzer argued the compliance departments at many of the
mutual firms need to be overhauled because they have proven
ineffective.  "They have utterly betrayed the American public,"
he said.

The testimony followed a Monday hearing in which senators
sharply questioned the response of federal regulators to alleged
trading abuses that were widespread within the mutual fund
industry and among brokers that siphon money from ordinary
investors.

Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) told AP she found it shocking that
the trading practices, "which benefit a select group of
individuals at the expense of the vast majority of mutual fund
investors, continue."

Ms. Collins, chairwoman of the Senate Governmental Affairs
Committee said she "questions why the Securities and Exchange
Commission . failed to detect these practices, to impose
appropriate restrictions on them or to penalize those who appear
to be misusing investors' money."

The SEC began a mutual fund investigation in early September,
and dozens of firms have been subpoenaed, including Fidelity
Investments, Janus Capital Group, Morgan Stanley and Vanguard
Group. Several investment companies, including Janus and Bank of
America, have pledged to make restitution to mutual fund
investors who lost money through alleged improper trading.

Sen. Joseph Lieberman (D-Conn.) wrote to SEC Chairman William
Donaldson that the agency "was far too late to the table in
addressing these problems."  Sen. Lieberman, a candidate for the
Democratic presidential nomination, requested detailed
information on the SEC's response and plans, AP reports.

Mr. Donaldson, speaking to reporters in Connecticut, said the
SEC was "trying to do the best job it can to add new resources
and set its priorities correctly.  I don't think it is very
constructive to take pot shots at the SEC."

The debacle has tarnished the reputation of mutual funds,
traditionally viewed as a safe, conservative investment. Some 90
million people have money in U.S. stock mutual funds.  SEC
officials told the Senate hearing Monday that fundamental
changes were needed in the mutual fund industry operates and
governs itself.  That's in addition to stiff punishment of
wrongdoers, they said.  The SEC found, for example, that a
quarter of the nation's largest brokerage houses helped favored
clients illegally trade mutual funds after hours.


NEW YORK: 40 Claims Lodged Over October Staten Ferry Accident
-------------------------------------------------------------
Some 40 legal claims have been filed against the city of New
York following last month's Staten Island ferry accident, AP
Newswire reports.

The statements of claim, which notify the city of an intention
to file lawsuits, seek a total of about $1.3 billion in
compensation on grounds ranging from wrongful death to emotional
trauma.  "We're being diligent and we're being aggressive,"
Anthony Bisignano, a lawyer whose firm has filed 20 notices of
claim related to the accident, told AP.

Several law firms advertised for clients in the wake of the
crash, despite an advisory from the New York State Bar
Association accident asking lawyers not to solicit ferry-related
cases.  

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of lawyers' ads in 1977,
but some legal experts criticized the ferry ads.  "Personally, I
wish lawyers were never allowed to advertise; that's where I
stand on this," Norman Reimer, vice president of the New York
County Lawyers Association, told The New York Times.

On October 15, the ferry, carrying around 1,500 passengers from
lower Manhattan to Staten Island, veered off course and slammed
into a pier at full throttle killing 10 people and injuring
dozens of others, AP reports.

Investigators suspect ferry captain Michael Gansas may have
failed to properly supervise boat pilot Richard Smith, who
apparently passed out at the controls before the wreck.  Mr.
Smith attempted suicide shortly after the crash.  Some
passengers had their limbs severed, including one man who lost
his legs but was kept alive with the help of a visiting British
nurse.

The notices of claim on behalf of Staten Island ferry crash
victims were filed with the New York City Office of the
Comptroller.  Plaintiffs are represented by Anthony Bisignano of
Bosco Bisignano & Mascolo LLP, Martin Harding & Mazzotti LLP,
Early Ludwick Sweeney & Strauss, and Sanford Rubenstein, and
defendant by Freehill Hogan & Mahar LLP.


PRUDENTIAL SECURITIES: Ex-Workers Charged With Improper Trading
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission and Massachusetts
Securities Division filed civil charges Tuesday against five
former brokers and a former branch manager at Prudential
Securities' Boston office over allegations of improper trading,
AP Newswire reports.

The suit claims that former brokers Martin J. Druffner, Justin
F. Ficken, Skifter Ajro, John S. Peffer and Marc J. Bilotti used
false identities for themselves or their customers to defraud
mutual funds and their shareholders, and alleges the defendants
made thousands of short-term, in-and-out trades known as market
timing.
  
"Our complaint alleges that by concealing or misrepresenting
their own identities or the identities of their clients, the
defendants were able to circumvent restrictions intended to
protect mutual fund shareholders against excessive market
timing," Stephen M. Cutler, director of the SEC's Division of
Enforcement told AP.  "That's fraud, plain and simple."

Prudential, though not named as a defendant in the SEC
complaint, is the latest company embroiled in the growing
scandal over mutual fund market timing.  Last week, the SEC and
Massachusetts regulators brought civil enforcement actions
against Boston-based Putnam Investments for allegedly turning a
blind eye to market timing trades by some customers and
employees.

A source familiar with the matter told The Associated Press on
Monday that Prudential was expected to be added as a defendant
within a few weeks, and the Massachusetts complaint criticized
the company even though it did not name it as a defendant.

"Prudential management welcomed the business and sought to
accommodate the Druffner Group's market timing business by
allotting the representatives additional assistants, a personal
fax machine and designated staff in the wire room available on a
daily basis to assist with the late day volume of trades and
exchanges," the complaint states.

The action came a day after the head of the SEC's Boston office
resigned following criticism his office did not respond
aggressively enough to a whistleblower's complaint about alleged
improper market timing at Putnam Investments, which was cited in
complaints filed by the regulators last week.  On Monday, when
it was first reported the civil actions were to be filed
imminently, the company said it was cooperating fully but had no
further comment.

The SEC complaint alleges the brokers violated federal
securities law and that former branch manager Robert Shannon
"substantially assisted" the brokers by, among other things,
approving market timing trades.  The SEC said it would seek
injunctive relief, penalties and disgorgement, a request common
in such proceedings to refund investors for any lost profits.

The SEC's civil fraud action against Druffner, Ficken, Ajro,
Peffer, Bilotti, and Shannon was filed in the U.S. District
Court for the District of Massachusetts.  Plaintiffs are
represented by SEC Enforcement Division Director Stephen M.
Cutler.


PUTNAM INVESTMENTS: CEO Resigns As More Investors Pull Out Funds
----------------------------------------------------------------
Lawrence Lasser, who built Putnam Investments into a mutual fund
powerhouse in the 17 years he was president, resigned under
pressure on Monday as investors pulled billions of dollars out
of Putnam funds after regulators charged the company with civil
securities fraud, Reuters reports.

Mr. Lasser's departure after 33 years at Putnam sent shock waves
through the $7 trillion mutual fund industry.  He is the most
senior industry executive to lose his job in the swirl of a
fast-growing investigation into improper trading of fund shares.  
The scandal has left the company he transformed into a household
name fighting for its life.

"The kind of conduct that has occurred has no place at Putnam,"
Jeffrey Greenberg, chief executive of Putnam's parent company,
insurance broker Marsh & McLennan Companies Inc., announcing the
departure of Lasser told Reuters.  "We are taking measures to
see that this does not happen again."

Sources close to Marsh told Reuters the board of trustees felt
compelled to act after pension plans in at least six states
pulled more than $4.3 billion out of Putnam funds after
regulators last week filed charges against Putnam, the No. 5 US
mutual fund company with $272 billion in assets.

Federal and Massachusetts regulators have accused Putnam of
letting some clients and several managers engage in so-called
market timing, a practice Putnam publicly prohibits.  Two Putnam
managers were also accused of securities fraud.  The company may
also face criminal investigations as federal prosecutors in New
York subpoenaed records last week.  On Monday, The Boston Globe
reported that Massachusetts regulators had subpoenaed Mr.
Lasser's own trading records, taking a step industry analysts
said may lead to more revelations.  Regulators did not
immediately return calls seeking comment, Reuters states.

