CAR_Public/041111.mbx              C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

             Thursday, November 11, 2004, Vol. 6, No. 224


                          Headlines

ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Reaches Settlement For IL Antitrust Lawsuit
ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Summary Judgment Granted in FL Hytrin Suit
ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Faces Consolidated Antitrust Lawsuit in MA
ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Continues To Face Litigation Over Oxycontin
ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Faces Consolidated Drug Lawsuit in MN Court

ABERCROMBIE & FITCH: Reaches Settlement in CA Race Bias Lawsuits
ALLEGHENY ENERGY: Fights Remand of Energy Suit To CA State Court
ALLEGHENY ENERGY: Plaintiffs Oppose MD Securities Suit Dismissal
ALLEGHENY ENERGY: Asks MD Court To Dismiss ERISA Violations Suit
ALOHA HOUSEWARES: Recalls 30T Radiant Heaters Due To Fire Hazard

ARMOR HOLDINGS: FL Court Grants Final Approval To Settlement
BLACK DIAMOND: Recalls 1,000 Ion Batteries Due To Fire Hazard
BILT-SAFE TECHNOLOGIES: Recalls 60T Blankets Due To Burn Hazard
CANADA: Group Hails Hearings For Reopening Hepatitis Settlement
CHESAPEAKE BAY: Group Plans Lawsuit Against EPA Clean-up Efforts

CMS ENERGY: Faces Several Natural Gas Antitrust Lawsuits in NV
CMS ENERGY: Faces Several Natural Gas Antitrust Lawsuits in CA
COMMUNITY HEALTH: Suit For Uninsured Patients Filed in AL Court
COMMUNITY HEALTH: Uninsured Patients Lodge PA Unfair Trade Suit
CONSUMERS ENERGY: Trial in ERISA Lawsuit Expected in Late 2005

CONSUMERS ENERGY: MI Court Mulls Dismissal of Securities Lawsuit
COX COMMUNICATIONS: LA Court Approves Subscriber Suit Settlement
COX COMMUNICATIONS: NY Court Dismisses Claim in Securities Suit
COX COMMUNICATIONS: NY Securities Lawsuit Dismissal Deemed Final
COX COMMUNICATIONS: Negotiating Settlement For GA, DE Lawsuits

DJ ORTHOPEDICS: CA Court Gives Final Approval To Suit Settlement
ENDOCARE INC.: Reaches $8.95M Securities Suit Settlement in CA
FIRSTENERGY CORPORATION: Asks NY Court To Dismiss Consumer Suit
FIRSTENERGY CORPORATION: OH Court Approves Stock Suit Settlement
FLORIDA: Eleven Disenfranchised Voters Lodge Lawsuit V. A-CORN

FORD MOTOR: TX Police Departments Withdraw Suit V. Patrol Cars
GENERAL BINDING: Recalls 34.6T Pouch Laminators For Fire Hazard
INDIANA: Ex-Patient Lodges Suit Over "Illegal" Debt Collections
JCP&L TRANSITION: NJ Court Junks Appeal of Suit De-certification
MCG CAPITAL: Appeals Court Mulls Stock Lawsuit Dismissal Appeal

MEDICAL STAFFING: Asks FL Court To Dismiss Securities Fraud Suit
MICROTUNE INC.: Working To Settle Securities Lawsuit in E.D. TX
PNM RESOURCES: Asks for Dismissal of Cross-Claim in Energy Suit
RELIANT ENERGY: Units Continue to Face CA Energy Antitrust Suits
RELIANT ENERGY: Plaintiffs Appeal CA Antitrust Lawsuit Dismissal

RELIANT ENERGY: Continues To Face Natural Gas Antitrust Lawsuits
SEI INVESTMENTS: Faces Securities Lawsuit Over PBHG Funds in MD
SELFWORX.COM: FTC Sues Over Unsubstantiated Weight Loss Claims
WINNEBAGO INDUSTRIES: Recalls Minnie Motor Homes For Fire Hazard
WINNEBAGO INDUSTRIES: Recalls Motorhomes For Fire, Damage Hazard

WORLDCOM INC.: Rejects Settlement For Right-of-Way Litigation
WORLDCOM INC.: Reaches Settlement for NY Consolidated ERISA Suit

                  New Securities Fraud Cases

AON CORPORATION: Murray Frank Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in IL
ASPEN TECHNOLOGY: Lerach Coughlin Lodges Securities Suit in MA
ASPEN TECHNOLOGY: Schatz & Nobel Lodges Securities Lawsuit in MA
JAKKS PACIFIC: Wolf Haldenstein Lodges Securities Lawsuit in NY
MARSH & MCLENNAN: Brodsky & Smith Lodges Securities Suit in NY

MARSH & MCLENNAN: Scott + Scott Lodges ERISA Lawsuit in NJ
STAR GAS: Goodking Labaton Lodges Securities Fraud Lawsuit in CT
SWIFT TRANSPORTATION: Schiffrin & Barroway Files AZ Stock Suit
UNITED RENTALS: Lerach Coughlin Lodges Securities Lawsuit in CT

                         *********


ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Reaches Settlement For IL Antitrust Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Abbott Laboratories, Inc. reached a settlement for an antitrust
class action filed in the United States District Court for the
Northern District of Illinois (labeled the Fullerton Drugs
suit).

The suit is one of several lawsuits filed against the Company in
the mid-1990s, on behalf of retail pharmacies in federal and
state Courts as purported class actions.  The retail pharmacies
allege that pharmaceutical manufacturers, including the Company,
conspired to fix prices for prescription pharmaceuticals and/or
to discriminate in pricing to retail pharmacies in violation of
state and federal antitrust laws.  The cases seek treble
damages, civil penalties, and injunctive and other relief.


ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Summary Judgment Granted in FL Hytrin Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Southern District of
Florida granted summary judgment in favor of Abbott
Laboratories, Inc. on plaintiffs' remaining claims in the class
action styled "In re: Terazosin Hydrochloride, MDL No. 1317."

Several similar suits were initially filed in federal Court and
various state Courts in connection with the settlement of patent
litigation by the Company involving terazosin hydrochloride, a
drug sold by the Company under the trademark Hytrin.

Abbott's motions for summary judgment on plaintiffs' remaining
claims are still pending.  One of the previously reported state
Court cases, styled "Hopper," was stayed pending the resolution
of MDL No. 1317.


ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Faces Consolidated Antitrust Lawsuit in MA
---------------------------------------------------------------
Abbott Laboratories, Inc. faces a consolidated antitrust class
action filed in the United States District Court in
Massachusetts under the Multidistrict Litigation Rules as "In
re: Pharmaceutical Industry Average Wholesale Price Litigation,
MDL 1456."

Several suits were initially filed in the state and federal
Court brought as purported class actions or representative
actions on behalf of individuals or entities.  These lawsuits
allege generally that the Company and numerous other
pharmaceutical companies reported false pricing information in
connection with certain drugs that are reimbursable under
Medicare and Medicaid.  These cases generally seek damages,
treble damages, disgorgement of profits, restitution and
attorneys' fees.

During the third quarter of 2004, one additional lawsuit was
filed, "The City of New York," in the United States District
Court for the Southern District of New York.  Transfer to the
MDL is pending.


ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Continues To Face Litigation Over Oxycontin
----------------------------------------------------------------
Abbott Laboratories, Inc. continues to face numerous lawsuits
involving the drug oxycodone (a drug sold under the trademark
OxyContin), which is manufactured and sold by Purdue Pharma.
Abbott promoted OxyContin to certain specialty physicians,
including surgeons and anesthesiologists, under a co-promotion
agreement with Purdue Pharma.

Most of the lawsuits allege generally that plaintiffs suffered
personal injuries as a result of taking OxyContin.  A few
lawsuits allege consumer protection violations and unfair trade
practices.  One suit by a third-party payor alleges antitrust
pricing violations and overpricing of the drug.

