CAR_Public/040106.mbx            C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R
  
             Tuesday, January 6, 2004, Vol. 6, No. 3

                         Headlines                            

ABBYLAND FOODS: Recalls Pork Sausages For Undisclosed Allergens
APPLE COMPUTERS: Users Threaten To File Lawsuit Over IBook, Ipod
ARCHON CORPORATION: Oral Arguments in Certification Appeal Set
ARIZONA: Abortion Doctor Sentenced for Sexual Abuse Offenses
AUSTRALIA: Solicitor Says Chairlift Re-Launch To Fuel Nightmares

AUTOWEST INC.: Appeals Court Reverses Arbitration Ruling in Suit
BLUBERRY PROCESSORS: Judge Signs Off On Triple Damages For Firms
CATHOLIC CHURCH: CA Clergy Abuse Lawsuits Filed on Wed. Deadline
CATHOLIC CHURCH: Bishops Complying With "New Plan," Report Says
DAIMLERCHRYSLER AG: Faces Lawsuit Over "Auto-Loan Bias" in TX

EPHEDRA: FDA Issues Consumer Alert, Ban On Dietary Supplements
FARMINGTON FOODS: IL Court Grants in Part Summary Judgment Call
HEARTLAND ADVISORS: Exec Defends Actions In Mutual Funds Probe
MADISON COUNTY: Number Of Cases Filed Continues To Rise
MONTANA: Attorneys Files Suit On Behalf of Mentally Ill Inmates

NATIONAL SECURITIES: Fully Pays Share in NY Lawsuit Settlement
NATIONAL SECURITIES: Faces Lawsuit Over Fastpoint Stocks in CA
PENNSYLVANIA: Suit Filed V. Developer, Others For Housing Fraud
RALPHS GROCERY: Union Launches Lawsuit Over Supermarket Hirings
RAYOVAC CORPORATION: Trial in Securities Suit Set November 2004

REMEDYTEMP INC.: Files Counterclaim in CA Fraud Suit Arbitration
ROCKSTAR GAMES: Haitian Rights Groups Sue Over Grand Theft Auto
SLAVERY LITIGATION: Descendants Pursue Lawsuit For Reparations
SMITHKLINE BEECHAM: Court Denies in Part Summary Judgment Motion
SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Trial in Stock Suit Set June 8,2004 in NY

SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Asks NY Court To Dismiss Securities Lawsuit
SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Asks NY Court To Dismiss Securities Lawsuit
SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Investors Launch DE Securities Fraud Suit
TELXON CORPORATION: Reaches Settlement of OH Securities Lawsuit
WISCONSIN: Appeals Court Vacates Dismissal of Inmates' Lawsuit

                 New Securities Fraud Cases

ALLIANCE CAPITAL: Bernstein Liebhard Files Securities Suit in NY
BEARS STEARN: Bonnett Fairbourn Files Securities Suit in S.D. NY
BIOVAIL CORPORATION: Weiss & Yourman Files Securities Suit in NY
BIOVAIL CORPORATION: Glancy & Binkow Lodges NY Securities Suit
CHARLES SCHWAB: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA

DYNACQ HEALTHCARE: Rabin Murray Files Securities Suit in S.D. TX
DYNACQ HEALTHCARE: Schiffrin & Barroway Files Stock Suit in TX
GILEAD SCIENCES: Wechsler Harwood Files Securities Suit in CA
INVESCO FUNDS: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in CO
MARSH & MCLENNAN: Weiss & Yourman Files Stock Lawsuit in S.D. NY

MFS FUNDS: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Fraud Lawsuit in MA
MORGAN STANLEY: Klayman & Toskes Files Securities Suit in NY
NETWORK ENGINES: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Lawsuit in MA
PMA CAPITAL: Donovan Searles Lodges Securities Suit in E.D. PA
SUNLIFE FINANCIAL: Rabin Murray Files Securities Lawsuit in MA

TOPAZ GROUP: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Fraud Lawsuit in WA
TOPAZ GROUP: Weiss & Yourman Commences Securities Lawsuit in WA
TOPAZ GROUP: Stull Stull Commences Securities Fraud Suit in WA
VIRBAC CORPORATION: Cauley Geller Files Securities Suit in TX
WATSON PHARMA: Bernstein Liebhard Lodges Securities Suit in CA

WARNACO INC: Lovell Stewart Launches Securities Suit in S.D. NY

                          *********

ABBYLAND FOODS: Recalls Pork Sausages For Undisclosed Allergens
---------------------------------------------------------------
Abbyland Foods, Inc., an Abbotsford, Wisconsin firm, in
cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food
Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), is voluntarily recalling
approximately 46,800 pounds of pork sausage because the product
label does not list whey, nonfat dry milk and wheat flour, which
are potential allergens.

The products being recalled are one-pound packages of "Gourmet
Banger." Each package bears the case code "490100." Each product
bears the establishment number "EST. 1633" inside the USDA mark
of inspection.  These products were produced between January 1,
2003 and December 30, 2003 and distributed to retail stores in
California, Florida and Nevada.

Also subject to recall are 10 lb. packages of "Gourmet Banger."  
Each package bears the case code "490210" and the company's name
and address.  Each product bears the establishment number "EST.
1633" inside the USDA mark of inspection.

These products were produced between January 1, 2003 and
December 30, 2003 and distributed to restaurants and other
institutions in California, Florida, Illinois, Massachusetts,
New Jersey, Nevada and Pennsylvania.

Media with questions about the recall should contact Patrick
Costello, company Director of Human Resources at, (715) 223-6386
ext. 7254.  Consumers with questions about the recall should
contact Tiffany Pierce, company Assistant Quality Assurance
manager, at (715) 223-6386 ext. 7228.


APPLE COMPUTERS: Users Threaten To File Lawsuit Over IBook, Ipod
----------------------------------------------------------------
Two online petitions have collected hundreds of signatures,
seeking to file lawsuits against Apple Computers, over claims of
defects in the iBook laptop and the Company's wildly-popular
iPods, a line of digital music players, Reuters reports.  

Users of Apple's iBook have been reporting problems with their
iBooks in increasing numbers in the last few weeks, according to
Ric Ford, president of MacIntouch Inc., which runs the
MacIntouch.com Website, an independent site for Mac users.  

Meanwhile, a video making the rounds of the Internet shows a man
spray-painting the message "IPod's unreplaceable battery lasts
only 18 months" on iPod posters. The filmmaker, Casey Neistat,
said in a note on his Web site, ipodsdirtysecret.com, that he
decided to make the film after his unit essentially died in
September and he was told the battery could not be replaced.
Subsequently, the Company has begun offering a $99 battery
replacement service.  Many enthusiasts believe the iPods will
get an upgrade at Macworld with the introduction of smaller,
less-expensive models and a range of case colors.

An Apple spokeswoman declined to comment on both questions of
pending litigation and the claims of defective computers,
Reuters states.

Apple has won raves over the years for its sleekly designed
computers. The company, with a market share of around 2 percent,
is able to command higher prices due in part to Apple machines
being perceived as more secure and reliable than PCs running
Microsoft's Windows operating system.  Taken together, both
consumer campaigns against a company that prides itself on high
standards for design and engineering threaten to cast a shadow
over Macworld, historically a forum for Apple and its
charismatic leader, Steve Jobs, to showcase new products and
innovations.

Mr. Ford attributed the increased chatter over the iBook more to
the fact that some users have narrowed in on the cause of the
long-standing problems rather than the impending start of the
Macworld show.  "I don't think it's really related to Macworld,"
he told Reuters.  "I think the problems have been there, but
people are starting to understand the source of the problems."  

The difficulties stem from the iBook's logic board, or
motherboard, users say in discussion forums and on message
boards -- including boards on Apple's own Web site.  Many users
report replacement units have the same problems with display and
video output.  Most of the complaints pertain to a particular
iBook model with dual USB ports, and many users say the problems
started to show up just after the computer came out of warranty.

One of the petition sites, BlackCider.com, which uses as its
logo an apple with a screw run through it, has 408 signatures
from potential lawsuit participants.  Site owner Michael Johnson
also offers T-shirts with the site logo on front and "Ask me
about my logic board" on back.  The other Web site, created by
Brendan Carolan at PetitionOnline.com, has collected 850
signatures and calls on Apple to either extend the iBook
warranties or offer a replacement.  Neither Mr. Johnson nor Mr.
Carolan were immediately available for comment, Reuters reports.

The claims of problems have also extended to the company's
higher-end PowerBook line. Macworld magazine, in its December
issue, said it had to return three of six 15-inch aluminum
PowerBook G4s it ordered for testing purposes because of
defects.


ARCHON CORPORATION: Oral Arguments in Certification Appeal Set
--------------------------------------------------------------
Oral arguments in the appeal of the class certification denial
for the consolidated class action filed against Archon
Corporation and other gambling and gaming equipment companies is
set for January 15, 2004 in the United States Ninth Circuit
Court of Appeals.

The suit, originally filed in the United States District Court
for Florida, Orlando Division, alleges that the defendants have
engaged in fraudulent and misleading conduct by inducing people
to play video poker machines and electronic slot machines based
on false beliefs concerning how the machines operate and the
extent to which there is actually an opportunity to win on a
given play.  The complaint alleges that the defendants' acts
constitute violations of the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt
Organizations Act and also give rise to claims for common law
fraud and unjust enrichment, and seek compensatory, special
consequential, incidental and punitive damages of several
billion dollars.

In response, all of the defendants, including the Company, filed
motions attacking the pleadings for failure to state a claim,
seeking to dismiss the complaints for lack of personal
jurisdiction and venue.  The Court heard the arguments on those
motions and ultimately denied the motions.  Plaintiffs then
filed their motion to certify a class, which the defendants
vigorously opposed.

On June 26, 2002, the court denied the motion to certify the
class.  Plaintiffs then sought discretionary review by the Ninth
Circuit of the order denying class certification.  On August 15,
2002, the Ninth Circuit granted review.  The briefing is
complete, an oral argument is scheduled for January 15, 2004.


ARIZONA: Abortion Doctor Sentenced for Sexual Abuse Offenses
------------------------------------------------------------
An abortion doctor, Dr. Brian Finkel, 64, was sentenced Friday
to nearly 35 years in prison for sexually abusing more than a
dozen patients during examinations, the Associated Press
reports.

Mr. Finkel was convicted last month on 22 counts of sexual abuse
and acquitted on 34 other abuse charges.  More than 30 women
testified at his trial that Mr. Finkel groped them and
inappropriately touched them.  Mr. Finkel cited his brusque
manner as the reason for his conviction and said his patients
"mistook his good intentions for malevolent ones."  "I'm sorry
if I hurt their feelings . I know I'm not Marcus Welby," he said
in court.

Superior Court Judge Jeffrey Cates told Mr. Finkel that his
conviction for abusing 13 different women between 1986 and 2001
"was not because of your demeanor but because you committed the
crimes."  

Mr. Finkel's lawyer, Richard Gierloff, told AP he intends to
appeal.

It's estimated Mr. Finkel performed 20 percent of all abortions
in the Phoenix area.  He was an outspoken advocate for abortion
rights and wore a gun for protection, AP reports.


AUSTRALIA: Solicitor Says Chairlift Re-Launch To Fuel Nightmares
----------------------------------------------------------------
A solicitor leading a class action against the Victoria's Arthur
Seat chairlift's operator has claimed that the reopening of the
chairlift would cause nightmares among some of those injured in
its collapse 12 months ago, news.com.au reports.  The collapse
of the chairlift, south-east of Melbourne, on January 3 last
year, injured 18 people and left 50 people stranded for several
hours.

Solicitor Barrie Woollacott, of Slater and Gordon, is
representing up to 20 people who are seeking damages for
physical and emotional injuries they claim to have received in
the incident.  They were seeking compensation for pain and
suffering, medical costs and income loss, which could amount to
hundreds of thousands of dollars, he said.

Mr. Woollacott said the reopening of the chairlift would
reignite painful memories.  "Lots of young kids still to this
day have nightmares," he said. "The reopening is going to cause
nightmares for people."

He said Slater and Gordon was representing people who suffered
back injuries, required extended leave from work and experienced
post traumatic stress disorder.  He added that the operator of
the chairlift and its insurance company had been served with a
writ and he hoped the claim could be resolved without going to
trial.  "I would be very disappointed if it had to go to the
court for the reason that these people are injured enough," he
told news.com.au.


AUTOWEST INC.: Appeals Court Reverses Arbitration Ruling in Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States Court of Appeals, First District, Fifth
Division reversed and remanded a ruling by the Superior Court,
City and County of San Francisco, denying a petition to compel
arbitration in a lawsuit brought against Autowest Inc., et al.,
on behalf of Ryan Gutierrez, et al., alleging violations of the
California Vehicle Leasing Act (VLA) and the Unfair Competition
Law (UCL).

The lawsuit is brought on behalf of lessees of an automobile,
against the lessor, Autowest, and the lessor's assignee, who
allege violations of the California Vehicle Leasing Act (VLA)
and the Unfair Competition Law (UCL).  The complaint also
included causes of action against the lessor for fraud,
negligent misrepresentation, violation of the California
Consumers Legal Remedies Act (CLRA), and false advertising, and
a separate cause of action against the assignee seeking
rescission and restitution.

The lessor filed a petition to compel arbitration under the
arbitration clause in the lease, and the District Court, No.
317755, James J. McBride, J., denied the petition.  The
lessor then appealed.      
     

BLUBERRY PROCESSORS: Judge Signs Off On Triple Damages For Firms
----------------------------------------------------------------
The future of Maine's blueberry industry remains unclear after a
judge signed off on triple damages against Maine's wild
blueberry processors, for a total of $56 million, the Associated
Press reports.

In November, wild blueberry growers won $18.6 million in a class
action against three processors they accused of price-fixing.  
Damage awards are automatically tripled in civil cases involving
antitrust issues.  The processors appealed, but Justice Joseph
Jabar gave a final signoff last week during a two-hour hearing
in Knox County Superior Court.  The processors are Allen's
Blueberry Freezer of Ellsworth, Jasper Wyman & Son of Milbridge
and Cherryfield Foods Inc. of Cherryfield.

Cherryfield Foods attorney William Kayatta Jr. of Portland,
tried to convince Judge Jabar to set aside the verdict entirely.
"The judgment itself, $18.6 million, by any stretch is a
staggering amount in relation to the companies," Mr. Kayatta
told AP.

He added the processors plan to appeal the case to the Maine
Supreme Judicial Court.  "It is not in the public interest to
have an entire industry that is subject to such a judgment.
Practically speaking, we are talking bankruptcy even if you look
at the $18.6 million," he said.

Grower Nathan Pease said his intention in starting the lawsuit
more than three years ago was merely the pursuit of fairness.
"I didn't do this to put anyone out of business," he said. "All
we growers want is to be treated fairly. We want the processors
to make money. But we want that to happen fairly."

James Kilbreth, a lawyer representing Wyman's, disagreed.  
"Today made it clear that the growers' focus is getting as many
dollars out of the processors as they can," he told AP.  "They
want to pin down and freeze the industry."

The November judgment was for what the jury thought the growers
were shortchanged by the processors' alleged conspiracy to set
field prices over four seasons in the late 1990s.  The 500 Maine
growers represented in the class action charged that the three
processors conspired to depress prices.  The processors have
denied any price fixing.

