The company handling electronic document production in the Enron civil suits says a software bug may have erased text in e-mails produced for discovery in the case over an 18-month span.

Applied Discovery Inc., a Bellevue, Wash.�based division of LexisNexis, says one client has reported a problem so far. And lawyers handling the Enron litigation said it was too early to predict the potential impact. But several of the lawyers, speaking on condition of anonymity, said that if the problem was widespread and had corrupted the discovery process, it could cost tens of millions of dollars to fix and could foul up both pending and settled Enron litigation.

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