LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
Report: Securities, Business Litigation Filings Continue To Drop In 3rd Quarter

NEW YORK - Although the number of new securities and business litigation filings and regulatory enforcement actions declined for the third straight quarter, they did so at a much slower pace, according to a report released Oct. 15 by industry analyst Advisen Ltd.

Judge Dismisses Shareholder Suit Against Capital One Directors And Officers

ALEXANDRIA, Va. - A federal judge in Virginia dismissed a shareholder derivative lawsuit against directors and officers of Capital One on Oct. 8 because, among other reasons, the shareholders failed to show that presuit demand upon the company's board of directors would have been futile (In re Capital One Derivative Shareholder Litigation, No. 12-cv-01100, E.D. Va.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 145911).

Judge Grants Class Certification In First Solar Securities Suit

PHOENIX - Lead plaintiffs in a securities class action lawsuit against an energy company and certain of its current and former officers and directors have properly met the statutory requirements for class certification, a federal judge in Arizona ruled Oct. 8 (Mark Smilovits v. First Solar Inc., et al., No. 12-0555, D. Ariz.).

Shareholder Asks Court To Give Final Approval To Derivative Suit Settlement

WILMINGTON, Del. - A shareholder told a federal court in Delaware on Oct. 7 that a settlement reached with directors and officers of a corporation in a shareholder derivative lawsuit is fair, reasonable and adequate and should be approved by the court (Jared Staal, derivatively on behalf of K12 Inc. v. Andrew H. Tisch, et al., No. 12-cv-00365, D. Del.).

U.S. Supreme Court Denies JPMorgan's Motion In Mortgage-Backed Securities Case

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 7 denied JPMorgan Chase & Co.'s motion to intervene in a Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA) lawsuit against several financial institutions that seeks to recover money lost as a result of the banks' sale of toxic residential mortgage-backed securities to Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac (JPMorgan Chase & Co. v. Federal Housing Finance Agency, No. 13M30, U.S. Sup.).

High Court Declines Review Of Ruling In Securities Suit Against Drug Maker

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The U.S. Supreme Court on Oct. 7 declined to review a First Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals ruling affirming in part and reversing in part a federal court's ruling that shareholders in a securities class action lawsuit failed to properly plead their claims in arguing that a pharmaceutical company and others misrepresented a number of facts regarding an iron-replacement drug the company was developing (AMAG Pharmaceuticals Inc., et al. v. Silverstrand Investments, et al., No. 12-1457, U.S. Sup.).

Judge Approves Settlement Of Suit Against E*Trade Directors And Officers

NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Oct. 3 granted final approval of a settlement in a shareholder derivative lawsuit, noting that the settlement is fair, reasonable and adequate (Catherine Rubery, Derivatively on Behalf of E*Trade Financial Corporation v. Mitchell H. Caplan, et al., No. 07-cv-8612, S.D. N.Y.).

Judge Substantially Dismisses Securities Claims In BP Oil Spill Lawsuit

HOUSTON - In an opinion made available on Oct. 7, a federal judge in New York significantly trimmed the claims in a securities class action complaint filed by Ohio state pension funds against BP PLC., two of its subsidiaries and three former officers and directors, ruling that the pension funds had not properly pleaded that the court had jurisdiction over some of the claims (In re BP p.l.c. Securities Litigation, No. 10-md-2185, Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, et al. v. BP P.L.C., et al., No. 12-1837, S.D. N.Y.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 142947).

Panel Affirms Dismissal Of Securities Class Action For Failure To Plead Scienter

NEW YORK - In an order made available on Oct. 4, and without providing further detail, a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel affirmed a federal judge in New York's dismissal of a securities class action lawsuit for failure to plead scienter (Forsta AP Fonden, et al. v. Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd., et al., No. 13-0511, 2nd Cir.; 2013 U.S. App. LEXIS 20195).

Judge Dismisses Securities Class Action Lawsuit With Leave To Amend

NEW YORK - Lead plaintiffs in a securities class action lawsuit have failed to plead any material misrepresentation or scienter in making their federal securities act claims against SAIC Inc. and certain of its current and former officers and directors, a federal judge in New York ruled Sept. 30 (In re SAIC Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 12-1353, S.D. N.Y.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 142606).

Securities Suit Against College, Others Transferred To California Federal Court

NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Oct. 1 granted a for-profit college's request for a transfer of venue in a securities class action lawsuit, ruling that a number of factors weigh in favor of relocating the action to a California federal court (Frank Erickson v. Corinthian Colleges Inc., et al., No. 13-4308, S.D. N.Y.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 142113).

Vice Chancellor Says Shareholder Failed To Show Demand Should Be Excused

WILMINGTON, Del. - A Delaware vice chancellor granted the directors and officers of a public limited partnership's motion to dismiss a shareholder's derivative complaint on Sept. 30 because the shareholder failed to show that presuit demand upon the board of directors of the limited partnership's general partner would have been futile (Frederick H. DiRienzo v. Warren G. Lichtenstein, et al., No. 7094-VCP, Del. Chanc.; 2013 Del. Ch. LEXIS 242).

Federal Judge Will Not Reconsider Securities Law Claims In Fraud Lawsuit

NEW YORK - A federal judge in New York on Sept. 27 declined to reconsider an investor's claims that an auditor violated federal securities law by failing to properly investigate certain red flags that would have uncovered a Ponzi scheme (Iowa Public Employees' Retirement System v. Deloitte & Touche LLP, No. 12-2136, S.D. N.Y.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139612).