The growers' attorneys said the $56 million should be disbursed
among all the growers represented in the suit.  The judge asked
them to submit a proposal for how the claims process should be
handled.


CATHOLIC CHURCH: CA Clergy Abuse Lawsuits Filed on Wed. Deadline
----------------------------------------------------------------
Courthouses throughout California were filled with attorneys
filing clergy abuse lawsuits last Wednesday, the last day
alleged child molestation cases - some of them dating back
decades - could be filed, Lodi News-Sentinel reports.

The Stockton Diocese has been named in six to eight cases, Larry
Drivon, a Morada attorney who has filed some 300 clergy abuse
lawsuits told the News-Sentinel.  One or two newer cases may
involve Oliver O'Grady, a former priest at St. Anne's Catholic
Church in Lodi. Mr. O'Grady was at St. Anne's from 1971 to 1978
and later transferred to four parishes in the Stockton Diocese.
He served seven years in state prison for sexual abuse that took
place in 1990 and 1991 in Calaveras County before being deported
to his native Ireland in late 2000.

It won't be known for several days how many clergy abuse cases
have been filed this week in San Joaquin County Superior Court,
court spokeswoman Leanne Kozak told the News-Sentinel.  She said
it's difficult to determine how many cases have been filed
against the Stockton Diocese because real names aren't used by
the plaintiffs.  They are listed either as "Doe" or "Roe."  
Sacramento attorney Joseph George filed three new cases against
the diocese on Monday, she added.  Mr. George was unavailable
for comment Wednesday because his law office was closed for the
holiday.  Mr. Drivon also believes two new cases have been filed
recently against Mr. O'Grady, but no details were available.  It
was not clear whether the new lawsuits filed by Mr. George
involve Mr. O'Grady.

The Stockton Diocese office was closed Wednesday, and its
attorney, Paul Balestracci, wasn't available for comment, the
News-Sentinel states.

Between 350 and 500 lawsuits involve Cardinal Roger Mahony of
the Los Angeles Archdiocese, who was bishop of the Stockton
Diocese from 1980 to 1985.  A vast majority of lawsuits against
Cardinal Mahony are from plaintiffs in Southern California, said
John Manly, a Costa Mesa attorney who has filed about 80 clergy
abuse lawsuits throughout the state.  "What's clear is Cardinal
Mahony's pattern of protecting child rapists didn't stop when he
left Stockton," Mr. Manly said.

Cardinal Mahony isn't accused in the lawsuits of sexual abuse;
rather he is accused of protecting priests by concealing
incidents and transferring priests to different parishes, he
added.

"This is not the junior-senior prom," Mr. Drivon said. "Roger
Mahony has protected dozens of sexual predators from the police.
He protected Oliver O'Grady, whom he knew to be a child rapist."  
One of Mr. Manly's clients is a former St. Anne's altar boy whom
O'Grady allegedly sexually assaulted in the early 1970s.  The
former altar boy is now in his early 40s and lives out of state.  

Tod Tamberg, a spokesman for the Archdiocese of Los Angeles,
told the News-Sentinel that attorneys like Mr. Drivon and Mr.
Manly are not necessarily telling the truth.  "Both of them
stand to take a huge amount of money from any settlement," he
said.  "The archdiocese believes that those victims that did
suffer abuse at the hands of priests who were unscrupulous
criminals should be compensated for their suffering when the
church was at fault."

However, many lawsuits are decades-old claims that cannot be
proven because key people to the case have died or memories have
faded, Mr. Tamberg continued.  "Not to say a good number of
cases aren't true," he said.  "That's a fact, and it's a sad
fact.  We don't want this to happen ever again."

Rather than clergy abuse, Mr. Drivon and Mr. Manly refer to
these types of cases as "child rape."  "Nobody wants to believe
what the problem is," Mr. Drivon told the News-Sentinel.  "We
have been screaming for 20 years about this problem. Nobody was
listening to what we have to say."

Cardinal Mahony has done a lot on behalf of possible sexual
abuse victims since he left the Stockton Diocese in 1985 to
become archbishop of the Los Angeles Diocese, Mr. Tamberg said.  
He wrote the archdiocese's first policy on sexual abuse, which
went into effect in 1987.  In 1994, he established a sexual
abuse advisory board to monitor clergy abuse.  Twelve of the 14
board members are lay people, which included a clergy abuse
victim and the parents of boys who were abused by a priest.

Wednesday was the deadline for people whose cases would normally
exceed the statute of limitations to file child sexual abuse
lawsuits against priests, dioceses and other adults supervising
children.  Senate Bill 1779, which Mr. Drivon wrote on behalf of
State Sen. John Burton, D-San Francisco, lifted the statute of
limitations for the 2003 calendar year only.

However, attorneys are filing class actions that would
essentially allow alleged victims to continue filing lawsuits in
2004, Mr. Drivon told the News-Sentinel.  A class action against
a particular diocese would allow victims to sue together because
there would be facts in common to all or some of the cases.  
"There are still enormous number of victims out there who
haven't got the information (about the opportunity to sue)," Mr.
Drivon said.  "Many of them moved out of state. Some of them are
just not getting the word."


CATHOLIC CHURCH: Bishops Complying With "New Plan," Report Says
---------------------------------------------------------------
Kathleen McChesney, a former top FBI agent and head of the
bishops' Office of Child and Youth Protection on Friday said
that an upcoming report on whether Roman Catholic bishops are
implementing their new mandatory discipline plan for sexually
abusive priests will say most dioceses are complying, but "there
is still a lot that needs to be done," the Associated Press
reports.  Ms. McChesney said the sheer size of some of the
largest dioceses slowed their progress, while others lacked the
personnel or financing for quick compliance.

The plan not only dictates how bishops should respond to abuse
claims, but also requires them to take steps to prevent
molestation, such as conducting background checks on all clergy
and lay workers in the diocese and training them to identify
abuse.  The largest archdioceses employ more than a thousand
priests alone, she told AP.

"Considering it's only been about a year since people have been
working on it, there's been a lot of progress, but nobody is
going to tell you that it's all been done," Ms. McChesney said,
in a phone interview with The Associated Press.  "What you're
going to find is that most of them are (complying), but there is
still a lot that needs to be done."

The report, which is scheduled to be released Tuesday in
Washington, is based on audits of all 195 U.S. dioceses
conducted by the Gavin Group, a Boston consulting firm led by
former FBI official Bill Gavin.  The bishops commissioned the
review, which will be conducted annually, as part of the new
policy they adopted at the height of the abuse crisis in June
2002 in Dallas.

The plan mandates that guilty priests be barred from public
ministry - from celebrating Mass to working in a church soup
kitchen - although they would technically remain priests.
Bishops can also ask the Vatican to force perpetrators from the
priesthood - a process that can take years.

Ms. McChesney said the auditors did find "a few" abusive priests
still in ministry, but the clergymen were removed as soon as the
breach was discovered.  "It was very, very rare," she told AP.
"Where we learned of it, we addressed it."

The auditors - mostly former FBI agents or investigators -
traveled the country from June to October in small teams,
interviewing bishops, diocesan personnel, victims, abusive
priests, prosecutors and lay people.  If deficiencies were
found, the auditors left instructions on fixing the problem,
then required the diocese to act on those recommendations by a
certain date.

Victim advocates have questioned whether the auditors could gain
a true understanding of how dioceses were responding to abuse
claims, since they had to rely on church officials for much of
their information.  However, Ms. McChesney said she believed the
audits provided an accurate picture since the investigators also
spoke with people outside the church.


DAIMLERCHRYSLER AG: Faces Lawsuit Over "Auto-Loan Bias" in TX
-------------------------------------------------------------
A federal lawsuit claims corporate giant DaimlerChrysler
methodically refused auto loans to qualified Galveston-area
black and Hispanic customers, Knight-Ridder / Tribune Business
News reports.

These rejections by DaimlerChrysler Services North America
helped trigger the failure of the Rick Perez Autonet dealership,
which relied largely on Galveston minority customers, said
Robert Wilson, the attorney who filed the lawsuit on behalf of
four area residents.  The plaintiffs had all been denied loans
on cars sold by the dealer.  The lawsuit claims DaimlerChrysler
denied loans from the Galveston dealership because it did
business in a city in which blacks and Hispanics constitute a
majority.

"These are folks who have credit ratings that would be accepted
in other areas by DaimlerChrysler but were denied credit in this
area," Mr. Wilson told the Tribune Business News.

A lawsuit over allegedly discriminatory loan denials or interest
rate policies is pending against DaimlerChrysler in anIllinois
federal court.  Another, against General Motors Assurance
Corporation (GMAC), is scheduled for trial next month in
Nashville, Tennessee.

In November, the Rev. Al Sharpton joined hundreds of people in
Chicago to protest alleged lending discrimination by
DaimlerChrysler against African-American car buyers.  The
protest took place outside a Chicago convention center while
DaimlerChrysler CEO Dieter Zetsche presided inside over the
unveiling of the company's 2004 car line.

DaimlerChrysler attorneys could not be reached for comment
Friday.  The company denied identical allegations Mr. Perez made
in a state district court lawsuit last year.  In that case, Mr.
Perez alleged that DaimlerChrysler Services and automaker
DaimlerChrysler violated the Texas Motor Vehicle Code by
imposing unreasonable operating rules on his dealership because
it served a primarily minority community.

The rules included requiring excessive cash reserves and forcing
the dealership to accept vehicles it didn't order, Mr. Perez
told the Tribune Business News.  Elements of that case are
scheduled for hearing in Austin in June by a state
administrative law judge.  If Mr. Perez prevails there, damages,
if any, would be decided in the Galveston court.

He said that DaimlerChrysler Services began in late 2001
rejecting customers whose loan applications normally would have
been automatically approved.  The trend began with a change of
management in the finance company's Houston office, he said.
The process began taking hours or days instead of minutes and
dozens - some from people with excellent credit ratings - were
rejected each month, he said.  

He learned that his dealership had been cut off from the
computerized credit analysis system used by all dealerships.  
Monthly sales plummeted from the "high 50s to the teens," Mr.
Perez saidm and complaints went unheeded.  Some of his customers
who were turned down at his dealership went to another
DaimlerChrysler dealership and were able to buy cars.

Claiming the named plaintiffs represent "a mere fraction" of
minorities denied loans by DaimlerChrysler Services at the
Galveston dealership alone, Mr. Wilson is asking U.S. District
Judge Sam Kent to make the case a class action.  If Kent agrees,
other people who claim Daimler Chrysler Services unjustly denied
them auto loans could join the lawsuit.

"We're not exactly sure that this was done only to Mr. Perez's
Galveston dealership," Mr. Wilson said.  "It may very well have
been done anywhere in the Houston zone of DaimlerChrysler
Services, and that would include parts of Houston."  

He said an identical lawsuit is pending against DaimlerChrysler
in a Chicago federal court.  The case was filed by the owner of
two dealerships in areas with high minority populations.  
Lawyers proposed joining Mr. Perez's Texas case to the Illinois
case, but the court said the merger was too cumbersome.  The
Illinois case likely could be certified as a class action by
midyear, he told the Tribune Business News.


EPHEDRA: FDA Issues Consumer Alert, Ban On Dietary Supplements
--------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Food and Drug Adminsitration (FDA) on December 30,
2003, issued a consumer alert on the safety of dietary
supplements containing ephedra.  The alert advised consumers to
immediately stop buying and using ephedra products.

Ephedra, also called Ma huang, is a naturally occurring
substance derived from plants.  Its principal active ingredient
is ephedrine, which when chemically synthesized is regulated as
a drug.  In recent years ephedra products have been extensively
promoted to aid weight loss, enhance sports performance, and
increase energy.

Also on December 30, FDA notified manufacturers that it intends
to publish a final rule stating that dietary supplements
containing ephedrine alkaloids present an unreasonable risk of
illness or injury.  The rule would have the effect of banning
the sale of these products as soon as it becomes effective, 60
days after publication.


FARMINGTON FOODS: IL Court Grants in Part Summary Judgment Call
---------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Northern District of
Illinois, Eastern Division granted in part, denied in part
Defendants Motion for Summary Judgment in regards a lawsuit
brought against Farmington Foods, Inc., on behalf of Plaintiffs
Juan T. Gonzalez, et al., seeking recovery in an Amended
Complaint alleging violations of the Fair Labor Standards Act,
the Illinois Minimum Wage Law, and the Illinois Wage Payment and
Collection Act.                  

Plaintiffs Juan T. Gonzalez, Sergio Gonzales, Maria L. Llames,
Lino Rubio, Rafael Cruz, Nicolas Pedro, Felipe Flores, and all
others similarly situated, in this case, are current and former
employees of Defendant who are or have been represented by the
United Food and Commercial Workers Union.  

The union has been the collective bargaining agent for
Defendant's production workers (as is pertinent herein, pace
boners, pace trimmers and laborers) for approximately twelve to
fifteen years and has entered into successive collective
bargaining agreements.  The two most recent
collective bargaining agreements cover the periods November 1,
1997 through October 31, 2000 and November 1, 2000 through
October 31, 2004, respectively.  Mr. Javier Ramirez, the
Director of Organizing for Local 546100-A, was the chief
negotiator for the union for the most recent collective
bargaining agreement.
  
At issue in the case are the two most recent collective
bargaining agreements.  Specifically, Plaintiffs allege, in
violation of the collective bargaining agreements, Defendant
failed to pay them their regular rate of pay for hours they
worked up to forty hours per week and for hours they worked in
excess of forty hours per week (i.e. overtime on a weekly basis)
as required by the FLSA for:

     (1) donning and doffing necessary and required sanitary and
         safety equipment;

     (2) donning and doffing required sanitary and safety
         equipment during meal breaks (as well as other
         compensable activities during meal breaks);

     (3) meal breaks;

     (4) cleaning equipment (on a daily and weekly basis);

     (5) sharpening knives; and

     (6) time spent before and after line operations

Plaintiffs further assert state law claims in violation of the
Illinois Minimum Wage Law and the Illinois Wage Payment and
Collection Act on these same stated bases.  Plaintiffs further
complain that Defendant violated the FLSA by failing to make,
keep  and preserve adequate and accurate records of the wages,
hours and other conditions of employment maintained by Defendant
(i.e., Defendant's records failed to show adequately and
accurately, inter alia, the number of hours worked each workday
and the total number hours worked each workweek with respect to
its employees).  
                                                
The Court granted Defendants motion as to its state law claims
and denied as to the FLSA claims.
                                                 

HEARTLAND ADVISORS: Exec Defends Actions In Mutual Funds Probe
--------------------------------------------------------------
According to a newspaper report Sunday, a Heartland Advisors
Inc. executive says he still backs the company's use of an
independent pricing source for mutual funds, a decision that
resulted in a federal lawsuit against the firm, the Associated
Press reports.

Heartland Advisors has promised to "vigorously contest" a
lawsuit by the Securities and Exchange Commission filed last
month accusing the Milwaukee investment firm of fraud and
insider trading.  Heartland's chief operating officer told the
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel that the company's defense rests on
its reliance on an outside pricing service to determine the
value of bonds in the two Heartland high-yield municipal bond
funds that were marked down drastically in October 2000.