One case has been brought by the Attorney General for the State
of West Virginia.  As of September 30, 2004, a total of 300
lawsuits are pending in which the Company is a party.  64 cases
are pending in federal Court; 236 cases are pending in state
Court.  277 cases are brought by individual plaintiffs, and 23
cases are brought as purported class action lawsuits.  Purdue
Pharma is a defendant in each lawsuit and, pursuant to the co-
promotion agreement, Purdue is required to indemnify Abbott in
each lawsuit.


ABBOTT LABORATORIES: Faces Consolidated Drug Lawsuit in MN Court
----------------------------------------------------------------
Abbott Laboratories, Inc. faces a consolidated class action
filed in the United States District Court for the District of
Minnesota, styled "In re Canadian Import Antitrust Litigation."

Six cases were initially filed, alleging generally the Company
and numerous other pharmaceutical manufacturers violated
antitrust laws by conspiring to prevent re-importation of drugs
from Canada.  A seventh case was filed during the third quarter
of 2004 in the same Court.  All seven cases were later
consolidated.

The consolidated lawsuit purports to be a class action brought
on behalf of all United States residents who purchased and/or
paid for brand name prescription drugs manufactured by the
defendants.  The plaintiffs seek an injunction prohibiting
efforts to stop re-importation, a refund of all allegedly
unlawful profits received by the defendants, treble damages, and
attorneys' fees.


ABERCROMBIE & FITCH: Reaches Settlement in CA Race Bias Lawsuits
----------------------------------------------------------------
Abercrombie & Fitch Co. recently reported that it incurred a 21
per cent drop in third-quarter, citing a nearly $33 million one-
time charge to settle three class-action lawsuits related to
work force diversity, the Associated Press reports.

Hispanic and Asian plaintiffs had initiated a lawsuit against
Abercrombie in June 2003 in San Francisco, alleging the suburban
Columbus retailer hires a disproportionately white sales force,
puts minorities in less-visible jobs and cultivates a virtually
all-white image in its catalogues and elsewhere.

According to the Company, it would pay $50 million to resolve
the litigation, taking a charge of $32.9 million, or 22 cents
per share, in the third quarter.

In a recent conference call with analysts, president and chief
operating officer Robert Singer stated that Abercrombie chose to
settle the matter in order to avoid a drawn-out dispute that
would have been harmful to the Company, which operates 363
Abercrombie and Fitch stores, 174 Abercrombie stores for
children and 224 Hollister stores.

Though still to be approved by a federal judge, Martin D'Urso,
one of the plaintiffs' lawyers, stated that they hope to submit
it to the Court within the next two weeks.


ALLEGHENY ENERGY: Fights Remand of Energy Suit To CA State Court
----------------------------------------------------------------
Allegheny Energy Supply Co. LLC and more than two dozen other
named defendant power suppliers opposed the motion to remand the
consolidated antitrust class action filed against them to
California state Court.

Nine putative class actions were initially filed in in state
Courts in 2002.  Eight of the suits were commenced by consumers
of wholesale electricity in California.  The ninth, styled
"Millar v. Allegheny Energy Supply Co., et al.," was filed on
behalf of California consumers and taxpayers.  The suits were
later removed to the United States District Court for the
Southern District of California

The complaints allege, among other things, that the Company and
the other defendant power suppliers violated California's
antitrust statute and the California unfair business practices
statutes by manipulating the California electricity market.  The
suits also challenge the validity of various long-term power
contracts with the State of California, including the CDWR
contract.

On August 25, 2003, the U.S. District Court granted the
Company's motion to dismiss seven of the eight consumer class
actions with prejudice.  The plaintiffs have appealed to the
United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

AE Supply was never served in the eighth consumer class action,
Kurtz v. Duke Energy Trading and Marketing, LLC, which involved
allegations substantively identical to those in the dismissed
actions.  On February 18, 2004, the Kurtz plaintiffs voluntarily
dismissed the action without prejudice.

The District Court separately granted plaintiffs' motion to
remand in the ninth action, Millar, on July 9, 2003.  On
December 18, 2003, the plaintiffs filed an amended complaint,
solely on behalf of consumers, naming certain additional
defendants, including The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. (Goldman
Sachs), in state Court.  The case was transferred back to the
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California in
early 2004, and plaintiffs moved to remand the case to state
Court.  The defendants have opposed the motion and it remains
outstanding.


ALLEGHENY ENERGY: Plaintiffs Oppose MD Securities Suit Dismissal
----------------------------------------------------------------
Plaintiffs opposed Allegheny Energy Supply Co. LLC's motion to
dismiss the consolidated securities class action filed against
the Company and several of its former senior managers in the
United States District Court for the District of Maryland.

From October 2002 through December 2002, plaintiffs claiming to
represent purchasers of the Company's securities filed 14
putative class action lawsuits in U.S. District Courts for the
Southern District of New York and the District of Maryland.

The complaints alleged that the Company and senior management
violated federal securities laws when it purchased Merrill
Lynch's energy marketing and trading business with the knowledge
that the business was built on illegal wash or round-trip trades
with Enron, which the complaints alleged artificially inflated
trading revenue, volume and growth.  The complaints asserted
that the Company's fortunes fell when Enron's collapse exposed
what plaintiffs claim were illegal trades in the energy markets.

All of the securities cases were transferred to the District of
Maryland and consolidated.  The plaintiffs filed an amended
complaint on May 3, 2004 that alleged that the defendants
violated federal securities laws by failing to disclose
weaknesses in Merrill Lynch's energy marketing and trading
business, as well as other internal control and accounting
deficiencies.  The amended complaint seeks unspecified
compensatory damages and equitable relief.


ALLEGHENY ENERGY: Asks MD Court To Dismiss ERISA Violations Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Allegheny Energy Supply Co. asked the United States District
Court for the District of Maryland to dismiss the consolidated
class action filed against it and a senior manager, alleging
violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of
1974 (ERISA).

In February and March 2003, two putative class action lawsuits
were filed in U.S. District Courts for the Southern District of
New York and the District of Maryland. The suits alleged that AE
and a senior manager violated the ERISA by:

     (1) failing to provide complete and accurate information to
         plan beneficiaries regarding the energy trading
         business, among other things;

     (2) failing to diversify plan assets;

     (3) failing to monitor investment alternatives;

     (4) failing to avoid conflicts of interest and

     (5) violating fiduciary duties

The ERISA cases were consolidated in the District of Maryland.
On April 26, 2004, the plaintiffs in the ERISA cases filed an
amended complaint, adding a number of current and former
directors of AE as defendants and clarifying the nature of their
claims.  On June 25, 2004, the defendants filed a motion to
dismiss the amended complaint.  Plaintiffs have opposed the
motion and it remains outstanding.


ALOHA HOUSEWARES: Recalls 30T Radiant Heaters Due To Fire Hazard
----------------------------------------------------------------
Aloha Housewares Inc., of Arlington, Texas is cooperating with
the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission by
voluntarily recalling about 30,000 Aloha radiant heaters.

Recessed thermal protector may cause a fire hazard if heater is
left on while covered by a blanket or similar item.  These
electric radiant heaters are Model 02931, with date code 02/07.
The model and date code are printed on a silver UL label on the
bottom of the heater. The heater is gray, and the name Airtech
is printed on the heater.

Manufactured in China, the heaters were sold at all Wal-Mart
stores nationwide sold the heaters from mid-September 2002
through April 2003 for about $16.

Free replacement heater - Consumers should stop using these
recalled heaters immediately and call Aloha Customer Service to
arrange for a free replacement. If the heater is subject to the
recall, Aloha Customer Service will send the consumer a UPS
"call tag" enclosed in a box for the return of the heater. The
consumer should remove the "call tag," place the heater in the
box, attach the "call tag" to the outside of the box, and give
the box to the UPS driver or drop it off at a UPS facility.
Aloha will verify that the item is recalled and send a
replacement heater at no charge. If the heater is not recalled,
Aloha will send it back to the consumer at no charge.

