CAR_Public/030311.mbx                C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R
  
                 Tuesday, March 11, 2003, Vol. 5, No. 49

                            Headlines                            

AT&T RESEARCH: To Settle For $75,000 EEOC Suit For Age Discrimination
AUSTRALIA: Most Bali Victims To Join Suit Against al-Qaeda's Financiers
BAYER: Plaintiffs Present E-mails Showing Baycol Research Disregarded
BAYER: Baycol Suits Increase Bringing Questions Of Financial Stability
BRISTOL-MYERS SQUIBB: Agrees To Settle FTC Generic Drug Antitrust Suit

CANADA: Court Rules Credit Reporting Firms Can Be Sued Over False Data
ENRON CORPORATION: TX Judge Refuses To Move Securities Fraud Suit Trial
FLORIDA: Court Probes Ban on Children's Adoption By Gay Men, Lesbians
HONEYWELL INTERNATIONAL: Enters Mediation In NJ Securities Fraud Suit
HSBC USA: Asks PA Court To Dismiss Consolidated Securities Suit in PA

ILLINOIS: Class Status Denied For Suit Over Treatment Of Mentally Ill
INDONESIA: Landslide Victims Sue State Forestry Firm, Local Government
LOCKHEED MARTIN: CA Court Dismisses Claims in Securities Fraud Lawsuit
MARYLAND: NAACP Gives Deadline To Vote On Racial Profiling Settlement
MARYLAND: Workers File Suit To Seek Double Pay For Snow Emergency Work

MCG CAPITAL: Investors Launch Suit For Securities Violations in E.D. VA
NIGERIA: Human Rights Group To Commence Suit Over January 2002 Bombing
PANAMSAT CORPORATION: Asks DE Court To Dismiss Securities Fraud Lawsuit
PENNSYLVANIA: Suit's Success To Void Forms For In-Depth Employee Checks
PESTICIDE FIRMS: Judge Certifies Suit Over Lobsters Killed By Chemicals

PHILADELPHIA: Man Sues After Being Mistakenly Arrested, Sent To Prison
QWEST COMMUNICATIONS: Judge Certifies Lawsuit Over "Fly Free" Promotion
REAL ESTATE: Asks Court To Set Aside Verdict in Securities Fraud Suit
SBC: Settles Consumer Suit With Money After Sending Free Phone Cards
SPIEGEL INC.: To Settle SEC Allegations Of Withholding Financial Info

TEXAS: Court Dismisses Portions Of Suit Seeking Closed-Captioned Films
TOBACCO LITIGATION: Judge To Deliver Ruling In "Light" Cigarettes Case
TOYOTA MOTOR: Agrees To Settle Suit Alleging Clean Air Act Violations
UNITED KINGDOM: Australian, New Zealand Ex-Coal Miners To Join Lawsuit
WHYALLA AIRLINES: Landmark Out-Of-Court Settlement Forged In Crash Suit

                     New Securities Fraud Cases    

MICHAELS STORES: Weiss & Yourman Files Securities Fraud Suit in N.D. TX
MICROTUNE INC.: Lovell Stewart Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in E.D. TX
PARAMETRIC TECHNOLOGY: Wolf Haldenstein Commences Securities Suit in MA
PROVIDENT FINANCIAL: Schiffrin & Barroway Lodges Securities Suit in OH
PROVIDENT FINANCIAL: Milberg Weiss Commences Securities Suit in S.D. OH

PROVIDENT FINANCIAL: Charles Piven Commences Securities Suit in S.D. OH
PROVIDENT FINANCIAL: Cauley Geller Commences Securities Suit in S.D. OH
SOLECTRON CORPORATION: Cauley Geller Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA
UNUMPROVIDENT CORPORATION: Emerson Poynter Lodges Securities Suit in TN
VITALWORKS INC.: Schiffrin & Barroway Lodges Securities Lawsuit in CT

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AT&T RESEARCH: To Settle For $75,000 EEOC Suit For Age Discrimination
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AT&T Research Laboratories will settle for $75,000 an age
discrimination lawsuit filed by the United States Equal Employment
Opportunity Commission on behalf of a 50-year-old man denied a job in
favor of an applicant almost half his age, the Associated Press
reports.

The settlement ended a lawsuit filed last year, alleging claims under
the Age Discrimination in Employment Act of 1967 on behalf of Gideon
Vigdorhous, who had applied for a job as a research statistician at the
Florham Park laboratories.  The lawsuit charged that the job was given
to a 28-year-old with less experience than Mr. Vigdorhous.