"The SEC has taken the position that we should not have
continued to rely on the world-leading, independent pricing
service at a point in time before October 13," Paul Beste said
in the paper's Sunday editions.  "We believe our decision to
continue to use the independent pricing source, just like all
the mutual funds in the United States, was a valid decision and
an appropriate decision for our shareholders, and it did come to
the calculation of an appropriate net asset value."

Mr. Beste told the newspaper that he researched in August 2000
and September 2000 whether Heartland should continue to rely on
the bond prices it was getting from Muller Data Corporation, its
outside pricing service.  His research showed that prices for
bonds sold from those two funds, as well as prices from two
other pricing services, were similar to those provided by
Muller, according to a 130-page document Heartland provided to
the SEC two years ago in response to the agency's concerns.  
Heartland did not grow uncomfortable with Muller's prices until
it sold a municipal bond on October 11, 2000, for $14 less than
the pricing service had marked it two weeks earlier, Mr. Beste
said.

Two days later, Heartland marked down the value of its High-
Yield Municipal Bond Fund by 69 percent and its Short Duration
High-Yield Municipal Fund by 44 percent, prompting the SEC
investigation.

The SEC lawsuit accuses Mr. Beste and other Heartland officials
of fraudulently pricing the bond funds to conceal a cash flow
crisis from at least August 2000 until March 2001, when the SEC
got a court order to put the funds in receivership.  It also
accuses four current or former employees, including founder
William J. Nasgovitz, of being involved in insider trading
related to the funds.

The SEC filed its lawsuit against Heartland three years after
the bond funds lost some $93 million over two weeks in October
2000 and five months after most of the funds' shareholders
settled a class-action lawsuit for $14 million.  The SEC
censured Muller, which is now FT Interactive Data, and settled
with the firm for $125,000.  It also issued an administrative
consent order against four Heartland directors.

Heartland likely will file a response to the SEC lawsuit in
February, said Thomas Lemke, an attorney with Washington law
firm Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, which represents Heartland.


MADISON COUNTY: Number Of Cases Filed Continues To Rise
-------------------------------------------------------
The number of class actions filed in Madison County continues to
rise, the Associated Press reports.  In 2003, there were 106
class actions filed in the southern Illinois circuit. Seventy-
seven of the lawsuits were filed in Madison County in 2002,
while 43 were filed there the year before.

Class actions are filed on behalf of a large group of people and
typically involve allegations of misconduct against a product,
company or service.  Lawyers say the county attracts such a
large number of class actions because it has developed a pro-
plaintiff reputation.

A Madison County judge in March 2003 ordered Philip Morris USA
to pay $10.1 billion to Illinois smokers.  The lawsuit stemmed
from the company's marketing of its "light" brands of
cigarettes.  That judgment is being appealed, AP reports.


MONTANA: Attorneys Files Suit On Behalf of Mentally Ill Inmates
---------------------------------------------------------------
Attorneys are seeking damages on behalf of state inmates Mark
Walker, James Watson and Mark Wearley, who they say suffer from
mental illness, contending prison officials deprived them of
their rights and mistreated them, the Associated Press reports.  
The lawsuit was filed late last month in Billings.

In addition to monetary damages for the men, the lawsuit seeks a
court order demanding corrections officials improve their
treatment of mentally ill prison inmates.  "Defendants have
deprived inmates of basic human needs by housing them naked,
removing certain clothing items, turning off their drinking
water, taking away bedding, taking away mattresses," the lawsuit
alleges.

Diana Leibinger-Koch, counsel for the Department of Corrections,
declined to discuss the case at length, saying only that the
agency denies the allegations in the lawsuit, AP states.

Sunday Rossberg of Great Falls, one of the inmates' attorneys,
told the Great Falls Tribune this week that they may seek to
have case certified as a class action lawsuit to include other
inmates who may have suffered alleged mistreatment.  Mr.
Rossberg earlier represented Mr. Walker in a lawsuit that ended
up before the Supreme Court over his treatment.  The court ruled
in April that Mr. Walker's treatment was cruel and unusual
punishment.  Mr. Walker was written up more than 100 times in a
year and locked in solitary confinement, often with no clothing,
for unruly behavior.  The court said the prison's "behavioral
management" plans only exacerbated his mental illness.

A state district judge already has directed the state
Corrections Department to treat unruly inmates with more
humanity.  The judge also ordered the department to hire two
experts to make sure the agency follows through, AP reports.

The latest lawsuit seeks unspecified damages to compensate Mr.
Walker, Mr. Watson and Mr. Wearley.  The inmates' attorneys
claim that Mr. Wearley and Mr. Watson also had mental illness
and suffered some of the same treatment as Mr. Walker.


NATIONAL SECURITIES: Fully Pays Share in NY Lawsuit Settlement
--------------------------------------------------------------
National Securities Corporation has fully paid its part in the
global settlement of the class actions filed against it,
Complete Management, Inc. and other defendants in the United
States District Court for the Southern District of New York.  
Plaintiffs in the class action sought approximately $80 million
from all named parties.  

In June 2000, the Company filed a motion to dismiss this action.  
In March 2001, the court denied the motion to dismiss.  In May
2001, the Company submitted its answer to the complaint in which
it set forth its defenses.  In November 2001, the plaintiffs
filed a motion to certify the class.  Plaintiffs thereafter
withdrew their motion and the case was referred to mediation.
The mediation process resulted in a global settlement of the
matter.


NATIONAL SECURITIES: Faces Lawsuit Over Fastpoint Stocks in CA
--------------------------------------------------------------
The National Securities Corporation faces a class action, along
with other firms, relating to a series of private placements of
securities in Fastpoint Communications, Inc. in the Superior
Court for the State of California for the County of San Diego.  

The suit alleges violations of state statutory and common law,
as well as Section 12 of the Securities Act of 1933.  Plaintiffs
are seeking approximately $14.0 million, but no specific amount
of damages has been sought against the Company in the complaint.  
The complaint asserts claims in connection with the Company's
role as placement agent in a series of private placements of
securities in Fastpoint.  Plaintiffs allege that the private
placement memoranda contained false and misleading statements or
omitted facts necessary to make statements not misleading.  

The Company filed its answer, and believes it has meritorious
defenses to the Plaintiffs' claims and will also contest class
certification.


PENNSYLVANIA: Suit Filed V. Developer, Others For Housing Fraud
---------------------------------------------------------------
New claims have been filed against a Monroe County, Pennsylvania
developer and an appraiser who were both previously named in
lawsuits alleging widespread home-sales fraud in the Poconos,
the Morning Call reports.

Chase Manhattan Mortgage Corp. filed the claims as part of its
response to a civil suit that accuses Chase of participating in
a conspiracy to defraud homebuyers.  Chase on December 23 denied
wrongdoing and filed cross-claims against its co-defendants:
developer Gene Percudani, appraiser Dominick Stranieri and
several companies controlled by Mr. Percudani.

The lawsuit was filed by four Monroe County couples and claims
that Percudani's companies would lure low-income home buyers
from New York and New Jersey with a promise of affordable homes,
then sell them overpriced houses based upon intentionally
inflated appraisals by Mr. Stranieri, using mortgages that were
based on altered credit applications and ultimately sold to
Chase.

The suit is one of several related to housing fraud allegations
in Monroe County but is the only one that seeks to lay blame on
Chase.  It was originally filed as a federal class action, but
earlier this year a judge ruled that suit could only represent
the claims of the four couples named as plaintiffs.  Mr.
Percudani and Mr. Stranieri are also defendants in multimillion-
dollar lawsuits filed by the Pennsylvania attorney general.

The state filed a $10.2 million consumer protection lawsuit in
the fall of 2002 in which both Mr. Percudani and Mr. Stranieri
are defendants, and an $8.5 million suit in September in which
Stranieri is one of 11 defendants.  Like the civil suit filed by
the four couples, the pending state lawsuits allege that
Stranieri created phony appraisals that helped developers sell
homes for far more than their market value.  The defendants have
denied charges of fraud, which was said to have contributed to a
high rate of foreclosures in Monroe County and driven some
families into bankruptcy.

In 2002, Chase reduced by as much as $50,000 the principal owed
on each of more than 200 mortgages the bank bought from
Percudani-owned Chapel Creek Mortgage, after determining the
homes were worth $80,000 to $110,000 - not the $150,000 to
$180,000 for which they were sold.  

In its answer to the lawsuit filed by the four couples, Chase
said it was a victim, too, the Morning Call states.  The bank
claims it would never have purchased the mortgages from Chapel
Creek if it had known about an arrangement between the couples
and Percudani's companies that made it appear the homebuyers
could afford a down payment, when in fact they could not.  Chase
is seeking damages from Mr. Percudani and Mr. Stranieri and also
argues that they should be responsible for any judgment that may
come against Chase as a result of the lawsuit.

Mr. Percudani and his companies denied wrongdoing in their
December 19 answer to the lawsuit and say the prices the couples
paid for their homes represented what the homes were worth. The
answer prepared by Percudani's lawyer, Marshall Anders, said  
"any financial loss or damage that the plaintiffs suffered was
brought about by their own actions, not any actions by the
answering defendants."  Mr. Stranieri also denied wrongdoing.  
Lawyers for Mr. Percudani and Mr. Stranieri also argue that a
statute of limitations prevents the couples from seeking triple
damages under a federal racketeering statute.

The plaintiffs are Eddie and Sharon Lester; Gilbert and Madeline
Vazquez; Arthur Lucky and Angela Romano-Lucky; and Roy and
Yadrisia Lamberty.  Together they are represented by more than a
dozen lawyers in New York, Pennsylvania and Massachusetts.


RALPHS GROCERY: Union Launches Lawsuit Over Supermarket Hirings
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United Food and Commercial Workers Union, which represents
striking grocery clerks, filed a lawsuit against Ralphs Grocery,
charging that from the start of the strike and lockout on
October 11, the chain let some striking workers return by using
the names and Social Security numbers of minor children or
relatives, the Associated Press reports.

The company said it has yet to see the lawsuit, but denied the
charges.

"We believe the lawsuit has little or no merit," Terry O'Neil,
spokesman for Kroger Co.'s Ralphs chain told AP.  "It is against
our policy to knowingly hire anyone who uses falsified
documentation."

The lawsuit is another escalation in the two-month standoff
between 70,000 Southern California grocery workers and the
companies that operate 860 Ralphs, Albertsons, Vons and
Pavilions stores.  A federal mediator recessed talks December 19
after little progress was made on the key issue of health
benefits.  The state attorney general's office has said it is
investigating whether the chains have broken antitrust laws by
forming a financial pact to share profits during the strike.


RAYOVAC CORPORATION: Trial in Securities Suit Set November 2004
---------------------------------------------------------------
Trial in the consolidated securities class action filed against
Rayovac Corporation is set for November 15,2004 in the United
States District Court for the Western District of Wisconsin.   
The suit also names as defendants:

     (1) Thomas H. Lee Partners, LP,

     (2) Kenneth V. Biller,

     (3) Kent J. Hussey,

     (4) David A. Jones,

     (5) Scott A. Schoen,

     (6) Stephen P. Shanesy,

     (7) Thomas R. Shepherd,

     (8) Randall J. Steward,

     (9) Warren C. Smith, Jr., and

    (10) Merrell Tomlin

The suit generally alleges that the defendants made various
false and misleading statements, which had the alleged effect of
artificially inflating the price of Rayovac stock during the
period from April 26, 2001 until September 19, 2001.  Plaintiffs
allege that statements by the Company during this period were
false and misleading due to alleged failures to disclose, among
other things:

     (i) alleged improper sales practices in purported violation
         of generally accepted accounting principles;

    (ii) failure to establish sufficient reserves for doubtful
         receivables;

   (iii) declining demand; and

    (iv)risks of doing business in Latin America

The Company and the individual defendants filed a motion to
dismiss the consolidated amended class action complaint in its
entirety on February 10, 2003, and in May 2003, the court issued
an order denying our motion to dismiss as to claims made under
the Securities Act and granting the motion to dismiss as to
claims made under the Exchange Act, with leave to amend the
complaint to attempt to state a claim upon which relief could be
granted under the Exchange Act.

On June 19, 2003, plaintiffs filed the second consolidated
amended class action and on July 9, 2003, the Company and the
individual defendants filed a motion to dismiss the complaint.
On October 20, 2003, the court granted defendants' motion and
dismissed plaintiffs' claims under the Exchange Act with
prejudice.

The Company and the individual defendants believe the remaining
claims under the Securities Act to be wholly without merit.


REMEDYTEMP INC.: Files Counterclaim in CA Fraud Suit Arbitration
----------------------------------------------------------------
RemedyTemp, Inc. filed a counterclaim in arbitration for the
class action filed in the Superior Court of the State of
California, County of Los Angeles by GLF Holding Company, Inc.
and Fredrick S. Pallas against it, its wholly-owned subsidiaries
(Remedy Intelligent Staffing, Inc. and Remedy Temporary
Services, Inc.) and:

     (1) Karin Somogyi,

     (2) Paul W. Mikos and

     (3) Greg Palmer

The Complaint purports to be a class action brought by the
individual plaintiffs on behalf of all of the Company's
traditional and licensed franchisees.  The complaint alleges
claims for fraud and deceit, negligent misrepresentation,
negligence, breach of contract, breach of warranty, conversion
and accounting, unfair and deceptive practices, and
plaintiffs seek restitution and equitable relief.

The plaintiffs claim that the Company wrongfully induced its
franchisees into signing franchise agreements and breached the
agreements, thus causing the franchisees damage.  The Company
has sought to compel arbitration with the plaintiffs in
accordance with its franchise agreement with each of them and to
deny class certification.

The Company believes it has meritorious defenses to the
allegations contained in this complaint.  The Company filed a
counterclaim in arbitration with the American Arbitration
Association alleging, among other things, breach of contract.


ROCKSTAR GAMES: Haitian Rights Groups Sue Over Grand Theft Auto
---------------------------------------------------------------
A Haitian civil rights group filed a lawsuit in Florida State
Circuit Court in Palm Beach County over the "Grand Theft Auto:
Vice City" video game, after it allegedly instructs players to
"kill the Haitians" and awards points for each kill, the
Associated Press reports.

The Haitian-American Coalition of Palm Beach county led the
suit, which claims that the video is dangerous to society and
asks that it be removed from store shelves will be decided in
federal court.  The suit also asks for more than $15,000 in
damages.  The suit names as defendants:

     (1) New York-based Rockstar Games, the game's manufacturer,

     (2) its parent company Take-Two Interactive Software Inc.,

     (3) Sony Computer Entertainment,

     (4) Microsoft Corporation,

     (5) Target,

     (6) Wal-Mart and

     (7) Best Buy

Rockstar Games Inc. has agreed to remove the offensive line from
future versions of the award-winning video that has sold 11
million copies.  The Company's attorneys opted to move the case
to federal court, and that motion was granted Tuesday.  No
hearing dates were immediately set.

The manufacturer of the game, in which an ex-convict is hired to
recover stolen drug money in the streets of Miami, has been
harshly criticized for its portrayal of Haitians.  Earlier this
month, about 100 Haitian-Americans demonstrated outside a Wal-
Mart Supercenter in nearby Boynton Beach chanting, "Stop Vice
City," AP reports.  Attorneys for the Haitian organizations and
the video game manufacturer did not return phone calls late
Wednesday.


