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Ex-hedge fund manager sues Greenberg Traurig A former manager of Apollo Management, a New York hedge fund, has filed a $10 million lawsuit against Greenberg Traurig and attorney Leslie Corwin alleging deceit or collusion. Plaintiff James Melcher claims that in the process of discovery for an underlying case in which he sued the hedge fund for breach of contract, Greenberg Traurig’s client, fund manager Brandon Fradd, set fire to a key document. The lawsuit further alleges that Corwin claimed that the firm was holding the document safely in escrow when, in fact, it had only a scorched remnant. Fradd asserts that he burned the document while making tea in his New York City apartment. Melcher claims that the defendant set fire to the document after his attorney requested that the firm turn it over to determine how old it was, a fact crucial to the breach of contract case. Corwin was not available for comment. A spokeswoman for the firm said in an e-mail message that the lawsuit was “utterly baseless” and was “nothing but a tactic designed to distract by suing an opposing party’s lawyers.” The complaint, Melcher v. Greenberg Traurig, No. 650188/2007, was filed on July 9 in New York County Supreme Court. Melcher’s attorney, Jeffrey Jannuzzo in New York, declined to comment. Chicago jury convicts Black and co-defendants A federal jury convicted media tycoon Conrad Black and three of his former executives at Hollinger International Inc. on July 13 of illegally pocketing money that should have gone to stockholders. Black, 62, was convicted of three counts of mail fraud and one count of obstruction of justice. He faces a maximum of 35 years in prison for the offenses, plus a maximum penalty of $1 million. He was acquitted on nine other counts, including racketeering and misuse of corporate perks. A federal court jury of nine men and three women delivered their verdict after deliberating for 11 days, following 14 weeks of testimony at the racketeering and fraud trial. Black’s three co-defendants were all found guilty on three counts of mail fraud. They are former Hollinger International vice presidents John Boultbee, 64, of Vancouver, British Columbia; and Peter Y. Atkinson, 60, of Toronto; and attorney Mark Kipnis, 59, of Chicago. Incentive payments nixed from BAR/BRI deal U.S. District Judge Manuel Real approved a roughly $49 million settlement in the BAR/BRI class action last week � but only after rejecting incentive payments to five class representatives, claiming they had a conflict of interest. The judge also delivered lower attorney fees than previously suggested for the class action, which alleged that West Publishing and Kaplan Inc., both major players in the legal test prep market, cut a secret deal to give West’s BAR/BRI a virtual monopoly over bar review courses, and Kaplan less competition in LSAT preparation classes. The proposed settlement called for the class of about 300,000 current and former law students to collect about $125 each. Linklaters’ revenue goes past 1 billion pounds Linklaters has become the latest U.K.-based firm to unveil massive increases in fee revenue and profits per partner, as London continues to underline its strength as an international finance center. Linklaters’ revenue increased by 19.9% to �1.121 billion ($2.2 billion) while profits per partner grew by 21.8%, up from �1.062 million last year to �1.294 million ($2.56 million). Linklaters’ figures come as part of a sustained period of growth for the firm. In the last three years, revenue has increased by 57%, while profits per partner have risen by an impressive 108%. Managing partner Tony Angel pointed to the upsurge in cross-border work as a major driver in Linklaters’ growth. Refco law firms could be liable for ‘negligence’ A bankruptcy court-appointed examiner investigating claims that might be made against professionals who worked for Refco Inc. concluded that Mayer, Brown, Rowe & Maw could be liable for “professional negligence,” while claims against Weil, Gotshal & Manges are also possible, though that is less clear. The examiner’s report for the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York, which is overseeing the Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization of Refco, was part of an effort to find where the company’s estate might make claims to help repay Refco creditors. “We are disappointed by the report and disagree with its conclusions,” Mayer Brown said in a statement. Weil Gotshal performed its due diligence responsibilities regarding Refco “thoroughly, professionally and conscientiously,” the firm said in a statement.

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