Putnam has denied any wrong-doing and said market timing stopped
in 2000.  Regulators, tipped off by a Putnam employee, said it
continued well into 2003.  A handful of pension funds, including
the $29 billion Massachusetts state plan, fired Putnam as their
investment manager, in part because state treasurers said they
felt duped by Putnam executives about the probe.

Jeff Greenberg Marsh's chairman on Monday met with Massachusetts
Treasurer Tim Cahill, who on Friday had urged Marsh to take
quick action to shore up eroding confidence in Putnam.  "Our
statement made this morning speaks volumes about the changes we
are making," Mr. Greenberg told reporters before he and Charles
Haldeman, Mr. Lasser's replacement, ducked out of press
conference and silently rushed to a car, chased by a group of
reporters and photographers.

Boston is the hub of the mutual fund industry and companies like
Fidelity Investments and Putnam are large employers.  The
growing wave of redemptions weighed on Marsh's share price last
week, sending it down nearly 10 percent in four days of trading.
On Monday it closed up nearly 5 percent at $44.88 on the New
York Stock exchange.

Marsh named Mr. Haldeman, 55, who joined Putnam only last year
as senior managing director and co-head of investments, to
succeed Mr. Lasser as Putnam president and chief executive.

In the mutual fund industry, the 60-year-old Lasser was known
for his hard-driving management style - he often fired off
sharply worded e-mails, dubbed Lassergrams, demanding
information on funds' performances.  He transformed Putnam from
a sleepy Boston-based mutual fund firm into a high-flying
company that built a reputation with big bets on growth stocks.  
He was also known as one of the industry's best-paid executives,
earning more than $130 million in the last five years, even when
his funds delivered subpar performance and investors pulled more
money away from Putnam than any other mutual fund firm.

"Many people see that Lasser was responsible for Putnam's lack
of ability to weather the bursting of the tech bubble. This was
another strike against him," Roy Weitz, who runs the industry
watchdog Web site FundAlarm.com, told Reuters.

With Mr. Lasser out, Mr. Haldeman is in the spotlight as Putnam
scrambles to keep more investors from walking out.  He came to
Putnam from Lincoln National Corporation's Delaware Investments
money-management unit, where he turned the company around by
firing managers and analysts to stem a tide of redemptions.

Morningstar Inc. the powerful independent mutual fund industry
research group, on Monday delivered a bit of good news when
Russel Kinnel, the company's chief analyst, stopped short of
urging investors to sell Putnam funds.  Instead, he recommended
not sending in more money at the moment.

Pension plans in other states are still mulling what to do with
the money Putnam invests for them.  

Industry analysts said only time will tell if Mr. Haldeman can
end investor defections at Putnam.  "Is Haldeman the right guy
to stem the tide? Maybe. We'll have to see how quickly the
market accepts him as running the company," Geoff Bobroff, an
independent industry consultant told Reuters.


PUTNAM FUNDS: NYC Pensions Withdraw Assets Amid Flurry of Suits
---------------------------------------------------------------
The New York City Employees Retirement System, the Police
Pension Fund and the Teachers' Retirement System, with combined
total assets of $725 million pulled their holdings from Putnam
Investments, joining the growing list of public pensions exiting
the No. 5 U.S. mutual fund following fraud allegations from U.S.
regulators, Reuters reports.

New York City Comptroller William Thompson made the announcement
on Monday night on behalf of the New York City pension plans
trustees.  "After careful consideration and discussion, the
boards of trustees of NYCERS, Police and Teachers have concluded
that the alleged actions of Putnam Investments are inconsistent
with the prudent management of their assets and have voted to
terminate the firm as a fund manager," Mr. Thompson said in
prepared remarks.

The announcement marks a continued hemorrhage of public pension
funds from Putnam.  Last week, public pension plans in Iowa, New
York State, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Massachusetts and
Vermont said they decided to fire Putnam, taking more than $4.3
billion of their money away from the Boston-based firm, Reuters
states.  Officials from pension funds in Florida, Connecticut,
Washington and elsewhere said they were also considering a
similar move.

Putnam Investments is a unit of insurance broker Marsh &
McLennan Companies Inc.


QUOVADX INC.: Reaches Settlement For Securities Fraud Suit in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
Quovadx, Inc. reached a settlement for the securities class
action filed in the United States District Court, Southern
District of New York against it, certain of its officers and
directors and certain underwriters, styled "Bartula v.
XCare.net, Inc., et al., Case No. 01-CV-10075."

The complaint asserts that the prospectus from the Company's
February 10, 2000 initial public offering (IPO) failed to
disclose certain alleged improper actions by various
underwriters for the offering in the allocation of the IPO
shares.  The amended complaint alleges claims against certain
underwriters, the Company and certain officers and directors
under the Securities Act of 1933 and the Securities Exchange Act
of 1934.

Similar complaints have been filed concerning more than 300
other IPOs.  All of these cases have been coordinated as In re
Initial Public Offering Securities Litigation, 21 MC 92.  In a
negotiated agreement, individual defendants, including all of
the individuals named in the complaint filed against the
Company, were dismissed without prejudice, subject to a tolling
agreement.  

Issuer and underwriter defendants in these cases filed motions
to dismiss and, on February 19, 2003, the Court issued an
opinion and order on those motions that dismissed selected
claims against certain defendants, including the Rule 10b-5
fraud claims against the Company, leaving only the Section 11
strict liability claims under the Securities Act of 1933 against
the Company.  

A committee of the Company's Board of Directors has approved a
settlement proposal made by the plaintiffs, but the settlement
is subject to a number of conditions.  If the settlement is not
achieved, the Company will continue to aggressively defend the
claims.  


SPORT-HALEY INC.: SEC Files Civil Fraud Suit V. Former Auditor
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission filed civil fraud charges
against Kenneth R. LeCrone, former auditor of Sport-Haley, Inc.,
alleging that he recklessly permitted the audit firm of Levine,
Hughes, and Mithuen, Inc. (LHM) to issue unqualified audit
opinions on Sport-Haley's opinions on Sport-Haley's financial
statements even though he knew or was reckless in not knowing
the company's 1998 and 1999 financial statements materially
misstated work-in-process (WIP) inventory, improperly capitalize
period costs and materially misstated losses on the sale of
headwear equipment.   

The Commission's lawsuit, which was brought in Federal Court in
the District of Colorado, seeks an anti-fraud injunctions and
civil money penalties.  The Commission's Amended Complaint
alleges that Sport-Haley materially overstated WIP inventory in
its financial statements during its 1998 and 1999 fiscal years.  
Mr. LeCrone knew or was reckless in not knowing that LHM failed
to perform sufficient audit procedures on the company's 1998 and
1999 WIP inventory accounts.

Mr. LeCrone agreed with Sport-Haley management to a solution to
adjust the overstated WIP inventory account that minimized the
impact on the company's gross margin, kept the 1998 financial
statements intact, and ratably eliminated $1.2 million of
overstated WIP inventory during the company's 2000 fiscal year.  
Sport-Haley failed to disclose the WIP inventory overstatement
or the company's measures to adjust the financial statements for
the overstatement.  

Mr. LeCrone also recklessly allowed Sport-Haley to improperly
capitalize period costs in financial statements filed with the
Commission during its 1998 and 1999 fiscal years.  Mr. LeCrone
knowingly or recklessly allowed the company to materially
misstate losses on the sale of headwear equipment in Sport-
Haley's 1999 year-end financial statements.   

Mr. LeCrone knew or was reckless in not knowing that Sport-
Haley's financial statements were materially false or
misleading, did not comply with generally accepted accounting
principles, and that the audits were not performed in accordance
with generally accepted auditing standards.
     
The Commission's complaint seeks an order against Mr. LeCrone
enjoining him from further violations of the antifraud and
reporting provisions of the federal securities laws and imposing
civil money penalties.    

The suit is styled "SEC v. Sport-Haley, Inc., Robert G.
Tomlinson, Steve S. Auger, and Kenneth R. LeCrone, Civil Action
No. 03-N-1917 (CBS)" filed in the United States District Court
for the District of Colorado.


