Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
Boston �� A Massachusetts federal judge ruled that last year’s indictment of Milberg Weiss & Bershad and two of its lawyers and the firm’s conduct during a proposed securities class action case meant the firm was “not adequate” lead counsel. In his March 15 order, Judge Joseph L. Tauro also denied class certification in the case against former executives and board members of Canton, Mass.-based skin substitute maker Organogenesis Inc. Organogenesis has since become a private company after investors bought it out of bankruptcy. In In Re: Organogenesis Securities Litigation, No. 04-10027 (D. Mass.), Tauro’s memo took issue with a Milberg Weiss letter to the court stating that no attorneys litigating the case were indicted. Indicted lawyer Steven Schulman had filed the amended complaint and signed the engagement letters of the lead plaintiffs before his withdrawal from the firm. “This court is not the first court to analyze the terms of this letter from Milberg Weis and to find ‘such fine shading of words’ disturbing,” Tauro wrote. “The court cannot ignore the fact that by virtue of the indictment Milberg Weiss is a different firm than it once was.” In May, 2006, the then-named Milberg, Weiss, Bershad, and Schulman and two former partners were indicated by a federal grand jury for fraud and obstruction of justice for making illegal payments to plaintiffs in securities class action cases. Tauro found that one of the two remaining potential lead plaintiffs did not lose money using the accounting method preferred by courts, and the other’s claims could not represent a class because his claims were atypical of other investors. Tauro also took the firm to task for filing erroneous certifications of plaintiffs’ stock trading records. “The failure to adequately check the records and properly oversee the process is evidence that the court will consider while assessing the adequacy of Milberg Weiss’ performance in the present litigation,” Tauro wrote. The problems with plaintiffs’ affidavits distinguishes the Organogenesis case from others where Milberg Weiss was denied lead counsel said lead defense attorney Jonathan Shapiro, a Boston-based partner at Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr. “[It's] not just problems represented by indictment,” Shapiro said. “In this case court concluded that Milberg failed to demonstrate it was an adequate lawyer for a class of investors.” Tauro’s memo also expressed concern that Milberg Weiss and its lawyers could be distracted by its pending criminal trial in January 2008. Milberg Weiss did not respond to requests for comment.

This content has been archived. It is available exclusively through our partner LexisNexis®.

To view this content, please continue to Lexis Advance®.

Not a Lexis Advance® Subscriber? Subscribe Now

Why am I seeing this?

LexisNexis® is now the exclusive third party online distributor of the broad collection of current and archived versions of ALM's legal news publications. LexisNexis® customers will be able to access and use ALM's content by subscribing to the LexisNexis® services via Lexis Advance®. This includes content from the National Law Journal®, The American Lawyer®, Law Technology News®, The New York Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.

ALM's content plays a significant role in your work and research, and now through this alliance LexisNexis® will bring you access to an even more comprehensive collection of legal content.

For questions call 1-877-256-2472 or contact us at [email protected]


ALM Legal Publication Newsletters

Sign Up Today and Never Miss Another Story.

As part of your digital membership, you can sign up for an unlimited number of a wide range of complimentary newsletters. Visit your My Account page to make your selections. Get the timely legal news and critical analysis you cannot afford to miss. Tailored just for you. In your inbox. Every day.

Copyright © 2020 ALM Media Properties, LLC. All Rights Reserved.