Consumer Contact: Call Aloha toll-free at (800) 295-4448 between
9 a.m. and 12 p.m., and between 1 p.m. and 4 p.m. CT Monday
through Friday, send a FAX to (817) 385-4958, or send an email
to ahitexaslg@aol.com consumers also can write to Aloha Customer
Service at 841 N. Great Southwest Parkway, Arlington, TX 76011.


ARMOR HOLDINGS: FL Court Grants Final Approval To Settlement
------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Firm of Carr, Tabb, Pope & Freeman, LLP recently
revealed that the Circuit Court of Duval County, Jacksonville
has issued a final order and judgment approving the previously
announced nationwide settlement against Armor Holdings, Inc. and
various of its subsidiaries and affiliated entities, on behalf
of purchasers of American Body Armor(TM) Safariland(R) and
Protech(TM) ballistic vests containing Zylon(R). As previously
disclosed, the settlement, in summary, provides:

All current owners of American Body Armor(TM) Xtreme ZX level II
and level IIIA vests will receive, at no cost, a new ballistic
vest of their choice manufactured by the Defendants or any of
their subsidiaries or affiliated entities, including American
Body Armor(TM), Safariland(R) and Protech(TM). Class members
will also receive:

     (1) either one or two new carriers (depending on the new
         model they choose); and

     (2) a fully-transferable $100 voucher good for five years
         toward the future purchase of any new concealable body
         armor manufactured by American Body Armor(TM),
         Safariland(R) or Protech(TM).

In addition, class members may also be entitled to a cash
refund. Furthermore, the Defendants must conduct substantial
testing of their used body armor and make available to class
members their testing data, protocols and other information. The
estimated value of the nationwide settlement exceeds $20
million.

Jack Roberts, President of the Southern States Police Benevolent
Association (a named Plaintiff in the lawsuit) commented, "The
settlement addresses the fundamental issue we raised in our
lawsuit-the effectiveness and durability of body armor. We are
very pleased that Armor Holdings has agreed to this exchange
program."

For more details, contact W. Pitts Carr by Mail: 10 North
Parkway Square, 4200 Northside Parkway, N.W., Atlanta, GA 30327
by Phone: 1-888-755-1649 or visit the following Web sites:
http://www.ctpflaw.comor http://www.americanbodyarmor.com/zx


BLACK DIAMOND: Recalls 1,000 Ion Batteries Due To Fire Hazard
-------------------------------------------------------------
Black Diamond Equipment Ltd., of Salt Lake City, Utah is
cooperating with the United States Consumer Product Safety
Commission by voluntarily recalling about 1,000 Soliras Headlamp
Lithium Ion Batteries.

The headlamp battery may overheat, posing a burn or fire hazard
to users. No incidents or injuries have been reported.

The recalled batteries are found in Black Diamond Soliras
headlamps. The batteries has the following dates which can be
found on the battery label: 0703, 0803, 0903, 1003, 1103, 1203,
0104, 0204, 0304, 0404, and 0504. The black headlamp has the
words and symbol for the Company on the light.

Manufactured in China, the batteries were sold at all authorized
dealers nationwide sold the headlamps from March 2004 through
May 2004 for about $150.

Consumers should stop using the headlamps immediately and return
the battery to the nearest authorized Black Diamond dealer for a
free replacement.

Consumer Contact: Call Black Diamond collect at (801) 278-5544
between 8 am. and 5 p.m. MT Monday through Friday. or log on to
the Company's Web site: http://www.blackdiamondequipment.com


BILT-SAFE TECHNOLOGIES: Recalls 60T Blankets Due To Burn Hazard
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bilt-Safe Technologies Inc., of Erwin, Tennessee is cooperating
with the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission by
voluntarily recalling about 60,000 Electric Blankets including
13,720 sold to consumers.

When the temperature controller on the blanket is reset multiple
times or the blanket is folded or covered with additional
blankets, the blanket can overheat. This can result in
smoldering and melting, posing a burn hazard to consumers. Bilt-
Safe has received 86 reports of the blankets overheating or
charring, including three reports of minor skin burns.

The recalled automatic warming blankets were sold in blue or
beige colors under the Bilt-Safe and Comfort Max brand names and
came in sizes to fit all mattresses. The temperature controller
is removable and plugs into a module at the bottom of the
blanket. The recalled units have the following model numbers,
which are located on a tag sewn to the blanket: BST-03-A-F, BST-
03-A-F, BST-03-A-Q, and BST-03-A-T.

Manufactured in China, the electric blankets were sold at all
Family Dollar Stores, Peebles Inc., and Le Roux at Home stores
nationwide from October 2003 through February 2004 for between
$40 and $100.

Consumers should stop using the electric blankets immediately
and contact Bilt-Safe to receive a free replacement controller.

Consumer Contact: Contact Bilt-Safe Technologies toll-free at
(800) 905-0799 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through
Friday to return the temperature controller free of charge and
receive a free replacement.


CANADA: Group Hails Hearings For Reopening Hepatitis Settlement
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Hepatitis C Society of Canada welcomes the Health Committee
hearings regarding the recommendation to open the existing 1986
to 1990 hepatitis C settlement to all victims of tainted blood,
regardless of when they contracted the disease.

The Society has been calling for fair and equitable compensation
for all Canadian hepatitis C victims since 1996, prior to the
publishing of the Krever Commission report in 1997, which made a
similar recommendation.

"Canadians who were injured and their families by the blood
system have had to wait countless years and endure more misery
while waiting for compensation," says Scott Hemming, Chair of
the Society.

"We're pleased Health Minister Dossanjh and the Health Committee
has finally realized the policy of the government to only
compensate victims in one class action time frame was short-
sighted and inconsistent with Canadian values of compassion and
fairness."

The Society is also recommending that changes to the existing
86-90 plan must be made promptly but carefully. The Society is
calling on the government to sustain the fund, rather than
placing this significant burden on the victims of the fund
possibly being depleted. As well, there is concern that many
victims may no longer have blood record documentation available
from hospitals or the Red Cross and could be disqualified by the
conditions under the stringent criteria for eligibility in the
86-90 plan.


CHESAPEAKE BAY: Group Plans Lawsuit Against EPA Clean-up Efforts
----------------------------------------------------------------
Signaling a more aggressive strategy for a group that has grown
increasingly frustrated over the slow progress in cleaning up
the bay, the Chesapeake Bay Foundation recently revealed that it
will file a lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency,
the Washington Post reports.

According to William C. Baker, the bay foundation's president,
the lawsuit, a copy of which was recently released, accuses the
federal agency of dragging its feet as sewage plants across the
region pollute the bay's waters. It specifically asks that the
EPA respond formally to the bay foundation petition submitted in
December seeking limits on the amount of nitrogen released from
such plants. Mr. Baker also adds that they've tried to give EPA
a chance to fulfill its promises, but since results aren't
forthcoming then are only recourse is to litigate.

The key issue in the legal action to be filed is nitrogen, which
along with phosphorus serves as food for huge algae blooms that
scientists say are responsible for creating "bad water" where
fish and crabs cannot breathe.

The suit is one of several recent legal steps initiated by
environmental groups, which have traditionally relied on
consensus, rather than confrontation, with government agencies
in the effort to clean up the bay.

Still Bill Matuszeski, who formerly oversaw the EPA's Chesapeake
cleanup effort, worries that lawsuits might bog down the process
further. "Tying this whole issue up in Court isn't going to move
it forward at all," he said.


CMS ENERGY: Faces Several Natural Gas Antitrust Lawsuits in NV
--------------------------------------------------------------
CMS Energy Corporation and several energy companies engaged in
the sale of natural gas in the United States face a putative
class action pending in the United States District Court in
Nevada.