SUNLINE: Coachella Taxi Drivers Launch Suit Over Regulatory Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Coachella Valley (California) Taxi Owners Association
Thursday intends to file a state and federal class action
against SunLine Regulatory Administration for alleged excessive
regulatory fees, the Desert Sun reports.

CVTOA President Sergio Santo said the suit also will name the
valley's nine cities and Riverside County - jurisdictions that
make up SunLine's joint powers authority, and could widen to
include Clean Energy Fuels Inc., a private company in which
Texas millionaire Boone Pickens is a primary stakeholder.  The
taxi association plans to seek $5M in damages.

The company has a revenue-sharing agreement with SunLine.  The
public-private partnership is the sole distributor of publicly
dispensed vehicular compressed natural gas in the Coachella
Valley.  In a previous complaint filed with the state, the
operators have contended Clean Energy is selling fuel without
certificates of accuracy from the state's Department of Weights
and Measures.

The taxi association represents 116 of the valley's 164 total
taxis.  The association has been pressuring SunLine to
relinquish its regulatory control, and began stepping up its
efforts after the industry began to see revenues decline after
the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks in the eastern United
States.

Mr. Santo told the SunLine board this week the agency's
continued regulation of the taxi industry represents a conflict
of interest as SunLine is in the businesses of transportation
and leasing out CNG taxis, the Desert Sun reports.  

For the past several months the operators have been seeking
permission to place advertisements on their vehicles, an issue
tossed back and forth between the city of Palm Springs and
SunLine.  The operators are also asking local policymakers for
an independent taxi regulator not affiliated with SunLine
Services Group, the non-transit arm of the public transportation
agency, the issuance of medallions for which the owners would
pay $400 annually, and a limit on the number of taxis allowed to
operate in the valley, with modifications to be made as needed.

The medallions, which are generally issued by taxi
administrators in larger cities, could be re-sold to other
operators, allowing operators to build equity in their business,
Mr. Santo said.

Rancho Mirage Councilman Alan Seman, a member of the SunLine
regulatory board, told the Desert Sun there is no other entity
in the valley willing to take on the responsibility of
regulating the taxi industry.  A lawsuit could be expensive for
SunLine, but Mr. Seman pointed out it could also be expensive
for the taxi owners association.  "We need to know the taxis are
safe. The cabs should be clean. The drivers should be clean.
What's wrong with that?" Mr. Seman said.

The regulatory board has expressed a desire to continue dialogue
with the operators to see if their differences can be worked
out.  Mr. Santo told the Desert Sun the time for talking is
over.

Meanwhile, auditors continue working at SunLine's Thousand Palms
property after a routine audit in May raised several questions
about accounting practices at the transit agency and its
services group.  The agency's former general manager, Richard
Cromwell III, resigned in August after it was learned he failed
to disclose his role as an advisory board member to Clean Energy
Fuels.


THIMEROSAL: Study States No Link Between Vaccines and Autism
------------------------------------------------------------
In a study, published in the December issue of Pediatrics,
government researchers say they found little evidence of a link
between vaccinations and developmental problems in a study of
more than 140,000 US children, AP newswire reports.

The report however didn't satisfy vaccine critics, who claimed
the study's initial results showed a stronger connection but
were watered down.  They also noted that the study's lead author
now works for a vaccine maker.  

The study is one of the latest attempts to determine whether
older vaccines with the mercury-containing preservative
thimerosal led to nervous-system problems such as autism, as
some vocal critics contend.  In one group of children studied,
routine vaccines in infancy appeared to slightly increase the
risk for tics.  In another group, a slight association was seen
with language delays but not tics.  A third group showed no
associations with any disorder.

In all, more than 140,000 children were studied and no link was
found with any other disorders, including autism, co-researcher
Dr. Frank DeStefano of the Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC), revealed in the study.

Many previous studies of vaccines containing the preservative
thimerosal also failed to find strong evidence of any link.  The
new results are reassuring, Dr. DeStefano told AP, and more
definitive answers are expected from in-person examinations the
CDC is giving some of the study participants.

However, Dr. Mark Geier, a geneticist who has worked as a
consultant on parents' lawsuits against vaccine makers, told AP
the researchers' own earlier analysis of the study results found
strong links between vaccines and such problems - and that the
published results attempt to conceal those findings.  He claimed
the final analysis "is intentional fraud."

Dr. DeStefano acknowledged that the early results suggested
stronger links with some disorders, though not autism, but
denied that there had been pressure or a cover-up.  He said the
final data reflect a more thorough recent analysis.

The study's lead author, former CDC researcher Dr. Thomas
Verstraeten, now works for vaccine maker GlaxoSmithKline in
Belgium, and Mr. Geier said that connection may have influenced
how the research was reported.

Dr. Verstraeten, who left the CDC in July 2001, did not respond
to an e-mail request seeking a response, and company spokeswoman
Nancy Pekarek said he did not wish to discuss the results, AP
states.  She provided a written statement in which Dr.
Verstraeten indicated that since leaving the CDC he has worked
only as an adviser as the study was finalized and prepared for
publication.

The researchers analyzed data from three health maintenance
organizations on children born between 1992 and 1999 and tracked
for several years.  Information was gathered on several
neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism, attention
deficit disorders, stammering and emotional disturbances.  While
the researchers were beginning to examine their results, public
health officials were beginning to publicly address concerns
about the use of thimerosal in childhood vaccines.

Mercury in high doses has been linked with neurodevelopmental
problems.  Parents and others worried about potentially
dangerous overexposure to thimerosal because of the increasing
number of vaccines recommended in childhood.  Vaccine makers
have since phased out use of thimerosal as a preservative in
childhood vaccines used in the United States, though trace
amounts remain in some vaccines.

It is still used as a preservative elsewhere, especially in
developing countries, Dr. Thomas Saari, a member of the American
Academy of Pediatrics' infections diseases committee and a
pediatrics professor at the University of Wisconsin in Madison,
told AP.

Vaccine expert Dr. Neal Halsey of Johns Hopkins University told
AP the study shows that if there is any association between
older vaccines and mild disorders, "it must be relatively small
. A major health risk should have shown up in a consistent
pattern in all three of the HMOs."

Still, he said the findings might have been different if the
researchers had done a separate analysis by gender, since boys
are much more susceptible to mercury exposure than girls.


UNITED STATES: Federal Agency Rejects Arsenic-Treated Lumber Ban
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Consumer Product Safety Commission voted unanimously to deny
a request to ban arsenic-treated lumber used in playground
equipment, which environmentalists say poses a health hazard, AP
Newswire reports.

The CPSC, in adapting its staff's finding and recommendation,
said that a ban was not needed because most manufacturers
already have stopped using the treated wood and other makers
soon will follow suit.

The lumber in question is treated with a pesticide, chromated
copper arsenate, that protects it from decay and insect damage.  
Almost all wooden playground equipment has been treated with the
pesticide.  The concern is that children can get cancer-causing
arsenic residue from the treated wood on their hands, then put
their hands in their mouths.  Besides playgrounds, the treated
wood has been used in picnic tables and decks.  Environmental
organizations had asked the commission to ban the treated wood.

The lumber industry has maintained that the treated wood is safe
and that children are exposed to more arsenic in food and water
than on the playground.  Still, following discussions with the
Environmental Protection Agency, the industry agreed in February
2002 to phase out the treated wood by December 2003

The industry's agreement applies to new products.  The
commission and the EPA are studying ways to coat existing
products made of treated wood with a sealant to prevent arsenic
from seeping through, AP reports.


WASHTENAW MORTGAGE: Trying to Settle GA Mortgage Brokers' Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
Washtenaw Mortgage Co. is attempting to settle the class action
styled "Hearn, et al. v. Washtenaw Mortgage Co., Case No. 4:98-
CV-78 (JRE)," filed in the United States District Court for the
Middle District of Georgia.

The suit alleges that the yield spread premium payments from the
Company to mortgage brokers were either payments for the
referral of business, or duplicative payments.  The suit seeks
unspecified damages.  

On June 22, 1998, the Company filed its answer denying all
liability, asserting affirmative defenses, and further asserting
that a class should not be certified.  The Company believes that
it is and has been in compliance with applicable federal and
state laws.  Though the ultimate outcome is not known at this
time, management does not currently expect a significant effect
to the financial statements.


