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AIR POLLUTION Clean Air Act settlement requires $320M controls Washington (AP)-Citgo Petroleum Corp. will install $320 million in pollution controls at six refineries and pay a $3.6 million fine to settle a federal lawsuit alleging Clean Air Act violations. The settlement requires Citgo, the nation’s No. 4 gas retailer, to reduce yearly emissions of nitrogen oxide by 7,184 tons and sulfur dioxide by 23,250 tons. Both can cause serious respiratory ailments and worsen cases of childhood asthma. The Citgo refineries are in Corpus Christi, Texas, which has two facilities; Lemont, Ill.; Lake Charles, La.; Paulsboro, N.J.; and Savannah, Ga. The states of Illinois, Louisiana, New Jersey and Georgia joined in the agreement. In addition to the pollution controls and civil penalty, Citgo will spend another $5 million to reduce emissions at its refineries in Corpus Christi. BANKRUPTCY WorldCom suit yields $111M for pension fund Montgomery, Ala. (AP)-Alabama’s pension fund received $111 million from three securities firms and an accounting firm to settle claims over WorldCom Inc.’s bankruptcy. The settlement resolves the Retirement Systems of Alabama’s claims against J.P. Morgan Securities, Citigroup Global Markets, Banc of America Securities, the parent companies of the firms and Arthur Andersen LLP, WorldCom’s former auditor. WorldCom filed for bankruptcy in July 2002, citing massive accounting irregularities that allowed the company to claim a profit when it was losing money. The Retirement Systems of Alabama, the pension fund for state employees and education workers, then sued two former WorldCom executives and several investment firms, claiming $124.7 million in losses from the telecommunications company, which was then based in Clinton, Miss. The pension fund sought $275 million in compensatory damages for losses on WorldCom stocks and bonds and $825 million in punitive damages. CONSUMER PROTECTION Settlement reached in Yellow Pages suit Kansas City, Mo. (AP)-A class action that claimed Southwestern Bell Advertising bilked advertisers out of more than $20 million in late fees has been settled for $21.7 million. Two Kansas City-area companies-Liberty Cellular Inc. and Blast Inc.-filed the initial suit in November 2001 claiming that Southwestern Bell had violated its contract by charging a $25 late fee to advertisers who didn’t pay their bills on time. The plaintiffs claimed that the late fees were falsely listed as collection activity fees on customer invoices. The suit was eventually given class action status, representing thousands of Yellow Pages advertisers in Missouri, Kansas, Arkansas, Oklahoma and Texas. Under the settlement, class members can receive direct cash payments or account credits. Southwestern Bell stopped charging the collection activity fees in December and has agreed not to pursue collection of fees that had been charged but not collected. HAZARDOUS ACTIVITY Chevron to pay $1.8M over plant explosions Houston (AP)-Chevron Phillips Chemical Co. has agreed to pay a $1.8 million civil penalty for Clean Air Act violations that led to releases of chemicals from a manufacturing plant in Pasadena, Texas, in 1999 and 2000, resulting in two explosions and three deaths. Justice Department and Environmental Protection Agency officials accused Chevron Phillips and its predecessor, Phillips Chemical Co., of failing to do enough to prevent accidental chemical releases at the plastic resins and specialty chemical manufacturing facility in the Houston suburb of Pasadena. This resulted in two accidental explosions, in June 1999 and March 2000, that released 1,3-butadiene, a carcinogen, and other chemicals into the air, causing three deaths and injuring almost 100 workers. The settlement requires Chevron Phillips to follow work practice requirements designed to ensure that the facility is operated in a manner that prevents accidental releases of chemicals. SECURITIES FRAUD $42M settlement in suit against bankrupt lender Anderson, S.C. (AP)-A federal judge has approved a nearly $42 million settlement of a civil lawsuit against the former officers and directors of the bankrupt Carolina Investors and its parent company, HomeGold Financial. The settlement, coupled with money recovered by the bankruptcy trustee, will give investors about 18 cents for every dollar they lost when the company closed over a year ago. About 8,000 people lost almost $275 million when the homelending operations sought protection from creditors in U.S. Bankruptcy Court. Former Carolina Investors Chairman Earle Morris, a former South Carolina lieutenant governor, faces trial in November facing 23 counts of securities fraud related to the fall of Carolina Investors. SHAREHOLDER SUIT Software maker settles case over earnings deceit Dallas (AP)-A federal judge has approved an $84.9 million settlement of a class action and several derivative lawsuits against the business software manufacturer i2 Technologies Inc. Dallas-based i2 said it would pay $41.9 million of the settlement cost and insurance would pay $43 million. Shareholders had accused i2 of issuing deceptive financial statements. Last year, the company restated earnings going back to 1998, lowering revenue by $360 million and widening its reported net loss to $207 million. The company said in June it would pay $10 million to settle a Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into its accounting practices.

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