SLAVERY LITIGATION: Descendants Pursue Lawsuit For Reparations
--------------------------------------------------------------
Almost 150 years after Andrew Jackson Hurdle was torn away from
his family and put on the auction block as a 9-year-old slave,
his daughter is seeking justice for him, the Associated Press
reports.

Hannah Hurdle-Toomey, 71, of Belleville, signed on as one of two
people from Illinois named in a class action seeking reparations
from 19 companies that they say benefited from the slave trade.  
The other is Marcelle Porter, a 74-year-old Chicago woman who
says her great-grandmother was a slave in North Carolina.

A January 26 hearing is scheduled in the United States District
Court in Chicago, Illinois.  Judge Charles Norgle could dismiss
the lawsuit if he agrees with the defendants' argument that the
plaintiffs can't sue for something that happened to their
ancestors.

If the plaintiffs eventually prevail, however, they say they
will use the money to set up a trust fund to help the black
community support social programs, Lionel Jean-Baptiste, the
lawyer representing the two women from Illinois, told AP.

The lawsuit was filed first in U.S. District Court in New York
in 2002 and moved last year to Chicago.  The suit names
companies like the Lehman Brothers brokerage firm, Aetna
Insurance and R.J. Reynolds Tobacco.

Lawyers for the companies named in the lawsuit contend that
people do not have the right to sue for something that happened
to the plaintiffs' ancestors.  They also argue the companies
were not directly responsible for the plight of slaves.

Hannah Hurdle-Toomey said that, even if the lawsuit is
dismissed, it will not diminish the life of her father who
helped found a religious college.  Like her father, Ms. Hurdle-
Toomey is an ordained Disciples of Christ minister.


SMITHKLINE BEECHAM: Court Denies in Part Summary Judgment Motion
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania granted in part, denied in part Defendants Motion
for Summary Judgment in regards a lawsuit brought against
Smithkline Beecham Corporation (SKB), et al., on behalf of
Louise D. Thomas, Dennis D. Darden, and Linda Jean Allen, et
al., seeking declaratory, equitable and legal relief
establishing their rights to receive benefits from SKB under the
Employee Retirement Income Security Act.

This class action is based on the allegations of the named
plaintiffs that defendants have violated the rights of a large
number of individuals to accrue benefits in SKB employee benefit
plans.  Plaintiffs claim that SKB improperly, but
purposefully, classified individuals as "temporary" or "leased"
employees, instead of common law employees, in order to deny or
delay these employees from attaining eligibility for SKB
employee benefits.

Based on this practice, on June 9, 2000, Louise Thomas and
Dennis Darden brought this ERISA action against SKB and the
administrators of the SKB employee benefit plans on behalf of
themselves and all others similarly situated, seeking a
declaratory judgment that the defendants include them as    
participants in the benefit plans (count I) and requesting
injunctive relief in the form of a court appointment of an
independent fiduciary for each benefit plan (count II).  
  
Also alleged in the complaint are claims that defendants
violated: 29 U.S.C. 1140 by refusing to allow common law
employees to participate in the benefit plans (count III); 29
U.S.C. 1104 by breaching their fiduciary duties (counts IV and
V); 29 U.S.C. 1024(b)(1)(A) by failing to provide documents and
information regarding the benefit plans to the plaintiffs (count
VI); and, 29 U.S.C. 1052 by instituting a de facto extension of
the minimum service provision of each benefit plan (count VII).

On August 8, 2000, Ms. Thomas and Mr. Darden amended their
complaint to add Linda Allen as a named plaintiff and the
benefit plans as defendants.  This suit was certified as a class
action on July 3, 2001 pursuant to Rule 23 of the Federal Rules
of Civil Procedure.  Ms. Allen, however, is not included in the
class, but rather asserts an individual claim for benefits.
      
On April 3, 2002, plaintiffs filed a motion to supplement their
amended complaint, which was granted pursuant to Federal Rule of
Civil Procedure 15(d) and over defendants' objections on
September 5, 2002.  The supplement provides greater specificity
as to the factual basis for the claims of breach of fiduciary
duty and violation of 29 U.S.C. 1140 raised by plaintiffs in
their amended class complaint. These more specific allegations
are that defendants' breached their fiduciary duty by: failing
to award plaintiffs the vesting and eligibility service credits
to which they were entitled (count VIII); failing to keep track
of the class members' eligibility for benefits (count IX); and,
requiring plaintiffs to provide SKB with detailed information
about their temporary service at SKB (count X).

Further, plaintiffs allege this information gathering
requirement was a pretext for withholding credits owed to
certain class members, namely: the approximately 550 class
members who did not provide information and were therefore not
granted benefits (count XI); and the approximately 250 class
members who did provide information, but who nonetheless were
not granted benefits (count XII). Finally, plaintiffs allege
that defendants breached their fiduciary duty by failing
to inform the class members of their right to appeal and the
process for doing so (count XIII).

In its ruling, the Court considered the motions for summary
judgment of defendants SKB, the accompanying memoranda of law,
defendants' statements of undisputed facts, plaintiffs'
responses in opposition thereto, and defendants' reply memoranda
in further support of their motions for summary judgment. The
Court granted in part, and denied in part Defendants Motion.    
Specifically, the Court grants defendants' motions for summary
judgment on plaintiffs' claims contained in counts
III, IV, V, VI, VII, XI and XII, and deny defendants' motions
for summary judgment on plaintiffs' claims contained in counts
I, II, VIII, IX, X and XIII.
     

SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Trial in Stock Suit Set June 8,2004 in NY
--------------------------------------------------------------
Trial in the class action filed against Symbol Technologies,
Inc., styled "PINKOWITZ V. SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ET AL.,"
is set for June 8,2004 in the United States District Court for
the Eastern District of New York.  The suit, filed on behalf of
purchasers of the common stock of Symbol between April 26, 2000
and April 18, 2002, inclusive, also names as defendants:

     (1) Tomo Razmilovic,

     (2) Jerome Swartz,

     (3) Kenneth Jaeggi,

     (4) Harvey P. Mallement,

     (2) George Bugliarello,

     (3) Leo A. Guthart,

     (4) Brian Burke and

     (5) Frank Borghese

The complaint alleged that defendants violated the federal
securities laws by issuing materially false and misleading
statements throughout the class period that had the effect of
artificially inflating the market price of the Company's
securities.

Discovery in the action has recently commenced.  In addition,
on October 15, 2003, plaintiffs moved for class certification.  
The Company believes it has meritorious defenses to the case's
claims.


SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Asks NY Court To Dismiss Securities Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Symbol Technologies asked the United States District Court for
the Eastern District of New York to dismiss a class action filed
against it, styled "HOYLE V. SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ET AL.,"
relating to the Company's acquisition of Telxon Corporation.  
Another virtually identical suit, styled "SALERNO V. SYMBOL
TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ET AL.," is pending in the same court.

The suits also name as defendants:

     (1) Tomo Razmilovic,

     (2) Kenneth V. Jaeggi,

     (3) Robert W. Korkuc,

     (4) Jerome Swartz,

     (5) Harvey P. Mallement,

     (6) George Bugliarello,

     (7) Charles B. Wang,

     (8) Leo A. Guthart and

     (9) James H. Simons

The Hoyle and Salerno complaints are brought on behalf of a
purported class of former shareholders of Telxon who obtained
Company stock in exchange for their Telxon stock pursuant to
Symbol's acquisition of Telxon effective as of November 30,
2000.  The complaint alleges that the defendants violated the
federal securities laws by issuing a Registration Statement and
Joint Proxy Statement/Prospectus in connection with the Telxon
acquisition that contained materially false and misleading
statements that had the effect of artificially inflating the
market price of Symbol's securities.

The Court has not ruled on the dismissal motion.  


SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Asks NY Court To Dismiss Securities Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Symbol Technologies, asked the United States District Court for
the Eastern District of New York to dismiss a class action filed
against it, styled "BILDSTEIN V. SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ET.
AL."  The suit also names as defendants:

     (1) Jerome Swartz,

     (2) Harvey P. Mallement,

     (3) Raymond R. Martino,

     (4) George Bugliarello,

     (5) Charles B. Wang,

     (6) Tomo Razmilovic,

     (7) Leo A. Guthart,

     (8) James Simons,

     (9) Saul F. Steinberg and

    (10) Lowell Freiberg

The plaintiff alleges that the defendants violated Section 14(a)
of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 14a-9
promulgated thereunder, and common and state law, by authorizing
the distribution of proxy statements in 2000, 2001 and 2002.  
Plaintiff seeks the cancellation of all affirmative votes at the
annual meetings for 2000, 2001 and 2002, canceling all awards
under the option plans, enjoining implementation of the option
plans and any awards thereunder and an accounting by the
defendants for all damage to Symbol, plus all costs and expenses
in connection with the action.


SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES: Investors Launch DE Securities Fraud Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
Symbol Technologies, Inc. faces a class action filed in the
Court of Chancery of the State of Delaware, styled "GOLD V.
SYMBOL TECHNOLOGIES, INC., ET AL."  The suit also names as
defendants:  

     (1) Tomo Razmilovic,

     (2) Kenneth V. Jaeggi,

     (3) Dr. Jerome Swartz,

     (4) Frank Borghese,

     (5) Brian Burke,

     (6) Richard M. Feldt,

     (7) Satya Sharma,

     (8) Harvey P. Mallement,

     (9) Raymond R. Martino,

    (10) George Bugliarello,

    (11) Dr. Leo A. Guthart,

    (12) Dr. James H. Simons,

    (13) Leonard H. Goldner,

    (14) Saul P. Steinberg,

    (15) Lowell C. Freiberg and

    (16) Charles Wang

The complaint alleges that the defendants violated the federal
securities laws by issuing materially false and misleading
statements from January 1, 1998 through December 31, 2002 that
had the effect of artificially inflating the market price of
Symbol's securities and that they to failed to properly oversee
or implement policies, procedures and rules to ensure compliance
with federal and state laws requiring the dissemination of
accurate financial statements, ultimately caused Symbol to be
sued for, and exposed to liability for, violations of the anti-
fraud provisions of the federal securities laws, engaged in
insider trading in Symbol's common stock, wasted corporate
assets and improperly awarded a severance of approximately
$13,000,000 to Mr. Razmilovic.

Plaintiff seeks to recover incentive-based compensation paid to
senior members of Symbol's management in reliance on materially
inflated financial statements and to impose a trust to recover
cash and other valuable assets received by the management
defendants and former Symbol board members in the form of
proceeds garnered from the sale of Symbol common stock
(including option related sales) from at least January 1, 1998
through December 31, 2002.


TELXON CORPORATION: Reaches Settlement of OH Securities Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Telxon Corporation reached a settlement for the consolidated
securities class actions filed in the United States District
Court, Northern District of Ohio, by certain of the Company's
stockholders on behalf of themselves and purported classes
consisting of Telxon stockholders, other than the defendants and
their affiliates, who purchased stock during the period from May
21, 1996 through February 23, 1999, or various portions thereof.

The suit alleges claims for "fraud on the market" arising from
alleged misrepresentations and omissions with respect to
Telxon's financial performance and prospects and an alleged
violation of generally accepted accounting principles by
improperly recognizing revenues.  The named defendants are the
Company, its former president and chief executive officer,
Frank E. Brick, and its former senior vice president and chief
financial officer, Kenneth W. Haver.

The amended complaint alleges that the defendants engaged in a
scheme to defraud investors through improper revenue recognition
practices and concealment of material adverse conditions in
Telxon's business and finances.  The amended complaint seeks
certification of the identified class, unspecified compensatory
and punitive damages, pre- and post-judgment interest, and
attorneys' fees and costs.

On November 13, 2003, the Company and the plaintiff class
reached a tentative settlement of all pending shareholder class
actions against the Company.  Under the settlement, the Company
anticipates that it will pay $37 million to the class.  As a
result of anticipated contributions by Telxon's insurers, the
Company expects that its net payment will be no more than $25
million.

The Company has not settled its lawsuit against its former
auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP (PwC), and, as part of the
proposed settlement of the class action, the Company has agreed
to pay to the class, under certain circumstances, up to $3
million of the proceeds of that lawsuit.  The settlement is
subject to the negotiation and execution of final settlement
documentation, approval by the Board of Directors, the agreement
of Telxon insurers and approval by the Court.


WISCONSIN: Appeals Court Vacates Dismissal of Inmates' Lawsuit
--------------------------------------------------------------
The United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit vacated and
remanded a ruling by the United States District Court for the
Western District of Wisconsin dismissing a lawsuit brought
against Defendants Jon E. Litscher and Steven B. Calperson, on
behalf of Plaintiff Thomas Goodrow, seeking relief from the
operation of Wisconsin Administrative Code, which limits
inmates' possession of sexually explicit materials.
                                                 
Mr. Goodrow, who is imprisoned under the judgment of a Wisconsin
court, filed this action under 42 U.S.C. 1983 seeking relief
from the operation of Wis. Admin. Code DOC 309, which limits
inmates' possession of sexually explicit materials.  Before the
defendants had been served with process, the district
court dismissed Goodrow's complaint on the ground that, because
he is confined in Oklahoma and not scheduled to return to
Wisconsin until April 2004, he is not adversely affected by the
provision in question.
     

                 New Securities Fraud Cases

ALLIANCE CAPITAL: Bernstein Liebhard Files Securities Suit in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bernstein Liebhard & Lifshitz, LLP initiated a class action
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York on behalf of all persons who purchased or
otherwise acquired shares or other ownership units in the mutual
funds in the AllianceBernstein family of funds, which are
managed by Alliance Capital Management Holding L.P.  from
October 2, 1998 through September 29, 2003, inclusive.

These funds are subject to this 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 that defendants violated Section 34(b) of
the Investment Company Act of 1940. The complaint alleges that
during the Class Period defendants engaged in an unlawful and
deceitful course of conduct designed to improperly financially
advantage defendants to the detriment of plaintiff and the other
members of the Class.

As part and parcel of defendants' unlawful conduct, defendants
failed to properly disclose:

     (a) that select favored customers were allowed to engage in
         illegal "late trading," a practice whereby an investor
         may place an order to purchase fund shares after 4:00
         p.m. and have that order filled at that day's closing
         net asset value; and

     (b) that select favored customers were improperly allowed
         to "time" their mutual fund trades. Such timing
         improperly allows an investor to trade in and out of a
         mutual fund to exploit short-term moves and
         inefficiencies in the manner in which the mutual funds
         price their shares.

For more information, contact Ms. Linda Flood (Director of
Shareholder Relations), by Mail: 10 East 40th Street, New York,
New York 10016, by Phone: (800) 217-1522 or 212-779-1414, or by
E-mail: AllianceBernstein@bernlieb.com.  


BEARS STEARN: Bonnett Fairbourn Files Securities Suit in S.D. NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Bonnett Fairbourn Friedman & Balint, P.C.
initiated a securities class action lawsuit in the United States
District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf
of purchasers, redeemers and holders of shares of certain mutual
funds in the Janus and Putnam families between November 1, 1998,
and July 3, 2003, against The Bear Stearns Cos. Inc., Canary
Capital Partners, LLC, Empire Financial Holding Co., Advantage
Trading Group, Millenium Partners, L.P., Edward J Stern, Donald
A. Wojnowski Jr., Putnam Investment Management, LLC, Janus
Mutual Funds, Janus Capital Group and certain of the
accompanying subsidiaries and affiliates.

