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ANTITRUST $65M Paxil class action deal gets judge’s final OK Philadelphia-A federal judge has granted final approval to SmithKline Beecham’s $65 million settlement of an antitrust class action brought by consumers who said they paid inflated prices for Paxil, a popular anti-depressant drug. The suit alleged that SmithKline illegally maintained a monopoly by filing a series of “sham” patent suits designed to delay any generic version of the drug from reaching the market. -ALM FRAUD Adelphia settles federal probe for $715 million Washington (AP)-Bankrupt Adelphia Communications Corp. has agreed to pay the government $715 million to settle a federal fraud investigation. Adelphia will deposit the money in a fund that the government will use to compensate investors hurt by the fraud. As part of the settlement, members of the Rigas family, the company’s founders, have agreed to forfeit more than 95% of their assets. Adelphia filed for bankruptcy in 2002 after founder John W. Rigas and others were accused of cheating investors out of billions of dollars. They were convicted of conspiracy, bank fraud and securities fraud last year. HAZARDOUS WASTE Kerr-McGee agrees to clean up Superfund sites Chicago (AP)-Kerr-McGee Chemical LLP has agreed to a settlement with government officials that is expected to result in the $74 million cleanup of radioactive waste and the restoration of natural resources at two Superfund sites near West Chicago, Ill. A consent decree, filed in federal court in Chicago, requires Kerr-McGee to excavate about 77,000 cubic yards of radioactive contamination in the DuPage River West Branch and the Kress Creek tributary, and ship the contaminated soil to a facility licensed to handle such waste. The cleanup project is expected to take four years to complete and will extend for about eight miles from West Chicago to the McDowell Dam. The sites were contaminated with thorium residue from the 1930s through the early 1970s. NEGLIGENCE WorldCom fraud to cost Arthur Andersen $65M New York (AP)-Decimated auditing firm Arthur Andersen LLP has paid $65 million to settle claims that it should have detected the record-breaking fraud at the telecommunications company WorldCom Inc., now MCI Inc. The settlement brought to $6.13 billion the amount that investment banks, auditors and former board members of WorldCom have paid to settle class action claims by angry investors. Deloitte & Touche pays $50M in Adelphia case Washington (AP)-Big Four accounting firm Deloitte & Touche LLP on April 26 agreed to pay $50 million to settle charges that it failed to detect massive accounting fraud that sent Adelphia Communications Corp. into bankruptcy. Deloitte & Touche was accused of engaging in improper professional conduct by failing to detect fraud when it reviewed Adelphia’s books for the 2000 fiscal year. In the settlement over Adelphia’s audit, Deloitte & Touche agreed to pay $25 million to settle a Securities and Exchange Commission administrative proceeding and $25 million to settle a suit filed in federal district court arguing that Deloitte failed to implement procedures designed to detect illegal acts at Adelphia. RACE DISCRIMINATION Food-services firm to pay $80M to settle suit New York (AP)-Food-services company Sodexho Inc. has agreed to pay $80 million to settle a lawsuit brought by thousands of black employees who said they were routinely barred from promotions and segregated within the company. The case was filed in March 2001 against the company’s corporate predecessor, Sodexho Marriott Services, after midlevel black managers said they realized that nearly all of them had been denied promotions into upper management, while less-qualified counterparts rose through the company. TORTS $284M hit for hazardous waste operator officers Columbia, S.C. (AP)-A federal judge ended a lawsuit investors brought against the nation’s largest hazardous waste operator with a court-ordered $200 million judgment against former officers and $84 million in settlements with Safety-Kleen Corp.’s former auditor and directors. Joseph F. Anderson Jr., chief judge for the District of South Carolina, did not let the seven-week trial go to the jury. Instead, he agreed with lawyers suing the company that there was enough evidence to rule in their favor against Kenneth Winger, the company’s former chief executive officer, and Paul Humphreys, the former chief financial officer. Safety-Kleen sought protection from creditors in a June 2000 bankruptcy filing after an internal investigation showed problems with how its top officers reported financial information internally and to shareholders.

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