Texas-Ohio, Inc. filed a class action in the United States
District Court for the Eastern District of California, alleging
defendants entered into a price-fixing conspiracy by engaging in
activities to manipulate the price of natural gas in California.
The complaint contains counts alleging violations of the Sherman
Act, Cartwright Act (a California statute), and the California
Business and Profession Code relating to unlawful, unfair, and
deceptive business practices.

There is currently pending in the Nevada Federal District Court
a multidistrict court litigation (MDL) matter involving seven
complaints originally filed in various state Courts in
California.  These complaints make allegations similar to those
in the Texas-Ohio case regarding price reporting, although none
contain a Sherman Act claim and some of the defendants in the
MDL matter are also defendants in the Texas-Ohio case.

Those defendants successfully argued to have the Texas-Ohio case
transferred to the MDL proceeding.  The plaintiff in the Texas-
Ohio case agreed to extend the time for all defendants to answer
or otherwise respond until May 28, 2004 and on that date a
number of defendants filed motions to dismiss.  In order to
negotiate possible dismissal and/or substitution of defendants,
CMS Energy and two other parent holding Company defendants were
given further extensions to answer or otherwise respond to the
complaint until November 16, 2004.

"Benscheidt v. AEP Energy Services, Inc., et al.," a new class
action complaint containing allegations similar to those made in
the Texas-Ohio case, albeit limited to California state law
claims, was filed in California state Court in February 2004.
The Company and CMS Energy Resource Management Company, formerly
CMS MST, are named as defendants.  Defendants filed a notice to
remove this action to California federal district Court, which
was granted, and had it transferred to the MDL proceeding in
Nevada.  However, the plaintiff is seeking to have the case
remanded back to California and until the issue is resolved, no
further action will be taken.

Another putative class action lawsuit, Fairhaven Power Company
v. Encana Power Corporation, containing allegations similar to
those made in the Texas-Ohio case, was filed in California
federal Court in September 2004.  CMS Energy, Enterprises, and
CMS MST are named as defendants.


CMS ENERGY: Faces Several Natural Gas Antitrust Lawsuits in CA
--------------------------------------------------------------
CMS Energy Corporation faces three new, virtually identical
actions were filed in San Diego Superior Court in July 2004, one
by the County of Santa Clara, one by the County of San Diego and
one by the City of and County of San Francisco and the San
Francisco City Attorney (collectively the Municipal Lawsuits).

Defendants, consisting of a number of energy companies including
the Company CMS Energy Resource Management Company, formerly CMS
MST, Cantera Natural Gas, and Cantera Gas Company, are alleged
to have engaged in false reporting of natural gas price and
volume information and sham sales to artificially inflate
natural gas retail prices in California.  All three complaints
allege claims for unjust enrichment and violations of the
Cartwright Act, and the San Francisco action also alleges a
claim for violation of the California Business and Profession
Code relating to unlawful, unfair, and deceptive business
practices.

The Municipal Lawsuits were removed to Federal District Court,
and conditional transfer orders were issued transferring the
cases to the Nevada MDL proceeding.  Plaintiffs in each of the
Municipal Lawsuits intend to seek to have the cases remanded
back to San Diego Superior Court, and they have agreed to extend
the time to answer or otherwise respond to the complaints to
thirty days from the date an order on the motion to remand is
issued.

Two new lawsuits were filed in California, one a putative class
action in San Diego Superior Court on behalf of retail consumers
of natural gas, and one in Alameda Superior Court on behalf of a
cooperative of public agencies engaged in the retail purchase of
natural gas.  The actions are virtually identical to the
Municipal Lawsuits, and the defendants include CMS Energy, CMS
MST, Cantera Natural Gas, and Cantera Gas Company.


COMMUNITY HEALTH: Suit For Uninsured Patients Filed in AL Court
---------------------------------------------------------------
Community Health Systems, Inc. faces a class action filed in the
Circuit Court of Barbour County, Alabama, Eufaula Division,
styled "Arleana Lawrence and Robert Hollins v. Lakeview
Community Hospital and Community Health Systems, Inc."

The suit was brought by the plaintiffs on their own behalf and
as the representatives of similarly situated uninsured
individuals who were treated at the Company's Lakeview Community
Hospital or any of its other Alabama hospitals.  The plaintiffs
allege that uninsured patients who do not qualify for Medicaid,
Medicare or charity care are charged unreasonably high rates for
services and materials and that the Company used unconscionable
methods to collect bills.  The plaintiffs seek restitution of
overpayment, compensatory and other allowable damages and
injunctive relief.


COMMUNITY HEALTH: Uninsured Patients Lodge PA Unfair Trade Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Community Health Systems, Inc. faces a class action filed in the
Court of Common Pleas, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, styled
"James Monroe v. Pottstown Memorial Hospital and Community
Health Systems, Inc."

This alleged class action was brought by the plaintiff on behalf
of himself and as the representative of similarly situated
uninsured individuals who were treated at the Company's
Pottstown Memorial Hospital or any of its other Pennsylvania
hospitals.  The plaintiff alleges that uninsured patients who do
not qualify for Medicaid, Medicare or charity care are charged
unreasonably high rates for services and materials and that the
Company uses unconscionable methods to collect bills.  The
plaintiff seeks recovery under the Pennsylvania Unfair Trade
Practices and Consumer Protection Law, restitution of
overpayment, compensatory and other allowable damages and
injunctive relief.


CONSUMERS ENERGY: Trial in ERISA Lawsuit Expected in Late 2005
--------------------------------------------------------------
Trial in the consolidated class action against Consumer Energy
Corporation, CMS Energy Corporation, CMS Energy Resource
Management Company, formerly CMS MST, and certain named and
unnamed officers and directors is expected late 2005.

Two suits were initially brought as purported class actions on
behalf of participants and beneficiaries of the CMS Employees'
Savings and Incentive Plan (the Plan).  The two cases, filed in
July 2002 in United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Michigan, were consolidated by the trial judge and
an amended consolidated complaint was filed.

Plaintiffs allege breaches of fiduciary duties under the
Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) and seek
restitution on behalf of the Plan with respect to a decline in
value of the shares of CMS Energy Common Stock held in the Plan.
Plaintiffs also seek other equitable relief and legal fees.

The judge issued an opinion and order dated March 31, 2004 in
connection with the motions to dismiss filed by CMS Energy, the
Company, and the individuals.  The judge dismissed certain of
the amended counts in the plaintiffs' complaint and denied CMS
Energy's motion to dismiss the other claims in the complaint.
CMS Energy, Consumers, and the individual defendants filed
answers to the amended complaint on May 14, 2004.


CONSUMERS ENERGY: MI Court Mulls Dismissal of Securities Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Michigan heard the motions to dismiss the consolidated
securities class action filed against Consumers Energy
Corporation, CMS Energy Corporation and certain officers and
directors of CMS Energy and its affiliates.

Beginning on May 17, 2002, a number of securities class action
complaints were filed as purported class actions by shareholders
who allege that they purchased CMS Energy's securities during a
purported class period.  The cases were consolidated into a
single lawsuit and an amended and consolidated class action
complaint was filed on May 1, 2003.

The consolidated complaint contains a purported class period
beginning on May 1, 2000 and running through March 31, 2003.  It
generally seeks unspecified damages based on allegations that
the defendants violated United States securities laws and
regulations by making allegedly false and misleading statements
about CMS Energy's business and financial condition,
particularly with respect to revenues and expenses recorded in
connection with round-trip trading by CMS MST.

The judge issued an opinion and order dated March 31, 2004 in
connection with various pending motions, including plaintiffs'
motion to amend the complaint and the motions to dismiss the
complaint filed by CMS Energy, the Company, and other
defendants.  The judge directed plaintiffs to file an amended
complaint under seal and ordered an expedited hearing on the
motion to amend, which was held on May 12, 2004.

