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BANKRUPTCY Banks pay dairy group $96.5M over bankruptcy MILAN, ITALY (AP) � Parmalat SpA has announced three settlement agreements related to the dairy group’s 2003 failure, with Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc., ING Bank FSB and Banca Monte Parma of Italy, for a total of $96.5 million. Parmalat is pursuing civil actions in Italy and the United States aimed at recouping losses from the $18 billion insolvency. Parmalat said Merrill Lynch agreed to pay Parmalat $39 million, closing all outstanding claims. Parmalat, which emerged from bankruptcy protection in 2005, also said it had settled suits filed against ING for $10.72 million and against Banca Monte Parma for $46.9 million. The dairy company said that it was seeking $9.25 billion in clawback claims in Italy, under which a company is allowed to reclaim money paid to banks in the period leading to the bankruptcy. BREACH OF CONTRACT MasterCard, FIFA settle World Cup sponsor fight NEW YORK (AP) � MasterCard Inc. said it will accept a $90 million settlement and discontinue its sponsorship of the 2010 and 2014 World Cup soccer tournaments, ending its legal dispute with Federation Internationale de Football Association, the sport’s governing body. MasterCard and FIFA have been fighting in court over MasterCard’s right to sponsor the tournaments. A New York federal judge ruled in December 2006 that FIFA had not honored its agreements with the credit card issuer when it awarded sponsorship rights to MasterCard’s rival Visa International Inc. CLASS ACTION Mortgagor to pay $5.1M over brokers’ hidden fees NEW YORK (AP) � NovaStar Mortgage Inc., the residential lending unit of NovaStar Financial Inc., said it has negotiated a settlement in a Tacoma, Wash., federal court to pay $5.1 million to 1,600 class action plaintiffs. The plaintiffs claimed that NovaStar charged them higher interest rates because of hidden fees NovaStar paid its mortgage brokers. NovaStar said yield-spread premiums were a common industry practice. GOVERNMENT Workers unfairly fired by new sheriff to get $7M JONESBORO, GA. (AP) � Clayton County, Ga., commissioners have approved a $7 million settlement for 34 sheriff’s department employees whom Sheriff Victor Hill fired on his first day in office in 2005. A Georgia state judge ruled the employees had been fired without cause, and they went back to work about two months later. The workers � most of whom are white � sued the county, claiming they were fired because of their race or because they supported Hill’s opponent in the 2004 sheriff’s race. PRICE-FIXING Energy firms settle Calif. crisis claims for $84M WASHINGTON (AP) � Two power companies will pay $84 million to settle claims against them stemming from the 2000-2001 California energy crisis, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission said. PacifiCorp, a unit of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co., will pay $27.9 million to resolve charges that it manipulated the California and Pacific Northwest power markets in 2000 and 2001. In the second case, a unit of Houston-based El Paso Corp. will pay $56 million to resolve all outstanding claims against it. PRODUCTS LIABILITY Firms must pay $5.5M over drug patch death WEST PALM BEACH, FLA. (AP) � A Florida federal jury awarded $5.5 million to the father of a man who died while wearing a drug patch made by two Johnson & Johnson subsidiaries. The jury found that Janssen Pharmaceutica Products and the Alza Corp., both based in New Jersey, were liable in the 2003 death of 28-year-old Adam Hendelson, who was wearing the companies’ Duragesic patch. The patch delivers controlled doses of the powerful painkiller fentanyl. Hendelson suffered chronic hip pain after a car accident and wore the patch on his arm. Tests showed Hendelson had at least three times the lethal dose of fentanyl in his system at the time of his death. SEX DISCRIMINATION Wal-Mart must pay $2M to fired pharmacist PITTSFIELD, MASS. (AP) � A pharmacist who claimed she was fired by Wal-Mart Stores Inc. after asking to be paid the same as her male colleagues has won a nearly $2 million award against the retail giant. A Massachusetts state jury concluded that Wal-Mart had discriminated against Cynthia Haddad and awarded her nearly $1 million in compensatory damages and $1 million in punitive damages. Haddad was fired in April 2004 after more than 10 years at a Wal-Mart store in Pittsfield. She claimed in court that she was fired because she asked to be paid the same as her male counterparts, including a bonus given to pharmacy managers. The company paid the bonus, then fired her two weeks later.

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