The funds included and the respective symbols are listed below:

     (1) Janus Fund (Nasdaq:JANSX)

     (2) Janus Enterprise Fund (Nasdaq:JAENX)

     (3) Janus Twenty Fund (Nasdaq:JAVLX)

     (4) Janus Investment Fund (Nasdaq: JABAX)

     (5) Putnam OTC & Emerging Growth Fund (Nasdaq: POEGX)

The complaint alleges 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 in return
for substantial fees, sticky money investments and other income
for themselves and their affiliates.

The complaint alleges that, during the class period, Bear
Stearns and the other defendants engaged in illegal and improper
trading practices, in concert with certain traders, which caused
financial injury to the shareholders of the above-referenced
Janus and Putnam funds. According to the complaint, the
defendants permitted certain favored investors, including
Defendant Canary Capital Partners, LLC and Canary Investment
Management, LLC to engage in "timing" and late trading of the
Janus and Putnam funds.

Timing is an arbitrage strategy whereby the favored investors
are permitted to conduct short-term trading of mutual fund
shares, despite explicit restrictions on such activity in the
funds' prospectuses and at the expense of long-term holders.

For more information, contact Andrew S. Friedman, or Francis J.
Balint Jr., by Mail: 2901 N. Central Ave., Suite 1000, Phoenix,
AZ 85012, by Phone: 800-847-9094, Fax: 602-274-1199, or by E-
mail: afriedman@bffb.com


BIOVAIL CORPORATION: Weiss & Yourman Files Securities Suit in NY
---------------------------------------------------------------
Weiss & Yourman initiated a class action lawsuit against Biovail
Corporation and its officer, in the United States District Court
for the Southern District of New York, on behalf of purchasers
of Biovail securities between May 17, 2002 and October 30, 2003,
inclusive.  

The complaint charges the defendants with violations of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  The complaint alleges that
defendants issued false and misleading statements, artificially
inflating the stock.

For more information, contact: James E. Tullman, Mark D. Smilow,
or David C. Katz, by Mail: The French Building, 551 Fifth
Avenue, Suite 1600, New York, New York 10176, by Phone:
(888) 593-4771 or (212) 682-3025, or by E-mail: info@wynyc.com.


BIOVAIL CORPORATION: Glancy & Binkow Lodges NY Securities Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Glancy & Binkow, LLP initiated a securities
class action in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of New York, on behalf of a class consisting
of all persons who purchased securities of Biovail Corporation
between May 17, 2002 and October 30, 2003, inclusive.

The Complaint charges Biovail and certain of the Company's
executive officers with violations of federal securities laws.
Among other things, plaintiff claims that defendants'
dissemination of materially false and misleading statements
concerning Biovail's financial performance caused the Company's
stock price to become artificially inflated, inflicting damages
on investors.

Biovail is a pharmaceutical company engaged in the development,
manufacture and marketing of medications utilizing advanced drug
delivery technologies for the treatment of chronic medical
conditions. Despite defendants' representations to the contrary
during the Class Period, the Complaint alleges that:

     (1) Biovail was aware that its aggressive growth
         projections could not be maintained due to a rise in
         internal expenses and competition;

     (2) Biovail was aware that it could not achieve its
         forecasted growth projections due to an increase in
         production and sales costs; and

     (3) Biovail was aware that it could not achieve its
         forecasted growth projections because of slow internal
         growth and added expenses associated with its recent
         acquisitions.

For more information, contact Lionel Z. Glancy, by Mail: 1801
Avenue of the Stars, Suite 311, Los Angeles, California 90067,
by Phone: (310) 201-9161 or Toll Free at (888) 773-9224, or by
E-mail: info@glancylaw.com.


CHARLES SCHWAB: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Northern District of California on behalf of all purchasers of
shares of The Charles Schwab Corporation, U.S. Trust
Corporation, N.A., and its Excelsior family of funds during the
period between November 23, 1998 and November 14, 2003,
inclusive, seeking to pursue remedies under the Securities Act
of 1933, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Investment
Company Act of 1940.

The Funds and the symbols for the respective Funds subject to
the lawsuit are:

     (1) Excelsior California Tax Exempt Income Fund
         (Nasdaq:UMCAX)

     (2) Excelsior Early Life Cycle Fund (Nasdaq:UMLCX)

     (3) Excelsior Funds Equity Income Fund (Nasdaq:UMEIX)

     (4) Excelsior Funds Inc. Biotechnology Fund (Nasdaq:UMBTX)

     (5) Excelsior Funds Inc. Blended Equity Fund (Nasdaq:UMEQX)

     (6) Excelsior Funds Inc. Emerging Markets Fund
         (Nasdaq:UMEMX)

     (7) Excelsior Funds Inc. Energy & Natural Resource Fund
         (Nasdaq:UMESX)

     (8) Excelsior Funds Inc. High Yield Fund (Nasdaq:EXHYX;
         Nasdaq:UMHYX)

     (9) Excelsior Funds Inc. Large Capital Growth Fund
         (Nasdaq:UMLGX)

    (10) Excelsior Funds Inc. Real Estate Fund (Nasdaq:UMREX)

    (11) Excelsior Funds Inc. Value & Restructuring Fund
         (Nasdaq:EXBIX; Nasdaq:UMBIX)

    (12) Excelsior Funds Mid Cap Value Shares Fund
        (Nasdaq:EXVAX; Nasdaq:UMVEX)

    (13) Excelsior Government Money Fund (Nasdaq:UTGXX)

    (14) Excelsior Institutional Equity Fund (Nasdaq:EXEQX)

    (15) Excelsior Institutional Funds International Equity Fund
         (Nasdaq:EXIIX)

    (16) Excelsior Institutional Money Fund (Nasdaq:EXINX;
         Nasdaq:EXIXX)

    (17) Excelsior Institutional Total Return Fund
         (Nasdaq:EXTBX)

    (18) Excelsior Intermediate-Term Managed Income Fund
         (Nasdaq:UIMIX)

    (19) Excelsior Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt Fund
         (Nasdaq:UMITX)

    (20) Excelsior International Fund (Nasdaq:UMINX)

    (21) Excelsior Long Term Tax Exempt Fund (Nasdaq:UMLTX)

    (22) Excelsior Managed Income Fund (Nasdaq:UMMGX)

    (23) Excelsior Money Fund (Nasdaq:UTMXX)

    (24) Excelsior Optimum Growth Fund (Nasdaq:EXOAX;
         Nasdaq:UMGRX)

    (25) Excelsior Pacific/Asia Fund (Nasdaq:USPAX)

    (26) Excelsior Pan European Fund (Nasdaq:UMPNX)

    (27) Excelsior Short Term Government Securities Fund
         (Nasdaq:UMGVX)

    (28) Excelsior Short-Term Tax-Exempt Securities Fund
         (Nasdaq:USSSX)

    (29) Excelsior Tax Exempt Fund (Nasdaq:USSXX)

    (30) Excelsior Tax Exempt Funds Inc. New York Intermediate
         Term Tax Exempt Fund (Nasdaq:UMNYX; Nasdaq:UTNXX)

    (31) Excelsior Treasury Money Fund (Nasdaq:UTTXX)

The wrongful conduct alleged in and which is the subject of the
lawsuit relates to "timing."  The lawsuit alleges that timing
injures ordinary mutual fund investors who are not allowed to
engage in such practices and benefits the mutual fund companies.

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


DYNACQ HEALTHCARE: Rabin Murray Files Securities Suit in S.D. TX
----------------------------------------------------------------
Rabin, Murray & Frank, LLP initiated a class action complaint in
the United States District Court for the Southern District of
Texas, Houston Division, on behalf of all persons or entities
who purchased Dynacq Healthcare, Inc. securities during the
period between January 14, 2003 and December 18, 2003, both
dates inclusive, against the the Company, and:

     (1) Philip S. Chan, and

     (2) Chiu M. Chan

Plaintiff alleges, inter alia, that the defendants fraudulently
certified that Dynacq's financial statements for the first three
quarters of fiscal 2003 were compiled in compliance with
Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.

The true facts were first revealed beginning on December 2,
2003, when the Company announced that it was requesting an
automatic extension of up to 15 days to file its Form 10-K for
fiscal year ended August 31, 2003 with the SEC. On December 18,
2003, the Company announced that its independent auditor, Ernst
& Young LLP, had resigned due to the Company's "lack of internal
controls necessary to develop reliable financial statements."

Also on December 18, 2003, the Company announced that it had
received a Nasdaq Staff Determination stating that Dynacq's
stock could be delisted on December 30, 2003 due to Dynacq's
failure to file its fiscal year 2003 10-K in a timely manner.
Finally, on December 18, 2003, the Company announced that it had
received notice that the SEC was conducting an investigation
into Dynacq's reporting of its financial statements, revenue and
cost recognition, allowances for doubtful accounts, and internal
financial and accounting controls.

The market reacted negatively to these disclosures. Dynacq
shares, after trading during the Class Period at a high of
$27.37 per share, plummeted to a low of just $4.09 per share on
December 19, 2003.

For more information, contact Eric J. Belfi or Gregory Linkh, by
Mail: 275 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10016, by Phone:
(800) 497-8076 or (212) 682-1818, by Fax: (212) 682-1892, or by
E-mail: info@rabinlaw.com.


DYNACQ HEALTHCARE: Schiffrin & Barroway Files Stock Suit in TX
---------------------------------------------------------------
Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP initiated a class action lawsuit in
the United States District Court for the Southern District of
Texas, Houston Division, on behalf of all purchasers of the
common stock of Dynacq Healthcare, Inc. from January 14, 2003
through December 18, 2003, inclusive, against the Company,
Philip S. Chan, and Chiu M. Chan

The complaint alleges that the Defendants violated Sections
10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule
10b-5 promulgated thereunder, by issuing a series of material
misrepresentations to the market between January 14, 2003 and
December 18, 2003. More specifically, the complaint alleges that
the defendants' statements were materially false and misleading
because they failed to disclose and/or misrepresented the
following adverse facts:

     (1) that the Company had materially overstated its
         earnings, revenues, net income, and earnings per share;

     (2) that the Company was improperly accounting for its
         costs and revenue in violation of Generally Accepted
         Accounting Principals;

     (3) that the Company lacked adequate internal controls and
         was therefore unable to ascertain the true financial
         condition of the Company; and

     (4) that as a result, the value of the Company's net income
         and financial results were materially overstated at all
         relevant times.

On December 1, 2003, the Company announced that it was
requesting an automatic extension of up to 15 days for filing
its 2003 Form 10-K. The Company stated that recently the
Division of Corporation Finance of the United States Securities
and Exchange Commission commented upon Dynacq's periodic
filings. On December 16, 2003, the Company announced that it
would further postpone the filing of its 2003 Form 10-K until
the SEC completed its review of Dynacq's periodic filings and
its independent auditors have completed their audit of the
Company's August 31, 2003 financial statements.

On December 18, 2003, the Company announced that Ernst & Young,
LLP resigned late on December 17, 2003 as the Company's
independent auditor effective immediately. E&Y verbally advised
the Company that E&Y resigned due to the Company's lack of
internal controls necessary to develop reliable financial
statements. News of this shocked the market with shares of
Dynacq falling 18.56 percent or $2.04 per share to close at
$8.95 per share on December 18, 2003.

The Company further shocked the market when it announced, after
the markets had closed on December 18, 2003, that had received a
NASDAQ Staff Determination stating that because Dynacq failed to
comply with the requirement of NASD Marketplace Rule 4310 (c)
(14), that it file a copy of its Form 10-K Annual Report to the
Securities and Exchange Commission in a timely fashion, that its
common stock would be delisted from the NASDAQ on December 30,
2003, unless Dynacq requested a hearing.

Additionally, the Company disclosed that it had received a
notice from the Ft. Worth, Texas office of the SEC that it was
conducting an informal investigation pertaining to Dynacq's
reporting of its financial statements, its recognition of costs
and revenue, its allowances for doubtful accounts, and its
internal controls.

News of this shocked the market. Shares of Dynacq plummeted 54%
or $4.86 per share to close at $4.09 per share on December 19,
2003.

For more information, contact Marc A. Topaz, or Stuart L.
Berman, 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.


GILEAD SCIENCES: Wechsler Harwood Files Securities Suit in CA
----------------------------------------------------------------
Wechsler Harwood LLP initiated a class action lawsuit in the
United States District Court for the Northern District of
California against Gilead and certain of its senior officers and
directors, on behalf of all purchasers of publicly traded
securities of Gilead Sciences, Inc. from July 14, 2003 through
October 28, 2003, inclusive.

The complaint alleges that defendants Gilead, John C. Martin,
John F. Milligan, Mark L. Perry, Norbert W. Bischofberger,
Anthony Carraciolo, and William A. Lee violated Sections 10(b)
and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder, by issuing a series of material
misrepresentations to the market between July 14, 2003 through
October 28, 2003.

More specifically, the complaint alleges that the defendants'
statements were materially false and misleading because they
failed to disclose and/or misrepresented the following adverse
facts:

     (1) that Gilead was aware that its revenue was not
         increasing due to sales of its drug Viread;

     (2) that Gilead was aware that Viread sales had only
         increased because wholesalers bought an excessive
         amount of the drug before July 27, 2003 in an attempt
         to avoid the price increase scheduled for July 27,
         2003;

     (3) that Gilead was aware that its wholesalers' over-buying
         of Viread to avoid the price increase accounted for $33
         to $37 million, not the $25 to $30 million that Gilead
         originally purported; and

     (4) that Gilead was aware that the wholesaler over-buying
         would decrease projected revenue in the future.

On October 28, 2003, Gilead announced that sales of Viread in
the third quarter 2003 would be less than expected due to an
inventory buildup by wholesalers.  The market reacted swiftly to
this news, with the Company's stock falling 12%, or $7.46 per
share from a high of $59.46 per share on October 28, 2003 to
close at $52.00 per share on October 29, 2003.

For more information, contact Craig Lowther, by Mail: 488
Madison Avenue, 8th Floor, New York, NY 10022, by Phone: toll
free (877) 935-7400 Ext. 257, or by E-mail: clowther@whesq.com


INVESCO FUNDS: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in CO
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
District of Colorado on behalf of all purchasers of INVESCO
Advantage Health Sciences Fund (Nasdaq: IAGHX), (Nasdaq: IGHBX),
(Nasdaq: IGHCX); INVESCO Core Equity Fund (Nasdaq: ICEAX),
(Nasdaq: ICEBX), (Nasdaq: IINCX), (Nasdaq: FIIIX), (Nasdaq:
IEIKX); INVESCO Dynamics Fund (Nasdaq: IDYAX), (Nasdaq: IDYBX),
(Nasdaq: IFDCX; Nasdaq: FIDYX; Nasdaq: IDYKX); INVESCO Energy
Fund (Nasdaq: IENAX; Nasdaq: IENBX), (Nasdaq: IEFCX; Nasdaq:
FSTEX; Nasdaq: IENKX); INVESCO Financial Services Fund (Nasdaq:
IFSAX; Nasdaq: IFSBX; Nasdaq: IFSCX), (Nasdaq: FSFSX), (Nasdaq:
FSFKX); and other Invesco Mutual Funds that are managed by
Invesco Funds Group, Inc., which is a subsidiary of Amvescap
PLC, from December 5, 1998 through November 24, 2003, inclusive,
seeking to pursue remedies under the Securities Act of 1933, the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the Investment Company Act
of 1940.

