X

Thank you for sharing!

Your article was successfully shared with the contacts you provided.
A federal judge refused on Monday to dismiss the lead shareholder class action securities case alleging that UnitedHealth Group Inc. and several of its executives backdated stock options. In a colorful but brief order, U.S. District Judge James M. Rosenbaum of the District of Minnesota likened the plaintiff’s theory to the 1973 movie, “The Sting,” in which two con-men outwit a mob boss by betting on horse races after the results are known. “Plaintiffs claim defendants were playing a game with a stacked deck,” the judge wrote in his ruling. “When awarded options, with deliberately selected grant dates which were already in the money, defendants were playing a game they knew they could not lose; and, unsurprisingly, defendants won.” The judge continued: “It is a poker axiom that if a player has his knees under the table and cannot tell who the sucker is, he’s it. In this game, according to plaintiffs, the patsy was either the hapless corporation, which in varying ways defendants controlled, or the corporation’s shareholders, whose equity provided the game’s antes and bloated pot.” The judge also chastised the defendants’ dismissal motions as “expending forests of trees and trillions of electrons.” He emphasized that he has not issued a decision on the merits of the case. Lead defense counsel Peter Carter, a partner at Minneapolis-based Dorsey & Whitney, did not return calls. Bill Lerach, a partner at San Diego-based Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins, who represents the California Public Employees’ Retirement System (CalPERS), the lead plaintiff in the case, did not return calls seeking 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This content has been archived.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Law Journal® and Corporate Counsel®, as well as ALM's other newspapers, directories, legal treatises, published and unpublished court opinions, and other sources of legal information.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.