Under the settlement, the Company agreed conduct training on age
discrimination for supervisors, managers and staffing personnel who
have hiring authority at the Florham Park facility.  The Company will
reimburse the EEOC $500 for the training, in addition to travel and
copying costs.

AT&T denies any wrongdoing, according to the settlement, which was
announced Thursday by the EEOC, AP reports.


AUSTRALIA: Most Bali Victims To Join Suit Against al-Qaeda's Financiers
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The majority of Australian Bali bomb victims have indicated they will
join a multi-trillion US dollar class action against financiers of the
al-Qaeda terrorist network, the Australian Associated Press General
News reports.

Twenty-three Australian, including victims of the bombings and the
families of those who died, have joined the action being brought by
Richard Middleton, who is a member of a US legal firm.  Another 50
people have registered their interest in the action, and lawyers are
confident they will officially join.  In addition, eight people from
overseas who were affected by the bombing have joined the action.  The
October 12, 2002 attacks killed nearly 200 people, 89 of whom were
Australian.

Mike Hourigan is Australian legal counsel for the class action and has
been meeting with families and victims across Australia since the
action was announced early last month.  Mr. Hourigan said families had
been assured there was no financial cost for them when they joined the
suit, even if it failed.

"Almost without exception, the families and victims want to join this
action mainly as a way of striking back at terrorism, not necessarily
the financial compensation that would come with a victory," said Mr.
Hourigan.

Those who sign up will be joining the relatives of about 900 victims of
the September 11 terrorist attacks, who are seeking $185 trillion in
damages from al-Qaeda financiers.  The defendants named in the class
action include wealthy Saudi individuals, banks, corporations and
Islamic charities implicated in the financing of al-Qaeda.


BAYER: Plaintiffs Present E-mails Showing Baycol Research Disregarded
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Bayer Corporation allegedly disregarded disturbing research on the
cholesterol drug Baycol, before it was withdrawn from the market,
evidence such as emails and documents presented in trial in Texas
federal court suggests, the Associated Press reports.  The $100 million
lawsuit, filed by an 82-year-old retired engineer who says a muscle-
destroying side effect made his legs stop working, is the first of
thousands against Bayer to go to trial in the United States.

Baycol (or Lipobay) was recalled in August 2001, after it was linked to
at least 52 deaths worldwide and to a side effect known as
rhabdomyolysis, a condition that causes muscle tissue to disintegrate
and to fail.  

Internal documents and e-mails released by the plaintiff's lawyers
during the trial show executives discussing potential dangers long
before sales were halted.  In June 2000, an e-mail to a vice president
noted that "there have been some deaths related to Baycol," and that
people at its marketing partner, SmithKline Beecham, knew it.  

"So much for keeping this quiet," the e-mail said.  "How will marketing
spin this?" another e-mail wondered, the Associated Press reports.

According to the suit, the Company was overly eager to jump into the
lucrative US market for the cholesterol-fighting drugs known as
statins.  About 8 million Americans use statins to lower their risk of
heart attacks, making them the third most widely prescribed drug in the
nation, AP stated.  At the trial, which opened February 18, plaintiff's
attorney Mikal Watts said Bayer "knew its drug would kill people, that
chose to go ahead and kill people anyway so they could go ahead and
make a billion dollars."

Bayer attorney Philip Beck said the e-mails were taken out of context.  
He assured that after Bayer finishes presenting its case - it began
this week - the jury would see that the company worked with the FDA to
make sure Baycol was used safely.

The Company faces more than 7,000 lawsuits from former Baycol users,
mostly in the United States.  Mr. Beck said the company is taking
responsibility for the drug and would rather compensate victims than
fight them in court.  However, he told AP the plaintiff's lawyer had
backed Bayer up against the wall by demanding a settlement covering
1,600 plaintiffs.  "Most of those cases are meritless," Beck said. "We
weren't going to be held hostage like that."

The Company has paid $125 million to settle about 450 cases, and
investors are clearly worried.  The US-traded stock of German parent
Bayer AG has fallen about one-fourth since the Texas trial began.


BAYER: Baycol Suits Increase Bringing Questions Of Financial Stability
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The number of lawsuits over Bayer's cholesterol drug Baycol are
increasing, bringing in their wake questions of how well the 140-year-
old German company's drug business can weather the thousands of
lawsuits lining up in the courts, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Some analysts have been translating these questions into numbers.  
Bayer has said that it has received 7,800 cases and plaintiffs' lawyers
say they have filed hundreds of new claims since the first case went to
trial two weeks ago.  This information, plus the fact that 700,000
people in the United States took Baycol before Bayer removed the drug
from the market in August 2001, has given analysts the "stuff" from
which predictions are made:  Some analysts are estimating as much as $5
billion in eventual settlements.