The Funds and the symbols for the respective Funds subject to
the lawsuit are:

     (1) INVESCO Advantage Health Sciences Fund (Sym: IAGHX,
         IGHBX, IGHCX)

     (2) INVESCO Advantage Fund (Sym: IADAX, IADBX, IADCX)

     (3) INVESCO Latin American Growth Fund (Sym: IVSLX)

     (4) INVESCO Core Equity Fund (Sym: ICEAX, ICEBX, IINCX,
         FIIIX, IEIKX)

     (5) INVESCO Dynamics Fund (Sym: IDYAX, IDYBX, IFDCX, FIDYX,
         IDYKX)

     (6) INVESCO Energy Fund (Sym: IENAX, IENBX, IEFCX, FSTEX,
         IENKX)

     (7) INVESCO Financial Services Fund (Sym: IFSAX, IFSBX,
         IFSCX, FSFSX, FSFKX)

     (8) INVESCO Gold & Precious Metals Fund (Sym: IGDAX, IGDBX,
         IGDCX, FGLDX)

     (9) INVESCO Health Sciences Fund (Sym: IAHSX, IBHSX, IHSCX,
         FHLSX, IHSKX)

    (10) INVESCO International Core Equity Fund (formerly known
         as International Blue Chip Value Fund) (Sym: IBVAX,
         IBVBX, IBVCX, IIBCX)

    (11) INVESCO Leisure Fund (Sym: ILSAX, LSBX, IVLCX, FLISX,
         ILEKX)

    (12) INVESCO Mid-Cap Growth Fund (Sym: IMGAX, IMGBX, IMGCX,
         IVMIX)

    (13) INVESCO Multi-Sector Fund (Sym: IAMSX, IBMSX, ICMSX,
         ICMSX)

    (14) AIM INVESCO S&P Index Fund (Sym: ISPIX)

    (15) INVESCO Small Company Growth Fund (Sym: ISGAX, ISGBX,
         ISGCX FIEGX ISCKX)

    (16) INVESCO Technology Fund (Sym: ITYAX, ITYBX, ITHCX,
         FTCHX, ITHKX)

    (17) INVESCO Total Return Fund (Sym: IATRX, IBTRX, ITRCX,
         FSFLX)

    (18) INVESCO Utilities Fund (Sym: IAUTX, IBUTX, IUTCX,
         ISTUX)

    (19) AIM INVESCO Cash Reserves Fund (currently known as AIM
         Money Market Fund) (New symbol: AIMXX)

    (20) AIM INVESCO Tax-Free Money Fund (Sym: FFRXX)

    (21) AIM INVESCO Treasurers Money Market Reserve Fund (Sym:
         IMRXX)

    (22) AIM INVESCO Treasurers Tax-Exempt Reserve Fund (Sym:
         ITTXX)

    (23) AIM INVESCO US Government Money Fund (Sym: FUGXX)

    (24) INVESCO Advantage Fund (Sym: IADAX, IADBX, IADCX)

    (25) INVESCO Balanced Fund (Sym: IBLAX, IBLBX, IBNCX, IBFIX,
         IMABX, IBLKX)

    (26) INVESCO European Fund (Sym: IEUAX, IEUBX, FEURX, IEUKX)

    (27) INVESCO Growth Fund (Sym: IAGWX, IBGWX, IBGCX, FLRFX,
         IGWKX)

    (28) INVESCO High-Yield Fund (Sym: IAHYX, IBHYX, IHYCX
         FHYPX, IHYKX)

    (29) INVESCO Growth & Income Fund, (Sym: IGIAX, IGIBX,
         IGRCX, IVGIX, IGIKX)

    (30) INVESCO Real Estate Opportunity Fund (Sym: IAREX,
         IBREX, IRECX, IVSRX)

    (31) INVESCO Select Income Fund (Sym: IASIX, IBSIX, ISICX,
         FBDSX)

    (32) INVESCO Tax-Free Bond Fund (Sym: IXBAX, IXBBX, ITFCX,
         FTIFX)

    (33) INVESCO Telecommunications Fund (Sym: ITLAX, ITLBX,
         INTCX, ISWCX, ITEKX)

    (34) INVESCO U.S. Government Securities Fund (Sym :IGVAX,
         IGVBX, IUGCX, FBDGX)

The wrongful conduct alleged in and which is the subject of the
lawsuit relates to "timing." The lawsuit alleges that timing
injures ordinary mutual fund investors who are not allowed to
engage in such practices and benefits the mutual fund companies.

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


MARSH & MCLENNAN: Weiss & Yourman Files Stock Lawsuit in S.D. NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
Weiss & Yourman initiated a securities class action against
Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. and its officers, in the United
States District Court for the Southern District of New York, on
behalf of purchasers of Marsh & McLennan securities between
January 3, 2000 and November 3, 2003, inclusive.

The complaint charges the defendants with violations of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  The complaint alleges that
defendants issued false and misleading statements, artificially
inflating the stock.

For more information, contact Mark D. Smilow, David C. Katz, or
James E. Tullman, by Mail: The French Building, 551 Fifth
Avenue, Suite 1600, New York, New York 10176, by Phone:
(888) 593-4771 or (212) 682-3025, or by E-mail: info@wynyc.com.


MFS FUNDS: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Fraud Lawsuit in MA
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
District of Massachusetts, on behalf of all purchasers of shares
of the MFS Mutual Funds, which are managed by Massachusetts
Financial Services Company, a subsidiary of Sun Life Financial,
Inc. during the period between December 15, 1998 and December 8,
2003, inclusive, seeking to pursue remedies under the Securities
Act of 1933, the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and the
Investment Company Act of 1940.

The Funds and the symbols for the respective Funds subject to
the lawsuit are:

     (1) MFS Capital Opportunities Fund (Nasdaq:MCOFX),
         (Nasdaq:MCOBX), (Nasdaq:MCOCX), (Nasdaq:MFCRX),
         (Nasdaq:MCOTX), (Nasdaq:EACOX), (Nasdaq:EBCOX),
         (Nasdaq:ECCOX)

     (2) MFS Core Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MFCAX), (Nasdaq:MFCBX),
         (Nasdaq:MFCCX), (Nasdaq:MCFRX), (Nasdaq:MCRRX)

     (3) MFS Emerging Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MFEGX),
         (Nasdaq:MEGBX), (Nasdaq:MFECX), (Nasdaq:MFERX),
         (Nasdaq:MEGRX), (Nasdaq:EAGRX), (Nasdaq:EBEGX),
         (Nasdaq:ECEGX)

     (4) MFS Growth Opportunities Fund (Nasdaq:MGOFX),
         (Nasdaq:MGOBX)

     (5) MFS Large Cap Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MCGAX),
         (Nasdaq:MCGBX)

     (6) MFS Managed Sectors Fund (Nasdaq:MMNSX),
         (Nasdaq:MSEBX), (Nasdaq:MMNCX)

     (7) MFS Mid Cap Growth Fund (Nasdaq:OTCAX), (Nasdaq:OTCBX),
         (Nasdaq:OTCCX), (Nasdaq:MMCRX), (Nasdaq:MCPRX),
         (Nasdaq:EAMCX), (Nasdaq:EBCGX), (Nasdaq:ECGRX)

     (8) MFS New Discovery Fund (Nasdaq:MNDAX), (Nasdaq:MNDBX),
         (Nasdaq:MNDCX), (Nasdaq:MFNRX), (Nasdaq:MNDRX),
         (Nasdaq:EANDX), (Nasdaq:EBNDX), (Nasdaq:ECNDX)

     (9) MFS New Endeavor Fund (Nasdaq:MECAX), (Nasdaq:MECBX),
         (Nasdaq:MECCX), (Nasdaq:MNERX), (Nasdaq:MENRX)

    (10) MFS Research Fund (Nasdaq:MFRFX), (Nasdaq:MFRBX),
         (Nasdaq:MFRCX), (Nasdaq:MFRRX), (Nasdaq:MSRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EARFX), (Nasdaq:EBRFX), (Nasdaq:ECRFX)

    (11) MFS Strategic Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MFSGX),
         (Nasdaq:MSBGX), (Nasdaq:MFGCX), (Nasdaq:MSGRX),
         (Nasdaq:MSTRX), (Nasdaq:EASGX), (Nasdaq:EBSGX),
         (Nasdaq:ECSGX)

    (12) MFS Technology Fund (Nasdaq:MTCAX), (Nasdaq:MTCBX),
         (Nasdaq:MTCCX), (Nasdaq:MTQRX), (Nasdaq:MTERX)

    (13) Massachusetts Investors Growth Stock (Nasdaq:MIGFX),
         (Nasdaq:MIGBX), (Nasdaq:MIGDX), (Nasdaq:MIGRX),
         (Nasdaq:MIRGX), (Nasdaq:EISTX), (Nasdaq:EMIVX),
         (Nasdaq:EMICX)

    (14) MFS Mid Cap Value Fund (Nasdaq:MVCAX), (Nasdaq:MCBVX),
         (Nasdaq:MVCCX), (Nasdaq:MMVRX), (Nasdaq:MCVRX),
         (Nasdaq:EACVX), (Nasdaq:EBCVX), (Nasdaq:ECCVX)

    (15) MFS Research Growth and Income Fund (Nasdaq:MRGAX),
         (Nasdaq:MRGBX), (Nasdaq:MRGCX), (Nasdaq:MGIRX),
         (Nasdaq:MRERX)

    (16) MFS Strategic Value Fund (Nasdaq:MSVTX),
         (Nasdaq:MSVLX), (Nasdaq:MQSVX), (Nasdaq:MSVRX),
         (Nasdaq:MVSRX), (Nasdaq:EASVX),  (Nasdaq:EBSVX),
         (Nasdaq:ECSVX)

    (17) MFS Total Return Fund (Nasdaq:MSFRX), (Nasdaq:MTRBX),
         (Nasdaq:MTRCX), (Nasdaq:MFTRX), (Nasdaq:MTRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EATRX), (Nasdaq:EBTRX), (Nasdaq:ECTRX)

    (18) MFS Union Standard Equity Fund (Nasdaq:MUEAX),
         (Nasdaq:MUSBX), (Nasdaq:MUECX)

    (19) MFS Utilities Fund (Nasdaq:MMUFX), (Nasdaq:MMUBX),
         (Nasdaq:MMUCX), (Nasdaq:MMURX), (Nasdaq:MURRX)

    (20) MFS Value Fund (Nasdaq:MEIAX), (Nasdaq:MFEBX),
         (Nasdaq:MEICX), (Nasdaq:MFVRX), (Nasdaq:MVRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EAVLX), (Nasdaq:EBVLX), (Nasdaq:ECVLX)

    (21) Massachusetts Investors Trust (Nasdaq:MITTX),
         (Nasdaq:MITBX), (Nasdaq:MITCX), (Nasdaq:MITRX),
         (Nasdaq:MIRTX), (Nasdaq:EAMTX), (Nasdaq:EBMTX),
         (Nasdaq:ECITX)

    (22) MFS Aggressive Growth Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MAAGX),
         (Nasdaq:MBAGX), (Nasdaq:MCAGX), (Nasdaq:MAARX),
         (Nasdaq:MAWAX), (Nasdaq:EAGTX), (Nasdaq:EBAAX),
         (Nasdaq:ECAAX)

    (23) MFS Conservative Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MACFX),
         (Nasdaq:MACBX), (Nasdaq:MACVX), (Nasdaq:MACRX),
         (Nasdaq:MCARX), (Nasdaq:ECLAX), (Nasdaq:EBCAX),
         (Nasdaq:ECACX)

    (24) MFS Growth Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MAGWX),
         (Nasdaq:MBGWX), (Nasdaq:MCGWX), (Nasdaq:MGARX),
         (Nasdaq:MGALX), (Nasdaq:EAGWX), (Nasdaq:EBGWX),
         (Nasdaq:ECGWX)

    (25) MFS Moderate Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MAMAX),
         (Nasdaq:MMABX), (Nasdaq:MMACX), (Nasdaq:MAMRX),
         (Nasdaq:MARRX), (Nasdaq:EAMDX), (Nasdaq:EBMDX),
         (Nasdaq:ECMAX)

    (26) MFS Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFBFX), (Nasdaq:MFBBX),
         (Nasdaq:MFBCX), (Nasdaq:MFBRX), (Nasdaq:MBRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EABDX), (Nasdaq:EBBDX), (Nasdaq:ECBDX)

    (27) MFS Emerging Markets Debt Fund (Nasdaq:MEDAX),
         (Nasdaq:MEDBX), (Nasdaq:MEDCX)

    (28) MFS Government Limited Maturity Fund (Nasdaq:MGLFX),
         (Nasdaq:MGLBX), (Nasdaq:MGLCX)

    (29) MFS Government Mortgage Fund (Nasdaq:MGMTX),
         (Nasdaq:MGTBX)

    (30) MFS Government Securities Fund (Nasdaq:MFGSX),
         (Nasdaq:MFGBX), (Nasdaq:MFGDX), (Nasdaq:MGSRX),
         (Nasdaq:MGVSX), (Nasdaq:EAGSX), (Nasdaq:EBGSX),
         (Nasdaq:ECGSX)

    (31) MFS High Income Fund (Nasdaq:MHITX), (Nasdaq:MHIBX),
         (Nasdaq:MHICX), (Nasdaq:EAHIX), (Nasdaq:EMHBX),
         (Nasdaq:EMHCX; (Nasdaq:MHIIX), (Nasdaq:MHIRX)

    (32) MFS High Yield Opportunities Fund (Nasdaq:MHOAX),
         (Nasdaq:MHOBX), (Nasdaq:MHOCX), (Nasdaq:MHOIX)

    (33) MFS Intermediate Investment Grade Bond Fund
         (Nasdaq:MGBFX), (Nasdaq:MGBVX), (Nasdaq:MGBCX),
         (Nasdaq:MGBEX), (Nasdaq:MIBRX)

    (34) MFS Limited Maturity Fund (Nasdaq:MQLFX)
         (Nasdaq:MQLBX), (Nasdaq:MQLCX), (Nasdaq:EALMX),
         (Nasdaq:EBLMX), (Nasdaq:ELDCX), (Nasdaq:MLDRX)

    (35) MFS Research Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MRBFX), (Nasdaq:MRBBX),
         (Nasdaq:MRBCX), (Nasdaq:EARBX), (Nasdaq:EBRBX),
         (Nasdaq:ECRBX), (Nasdaq:MRBIX), (Nasdaq:MRBRX)

    (36) MFS Strategic Income Fund (Nasdaq:MFIOX),
         (Nasdaq:MIOBX), (Nasdaq:MIOCX), (Nasdaq:MFIIX)

    (37) MFS Alabama Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFALX),
         (Nasdaq:MBABX)