WASHTENAW MORTGAGE: Trying To Settle MI Consumer Fraud Lawsuit
--------------------------------------------------------------
Washtenaw Mortgage Co. is attempting to settle a class action,
styled "Hearn, et al. v. Washtenaw Mortgage Co., Case No. 02-
60093," filed in the United States District Court for the
Eastern District of Michigan, Southern Division.

The Company was named as a defendant in this case based on the
assertion that the Company engaged in the unauthorized practice
of law by virtue of drafting loan documents.  The Michigan
Supreme Court recently ruled that lenders in similar situations
have not engaged in the unauthorized practice of law.  Though
the ultimate outcome is not known at this time, management does
not currently expect a significant effect to the financial
statements.


WASHTENAW MORTGAGE: Faces Predatory Lending Lawsuit in WV Court
---------------------------------------------------------------
Washtenaw Mortgage Co. faces a class action, styled "Webb, et
al. v. Washtenaw Mortgage Co., Case No. 01C38," filed in the
West Virginia state court, asserting that the Company and others
conspired to take advantage of borrowers through predatory
lending practices such as inflating appraisals, not properly
disclosing fees and charges, etc.

The class which plaintiffs have asked the court to certify
consists of persons who signed loan agreements in West Virginia
with the Company, arranged by a broker, First Security, during
the last five years, with contracts on loan forms provided by
WMC.  The class (as proposed by the plaintiffs) is thus limited
in number.  The hearing on class certification will be held in
the fall.

At this time, management cannot express an opinion on the impact
of this case or the ultimate outcome of this matter and no
liability has been established.


XEROX CORPORATION: Trial in CT Employee Suit Set For Early 2004
---------------------------------------------------------------
Trial in the class action filed against Xerox Corporation in the
Superior Court of Connecticut, Judicial District of Waterbury is
set for February to March 2004, with alternative dates set for
November 2003.  The suit, styled "Bingham v. Xerox Corporation,
et al." names as defendants the Company and:

     (1) Barry D. Romeril,

     (2) Eunice M. Filter and

     (3) Paul Allaire

The complaint alleges that the plaintiff was wrongfully
terminated in violation of public policy because he attempted to
disclose to senior management and to remedy alleged accounting
fraud and reporting irregularities.  The plaintiff further
claims that the Company and the individual defendants violated
the Company's policies/commitments to refrain from retaliating
against employees who report ethics issues.

The plaintiff also asserts claims of defamation and tortious
interference with a contract.  He seeks:

     (i) unspecified compensatory damages in excess of $15
         thousand,

    (ii) punitive damages, and

   (iii) the cost of bringing the action and other relief as
         deemed appropriate by the court.

The Company denies any wrongdoing.  The parties are engaged in
voluntary mediation in an attempt to resolve the matter.


XEROX CORPORATION: To Seek For Writ of Certiorari by  Dec. 2003
---------------------------------------------------------------
Xerox Corporation's Retirement Income Guarantee Plan (RIGP) is
set to file a petition for a writ of certiorari on or before
December 15,2003 before the United States District Court for the
Southern District of Illinois for the lawsuit, styled "Berger,
et al. v. RIGP."

The RIGP represents the primary U.S. pension plan for salaried
employees.  Plaintiffs brought this action on behalf of
themselves and an alleged class of over 25,000 persons who
received lump sum distributions from RIGP after January 1, 1990.  
Plaintiffs assert violations of the Employee Retirement Income
Security Act (ERISA), claiming that the lump sum distributions
were improperly calculated.

On July 3, 2001, the court granted the plaintiffs' motion for
summary judgment, finding the lump sum calculations violated
ERISA.  On September 30, 2002, the court entered a judgment on
damages, stating it would adopt plaintiffs' methodology for
calculating such damages, resulting in a damage award of $284.
Based on advice of legal counsel, RIGP concluded that success on
appeal was probable and the judgment would be overturned based
on significant errors of law in the lower court.  RIGP
appealed the court's ruling with respect to both liability and
damages.

Subsequently, there were briefings, followed by an oral argument
of the appeal to the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals on April
9, 2003.  Following the oral argument, RIGP and its counsel
reassessed the probability of a favorable outcome related to the
litigation which has resulted in the Company recording a charge
equal to the amount of the initial judgment of $284 plus
applicable interest, or $300 in the first quarter of 2003.  
Other than for the accrual of post-judgment interest, the charge
will only be subject to adjustment upon final legal
determination, or upon settlement of the parties.

As sponsor of the Plan, the Company was required to record the
charge related to its obligation as, under relevant accounting
standards, the results of the reassessment required recognition
of the judgment.  On August 1, 2003, the Seventh Circuit Court
of Appeals affirmed the lower court's judgment in all material
respects.  On August 15, 2003, RIGP filed a petition for
rehearing en banc which was rejected by the Court of Appeals on
September 15, 2003.  On September 19, 2003, RIGP filed a motion
asking the Seventh Circuit to stay the issuance of its mandate,
pending RIGP's filing of a petition for writ of certiorari in
the Supreme Court of the United States.  On September 25, 2003,
the Seventh Circuit denied the motion and issued its mandate.

On October 3, 2003, RIGP filed an application for a recall of
the mandate directly with the Supreme Court and asked the Court
to stay enforcement of the judgment pending RIGP's filing of its
petition for writ of certiorari.  This application was also
denied.  

Any final judgment would be paid from RIGP assets.  However,
such payment may require the Company to make additional
contributions in connection with this litigation in the future.  
Timing of such additional contributions under ERISA funding
rules would not be required any earlier than 2005.  However,
plaintiffs may seek interim relief that, if successful, would
require the Company to pay such judgment, or a portion thereof,
as early as the fourth quarter of 2003.


XEROX CORPORATION: Ask CT Court To Dismiss Securities Law Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
Xerox Corporation asked the United States District Court for the
District of Connecticut to dismiss the securities law action,
styled "Florida State Board of Administration, et al. v. Xerox
Corporation, et al," filed by four institutional investors,
namely:

     (1) the Florida State Board of Administration,

     (2) the Teachers' Retirement System of Louisiana,

     (3) Franklin Mutual Advisers and

     (4) PPM America, Inc.

The suit names as defendants the Company and:

     (i) Paul Allaire,

     (ii) G. Richard Thoman,

     (iii) Barry Romeril,

     (iv) Anne Mulcahy,

     (v) Philip Fishbach,

     (vi) Gregory Tayler and

     (vii) KPMG

The plaintiffs bring this action individually on their own
behalves.  In an amended complaint filed on October 3, 2002, one
or more of the plaintiffs allege that each of the Company, the
individual defendants and KPMG violated Sections 10(b) and 18 of
the 1934 Act, SEC Rule 10b-5 thereunder, the Florida Securities
Investors Protection Act, Fl. Stat. ss. 517.301, and the
Louisiana Securities Act, R.S. 51:712(A).

The plaintiffs further claim that the individual defendants are
each liable as "controlling persons" of the Company pursuant to
Section 20 of the 1934 Act and that each of the defendants is
liable for common law fraud and negligent misrepresentation.  
The complaint generally alleges that the defendants participated
in a scheme and course of conduct that deceived the investing
public by disseminating materially false and misleading
statements and/or concealing material adverse facts relating to
the Company's financial condition and accounting and reporting
practices.

The plaintiffs contend that in relying on false and misleading
statements allegedly made by the defendants, at various times
from 1997 through 2000 they bought shares of the Company's
common stock at artificially inflated prices.  As a result, they
allegedly suffered aggregated cash losses in excess of $200.

The plaintiffs further contend that the alleged fraudulent
scheme prompted a SEC investigation that led to the April 11,
2002 settlement which, among other things, required the Company
to pay a $10 penalty and restate its financials for the years
1997-2000 including restatement of financials previously
corrected in an earlier restatement which plaintiffs contend was
false and misleading.  The plaintiffs seek, among other things,
unspecified compensatory damages against the Company, the
individual defendants and KPMG, jointly and severally, including
prejudgment interest thereon, together with the costs and
disbursements of the action, including their actual attorneys'
and experts' fees.