Reports say that Bayer's position after loss of Baycol, one of its top
sellers, is not the most stable.  This, combined with the fact that
half of its existing pharmaceutical sales come from drugs about to
become generic, makes for a shaky financial position.  The company has
taken steps to shore up its drug business by a willingness to
restructure and relinquish majority control, but most potential bidders
have backed away.

"Bayer's pharmaceutical business is in a very weak position to begin
with," said Tony Cox, analyst at Dresdner, Kleinwort Wasserstein.  "It
is hard to guess how it will turn out for the company."  As a result
investors have been turning their backs on the stock, knocking off
nearly a quarter of its market value in the past two weeks.

The overarching legal question is how much Bayer executives knew about
the dangers of Baycol while they were trying to turn it into a
blockbuster product.  One jury's answer is expected in about two weeks,
from the Corpus Christi, Texas, trial, and it should go a long way in
determining the extent of Bayer's financial exposure.

Any verdict that awards punitive damages could trigger thousands of new
claims in the United States, according to the lawyers.  Such a verdict
would embolden lawyers to pursue much steeper awards than the average
$280,000 out-of-court settlements Bayer has paid out so far.  The
case's outcome also is expected to depend on a US District Court
judge's ruling in the next few months over whether to include thousands
of other cases filed in federal court in a class action.

Since August, Bayer has settled 450 cases for a total of $125 million,
and is negotiating to settle about 500 more for approximately the same
amount.  So far, the company's insurance has covered those claims.  The
biggest payments, for about $1.2 million each, have been paid to
relatives of patients who died from the severe muscle-weakening
condition linked to Baycol.  However, lawyers at Kenneth B. Moll &
Associates in Chicago, which has filed nearly 1,000 claims on behalf of
Baycol patients, say the company still has not settled many of the most
serious claims.


BRISTOL-MYERS SQUIBB: Agrees To Settle FTC Generic Drug Antitrust Suit
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Bristol-Myers Squibb agreed to settle antitrust charges filed by the
United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) by submitting to tough new
restrictions on its business tactics, Reuters reports.  The suit
alleges the Company illegally blocked cheaper versions of three of its
drugs, anti-anxiety drug BuSpar and cancer drugs Taxol and Platinol.

The suit further alleges the Company delayed generic competition by
filing new patents for the three drugs that didn't meet the standard
for listing in the "Orange Book" of patent-protected drugs published by
the Food and Drug Administration, Reuters states.

Under the agreement, the Company will adhere to a 10-year ban that will
prohibit it from its past practice of filing new patent listings that
automatically lock out generic competitors to a particular drug for 30
months at a time.  In January, the Company also reached a $670 million
settlement to resolve similar charges regarding BuSpar and Taxol, filed
by a group of state attorneys, generic drugmakers and pharmacy chains.

"Bristol's illegal conduct protected nearly $2 billion in yearly sales
from the three monopolies," FTC Chairman Timothy Muris told a news
conference,  "forcing cancer patients and others to overpay by hundreds
of millions of dollars for important and often life-saving
medications."

The five-member FTC voted unanimously to accept the settlement which
will be subject to 30 days public comment, Reuters reports.

Bristol-Myers can still file suit against a generic drug company for
patent infringement under the settlement.  The company said in a
statement the restrictions should not significantly impact protection
of its intellectual property, nor adversely impact its financial
position.  "The company has agreed to these proposed terms in order to
achieve a resolution of these matters which will allow it to continue
its focus on discovering and developing quality medicines," Bristol-
Myers said.

State attorneys general also praised the settlement.  "The message to
other drug manufacturers should be loud and clear: We will not tolerate
illegal misuse of patents or misconduct that deprives patients of
affordable medicine," Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal
told Reuters.


CANADA: Court Rules Credit Reporting Firms Can Be Sued Over False Data
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Credit-reporting agencies can be sued for negligence, the Ontario Court
of Appeal ruled recently.  Two conditions must be present, however, in
order for plaintiffs to prevail:  the false information must have been
circulated by the agency and the credit rating of the individual
involved must have been harmed, The Globe and Mail reports.

The ruling by the appeals court was a major victory in a class acti