    (38) MFS Arkansas Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFARX),
         (Nasdaq:MBARX)

    (39) MFS California Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MCFTX),
         (Nasdaq:MBCAX), (Nasdaq:MCCAX)

    (40) MFS Florida Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFFLX),
         (Nasdaq:MBFLX)

    (41) MFS Georgia Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MMGAX),
         (Nasdaq:MBGAX)

    (42) MFS Maryland Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFSMX),
         (Nasdaq:MBMDX)

    (43) MFS Massachusetts Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFSSX),
         (Nasdaq:MBMAX)

    (44) MFS Mississippi Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MISSX),
         (Nasdaq:MBMSX),

    (45) MFS Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MMBFX), (Nasdaq:MMBBX)

    (46) MFS Municipal Limited Maturity Fund (Nasdaq:MTLFX),
         (Nasdaq:MTLBX), (Nasdaq:MTLCX)

    (47) MFS New York Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSNYX),
         (Nasdaq:MBNYX), (Nasdaq:MCNYX)

    (48) MFS North Carolina Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSNCX),
         (Nasdaq:MBNCX), (Nasdaq:MCNCX)

    (49) MFS Pennsylvania Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFPAX),
         (Nasdaq:MBPAX)

    (50) MFS South Carolina Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFSCX),
         (Nasdaq:MBSCX)

    (51) MFS Tennessee Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSTNX),
         (Nasdaq:MBTNX)

    (52) MFS Virginia Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSVAX),
         (Nasdaq:MBVAX), (Nasdaq:MVACX)

    (53) MFS West Virginia Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFWVX),
         (Nasdaq:MBWVX)

    (54) MFS Emerging Markets Equity Fund (Nasdaq:MEMAX),
         (Nasdaq:MEMBX), (Nasdaq:MEMCX), (Nasdaq:MEMIX)

    (55) MFS Global Equity Fund (Nasdaq:MWEFX), (Nasdaq:MWEBX),
         (Nasdaq:MWECX), (Nasdaq:MWEIX), (Nasdaq:MGERX)

    (56) MFS Global Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MWOFX), (Nasdaq:MWOBX),
         (Nasdaq:MWOCX), (Nasdaq:MWOIX), (Nasdaq:MGLRX)

    (57) MFS Global Total Return Fund (Nasdaq:MFWTX),
         (Nasdaq:MFWBX), (Nasdaq:MFWCX), (Nasdaq:MFWIX),
         (Nasdaq:MGRRX)

    (58) MFS International Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MGRAX),
         (Nasdaq:MGRBX), (Nasdaq:MGRCX), (Nasdaq:MQGIX)

    (59) MFS International New Discovery Fund (Nasdaq:MIDAX),
         (Nasdaq:MIDBX), (Nasdaq:MIDCX), (Nasdaq:EAIDX),
         (Nasdaq:EBIDX), (Nasdaq:ECIDX), (Nasdaq:MWNIX),
         (Nasdaq:MINRX)

    (60) MFS International Value Fund (Nasdaq:MGIAX),
         (Nasdaq:MGIBX), (Nasdaq:MGICX), (Nasdaq:MINIX)

    (61) MFS Research International Fund (Nasdaq:MRSAX),
         (Nasdaq:MRIBX), (Nasdaq:MRICX), (Nasdaq:EARSX),
         (Nasdaq:EBRIX), (Nasdaq:ECRIX), (Nasdaq:MRSIX),
         (Nasdaq:MRIRX)

The wrongful conduct alleged in and which is the subject of the
lawsuit relates to "timing."  The lawsuit alleges that timing
injures ordinary mutual fund investors who are not allowed to
engage in such practices and benefits the mutual fund companies.

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


MORGAN STANLEY: Klayman & Toskes Files Securities Suit in NY
------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Klayman & Toskes, P.A. initiated a class action
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York on behalf of individual and institutional
investors who invested in the Morgan Stanley and Van Kampen
family of funds between October 1, 1999 and December 31, 2002.

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, Rule 10b-5 and Section 206
of the Investment Advisers Act of 1940.  The complaint charges
that defendants engaged in an unlawful and deceitful course of
conduct including failure to properly disclose that Morgan
Stanley had been aggressively pushing its sales personnel to
sell Morgan Stanley and Van Kampen funds, instead of mutual
funds owned and managed by other companies.  This was done
through internal contests offering various prizes to brokers who
sold the most in proprietary funds.

The complaint also alleged that the advisors to the funds paid
excessive commissions, directly or indirectly, to MSDW, the
broker dealer, which came directly out of the funds' assets, as
payment to MSDW for its steering clients towards Morgan
Stanley's proprietary funds, including the Van Kampen funds.
Morgan Stanley is the parent of all defendants bearing the Van
Kampen name.

For more information, contact Lawrence L. Klayman, by Phone:
(888) 997-9956.


NETWORK ENGINES: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Lawsuit in MA
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a securities
class action in the United States District Court for the
District of Massachusetts, on behalf of shareholders who
purchased, converted, exchanged or otherwise acquired the common
stock of Network Engines, Inc. between November 6, 2003 and
December 10, 2003, inclusive.

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

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


PMA CAPITAL: Donovan Searles Lodges Securities Suit in E.D. PA
--------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Donovan Searles initiated a class action lawsuit
in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania against the Company and certain former officers and
directors as defendants, on behalf of all purchasers of the
publicly traded common stock and the publicly issued 8.50% Notes
of PMA Capital Corporation beginning on or about May 29, 2003
and thereafter, inclusive.

The Complaints allege that defendants violated Sections 11 and
12 of the Securities Act of 1933 and Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of
the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. As alleged in the
Complaint, PMA's public statements during the Class Period were
materially false and misleading because:

     (1) PMA maintained inadequate loss reserves for its PMA Re
         subsidiary;

     (2) reserve requirements for PMA Re announced in connection
         with the initial public offering of the Notes were
         materially insufficient; and

     (3) as a consequence of the understatement of loss
         reserves, PMA's earnings and assets were materially
         overstated at all relevant times.

On November 4, 2003, PMA issued a press release announcing that
it would have to increase its loss reserves for PMA Re by $150
million, and would be suspending its common stock dividend. This
news caused an immediate drop in the price of PMA's common stock
and the trading values of the 8.50% Notes. On November 6, 2003,
PMA issued a press release announcing the resignations of its
president and chief executive officer and its chairman of the
board.

For more information, contact Michael D. Donovan, by Phone:
1-800-619-1677 or 215-732-6067, by E-mail:
mdonovan@donovansearles.com, or visit the firm's Website:
http://www.donovansearles.com.



SUNLIFE FINANCIAL: Rabin Murray Files Securities Lawsuit in MA
--------------------------------------------------------------
Rabin, Murray & Frank, LLP initiated a class action lawsuit in
United States District Court for the District of Massachusetts,
on behalf of all persons or entities who purchased or otherwise
acquired MFS Technology Fund (Nasdaq:MTCBX), (Nasdaq: MTCCX),
(Nasdaq:MTQRX), (Nasdaq:MTERX), (Nasdaq:MTCIX); Massachusetts
Investors Growth Stock (Nasdaq:MIGBX), (Nasdaq:MIGDX),
(Nasdaq:MIGRX), (Nasdaq:MIRGX), (Nasdaq:EISTX), (Nasdaq:EMIVX),
(Nasdaq:EMICX), (Nasdaq:MGTIX); MFS Mid Cap Value Fund
(Nasdaq:MCBVX), (Nasdaq:MVCCX), (Nasdaq:MMVRX), (Nasdaq:MCVRX),
(Nasdaq:EACVX), (Nasdaq:EBCVX), (Nasdaq:ECCVX), (Nasdaq:MCVIX);
MFS Research Growth and Income Fund (Nasdaq:MRGBX),
(Nasdaq:MRGCX), (Nasdaq:MGIRX), (Nasdaq:MRERX), (Nasdaq:MRGRX),
between December 15, 1998 and December 7, 2003, inclusive,
against Sun Life, MFS Company, each of the MFS mutual funds and
their registrants, and John Does 1-100.

The Funds, and the Symbols for the respective Funds named below,
are:

     (1) MFS Capital Opportunities Fund (Nasdaq:MCOFX),
         (Nasdaq:MCOBX), (Nasdaq:MCOCX), (Nasdaq:MFCRX),
         (Nasdaq:MCOTX), (Nasdaq:EACOX), (Nasdaq:EBCOX),
         (Nasdaq:ECCOX)

     (2) MFS Core Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MFCAX), (Nasdaq:MFCBX),
         (Nasdaq:MFCCX), (Nasdaq:MCFRX), (Nasdaq:MCRRX)

     (3) MFS Emerging Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MFEGX),
         (Nasdaq:MEGBX), (Nasdaq:MFECX), (Nasdaq:MFERX),
         (Nasdaq:MEGRX), (Nasdaq:EAGRX), (Nasdaq:EBEGX),
         (Nasdaq:ECEGX)

     (4) MFS Growth Opportunities Fund (Nasdaq:MGOFX),
         (Nasdaq:MGOBX)

     (5) MFS Large Cap Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MCGAX),
         (Nasdaq:MCGBX)

     (6) MFS Managed Sectors Fund (Nasdaq:MMNSX),
         (Nasdaq:MSEBX), (Nasdaq:MMNCX)

     (7) MFS Mid Cap Growth Fund (Nasdaq:OTCAX), (Nasdaq:OTCBX),
         (Nasdaq:OTCCX), (Nasdaq:MMCRX), (Nasdaq:MCPRX),
         (Nasdaq:EAMCX), (Nasdaq:EBCGX), (Nasdaq:ECGRX)

     (8) MFS New Discovery Fund (Nasdaq:MNDAX), (Nasdaq:MNDBX),
         (Nasdaq:MNDCX), (Nasdaq:MFNRX), (Nasdaq:MNDRX),
         (Nasdaq:EANDX), (Nasdaq:EBNDX), (Nasdaq:ECNDX)

     (9) MFS New Endeavor Fund (Nasdaq:MECAX), (Nasdaq:MECBX),
         (Nasdaq:MECCX), (Nasdaq:MNERX), (Nasdaq:MENRX)

    (10) MFS Research Fund (Nasdaq:MFRFX), (Nasdaq:MFRBX),
         (Nasdaq:MFRCX), (Nasdaq:MFRRX), (Nasdaq:MSRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EARFX), (Nasdaq:EBRFX), (Nasdaq:ECRFX)

    (11) MFS Strategic Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MFSGX),
         (Nasdaq:MSBGX), (Nasdaq:MFGCX), (Nasdaq:MSGRX),
         (Nasdaq:MSTRX), (Nasdaq:EASGX), (Nasdaq:EBSGX),
         (Nasdaq:ECSGX)

    (12) MFS Technology Fund (Nasdaq:MTCAX), (Nasdaq:MTCBX),
         (Nasdaq:MTCCX), (Nasdaq:MTQRX), (Nasdaq:MTERX)

    (13) Massachusetts Investors Growth Stock (Nasdaq:MIGFX),
         (Nasdaq:MIGBX), (Nasdaq:MIGDX), (Nasdaq:MIGRX),
         (Nasdaq:MIRGX), (Nasdaq:EISTX), (Nasdaq:EMIVX),
         (Nasdaq:EMICX)

    (14) MFS Mid Cap Value Fund (Nasdaq:MVCAX), (Nasdaq:MCBVX),
         (Nasdaq:MVCCX), (Nasdaq:MMVRX), (Nasdaq:MCVRX),
         (Nasdaq:EACVX), (Nasdaq:EBCVX), (Nasdaq:ECCVX)

    (15) MFS Research Growth and Income Fund (Nasdaq:MRGAX),
         (Nasdaq:MRGBX), (Nasdaq:MRGCX), (Nasdaq:MGIRX),
         (Nasdaq:MRERX)

    (16) MFS Strategic Value Fund (Nasdaq:MSVTX),
         (Nasdaq:MSVLX), (Nasdaq:MQSVX), (Nasdaq:MSVRX),
         (Nasdaq:MVSRX), (Nasdaq:EASVX),  (Nasdaq:EBSVX),
         (Nasdaq:ECSVX)

    (17) MFS Total Return Fund (Nasdaq:MSFRX), (Nasdaq:MTRBX),
         (Nasdaq:MTRCX), (Nasdaq:MFTRX), (Nasdaq:MTRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EATRX), (Nasdaq:EBTRX), (Nasdaq:ECTRX)

    (18) MFS Union Standard Equity Fund (Nasdaq:MUEAX),
         (Nasdaq:MUSBX), (Nasdaq:MUECX)

    (19) MFS Utilities Fund (Nasdaq:MMUFX), (Nasdaq:MMUBX),
         (Nasdaq:MMUCX), (Nasdaq:MMURX), (Nasdaq:MURRX)

    (20) MFS Value Fund (Nasdaq:MEIAX), (Nasdaq:MFEBX),
         (Nasdaq:MEICX), (Nasdaq:MFVRX), (Nasdaq:MVRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EAVLX), (Nasdaq:EBVLX), (Nasdaq:ECVLX)

    (21) Massachusetts Investors Trust (Nasdaq:MITTX),
         (Nasdaq:MITBX), (Nasdaq:MITCX), (Nasdaq:MITRX),
         (Nasdaq:MIRTX), (Nasdaq:EAMTX), (Nasdaq:EBMTX),
         (Nasdaq:ECITX)

    (22) MFS Aggressive Growth Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MAAGX),
         (Nasdaq:MBAGX), (Nasdaq:MCAGX), (Nasdaq:MAARX),
         (Nasdaq:MAWAX), (Nasdaq:EAGTX), (Nasdaq:EBAAX),
         (Nasdaq:ECAAX)

    (23) MFS Conservative Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MACFX),
         (Nasdaq:MACBX), (Nasdaq:MACVX), (Nasdaq:MACRX),
         (Nasdaq:MCARX), (Nasdaq:ECLAX), (Nasdaq:EBCAX),
         (Nasdaq:ECACX)

    (24) MFS Growth Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MAGWX),
         (Nasdaq:MBGWX), (Nasdaq:MCGWX), (Nasdaq:MGARX),
         (Nasdaq:MGALX), (Nasdaq:EAGWX), (Nasdaq:EBGWX),
         (Nasdaq:ECGWX)

    (25) MFS Moderate Allocation Fund (Nasdaq:MAMAX),
         (Nasdaq:MMABX), (Nasdaq:MMACX), (Nasdaq:MAMRX),
         (Nasdaq:MARRX), (Nasdaq:EAMDX), (Nasdaq:EBMDX),
         (Nasdaq:ECMAX)

    (26) MFS Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFBFX), (Nasdaq:MFBBX),
         (Nasdaq:MFBCX), (Nasdaq:MFBRX), (Nasdaq:MBRRX),
         (Nasdaq:EABDX), (Nasdaq:EBBDX), (Nasdaq:ECBDX)

    (27) MFS Emerging Markets Debt Fund (Nasdaq:MEDAX),
         (Nasdaq:MEDBX), (Nasdaq:MEDCX)

    (28) MFS Government Limited Maturity Fund (Nasdaq:MGLFX),
         (Nasdaq:MGLBX), (Nasdaq:MGLCX)

    (29) MFS Government Mortgage Fund (Nasdaq:MGMTX),
         (Nasdaq:MGTBX)

