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ANTITRUST DuPont settles suit over generic drug for $44.5M The 3d U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has approved a $44.5 million settlement of a consumer antitrust suit against DuPont Pharmaceuticals Co. that accused the manufacturer of issuing misleading statements about a generic anti-coagulant drug to protect sales of its drug Coumadin, used to treat blood-clotting disorders. Coumadin was the only warfarin sodium product available until 1997, when a generic version of the drug manufactured by Barr Laboratories Inc. was approved by the Food and Drug Administration. Consumers alleged that DuPont set out to avoid competition from Barr by disseminating false and misleading information about the safety and equivalence of the less-expensive generic version. -ALM BANKRUPTCY Swiss insurance company settles U.S. litigation Zurich, Switzerland (AP)-Insurance giant Zurich Financial Services has reached a $47.5 million settlement in the United States to end litigation over the bankruptcy of a nursing home chain. The agreement was reached between a U.S.-based Zurich Financial subsidiary-ZC Specialty Insurance Co.-and Senior Living Properties Trust. The case arose from the bankruptcy of the Senior Living Properties nursing home chain. In April, a Texas bankruptcy court ruled that ZC was a de facto partner of Senior Living Properties and thus liable for its debts. FRAUD $161M verdict against Norwegian fugitive Charleston, W.Va. (AP)-Jurors in a federal court agreed to a $161 million verdict against a fugitive financier who, government lawyers say, was responsible for a scheme that led to the most costly bank failure since the Great Depression. Attorneys for the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC) contend that Harald Bakkebo, a native of Norway, made off with at least $27 million by taking advantage of officers at the First National Bank of Keystone, who were themselves looting the tiny southern West Virginia bank. The case against Bakkebo was part of the FDIC’s bid to recover some of the $664 million the agency paid out as a result of the bank’s collapse. MUTUAL FUNDS Franklin Templeton pays $20M to settle with SEC Washington (AP)-Two companies that manage and market Franklin Templeton mutual funds have agreed to pay $20 million to settle federal regulators’ charges that they failed to disclose their use of fund assets to pay brokerages for steering customers to the funds. Settling an administrative proceeding, the Securities and Exchange Commission said that from 2001 to 2003, Franklin Templeton Distributors had shelf-space deals-spots on lists of brokers’ recommended buys for customers-with 39 brokerage firms for which it paid $52 million out of fund assets, without adequately disclosing the arrangements to the fund boards or shareholders. The $20 million civil fine will go to the funds whose assets were used to pay for shelf space at brokerage firms. RETIREMENT FUNDS Energy provider settles lost savings suit for $31M Houston (AP)-A federal judge has approved a nearly $31 million settlement between Dynegy Inc. and employees who sued the electricity and natural gas provider over lost retirement savings. About 5,400 current and former Dynegy employees are eligible to share about $23 million after attorney fees are paid. The lawsuit claimed that Dynegy and those who ran the company’s retirement funds should have prevented investments by employees in the company’s stock because of financial misstatements stemming from issues that included gas price index reporting problems. SECURITIES FRAUD Investor to pay $79M to settle SEC charges New York (AP)-Knight Equity Markets L.P. will pay $79 million to settle charges that the company defrauded its institutional investors by delaying trades and intervening in deals to boost the price. According to the Securities and Exchange Commission and the National Association of Securities Dealers Inc., a former institutional sales trader at Knight used deceptive sales practices-including buying up shares for Knight that clients wanted, then selling them at a higher price and pocketing the difference for Knight. The trader’s actions totaled $41 million in illegal profits. The SEC and NASD also said that Knight had failed to supervise the trader adequately as his immediate supervisor was his brother. Time Warner, DOJ settle AOL charges for $210M Washington (AP)-Time Warner Inc. has agreed to pay $210 million to settle charges involving the America Online unit. Under terms of the settlement with the Justice Department, prosecution on charges of aiding and abetting securities fraud will be deferred provided that AOL and Time Warner cooperate in an ongoing investigation into whether AOL improperly helped smaller Internet companies artificially inflate their earnings.

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