Judge Grants Final Approval Of $688M Settlement In 2 Securities Class Actions

NEWARK, N.J. - A federal judge in New Jersey on Oct. 1 granted final approval of a $688 million settlement in two securities class action lawsuits alleging that Merck and Co. Inc. and others failed to disclose adverse results of a clinical trial for two cholesterol drugs Merck was developing (In Re: Merck & Co., Vytorin/Zetia Securities Litigation, No. 2:08-CV-2177, D. N.J.; In Re: Schering-Plough Corp./ENHANCE Securities Litigation, 08-397, D. N.J.).

Judge: Lead Plaintiffs Failed To Plead Scienter In Securities Class Action Suit

BOISE, Idaho - Dismissal of a securities class action lawsuit is necessary, a federal judge in Idaho ruled Sept. 26, because lead plaintiffs in the action have failed to plead scienter (Bricklayers of Western Pennsylvania Pension Plan v. Hecla Mining Co., et al., No. 12-0042, D. Idaho; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139869).

Securities Claims Against Auditor For Chinese Reverse Merger Company Dismissed

NEW YORK - Dismissal of a shareholder's securities class action lawsuit against a Chinese company's former auditor and the one of auditors former principals is proper because the shareholder failed to plead an actionable misrepresentation, scienter or loss causation, a federal judge in New York ruled Sept. 30 (In re China Organic Securities Litigation, No. 11-8623, S.D. N.Y.).

Interlocutory Appeal In AIG Government Takeover Case Denied

WASHINGTON, D.C. - A federal judge on Sept. 27 denied the federal government's motion for certification of interlocutory appeal in a shareholder lawsuit regarding the government's takeover of American International Group (AIG), ruling that the motion is untimely and that the grounds for appeal do not satisfy statutory requirements (Starr International Co. Inc. v. The United States, et al., No. 11-779, Fed. Clms.).

Judge: Investors Properly Pleaded Misrepresentation Claims In Securities Suit

LAS VEGAS - Dismissal of a securities class action lawsuit against MGM Resorts International (MGM) and others is not proper, a federal judge in Nevada ruled Sept. 26, because lead plaintiffs in the action have pleaded an actionable misstatement, scienter and loss causation (In re MGM Mirage Securities Litigation, No. 09-1558, D. Nev.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 139356).

Undisclosed Securities Class Action Settlement Reached In Suit Against Siemens

NEWARK, N.J. - Without providing any detail, a federal judge in New Jersey on Sept. 26 issued a one-page order dismissing a securities class action lawsuit against Siemens Hearing Instruments Inc. (SHI) for alleged violations of federal securities law in order to allow for a settlement agreement to be finalized (MTB Investment Partners LP v. Siemens Hearing Instruments Inc., No. 12-0340, D. N.J.).

Judge OKs Directors' And Officers' $2.75 Million Settlement With Shareholders

SEATTLE - A federal judge in Washington on Sept. 26 gave final approval to the $2.75 million settlement of a shareholder derivative lawsuit (In re HQ Sustainable Maritime Industries, Inc. Derivative Litigation, No. 11-cv-00910, W.D. Wash.).

Shareholders Ask For Final Approval Of Settlement Of Derivative Suit

SAN FRANCISCO - A group of shareholders asked a California federal court on Sept. 23 to give final approval to a settlement with directors and officers of a company that implements certain corporate governance changes (In re OCZ Technology Group, Inc. Shareholder Derivative Litigation, No. 12-cv-05556, N.D. Calif.).

Justice Says Shareholder's Arguments Regarding Demand Futility Fail

NEW YORK - A New York state court justice granted a group of directors' and officers' motion to dismiss a shareholder derivative suit on Sept. 23 because the shareholder failed to show that presuit demand upon the company's board of directors would have been futile (International Painters and Allied Trades Industry Pension Fund v. Cantor Fitzgerald, L.P., et al., No. 650736/2012, N.Y. Sup., New York Co.).

2nd Circuit Affirms Dismissal Of Securities Suit Against Royal Bank Of Scotland

NEW YORK - A federal district court did not err in dismissing a securities class action lawsuit against The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC (RBS) and others because the lead plaintiff in the action failed to plead any actionable misrepresentation, a Second Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel ruled Sept. 25 (The Freeman Group, et al. v. The Royal Bank of Scotland Group PLC, et al., No. 12-3642, 2nd Cir.).

Judge: Shareholders Failed To Show That Directors Knew Of Alleged Wrongdoing

CHICAGO - A federal judge in Illinois on Sept. 24 dismissed a shareholder derivative complaint because the plaintiffs failed to prove demand futility and did not show that members of the company's board of directors had knowledge of certain alleged wrongdoing (Marvin H. Maurras Revocable Trust, et al. v. Edgar M. Bronfman, Jr., No. 12-cv-03395, N.D. Ill.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 136770).

Judge Won't Dismiss Federal Claims In Securities Class Action Lawsuit

CHICAGO - In an opinion made available on Sept. 23, a federal judge in Illinois denied motions to dismiss filed by defendants in a securities class action lawsuit, ruling that the lead plaintiff in the action has properly pleaded his federal securities law claims (In re Groupon Inc. Securities Litigation, No. 12-2450, N.D. Ill.; 2013 U.S. Dist. LEXIS 135191).