The Company and the individual defendants filed a motion to
dismiss all claims in the complaint and the motion is currently
pending.  The individual defendants and the Company deny any
wrongdoing alleged in the complaint and intend to vigorously
defend the action. Based on the stage of the litigation, it is
not possible to estimate the amount of loss or range of possible
loss that might result from an adverse judgment or a settlement
of this matter.


XEROX CORPORATION: Oral Arguments For Dismissal Set Nov. 6, 2003
----------------------------------------------------------------
Oral arguments on Xerox Corporation's motion to be dismissed as
defendant in the class action, styled "Digwamaje et al. v. IBM
et al," pending in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of New York, is set to commence on November
6,2003.  

The defendants include a number of other corporate defendants
who are accused of providing material assistance to the
apartheid government in South Africa from 1948 to 1994, by
engaging in commerce in South Africa and with the South African
government and by employing forced labor, thereby violating both
international and common law.

Specifically, plaintiffs claim violations of the Alien Tort
Claims Act, the Torture Victims Protection Act and the Racketeer
Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO).  They also
assert human rights violations and crimes against humanity.  
Plaintiffs seek compensatory damages in excess of $200 billion
and punitive damages in excess of $200 billion.  The foregoing
damages are being sought from all defendants, jointly and
severally.

The company denies any wrongdoing and intends to vigorously
defend the action.  Based upon the stage of the litigation, it
is not possible to estimate the amount of loss or range of
possible loss that might result from an adverse judgment or a
settlement of this matter.


ZANDRIA CORPORATION: SEC Files, Settles Insider Trading Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission issued a settled
administrative order pursuant to Rule 102(e) of its Rules of
Practice that suspends B. Roland Frasier, III, from appearing or
practicing before the Commission as an attorney.  The Order is
based on the findings of the U.S. District Court for the
Southern District of California in the final judgment entered in
a related civil action on October 20, 2003, that Mr. Frasier
violated the antifraud provisions of the federal securities
laws.    

Mr. Frasier committed these violations in his capacity as former
outside counsel to Zandria Corporation, a defunct Internet
company previously located in San Diego, California.  
Specifically, the Court found that Mr. Frasier had violated
Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule
10b-5 thereunder, by engaging in a fraudulent trading scheme
regarding Zandria Corporation stock.  Mr. Frasier consented to
the entry of the administrative order.   


                   New Securities Fraud Cases


ALLIANCE CAPITAL: Schiffrin & Barroway Files Fraud Lawsuit in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP initiated a securities class action in
the United States District Court for the Southern District of
New York on behalf of all purchasers, redeemers and holders of
shares of the AllianceBernstein Funds managed by Alliance
Capital Management Holding L.P. (NYSE: AC) between October 2,
1998 and September 29, 2003, inclusive.

The following funds are subject to the above class action
lawsuit:

     (1) AllianceBernstein Growth & Income Fund (Sym: CABDX,
         CBBDX, CBBCX)

     (2) AllianceBernstein Health Care Fund (Sym: AHLAX, AHLBX,
         AHLCX)

     (3) AllianceBernstein Disciplined Value Fund (Sym: ADGAX,
         ADGBX, ADGCX)

     (4) AllianceBernstein Mid-Cap Growth (Sym: CHCAX, CHCBX,
         CHCCX)

     (5) AllianceBernstein Real Estate Investment Fund (Sym:
         AREAX, AREBX, ARECX)

     (6) AllianceBernstein Growth Fund  (Sym: AGRFX, AGBBX,
         AGRCX)

     (7) AllianceBernstein Select Investor Series Biotechnology
         Portfolio (Sym: ASBAX, AIBBX, ASBCX)

     (8) AllianceBernstein Small CapValue Fund (Sym: ABASX,
         ABBSX, ABCSX)

     (9) AllianceBernstein Premier Growth Fund (Sym: APGAX,
         APGBX APGCX)

    (10) AllianceBernstein Select Investor Series Technology
         Portfolio (Sym AITAX, AITBX, AITCX)

    (11) AllianceBernstein Value Fund (Sym: ABVAX, ABVBX,
         ABVCX)

    (12) AllianceBernstein Quasar Fund (Sym: QUASX, QUABX,
         QUACX)

    (13) AllianceBernstein Technology Fund (Sym: ALTFX, ATEBX,
         ATECX)

    (14) AllianceBernstein Select Investor Series Premier
         Portfolio (Sym: ASPAX, ASPBX, ASPCX)

    (15) AllianceBernstein Utility Income Fund (Sym: AUIAX,
         AUIBX, AUICX)

    (16) AllianceBernstein Balanced Shares (Sym: CABNX, CABBX,
         CBACX)

    (17) AllianceBernstein Disciplined Value Fund (Sym: ADGAX,
         ADGBX, ADGCX)

    (18) AllianceBernstein Global Value Fund (Sym: ABAGX, ABBGX,
         ABCGX)

    (19) AllianceBernstein International Value Fund (Sym: ABIAX,
         ABIBX, ABICX)

    (20) AllianceBernstein Real Estate Investment Fund (Sym:
         AREAX, AREBX, ARECX)

    (21) AllianceBernstein Small Cap Value Fund  (Sym: ABASX,
         ABBSX, ABCSX)

    (22) AllianceBernstein Utility Income Fund (Sym: AUIAX,
         AUIBX, AUICX)

    (23) AllianceBernstein Value Fund (Sym: ABVAX, ABVBX, AVBCX)

    (24) AllianceBernstein Blended Style Series - U.S. Large Cap
         Portfolio (Sym: ABBAX, ABBAX, ABBCX)

    (25) AllianceBernstein All-Asia Investment Fund (Sym: AALAX,
         AAABX, AAACX)

    (26) AllianceBernstein Global Value Fund (Sym: ABAGX, ABBGX,
         ABCGX)

    (27) AllianceBernstein Greater China '97 Fund (Sym: GCHAX,
         GCHBX, GCHCX)

    (28) AllianceBernstein International Premier Growth Fund
        (Sym: AIPAX, AIPBX, AIPCX)

    (29) AllianceBernstein International Value Fund (Sym: ABIAX,
         ABIBX, ABICX)

    (30) AllianceBernstein Global Small Cap Fund (Sym: GSCAX,
         AGCBX, GSCCX)

    (31) AllianceBernstein New Europe Fund (Sym: ANEAX, ANEBX,
         ANECX)

    (32) AllianceBernstein Worldwide Privatization Fund (Sym:
         AWPAX, AWPBX, AWPCX)

    (33) AllianceBernstein Select Investor Series Biotechnology
         Portfolio (Sym: ASBAX, AIBBX, ASBCX)

    (34) AllianceBernstein Select Investor Series Premier
         Portfolio (Sym: ASPAX, ASPBX, ASPCX)

    (35) AllianceBernstein Select Investor Series Technology
         Portfolio (Sym: AITAX, AITBX, AITCX)

    (36) AllianceBernstein Americas Government Income Trust
         (Sym: ANAGX, ANABX, ANACX)

    (37) AllianceBernstein Bond Fund Corporate Bond Portfolio
         (Sym: CBFAX, CBFBX, CBFCX)

    (38) AllianceBernstein Bond Fund Quality Bond Portfolio
         (Sym: ABQUX, ABQBX, ABQCX)

    (39) AllianceBernstein Bond Fund U.S. Government Portfolio
         (Sym: ABUSX, ABUBX ABUCX)

    (40) AllianceBernstein Emerging Market Debt Fund (Sym:
         AGDAX, AGDBX, AGDCX)

    (41) AllianceBernstein Global Strategic Income Trust
         (Sym: AGSAX, AGSBX, AGCCX)

    (42) AllianceBernstein High Yield Fund (Sym: AHYAX, AHHBX,
         AHHCX)

    (43) AllianceBernstein Multi-Market Strategy Trust (Sym:
         AMMSX, AMMBX, AMMCX)

    (44) AllianceBernstein Short Duration (Sym: ADPAX, ADPBX,
         ADPCX)