At the hearing, the judge ordered plaintiffs to file a Second
Amended Consolidated Class Action complaint deleting Counts III
and IV relating to purchasers of CMS PEPS, which the judge
ordered dismissed with prejudice.  Plaintiffs filed this
complaint on May 26, 2004.  CMS Energy, Consumers, and the
individual defendants filed new motions to dismiss on June 21,
2004.  The judge has taken the matter under advisement.


COX COMMUNICATIONS: LA Court Approves Subscriber Suit Settlement
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Louisiana State Court granted final approval to the
settlement of the subscriber class action filed against Cox
Communications Louisiana L.L.C. (Cox Louisiana).  The suit
challenged the propriety of late fees charged by the Company in
the greater New Orleans area to customers who fail to pay for
services in a timely manner.  The suit seeks injunctive relief
and damages under certain claimed state law causes of action.

On March 29, 2004, the parties entered into a settlement
agreement.  This settlement was approved by the Court and became
final in August 2004.  The settlement did not have a material
impact on Cox's operations or liquidity.


COX COMMUNICATIONS: NY Court Dismisses Claim in Securities Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Southern District of
New York dismissed one cause of action in the class action filed
against Cox Communications, Inc., AT&T Corporation and certain
former officers and directors of Excite@Home.

The consolidated suit was filed on behalf of persons who
purchased and held shares of Excite@Home common stock between
the time period March 28, 2000 and September 28, 2001.  The
complaint asserts a claim against the Company as an alleged
"controlling person" of Excite@Home under Section 20(a) of the
Securities Exchange Act for violations of Section 10(b) of the
Securities Exchange Act and Rule 10b-5 thereunder.  The suit
seeks from Cox unspecified monetary damages, statutory
compensation and other relief.

In addition, a claim against Cox's former Executive Vice
President, David Woodrow, who formerly served on Excite@Home's
board of directors, is asserted for breach of purported
fiduciary duties.  The suit seeks from Woodrow unspecified
monetary and punitive damages.

On February 11, 2003, Cox and Woodrow filed a dispositive motion
to dismiss on various grounds, including failure to state a
claim.  On September 17, 2003, the District Court granted the
motion in part and denied it in part.  Specifically, the Court
dismissed several purported statements by Excite@Home as bases
for potential liability because they were merely generalized
expressions of confidence and optimism constituting "puffery,"
dismissed the fiduciary duty claim against Mr. Woodrow as pre-
empted by the federal securities laws, and denied the motions as
to the remaining allegations of the complaint.

On October 7, 2003, Cox and Mr. Woodrow sought reconsideration
of a portion of the Court's order.  On December 24, 2003, the
plaintiffs moved to certify a class of persons who purchased
Excite@Home stock between March 28, 2000 and September 28, 2001,
or held such stock as of April 28, 2000.  This motion is
pending.

On February 17, 2004, the Court granted plaintiffs leave to file
a motion to amend the complaint to add an additional claim for
relief against all defendants under Section 14(a) of the
Securities Exchange Act in connection with an allegedly false or
misleading proxy statement issued by Excite@Home.  On February
24, 2004, the Court granted Cox's and Mr. Woodrow's motion for
reconsideration and dismissed plaintiffs' allegations that Cox
and Mr. Woodrow were "control persons" with respect to primary
violations of Rule 10b-5 alleged to have occurred after August
28, 2000.

On April 5, 2004, Cox and certain other defendants jointly filed
a motion to dismiss the Section 14(a) cause of action that was
added in plaintiffs' amended complaint.  On August 9, 2004, the
District Court granted defendants' motion, and dismissed the
Section 14(a) cause of action.


COX COMMUNICATIONS: NY Securities Lawsuit Dismissal Deemed Final
----------------------------------------------------------------
The dismissal of the securities class action filed against Cox
Communications, Inc. and David Woodrow in the United States
District Court for the Southern District of New York is deemed
final, after plaintiffs failed to file an appeal.

Leo James filed the suit in July 2003, asserting a claim against
the Company as an alleged "controlling person" of Excite@Home
under Section 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act for
violations of Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act and
Rule 10b-5 thereunder.  The suit seeks from Cox unspecified
monetary damages, statutory compensation and other relief.

On November 17, 2003, Cox and certain other defendants jointly
filed a motion to dismiss the James action on the grounds that,
among other things, it was duplicative of the Leykin action.
The motion to dismiss was granted on August 18, 2004, and the
James action was dismissed without prejudice.


COX COMMUNICATIONS: Negotiating Settlement For GA, DE Lawsuits
--------------------------------------------------------------
Cox Communications, Inc. is working to settle the class actions
filed against it in Delaware and Georgia Courts on behalf
of its public stockholders, challenging Cox Enterprises, Inc.'s
(CEI) August 2, 2004 proposal to acquire all of the issued and
outstanding shares of Cox Class A common stock not beneficially
owned by CEI, for $32.00 in cash per share.

Fifteen of the lawsuits were filed in the Court of Chancery of
the State of Delaware.  Following a hearing held on August 24,
2004, the Delaware Court consolidated the actions under the
caption "In re Cox Communications, Inc. Shareholders'
Litigation, Consolidated C.A. No. 613-N."

The Delaware complaint names as defendants the Company, CEI, Cox
Holdings, Barbara Cox Anthony and Anne Cox Chambers, and the
members of the Cox Board of Directors.  The Delaware complaint
alleges, among other things, that the price proposed to be paid
in the proposed transaction was unfairly low, that the
initiation and timing of the proposed transaction were in breach
of the defendants' purported duties of loyalty and constituted
unfair dealing, that the structure of the proposed transaction
was inequitably coercive, that defendants caused materially
misleading and incomplete information to be disseminated to the
public holders of the Cox shares, and that the Board defendants
would breach their duty of care and good faith by approving the
proposed transaction and by purportedly attempting to
disenfranchise the holders of the Cox shares by circumventing
certain alleged contractual voting rights.

The Delaware complaint seeks an injunction against the proposed
transaction, or, if it is consummated, rescission of the
transaction and imposition of a constructive trust, as well as
money damages, an accounting, attorneys' fees, expenses and
other relief.

The remaining three putative class action lawsuits were filed in
the Superior Court of Fulton County, Georgia, styled Brody v.
Cox Communications, Inc., et al., 2004CV89198, Golombuski v. Cox
Communications, Inc., et al., 2004CV89216, and Durgin v. Cox
Communications, Inc., et al., 2004CV89301.  The Georgia actions
were purportedly brought on behalf of the public holders of
shares of Cox Class A common stock against Cox, CEI and the Cox
Board, although four counts of the Golombuski complaint were
brought derivatively on behalf of Cox against the Cox Board and
CEI.

With the exception of the Durgin action, which did not assert
claims against CEI, the Georgia actions each allege that CEI and
the Cox Board breached their fiduciary duties in connection with
the proposed transaction, which plaintiffs allege proposed a
purchase price which was below the fair value of the Cox shares.
On August 18, 2004, plaintiffs in the Georgia actions moved for
entry of a case management order to consolidate the Georgia
Actions under the caption In re Cox Communication, Inc.
Shareholder Litigation, C.A. No. 2004-CV-89198.

On October 19, 2004, CEI and Cox publicly announced that they
had entered into a Merger Agreement pursuant to which the shares
of Cox Class A common stock not beneficially owned by CEI would
be proposed to be acquired for $34.75 per share by means of a
tender offer and follow-on merger.  On October 18, 2004, prior
to the announcement of the Merger Agreement, the parties to the
Delaware action agreed upon and executed a memorandum of
understanding.

Pursuant to the Delaware memorandum of understanding, the
parties to the Delaware action agreed, subject to the conditions
described below, to enter into a stipulation of settlement, to
cooperate in public disclosures related to the Merger Agreement,
and to use their best efforts to gain approval of the proposed
settlement terms by the Delaware Court.  The Delaware memorandum
of understanding contemplates that, if the proposed settlement
is approved by the Delaware Court following notice to the
holders of the Cox shares, the Delaware Court will enter a final
order providing for the dismissal with prejudice of the Delaware
action and a release in favor of all defendants of any and all
claims related to the proposed transaction, including the tender
offer and the follow-on merger, that have been or could have
been asserted by the plaintiffs on behalf of the holders of the
Cox shares.