    (30) MFS Government Securities Fund (Nasdaq:MFGSX),
         (Nasdaq:MFGBX), (Nasdaq:MFGDX), (Nasdaq:MGSRX),
         (Nasdaq:MGVSX), (Nasdaq:EAGSX), (Nasdaq:EBGSX),
         (Nasdaq:ECGSX)

    (31) MFS High Income Fund (Nasdaq:MHITX), (Nasdaq:MHIBX),
         (Nasdaq:MHICX), (Nasdaq:EAHIX), (Nasdaq:EMHBX),
         (Nasdaq:EMHCX; (Nasdaq:MHIIX), (Nasdaq:MHIRX)

    (32) MFS High Yield Opportunities Fund (Nasdaq:MHOAX),
         (Nasdaq:MHOBX), (Nasdaq:MHOCX), (Nasdaq:MHOIX)

    (33) MFS Intermediate Investment Grade Bond Fund
         (Nasdaq:MGBFX), (Nasdaq:MGBVX), (Nasdaq:MGBCX),
         (Nasdaq:MGBEX), (Nasdaq:MIBRX)

    (34) MFS Limited Maturity Fund (Nasdaq:MQLFX)
         (Nasdaq:MQLBX), (Nasdaq:MQLCX), (Nasdaq:EALMX),
         (Nasdaq:EBLMX), (Nasdaq:ELDCX), (Nasdaq:MLDRX)

    (35) MFS Research Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MRBFX), (Nasdaq:MRBBX),
         (Nasdaq:MRBCX), (Nasdaq:EARBX), (Nasdaq:EBRBX),
         (Nasdaq:ECRBX), (Nasdaq:MRBIX), (Nasdaq:MRBRX)

    (36) MFS Strategic Income Fund (Nasdaq:MFIOX),
         (Nasdaq:MIOBX), (Nasdaq:MIOCX), (Nasdaq:MFIIX)

    (37) MFS Alabama Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFALX),
         (Nasdaq:MBABX)

    (38) MFS Arkansas Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFARX),
         (Nasdaq:MBARX)

    (39) MFS California Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MCFTX),
         (Nasdaq:MBCAX), (Nasdaq:MCCAX)

    (40) MFS Florida Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFFLX),
         (Nasdaq:MBFLX)

    (41) MFS Georgia Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MMGAX),
         (Nasdaq:MBGAX)

    (42) MFS Maryland Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFSMX),
         (Nasdaq:MBMDX)

    (43) MFS Massachusetts Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFSSX),
         (Nasdaq:MBMAX)

    (44) MFS Mississippi Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MISSX),
         (Nasdaq:MBMSX),

    (45) MFS Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MMBFX), (Nasdaq:MMBBX)

    (46) MFS Municipal Limited Maturity Fund (Nasdaq:MTLFX),
         (Nasdaq:MTLBX), (Nasdaq:MTLCX)

    (47) MFS New York Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSNYX),
         (Nasdaq:MBNYX), (Nasdaq:MCNYX)

    (48) MFS North Carolina Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSNCX),
         (Nasdaq:MBNCX), (Nasdaq:MCNCX)

    (49) MFS Pennsylvania Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFPAX),
         (Nasdaq:MBPAX)

    (50) MFS South Carolina Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFSCX),
         (Nasdaq:MBSCX)

    (51) MFS Tennessee Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSTNX),
         (Nasdaq:MBTNX)

    (52) MFS Virginia Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MSVAX),
         (Nasdaq:MBVAX), (Nasdaq:MVACX)

    (53) MFS West Virginia Municipal Bond Fund (Nasdaq:MFWVX),
         (Nasdaq:MBWVX)

    (54) MFS Emerging Markets Equity Fund (Nasdaq:MEMAX),
         (Nasdaq:MEMBX), (Nasdaq:MEMCX), (Nasdaq:MEMIX)

    (55) MFS Global Equity Fund (Nasdaq:MWEFX), (Nasdaq:MWEBX),
         (Nasdaq:MWECX), (Nasdaq:MWEIX), (Nasdaq:MGERX)

    (56) MFS Global Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MWOFX), (Nasdaq:MWOBX),
         (Nasdaq:MWOCX), (Nasdaq:MWOIX), (Nasdaq:MGLRX)

    (57) MFS Global Total Return Fund (Nasdaq:MFWTX),
         (Nasdaq:MFWBX), (Nasdaq:MFWCX), (Nasdaq:MFWIX),
         (Nasdaq:MGRRX)

    (58) MFS International Growth Fund (Nasdaq:MGRAX),
         (Nasdaq:MGRBX), (Nasdaq:MGRCX), (Nasdaq:MQGIX)

    (59) MFS International New Discovery Fund (Nasdaq:MIDAX),
         (Nasdaq:MIDBX), (Nasdaq:MIDCX), (Nasdaq:EAIDX),
         (Nasdaq:EBIDX), (Nasdaq:ECIDX), (Nasdaq:MWNIX),
         (Nasdaq:MINRX)

    (60) MFS International Value Fund (Nasdaq:MGIAX),
         (Nasdaq:MGIBX), (Nasdaq:MGICX), (Nasdaq:MINIX)

    (61) MFS Research International Fund (Nasdaq:MRSAX),
         (Nasdaq:MRIBX), (Nasdaq:MRICX), (Nasdaq:EARSX),
         (Nasdaq:EBRIX), (Nasdaq:ECRIX), (Nasdaq:MRSIX),
         (Nasdaq:MRIRX)

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,
certain of the defendants failed to disclose that they
improperly allowed certain favored investors to engage in
"timing" of the Funds' securities.

In return for receiving extra fees from privileged investors,
Sun Life and MFS Company, and its affiliates, allowed and
facilitated timing in the Funds, to the detriment of class
members, who paid, dollar for dollar, for improper profits made
by these investors. These practices were undisclosed in the
prospectuses of the Funds, which falsely represented that the
Funds actively police against timing

For more information, contact Eric J. Belfi, or Gregory Linkh,
by Phone: (800) 497-8076, or (212) 682-1818, Fax:
(212) 682-1892, or E-mail: info@rabinlaw.com.


TOPAZ GROUP: Charles Piven Lodges Securities Fraud Lawsuit in WA
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices Of Charles J. Piven, P.A. initiated a securities
class action in the United States District Court for the
District of Washington against defendant The Topaz Group, Inc.
and certain of its officers and directors, on behalf of
shareholders who purchased, converted, exchanged or otherwise
acquired the common stock of The Topaz Group, Inc. between March
21, 2002 and August 20, 2003, inclusive.

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

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


TOPAZ GROUP: Weiss & Yourman Commences Securities Lawsuit in WA
---------------------------------------------------------------
Weiss & Yourman initiated a class action in U.S. District Court
for the District of Washington on behalf of those who purchased
Topaz Group, Inc. securities between March 21, 2002 and August
20, 2003, inclusive.

The complaint charges that the company and certain of its
officers violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934.  Specifically, the complaint alleges that
defendants issued false and misleading financial statements by
overstating inventory, understating allowances for doubtful
accounts and improperly recognizing revenue, in violation of
GAAP (generally accepted accounting principles).

The complaint alleges that plaintiff and other members of the
class suffered damages when they purchased Topaz shares at
prices artificially inflated by defendants' conduct.

For more information, contact Weiss & Yourman, by Phone:
(800) 437-7918, E-mail: info@wyca.com, or visit the firm's
Website: http://www.wyca.com.


TOPAZ GROUP: Stull Stull Commences Securities Fraud Suit in WA
--------------------------------------------------------------
Stull, Stull & Brody, LLP initiated a class action lawsuit in
U.S. District Court for the District of Washington on behalf of
purchasers of Topaz Group, Inc. between March 21, 2002 and
August 20, 2003, inclusive, against the Company and:

     (1) Aphichart Fufuangvanich,

     (2) George Pfeifer,

     (3) Peter Brongers and

     (4) Timothy Matula  

The Complaint charges that defendants violated Sections 10(b)
and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10-
b(5). The Complaint alleges that Defendants issued a series of
false and misleading financial statements which did not comply
with generally accepted accounting principles. Specifically,
Defendants incorrectly reported Topaz' financial position by,
inter alia: overstating inventory, understating allowances for
doubtful accounts and improperly recognizing revenue. As a
result of defendants' conduct, plaintiff and Class members
purchased Topaz shares at artificially inflated prices and were
damaged thereby.

For more information, contact Michael D. Braun, by Phone:
310-209-2468, Fax: 388-388-4605, or E-mail: info@secfraud.com.


VIRBAC CORPORATION: Cauley Geller Files Securities Suit in TX
----------------------------------------------------------------
Cauley Geller Bowman & Rudman, LLP initiated a class action
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Northern
District of Texas, Fort Worth Division, on behalf of purchasers
of Virbac Corporation common stock during the period between May
3, 2001 through November 12, 2003, inclusive, against the
Company, Thomas L. Bell and Joseph A. Rougraff.

The lawsuit charges the defendants with violations of Sections
10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule
10b-5 promulgated thereunder. Between May 3, 2001 and November
12, 2003, the defendants issued a series of material
misrepresentations to the market concerning the Company's
financial results.

More specifically, the defendants' statements were materially
false and misleading because they failed to disclose and/or
misrepresented these adverse facts, among others:

     (1) that Virbac had materially overstated its net income
         and earnings per share;

     (2) that Virbac had materially overstated its inventory;

     (3) that Virbac's financial results were in violation of
         Generally Accepted Accounting Principles;

     (4) that Virbac lacked adequate internal controls and was
         therefore unable to ascertain the true financial
         condition of the Company; and

     (5) that as a result, the value of Virbac's financial
         results were materially overstated at all relevant
         times.

On November 12, 2003, after the markets closed, the Company
announced that it would delay the release of its results for the
quarter and nine months ended September 30, 2003, as well as the
filing of its corresponding quarterly report on Form 10-Q with
the Securities and Exchange Commission pending completion of an
internal inquiry being conducted by the Audit Committee of the
Company's Board of Directors. The Company further stated that
during the course of their quarterly review, the Company's
outside auditors, PricewaterhouseCoopers, raised questions
relating to certain of the Company's revenue recognition
practices and inventory accounting practices.

The market reacted swiftly to this news, with the Company's
stock falling 22% or $1.85 per share before being halted by
Nasdaq at 10:46 A.M., eastern time. The Company's stock price
was $6.50 per share when trading was halted.

The final blow occurred on November 24, 2003 when Virbac
announced it would restate its results for 2001, 2002, and the
first two quarters of 2003 due to the questions raised by
PricewaterhouseCoopers relating to certain of the Company's
revenue recognition practices and inventory accounting
practices. As of today, the Company's stock was still halted.

For more information, contact Samuel H. Rudman, or David A.
Rosenfeld, or the Client Relations Department: Jackie Addison,
Heather Gann or Chandra West, by Mail: P.O. Box 25438, Little
Rock, AR 72221-5438, by Phone: 1-888-551-9944 toll free, Fax:  
1-501-312-8505, or E-mail: info@cauleygeller.com.


WATSON PHARMA: Bernstein Liebhard Lodges Securities Suit in CA
--------------------------------------------------------------
Bernstein, Liebhard & Lifshitz, LLP initiated a securities class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Central District of California, on behalf of all persons who
purchased or acquired Watson Pharmaceuticals, Inc. between
November 2, 1999 and November 13, 2001, inclusive.

The complaint alleges that Watson and certain of its officers
and directors violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the
Securities and Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated
thereunder, by issuing materially false and misleading
statements concerning the Company's business.

In particular, the Complaint alleges that defendants' statements
were materially false and misleading because they failed to
disclose and misrepresented these material facts:

     (1) that Watson was materially overstating its financial
         results by failing to write down the value of its
         inventories and the value of certain of the Company's
         assets;

     (2) that Watson was experiencing significantly increased
         competition for generic drugs and was also experiencing
         manufacturing difficulties; and

     (3) that based on the foregoing, defendants' positive
         statements about the Company were lacking in a
         reasonable basis at all times and were therefore
         materially false and misleading.

Prior to the disclosure of the true facts about the Company,
defendants used millions of shares of Watson common stock to
acquire other businesses.

On November 13, 2001, Watson shocked the market when it
announced its financial results for third quarter 2001 which
were well below expectations. Furthermore, the Company announced
that it was writing off almost all of its investment in Dilacor
XR and that the Company was writing off over $20 million in
additional impaired inventory.

In response to this negative announcement, the price of Watson
common stock plummeted, trading down almost $20 per share, to
close trading at $28.54 per share, compared to the prior day's
close of $47.15 per share, on tremendous volume of over 15.3
million shares traded -- almost 20 times the average trading
volume for Watson shares.

For more information, contact Ms. Linda Flood, Director of
Shareholder Relations, by Mail: 10 East 40th Street, New York,
New York 10016, by Phone: (800) 217-1522 or (212) 779-1414, or
E-mail: WPI@bernlieb.com.


WARNACO INC: Lovell Stewart Launches Securities Suit in S.D. NY
---------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Lovell Stewart Halebian LLP initiated a class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of New York on behalf of all individuals and
entities that purchased the common stock of Warnaco Inc. between
August 15, 2000 and June 8, 2001, inclusive.

Five related securities class actions have been consolidated
into the action styled In re Warnaco Sec. Litig. (II), No. 01-
CV-3346 (MCG) (S.D.N.Y.) and is currently pending before United
States District Court Judge Miriam Goldman Cedarbaum, who
presides over this action in New York, New York.

The consolidated action alleges violations of Sections 10(b) and
20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended by the
Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder against Linda Wachner (former CEO),
William S. Finkelstein (former CFO), Stanley P. Silverstein
(former General Counsel), and the Company's auditors, Deloitte &
Touche LLP. The Actions were not brought against Warnaco because
it filed a voluntary petition for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy one day
after the end of the Class Period. The consolidated action is
continuing against the other defendants.

The consolidated action alleges that Warnaco, a retail clothing
manufacturer and distributor, and the other defendants provided
materially false and misleading statements and omissions
concerning the Company's financial condition, results of
operations, and business prospects. The Company reported
reassuring earnings and adequate liquidity throughout most of
the Class Period. However, undisclosed to the investing public
was at least the following: Warnaco was in de facto default of
its loan agreements throughout much of the Class Period; the
Company's books and records were riddled with accounting fraud
and errors because of almost a complete lack of internal
controls resulting in overstatements, inter alia, of
inventories, accounts receivables and shareholders' equity, and
unreconciled intercompany accounts in violation of Generally
Accepted Accounting Principles. As announced after the end of
the Class Period, Warnaco was required to restate its financial
statements issued during the Class Period several times,
ultimately resulting in downward adjustments to shareholders'
equity by orders of magnitude. The consolidated action also
alleges that Deloitte, inter alia, failed to perform its audits
and reviews of the Company's financial statements in accordance
with Generally Accepted Auditing Standards. The Company's stock
traded as high as $5.43 per share during the Class Period.

The motion to dismiss the Exchange Act claims by the individual
defendants has been denied. Defendant Deloitte moved to dismiss
the fourth amended class action complaint. Plaintiffs have
opposed Deloitte's motion.

For more information, contact: Daniel Patrick Moynihan by Mail:
United States Courthouse, 500 Pearl Street, New York, New York
10007-1312.

                           *********

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 2004.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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