    (45) AllianceBernstein Intermediate California Muni
         Portfolio (Sym: AICBX, ACLBX, ACMCX)

    (46) AllianceBernstein Intermediate Diversified Muni
         Portfolio (Sym: AIDAX, AIDBX, AIMCX)

    (47) AllianceBernstein Intermediate New York Muni Portfolio:
         (Sym: ANIAX, ANYBX, ANMCX)

    (48) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund National Portfolio
         (Sym: ALTHX, ALTBX, ALNCX)

    (49) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Arizona Portfolio
         (Sym: AAZAX, AAZBX, AAZCX)

    (50) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund California Portfolio
         (Sym: ALCAX, ALCBX, ACACX)

    (51) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Insured California
         Portfolio (Sym: BUICX, BUIBX, BUCCX)

    (52) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Insured National
         Portfolio (Sym: CABTX, CBBBX, CACCX)

    (53) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Florida Portfolio
         (Sym: AFLAX, AFLBX, AFLCX)

    (54) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Massachusetts
         Portfolio (Sym: AMAAX, AMABX)

    (55) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Michigan Portfolio
         (Sym: AMIAX, AMIBX, AMICX)

    (56) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Minnesota Portfolio
         (Sym: AMNAX, AMNBX, AMNCX)

    (57) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund New Jersey Portfolio
         (Sym: ANJAX, ANJBX, ANJCX)

    (58) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund New York Portfolio
         (Sym: ALNYX, ALNBX, ANYCX)

    (59) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Ohio Portfolio
        (Sym: AOHAX, AOHBX, AOHCX)

    (60) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Pennsylvania
         Portfolio (Sym: APAAX, APABX, APACX)

    (61) AllianceBernstein Muni Income Fund Virginia Portfolio
         (Sym: AVAAX, AVABX, AVACX)

Investors in the State of Rhode Island 529 Plan, known as the
CollegeBoundfund(SM), may have invested in one or more of the
funds listed below:

     (i) AllianceBernstein Growth & Income Fund

    (ii) AllianceBernstein Mid-Cap Growth Fund

   (iii) AllianceBernstein Premier Growth Fund

    (iv) AllianceBernstein Quasar Fund

     (v) AllianceBernstein Technology Fund

    (vi) AllianceBernstein Quality Bond Portfolio

   (vii) AllianceBernstein International Value Fund

  (viii) AllianceBernstein Small Cap Value Fund

    (ix) AllianceBernstein Value Fund

The complaint charges the AllianceBernstein Funds, Alliance
Capital Management Holding L.P., and certain of its wholly-owned
subsidiaries with violations of the Securities Act of 1933, the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Investment Company Act of
1940, and for common law breach of fiduciary duties.

The Complaint alleges that during the Class Period, the
AllianceBernstein Funds and the other defendants engaged in
illegal and improper trading practices, in concert with certain
institutional traders, which caused financial injury to the
shareholders of the AllianceBernstein Funds.

According to the Complaint, the Defendants surreptitiously
permitted certain favored investors, including Defendants Canary
Capital Partners, LLC and Canary Investment Management, LLC to
illegally engage in "timing" of the AllianceBernstein Funds
whereby these favored investors were permitted to conduct short-
term, "in and out" trading of mutual fund shares, despite
explicit restrictions on such activity in the AllianceBernstein
Funds' prospectuses.

For more information, contact Marc A. Topaz, or Stuart L.
Berman, of Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP by Mail: Three Bala Plaza
East, Suite 400, Bala Cynwyd, PA  19004, by Phone:
1-888-299-7706 (toll free) or 1-610-667-7706, or by E-mail:
info@sbclasslaw.com.


MORGAN STANLEY: Cohen Milstein Lodges Securities Suit in S.D. NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
Cohen, Milstein, Hausfeld & Toll, PLLC initiated a securities
class action on behalf of purchasers of several Morgan Stanley
and Van Kampen Mutual Funds, including the Morgan Stanley
American Opportunities Fund (AMOAX, AMOBX, AMOCX, AMODX) and the
Morgan Stanley S&P 500 Index Fund (SPIAX, SPIBX, SPICX, SPIDX),
between October 1, 1999 and December 31, 2002, inclusive  in the
United States District Court for the Southern District of New
York.

In addition, the following funds may have been effected by the
conduct alleged in the above class action lawsuit:

     (1) Morgan Stanley 21st Century Trend Fund (TCTAX, TCTBX,
         TCTCX, TCTDX)

     (2) Morgan Stanley Aggressive Equity Fund (AEQAX, AEQBX,
         AEQCX, AEQDX)

     (3) Morgan Stanley All Star Growth Fund (ALLAX, ALLBX,
         ALLCX, ALLDX)

     (4) Morgan Stanley American Opportunities Fund (AMOAX,
         AMOBX, AMOCX, AMODX)

     (5) Morgan Stanley Biotechnology Fund (BTKAX, BTKBX, BTKCX,
         BTKDX)

     (6) Morgan Stanley Capital Opportunities Trust (CPOAX,
         CPOBX, CPOCX, CPODX)

     (7) Morgan Stanley Developing Growth Securities (DGRAX,
         DGRBX, DGRCX, DGRDX)

     (8) Morgan Stanley Financial Services Trust (FSVAX, FSVBX,
         FSVCX, FSVDX)

     (9) Morgan Stanley Growth Fund (GRTAX, GRTBX, GRTCX, GRTDX)

    (10) Morgan Stanley Health Sciences Trust (HCRAX, HCRBX,
         HCRCX, HCRDX)

    (11) Morgan Stanley Information Fund (IFOAX, IFOBX, IFOCX,
         IFODX)

    (12) Morgan Stanley KLD Social Index Fund (SIXAX, SIXBX,
         SIXCX, SIXDX)

    (13) Morgan Stanley Market Leader Trust (MLDAX, MLDBX,
         MLDCX, MLDDX)

    (14) Morgan Stanley Mid-Cap Value Fund (MDFAX, MDFBX, MDFCX,
         MDFDX)

    (15) Morgan Stanley Nasdaq-100 Index Fund (NSQAX, NSQBX,
         NSQCX, NSQDX)

    (16) Morgan Stanley Natural Resource Development Securities
         (NREAX, NREBX, NRECX, NREDX)

    (17) Morgan Stanley New Discoveries Fund (NDFAX, NDFBX,
         NDFCX, NDFDX)

    (18) Morgan Stanley Next Generation Trust (NGTAX, NGTBX,
         NGTCX, NGTDX)

    (19) Morgan Stanley Small-Mid Special Value Fund (JBJAX,
         JBJBX, JBJCX, JBJDX)

    (20) Morgan Stanley Special Growth Fund (SMPAX, SMPBX,
         SMPCX, SMPD)

    (21) Morgan Stanley Special Value Fund (SVFAX, SVFBX, SVFCX,
         SVFDX)

    (22) Morgan Stanley Tax-Managed Growth Fund (TGXAX, TGXBX,
         TGXCX, TGXDX)

    (23) Morgan Stanley Technology Fund (TEKAX, TEKBX, TEKCX,
         TEKDX)

    (24) Morgan Stanley European Growth Fund (EUGAX, EUGBX,
         EUGCX, EUGDX)

    (25) Morgan Stanley Fund of Funds - International Portfolio
         (IOFBX, IOFCX, IOFDX)

    (26) Morgan Stanley Global Advantage Fund, (GADAX, GADBX,
         GADCX, GADDX)

    (27) Morgan Stanley Global Dividend Growth Securities
         (GLBAX, GLBBX, GLBCX, GLBDX)

    (28) Morgan Stanley Global Utilities Fund (GUTAX, GUTBX,
         GUTCX, GUTDX)

    (29) Morgan Stanley International Fund (INLAX, INLBX, INLCX,
         INLDX)

    (30) Morgan Stanley International Smallcap Fund (ISMAX,
         SMBX, ISMCX, ISMDX)

    (31) Morgan Stanley International Value Equity Fund (IVQAX,
         IVQBX, IVQCX, IVQDX)

    (32) Morgan Stanley Japan Fund (JPNAX, JPNBX, JPNCX, JPNDX)