The terms of the proposed settlement are, among other things:

     (1) that, subject to the Merger Agreement, CEI shall
         proceed with the tender offer and the follow-on merger
         in which the holders of the Cox shares shall be
         entitled to receive consideration of $34.75 per share,

     (2) that the tender offer will be subject to, among other
         conditions, the condition that a majority of shares
         held by persons other than CEI, its subsidiaries and
         directors and executive officers of Cox tender their
         shares,

     (3) acknowledgement that the efforts of plaintiffs' counsel
         in the Delaware action were causal factors that led to
         the increased consideration offered to the holders of
         the Cox shares in the tender offer and the follow-on
         merger and to the majority of the minority condition,
         and

     (4) that the plaintiffs shall be given the opportunity to
         review in advance and comment upon certain disclosures
         made by CEI and Cox in connection with the tender offer
         and the follow-on merger.

Also on October 18, 2004, the parties to the Georgia actions
entered into a memorandum of understanding which set forth the
agreement by the parties for the dismissal of the Georgia
actions. The Georgia memorandum of understanding provides, among
other things, that if the Delaware actions are dismissed in
accordance with the Delaware memorandum of understanding and the
dismissal becomes non-appealable, the parties to the Georgia
actions will jointly seek, within two business days thereof, to
effect the dismissal with prejudice of the Georgia actions
without further notice to holders of the Cox shares.

The Delaware memorandum of understanding and the Georgia
memorandum of understanding provide that defendants will provide
plaintiffs' counsel in the Delaware action and the Georgia
actions with confirmatory discovery relating to the Merger
Agreement, including additional document production and
depositions, and that all other proceedings in the actions are
suspended, except any settlement related proceedings in Delaware
and Georgia.

Counsel for plaintiffs in the Delaware action and counsel for
plaintiffs in the Georgia actions intend to apply to the
Delaware Court and the Georgia Court, respectively, for a
reasonable award of fees and expenses, and defendants have
reserved the right to object to any such application.  The
proposed settlement is subject to the execution of a definitive
stipulation of settlement and final approval by the Delaware
Court.


DJ ORTHOPEDICS: CA Court Gives Final Approval To Suit Settlement
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Southern District of
California granted final approval for the settlement for the
consolidated securities class action filed against DJ
Orthopedics, Inc. on behalf of purchasers of its common stock
alleging violations of the federal securities laws in connection
with the Company's initial public offering in November 2001.
The suit is styled "In re DJ Orthopedics, Inc. Securities
Litigation, Case No. 01-CV-2238-K (RBB)."  The suit names as
defendants the Company and:

     (1) Leslie H. Cross, President and Chief Executive Officer,

     (2) Cyril Talbot III, former Senior Vice President,
         Finance, Chief Financial Officer, and Secretary,

     (3) Charles T. Orsatti, former Chairman of the Board of
          Directors,

     (4) Mitchell J. Blutt, M.D.,

     (5) Kirby L. Cramer

     (6) former director Damion E. Wicker, M.D and the

     (7) underwriters of the Company's initial public offering

The complaint seeks unspecified damages and following the filing
of a motion to dismiss that eliminated all but one alleged
omission, continues to assert that defendants violated Sections
11, 12, and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933 by failing to
disclose allegedly material intra-quarterly sales data in the
registration statement and prospectus, an earlier Class Action
Reporter story (May 21,2004) states.


ENDOCARE INC.: Reaches $8.95M Securities Suit Settlement in CA
--------------------------------------------------------------
Endocare, Inc. (OTC: ENDO), an innovative medical device Company
focused on the development of minimally invasive technologies
for tissue and tumor ablation along with vacuum technologies for
erectile dysfunction, recently reached an agreement with lead
plaintiffs and their counsel in the securities class action
lawsuit pending against the Company and certain of its directors
and former officers in the U.S. District Court for the Central
District of California. A settlement agreement has been executed
and will be submitted to the Court for its preliminary approval
and for authorization to provide notice of its terms to class
members. Under the agreement, in exchange for a release of all
claims, the Company and the individuals will pay a total of
$8.95 million in cash. The Company's Directors and Officers
liability insurance carriers will fund the total amount of $8.95
million subject to reservations of rights by the carriers.
Consummation of the settlement is subject to Court approval. The
investigations of the Company by the Securities and Exchange
Commission and Department of Justice are ongoing and are not
affected by the preliminary settlement discussed above.

In the settlement agreement, the defendants admit no wrongdoing.
The lawsuit is being settled at an amount and in a fashion that
weighs the parties' assessment of the merits of the claims, the
risk and expense of continued litigation, and management's
assessment of the burden continued litigation would pose to the
Company's business and to its stockholders.

Chairman and CEO of Endocare, Craig T. Davenport, commented,
"This settlement is an important milestone for our Company. The
financial and personnel resources committed to this effort have
been substantial and we are grateful that the hard work of our
executives and our legal team has led to the equitable
conclusion of this matter. In addition, it is gratifying to put
an end to the intangible costs related to the energy and morale
of our employees and shareholders. Our focus is firmly on the
future of this Company and its products and we are all relieved
to have this matter behind us."


FIRSTENERGY CORPORATION: Asks NY Court To Dismiss Consumer Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
FirstEnergy Corporation asked the New York State Supreme Court
to dismiss the class action filed against it, alleging damages
caused by widespread power outages in various states and parts
of Southern Canada in August 14, 2003.

The outages affected approximately 1.4 million customers in
FirstEnergy's service area.  On April 5, 2004, the U.S. Canada
Power System Outage Task Force released its final report on the
outages.  In the final report, the Task Force concluded, among
other things, that the problems leading to the outages began in
FirstEnergy's Ohio service area.

Specifically, the final report concludes, among other things,
that the initiation of the August 14, 2003 power outages
resulted from an alleged failure of both FirstEnergy and ECAR to
assess and understand perceived inadequacies within the
FirstEnergy system; inadequate situational awareness of the
developing conditions; and a perceived failure to adequately
manage tree growth in certain transmission rights of way.  The
Task Force also concluded that there was a failure of the
interconnected grid's reliability organizations (MISO and PJM)
to provide effective diagnostic support.

Three substantially similar actions were filed in various Ohio
state Courts by plaintiffs seeking to represent customers who
allegedly suffered damages as a result of the August 14, 2003
power outages.  All three cases were dismissed for lack of
jurisdiction.  One case was re-filed at the PUCO and the other
two have been appealed.  In addition to the one case that was
refiled at the PUCO, the Ohio Companies were named as
respondents in a regulatory proceeding that was initiated at the
PUCO in response to complaints alleging failure to provide
reasonable and adequate service stemming primarily from the
August 14, 2003 power outages.

One complaint has been filed against FirstEnergy in the New York
State Supreme Court.  In this case, several plaintiffs in the
New York City metropolitan area allege that they suffered
damages as a result of the August 14, 2003 power outages.  None
of the plaintiffs are customers of any FirstEnergy affiliate.


FIRSTENERGY CORPORATION: OH Court Approves Stock Suit Settlement
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Northern District of
Ohio granted preliminary approval to the settlement of the
securities class actions filed against FirstEnergy Corporation
and certain of its officers and directors.

The suits allege violations of federal securities laws in
connection with, among other things, the restatements in August
2003 by the Company and the Ohio Companies of previously
reported results, the August 14, 2003 power outages and the
extended outage at the Davis-Besse Nuclear Power Station.

On July 27, 2004, the Company announced that it had reached an
agreement to resolve these pending lawsuits.  The settlement
agreement, which does not constitute any admission of
wrongdoing, provides for a total settlement payment of $89.9
million.  Of that amount, FirstEnergy's insurance carriers will
pay $71.92 million, based on a contractual pre-allocation, and
FirstEnergy will pay $17.98 million, which resulted in an after-
tax charge against FirstEnergy's second quarter and year-to-date
2004 earnings of $11 million or $0.03 per share of common stock
(basic and diluted).

A final hearing has been scheduled for mid-December 2004.
Although not anticipated to occur, in the event that a
significant number of shareholders do not accept the terms of
the settlement, FirstEnergy and individual defendants have the
right, but not the obligation, to set aside the settlement and
recommence the litigation.


FLORIDA: Eleven Disenfranchised Voters Lodge Lawsuit V. A-CORN
--------------------------------------------------------------
South Florida-based attorney Stuart Rosenfeldt has initiated a
lawsuit against voter registration group A-CORN, saying that he
has eleven clients who were denied the right to vote and thinks
there may be hundreds more, the Associated Press reports.

According to Mr. Rosenfeldt, he is representing eleven people in
Miami-Dade and Orange County who learned too late that they were
never registered to vote after they signed up with A-CORN, which
is under investigation for not turning in all the paperwork. The
group had conducted voter registration drives across the state.

Attorneys are seeking more victims to push for a class action
lawsuit against the group. Mr. Rosenfeldt states that he'll sue
A-CORN for punitive damages, 100-thousand dollars per
disenfranchised voter.

A-CORN, however is blaming the paperwork problems on a dishonest
employee.


FORD MOTOR: TX Police Departments Withdraw Suit V. Patrol Cars
--------------------------------------------------------------
Texas police departments dropped a lawsuit against Ford Motor
Co. in which they claimed the Company's Crown Victoria patrol
cars are vulnerable to fuel-fed fires in high-speed rear-end
collisions.

According to attorneys for the Nueces County, Texas, sheriff's
department, they decided to dismiss the suit on November 3,
since the claim was unlikely to win Court approval. The county,
which was suing Ford on behalf of other state police
departments, claimed the police cruisers were defectively
designed because Ford placed the vehicles' gas tanks behind the
rear axle.

The Texas suit is one of more than a dozen brought by police
agencies alleging the placement of the fuel tank in the Crown
Victoria put police officers' lives at risk. Last month, Ford
won the first class-action claim to go to trial when an Illinois
jury found the Crown Victoria is "reasonably safe." Ford said
the Illinois verdict was a factor in the Texas dismissal.

However, David Perry, attorney for the Texas departments, stated
that the Texas police departments didn't drop their suit, which
they were seeking to have certified as a class action, because
of the Illinois verdict. In an e-mail to Bloomberg News, the
attorney stated that after they had filed the lawsuit the Texas
Supreme Court decided a number of cases which indicate that it
is very unlikely that we could sustain class certification. "We
dismissed the case for that reason," he states.

David Healy, an analyst at New York-based Burnham Securities,
stated that the recent verdict in Illinois and Texas dismissal
"could mean that this litigation is winding down."


GENERAL BINDING: Recalls 34.6T Pouch Laminators For Fire Hazard
---------------------------------------------------------------
General Binding Corporation, ("GBC") of Northbrook, Illinois is
cooperating with the United States Consumer Product Safety
Commission by voluntarily recalling about 34,600 HeatSealT Pouch
Laminators.

Improper wiring at the heating coil could cause the pouch
laminators to overheat and become a fire hazard.

The recall includes the H300 and H200 model HeatSealT: Pouch
Laminators. They are used to laminate documents and photos. The
recalled H300 Pouch Laminators have serial numbers starting with
"PI," "PJ," "PK," "PL," "QA," "QB," "QC" or "QD." The recalled
H200 Pouch Laminators have serial numbers starting with "PI" or
"PJ". The H300 and H200 model numbers are found on the top of
the Pouch Laminators, and on the rating plate on the bottom of
the Pouch Laminators. The serial numbers are found on the rating
plate on the bottom of the Pouch Laminators.

Manufactured in China, the laminators were sold at all office
supplies stores nationwide from September 2003 through September
2004 for between $200 and $260.

Consumers should stop using the Pouch Laminators included in
this recall immediately, and contact GBC a free replacement or
refund.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact GBC at
(800) 541-0094 between 8 a.m. through 5:30 p.m. CT Monday
through Friday or visit the Company's Web site:
http://www.gbcoffice.com


INDIANA: Ex-Patient Lodges Suit Over "Illegal" Debt Collections
---------------------------------------------------------------
Crown Point attorney Robert Stochel initiated a new class action
lawsuit filed on behalf of Michelle Weiss in U.S. District Court
in Hammond, which is seeking to stop representatives of a
missing sinus doctor Mark Weinberger from collecting debts she
alleges are not owed to the clinic, the Munster Times reports.

Ms. Weiss, a former patient of Dr. Weinberger, went to the
Merrillville-based doctor for a sinus-related procedure in
September and received a bill for $678 she maintains she doesn't
owe.

According to Mt. Stochel, he has received numerous phone calls
from former patients of the missing doctor after Munster-based
collection agencies began sending out billings last week seeking
money due to the clinic. He further notes that the stories of
those he spoke to were all similar to his client in that the
callers thought they didn't owe the clinic more money than what
had already been paid by their health care insurance provider.

The suit sought to stop Robert Handler, the Court-appointed
receiver for Dr. Weinberger's clinic, from collecting debts and
obligations allegedly owed to the clinic. The suit also alleges
that Mr. Handler and those he represents are violating federal
and state laws by attempting to collect the debts that are not
owed. Furthermore, the lawsuit is also seeking damages from the
defendant, attorney fees and costs along with an order declaring
any claims for amounts greater than what was paid by the
patient's health care provider are void.

Mr. Handler recently said that he was responsible for hiring
Trustmark Recovery Services and Medical Billing, both based in
Munster, to handle the billing and collection for the Weinberger
Sinus Clinic located at 255 E. 90th Drive.

Dr. Weinberger, who had marketed himself as the "Nose Doctor"
because of his specialty in treating sinus-related problems was
reported missing in late September by family members after he
declined to return home with them from a trip to Greece. He has
not returned to his office since, and creditors have placed the
business under a Court-ordered receivership to satisfy more than
$5.7 million in unpaid claims.


JCP&L TRANSITION: NJ Court Junks Appeal of Suit De-certification
----------------------------------------------------------------
The New Jersey Supreme Court refused to allow JCP&L Transition
Funding LLC and plaintiffs to appeal a lower Court ruling over
the decertification of a lawsuit filed against the Company, over
the July 1999 heat wave in the Mid-Atlantic states.

The severe heat wave resulted in power outages throughout the
service territories of many electric utilities, including
JCP&L's territory.  In an investigation into the causes of the
outages and the reliability of the transmission and distribution
systems of all four New Jersey electric utilities, the New
Jersey Board of Public Utilities concluded that there was not a
prima facie case demonstrating that, overall, JCP&L provided
unsafe, inadequate or improper service to its customers.

Two class action lawsuits (subsequently consolidated into a
single proceeding) were filed in New Jersey Superior Court in
July 1999 against JCP&L, GPU and other GPU companies, seeking
compensatory and punitive damages arising from the July 1999
service interruptions in the JCP&L territory.

In August 2002, the trial Court granted partial summary judgment
to JCP&L and dismissed the plaintiffs' claims for consumer
fraud, common law fraud, negligent misrepresentation, and strict
products liability.  In November 2003, the trial Court granted
JCP&L's motion to decertify the class and denied plaintiffs'
motion to permit into evidence their class-wide damage model
indicating damages in excess of $50 million.

These class decertification and damage rulings were appealed to
the Appellate Division.  The Appellate Court issued a decision
on July 8, 2004, affirming the decertification of the originally
certified class but remanding for certification of a class
limited to those customers directly impacted by the outages of
transformers in Red Bank, New Jersey.  On September 8, 2004, the
New Jersey Supreme Court denied the motions filed by plaintiffs
and JCP&L for leave to appeal the decision of the Appellate
Court.