    (33) Morgan Stanley Latin American Growth Fund (LATAX,
         LATBX, LATCX, LATDX)

    (34) Morgan Stanley Pacific Growth Fund (TGRAX, TGRBX,
         TGRCX, TGRDX)

    (35) Morgan Stanley Allocator Fund (ALRAX, ALRBX, ALRCX,
         ALRDX)

    (36) Morgan Stanley Balanced Growth Fund (BGRAX, BGRBX,
         BGRCX, BGRDX)

    (37) Morgan Stanley Balanced Income Fund, (BINAX, BINBX,
         BINCX, BINDX)

    (38) Morgan Stanley Convertible Securities Trust, (CNSAX,
         CNSBX, CNSCX, CNSDX)

    (39) Morgan Stanley Dividend Growth Securities, (DIVAX,
         DIVBX, DIVCX, DIVDX)

    (40) Morgan Stanley Equity Fund (EQFAX, EQFBX, EQFCX, EQFDX)

    (41) Morgan Stanley Fund of Funds - Domestic Portfolio
         (DOFAX, DOFBX, DOFCX, DOFDX)

    (42) Morgan Stanley Fundamental Value Fund (FVFAX, FVFBX,
         FVFCX, FVFDX)

    (43) Morgan Stanley Income Builder Fund, (INBAX, INBBX,
         INBCX, INBDX)

    (44) Morgan Stanley Real Estate Fund (REFAX, REFBX, REFCX,
         REFDX)

    (45) Morgan Stanley S&P 500 Index Fund (SPIAX, SPIBX, SPICX,
         SPIDX)

    (46) Morgan Stanley Strategist Fund (SRTAX, SRTBX, SRTCX,
         SRTDX)

    (47) Morgan Stanley Total Market Index Fund (TMIAX, TMIBX,
         TMICX, TMIDX)

    (48) Morgan Stanley Total Return Trust (TRFAX, TRFBX, TRFCX,
         TRFDX)

    (49) Morgan Stanley Utilities Fund (UTLAX, UTLBX, UTLCX,
         UTLDX)

    (50) Morgan Stanley Value Fund (VLUAX, VLUBX, VLUCX, VLUDX)

    (51) Morgan Stanley Value-Added Market Series/Equity
         Portfolio (VADAX, VADBX, VADCX, VADDX)

    (52) Morgan Stanley Active Assets California Tax-Free Trust
         (AACXX)

    (53) Morgan Stanley Active Assets Government Securities
         Trust (AAGXX)

    (54) Morgan Stanley Active Assets Institutional Money Trust
         (AVIXX)

    (55) Morgan Stanley Active Assets Money Trust (AAMXX)

    (56) Morgan Stanley Active Assets Tax-Free Trust (AATXX)

    (57) Morgan Stanley Flexible Income Trust (DINAX, DINBX,
         DINCX, DINDX,)

    (58) Morgan Stanley Federal Securities Trust (FDLAX, FDLBX,
         FDLCX, FDLDX)

    (59) Morgan Stanley High Yield Securities (HYLAX, HYLBX,
         HYLCX, HYLDX)

    (60) Morgan Stanley Quality Income Trust (IISAX, IISBX,
         IISCX, IISDX)

    (61) Morgan Stanley Limited Duration Fund (MSLDX)

    (62) Morgan Stanley Limited Duration U.S. Treasury Trust
         (LDTRX)

    (63) Morgan Stanley Liquid Asset Fund (DWLXX)

    (64) Morgan Stanley Prime Income Trust (XPITX)

    (65) Morgan Stanley U.S. Government Money Market Trust
         (DWGXX)

    (66) Morgan Stanley U.S. Government Securities Trust (USGAX,
         USGBX, USGCX, USGDX)

    (67) Morgan Stanley California Tax-Free Daily Income Trust
         (DSCXX)

    (68) Morgan Stanley California Tax-Free Income Fund (CLFAX,
         CLFBX, CLFCX, CLFDX)

    (69) Morgan Stanley Hawaii Municipal Trust (DWHIX)

    (70) Morgan Stanley Limited Term Municipal Trust (DWLTX)

    (71) Morgan Stanley Multi-State Municipal Series Trust,
         Arizona Series (DWAZX)

    (72) Morgan Stanley Multi-State Municipal Series Trust,
         Florida Series (DWFLX)

    (73) Morgan Stanley Multi-State Municipal Series Trust, New
         Jersey Series (DWNJX)

    (74) Morgan Stanley Multi-State Municipal Series Trust,
         Pennsylvania Series (DWPAX)

    (75) Morgan Stanley New York Municipal Money Market Trust
         (DWNXX)

    (76) Morgan Stanley New York Tax-Free Income Fund (NYFAX,
         NYFBX, NYFCX, NYFDX)

    (77) Morgan Stanley Tax-Exempt Securities Trust (TAXAX,
         TAXBX, TAXCX, TAXDX)

    (78) Morgan Stanley Tax-Free Daily Income Trust (DSTXX)

    (79) Van Kampen Advantage Municipal Income Trust (VKA)

    (80) Van Kampen Advantage Municipal Income Trust II (VKI)

    (81) Van Kampen Advantage Pennsylvania Municipal Income
         Trust (VAP)

    (82) Van Kampen Bond Fund (IOBIX, VBF)

    (83) Van Kampen California Municipal Trust (VKC)

    (84) Van Kampen California Quality Municipal Trust (VQC)

    (85) Van Kampen California Value Municipal Income Trust
         (VCV)

    (86) Van Kampen Comstock Fund (ACSTX, ACSWX, ACSYX, ACSRX)

    (87) Van Kampen Convertible Securities Fund (VXS)

    (88) Van Kampen Corporate Bond Fund (ACCBX, ACCDX, ACCEX)

    (89) Van Kampen Emerging Growth Fund (ACEGX, ACEMX, ACEFX,
         ACEEX)

    (90) Van Kampen Enterprise Fund (ACENX, ACEOX, ACEPX)

    (91) Van Kampen Equity & Income Fund (ACEIX, ACEQX, ACERX,
         ACESX)

    (92) Van Kampen Florida Municipal Opportunity Trust (VMO)

    (93) Van Kampen Florida Quality Municipal Trust (VFM)

    (94) Van Kampen Government Securities Fund (ACGSX, ACGTX,
         ACGVX)

    (95) Van Kampen Growth & Income Fund (ACGIX, ACGJX, ACGKX,
         ACGLX)

    (96) Van Kampen Harbor Fund (ACHBX, ACHAX, ACHCX)

    (97) Van Kampen High Income Corporate Bond Fund (ACHYX,
         ACHZX, ACHWX)

    (98) Van Kampen Income Trust (VIN)

    (99) Van Kampen High Income Trust (VIT)

   (100) Van Kampen Investment Grade Municipal Trust (VIG)

   (101) Van Kampen Limited Maturity Government Fund (ACFMX,
         ACFTX, ACFWX)

   (102) Van Kampen High Income Trust II (VLT)

   (103) Van Kampen Massachusetts Value Municipal (VMV)

   (104) Van Kampen Municipal Income Trust (VMT)

The complaint charges Morgan Stanley, Morgan Stanley DW Inc.,
Morgan Stanley Investment Advisors Inc., Morgan Stanley
Investments LP., Morgan Stanley Distributors Inc., Van Kampen
Investment Advisory Corp., Van Kampen Asset Management Inc., and
Van Kampen Funds Inc., with violating the Securities Act of
1933, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Investment
Advisers Act of 1940, the Investment Company Act of 1940, and
common law breach of fiduciary duties for failing to properly
disclose that Morgan Stanley had been aggressively pushing its
sales personnel to sell Morgan Stanley and Van Kampen mutual
funds, instead of mutual funds owned and managed by other
companies.  This practice was carried out through a series of
internal contests offering various prizes and non-cash
compensation to brokers who sold the most in proprietary funds.

The complaint further alleges that the advisors to the Funds
(Morgan Stanley Investment Advisors, Inc., Morgan Stanley
Advisors LP, Van Kampen Investment Advisory Corp., and Van
Kampen Asset Management Inc.) paid excessive commissions,
directly or indirectly, to MSDW, the broker dealer, which came
directly out of the Funds' assets, as payments to MSDW for
steering clients towards Morgan Stanley and Van Kampen's
proprietary funds.  The advisors profited from this scheme by
earning increased management fees, while MSDW benefitted from
increased commissions and Morgan Stanley profited as the
ultimate parent of MSDW and the advisors.

For more information, contact Steven J. Toll, or Mary Ann Fink,
by Mail: 1100 New York Avenue, N.W., West Tower - Suite 500,
Washington, D.C. 20005, by Phone: 888-240-0775 or 202-408-4600,
or by E-mail: stoll@cmht.com, or mfink@cmht.com


PUTNAM FUNDS: Milberg Weiss Launches Securities Fraud Suit in MA
----------------------------------------------------------------
Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach LLP initiated a securities
class action in the United States District Court for the
District of Massachusetts against defendants Marsh & McLennan
Companies, Inc., Putnam Investments Trust, Putnam Investment
Management LLC, Putnam Investment Funds, each of the Funds, and
John Does 1-100, on behalf of purchasers of the securities of
the Putnam Funds family of funds, between November 1, 1998 and
September 3, 2003, inclusive, seeking to pursue remedies under
the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, the Securities Act of 1933
and the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.

The Funds, and the symbols for the respective Funds named below,
are as follows:

     (1) Putnam American Government Income Fund

     (2) Putnam Arizona Tax Exempt Income Fund

     (3) Putnam Asset Allocation: Balanced Portfolio

     (4) Putnam Asset Allocation: Conservative Portfolio

     (5) Putnam Asset Allocation: Growth Portfolio (Sym: PAEAX)

     (6) Putnam California Tax Exempt Income Fund

     (7) Putnam Capital Appreciation Fund

     (8) Putnam Capital Opportunities Fund

     (9) Putnam Classic Equity Fund

    (10) Putnam Convertible Income-Growth Trust

    (11) Putnam Discovery Growth Fund

    (12) Putnam Diversified Income Trust

    (13) Putnam Equity Income Fund

    (14) Putnam Europe Equity Fund

    (15) Putnam Florida Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (16) Putnam Fund for Growth and Income (Sym: PGRWX)

    (17) George Putnam Fund of Boston

    (18) Putnam Global Equity Fund (Sym: PEQUX)

    (19) Putnam Global Income Trust

    (20) Putnam Global Natural Resources Fund

    (21) Putnam Growth Opportunities Fund (Sym: POGAX, POGBX,
         POGCX, PGOMX)

    (22) Putnam Health Sciences Trust

    (23) Putnam High Yield Advantage Fund

    (24) Putnam High Yield Trust

    (25) Putnam Income Fund

    (26) Putnam Intermediate U.S. Government Income Fund

    (27) Putnam International Capital Opportunities Fund

    (28) Putnam International Equity Fund

    (29) Putnam International Growth and Income Fund

    (30) Putnam International New Opportunities Fund (Sym:
         PINOX)

    (31) Putnam Investors Fund

    (32) Putnam Massachusetts Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (33) Putnam Michigan Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (34) Putnam Mid Cap Value Fund

    (35) Putnam Minnesota Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (36) Putnam Money Market Fund

    (37) Putnam Municipal Income Fund

    (38) Putnam New Jersey Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (39) Putnam New Opportunities Fund

    (40) Putnam New Value Fund (Sym: PANVX)

    (41) Putnam New York Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (42) Putnam New York Tax Exempt Opportunities Fund

    (43) Putnam OTC & Emerging Growth Fund

    (44) Putnam Ohio Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (45) Putnam Pennsylvania Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (46) Putnam Research Fund

    (47) Putnam Small Cap Growth Fund

    (48) Putnam Small Cap Value Fund

    (49) Putnam Tax Exempt Income Fund

    (50) Putnam Tax Exempt Money Market Fund

    (51) Putnam Tax Smart Equity Fund

    (52) Putnam Tax-Free High Yield Fund

    (53) Putnam Tax-Free Insured Fund

    (54) Putnam U.S. Government Income Trust

    (55) Putnam Utilities Growth and Income Fund

    (56) Putnam Vista Fund

    (57) Putnam Voyager Fund (Sym: PVOYX)

The Complaint alleges that defendants violated Sections 11 and
15 of the Securities Act of 1933; Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of
the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated
thereunder; and Section 206 of the Investment Advisers Act of
1940.

The Complaint charges that, throughout the Class Period,
defendants failed to disclose that they improperly allowed
certain investors (the John Doe defendants) to engage in the
"timing" of their transactions in the Funds' securities.

In return for receiving extra fees defendants allowed the John
Doe defendants to engage in timing, to the detriment of class
members, who paid, dollar for dollar, for the favored investors'
improper profits. These practices were undisclosed in the
prospectuses of the Funds, which falsely represented that the
Funds actively police against timing.

For more information, contact Steven G. Schulman, Peter E.
Seidman, or Andrei V. Rado, by Mail: One Pennsylvania Plaza,
49th fl., New York, NY, 10119-0165, by Phone: (800) 320-5081, by
E-mail: putnamfundscase@milbergNY.com, or visit the firm's
Website: http://www.milberg.com.


TITAN PHARMACEUTICALS: Milberg Weiss Files Stock Suit in N.D.CA
---------------------------------------------------------------
Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach LLP initiated a securities
class action in the United States District Court for the
Northern District of California on behalf of purchasers of Titan
Pharmaceuticals, Inc. common stock during the period between
December 1, 1999 and July 22, 2002.

The complaint charges Titan Pharmaceuticals and certain of its
officers and directors with violations of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934.  During the Class Period, Titan
Pharmaceuticals sought to develop Iloperidone (Zomaril), a
potential new drug for the treatment of schizophrenia.

The complaint alleges that from the very beginning of the Class
Period, defendants declared that the development program for
Iloperidone was making steady progress through Phase III
clinical trials and towards drug approval in the U.S. Defendants
expressed excitement over the safety and efficacy of Iloperidone
and with the Phase III study results, particularly the
statistically significant reduction in the symptoms of
schizophrenia in patients. Defendants concluded that the
positive late-stage development results pointed to an important
role for Iloperidone as an important new option for the
treatment of schizophrenia.

Heightened expectations for the success of Iloperidone stood in
contrast to an ongoing process of U.S. Food and Drug
Administration review of serious un-addressed safety issues
facing older, established anti-psychotic drugs. This process has
resulted in the imposition of severe marketing restrictions for
a number of established anti-psychotic drugs.

However, during the Class Period, defendants artificially
inflated the price of Titan Pharmaceuticals shares by issuing a
series of materially false and misleading statements about the
Company's Investigational New Drug and New Drug Applications for
Iloperidone (Zomaril).

As a result of the defendants' alleged false statements, Titan
Pharmaceuticals stock traded at inflated prices during the Class
Period, causing millions of dollars of damages to the Class.
However, based on the disclosures made in defendants' press
release of July 22, 2002, pointing to the ability of Iloperidone
to prolong the QT interval and raising serious questions about
Iloperidone cardiovascular safety and marketability, the price
of Titan Pharmaceuticals' shares fell a precipitous 58%, to
$1.63, its lowest level ever, on volume of 3.8 million shares.

For more information, contact William Lerach, Darren Robbins, of
Milberg Weiss, by Phone: 800/449-4900, by E-mail:
wsl@milberg.com, or visit the firm's Website:
http://www.milberg.com.


                        *********

A list of Meetings, Conferences and Seminars appears in each
Wednesday's edition of the Class Action Reporter. Submissions
via e-mail to carconf@beard.com are encouraged.

Each Friday's edition of the CAR includes a section featuring
news on asbestos-related litigation and profiles of target
asbestos defendants that, according to independent researches,
collectively face billions of dollars in asbestos-related
liabilities.  The Asbestos Defendant Profiles is backed by an
online database created to respond to custom searches. Go to
http://litigationdatasource.com/asbestos_defendant_profiles.html

                        *********


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
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Copyright 2003.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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