MCG CAPITAL: Appeals Court Mulls Stock Lawsuit Dismissal Appeal
---------------------------------------------------------------
The United States Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals has yet to
rule on the appeal of the dismissal of the securities class
action filed against MCG Capital Corporation, certain of its
officers and directors.

The suit, filed in the United States District Court for the
Eastern District of Virginia, alleged that the defendants made
certain misstatements in violation of Sections 11, 12(a) (2) and
15 of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 10(b), Rule 10b-5
and Section 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Specifically, the complaint asserted that members of the
plaintiff class purchased the Company's common stock at
purportedly inflated prices during the period from November 28,
2001 to November 1, 2002 as a result of certain misstatements
regarding the academic degree of the Company's chief executive
officer.  The complaint sought unspecified compensatory and
other damages, along with costs and expenses.

On June 16, 2003, a consolidated amended class action complaint
was filed in the proceedings captioned "In re MCG Capital
Corporation Securities Litigation, 1:03cv0114-A."  The
consolidated amended complaint named only the Company and
certain of its officers and directors as defendants, and alleged
violations of Sections 11 and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933
and Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934.

The Company filed a motion to dismiss the consolidated amended
class action complaint.  On September 12, 2003, the Court
dismissed the lawsuit in its entirety.  The plaintiffs filed a
notice of appeal to seek review of the district Court decision
by the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit,
and both parties have now filed briefs.


MEDICAL STAFFING: Asks FL Court To Dismiss Securities Fraud Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Medical Staffing Network Holdings, Inc. asked the United States
District Court for the Southern District of Florida to dismiss
the consolidated securities class action filed against it and
certain of its directors and executive officers.

On February 20, 2004, Joseph and Patricia Marrari, and on April
16, 2004, Tommie Williams, filed class action lawsuits on behalf
of themselves and purchasers of the Company's common stock
pursuant to or traceable to the Company's initial public
offering in April 2002.  The complaints allege that certain
disclosures in the Registration Statement/Prospectus filed in
connection with the Company's initial public offering on April
17, 2002 were materially false and misleading in violation of
the Securities Act of 1933.  The complaints seek compensatory
damages as well as costs and attorney fees.

On March 29, 2004, a third class action lawsuit brought on
behalf of the same class of the Company's stockholders, making
claims under the Securities Act similar to those in the lawsuits
filed by Plaintiffs Joseph and Patricia Marrari and Tommie
Williams, was commenced by Plaintiff Haddon Zia in the Florida
Circuit Court of the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit in and for Palm
Beach County, Florida.  Defendants removed this case to the
United States District Court for the Southern District of
Florida and Plaintiff moved to remand the case back to the
Florida Circuit Court of the Fifteenth Judicial Circuit, which
motion Defendants opposed.

On September 16, 2004 the Federal District Court entered an
order granting Plaintiff's motion to remand.  Defendants filed
their Notice of Appeal to the Eleventh Circuit on October 13,
2004, by which they appealed the remand order.  Also on October
13, 2004, Defendants moved to stay the state Court proceedings.
The Zia complaint seeks rescission or damages as well as certain
equitable relief and costs and attorney fees.

On March 2, 2004, another class action complaint was filed
against the Company and certain of its directors and executive
officers in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of Florida by Jerome Gould, individually and on behalf
of a class of the Company's stockholders who purchased stock
during the period from April 18, 2002 through June 16, 2003.
The complaint alleges that certain of the Company's public
disclosures during the class period were materially false and
misleading in violation of Section 10(b) of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder.
The complaint seeks compensatory damages, costs and attorney
fees.

On July 2, 2004, the Marrari, Gould, Williams and Zia actions
were consolidated, Plaintiff Thomas Greene was appointed Lead
Plaintiff of the consolidated action and the law firm of Cauley
Geller Bowman & Rudman LLP was appointed Lead Counsel for
Plaintiffs.  On September 1, 2004, Lead Plaintiff filed his
consolidated amended class action complaint.  The Complaint
makes allegations on behalf of a class consisting of purchasers
of the Company's common stock pursuant to or traceable to the
Company's initial public offering in April 2002, for purposes of
the Securities Act claims, and on behalf of the Company's
stockholders who purchased stock during the period from April
18, 2002 through June 16, 2003, for purposes of the Exchange Act
claims.

The Complaint alleges that certain of the Company's public
disclosures during the class period were materially false and
misleading in violation of Section 11 of the Securities Act and
Section 10(b) of the Exchange Act.  The Complaint seeks
compensatory damages as well as costs and attorney fees.


MICROTUNE INC.: Working To Settle Securities Lawsuit in E.D. TX
---------------------------------------------------------------
Microtune, Inc. has entered negotiations to settle the
consolidated securities class action filed in the United States
District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.  The suit
names as defendants the Company and:

     (1) former Chairman of the Board and Chief Executive
         Officer, Douglas J. Bartek,

     (2) former Chief Financial Officer and Vice-President
         of Finance and Administration, Everett Rogers,

     (3) former President and Chief Operating Officer,
         William L. Housley, and

     (4) former Chief Financial Officer and former General
         Counsel, Nancy A. Richardson

The suit alleges violations of federal securities laws and
regulations.  The claims of the plaintiffs include that the
defendants violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934, as well as SEC Rule 10b-5, resulting in
damages to persons who purchased, converted, exchanged, or
otherwise acquired the Company's common stock between July 23,
2001 and February 20, 2003, inclusive.

The plaintiffs' specific allegations include that the defendants
engaged in fraudulent accounting and financial practices and
misrepresented material facts and omitted to state material
facts necessary to make other statements made not misleading,
and that these misrepresentations or omissions had the effect of
artificially inflating Microtune's stock price.  At this time,
the alleged misrepresentations and omissions include, among
others, allegations that:

     (i) Microtune materially overstated revenue by recognizing
         certain sales immediately as revenue when deferred
         revenue recognition would have been more appropriate;

    (ii) Microtune failed to establish reserves when
         appropriate;

   (iii) Microtune lacked adequate internal controls to assure
         its financial statements were fairly presented in
         conformity with generally accepted accounting
         principles;

    (iv) Microtune lacked sufficient controls and procedures for
         the timely and accurate issuance of periodic press
         releases;

     (v) Microtune lacked sufficient means to monitor prior
         public statements to detect whether an update was
         required; and

    (vi) Microtune failed to record impairment charges relating
         to the assets acquired with the Transilica acquisition
         at the appropriate time (Transilica-related claims).

The relief sought by the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, both
individually and on behalf of stockholders, includes damages,
interest, costs, fees, and expenses.  Lead plaintiffs have been
appointed.

The defendants filed motions to dismiss Plaintiffs' claims.  On
April 12, 2004, the District Court entered an order dismissing
all claims against defendants Rogers and Housley with prejudice
and dismissing all claims against the remaining Defendants with
prejudice except the Transilica-related claims.

The Company is currently in negotiations to settle the
consolidated lawsuit.  There can be no assurance that these
negotiations will result in a final settlement, the Company
stated in a regulatory filing.  Any settlement agreement would
be subject to numerous conditions, including the execution of
acceptable settlement documentation and Court approval.  If
achieved, any settlement will involve a cash payment from
Microtune, although the Company does not expect any settlement
will have a material impact on its business prospects, results
of operations or financial condition.


PNM RESOURCES: Asks for Dismissal of Cross-Claim in Energy Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
PNM Resources, Inc. moved to dismiss the cross-claim, relating
to the class actions filed California state Courts filed against
it and several other electric generators and marketers, alleging
that the defendants violated the law by manipulating the market
to grossly inflate electricity prices.

Named defendants in these lawsuits include Duke Energy
Corporation (Duke) and related entities along with other named
sellers into the California market and numerous other
"unidentified defendants."  Certain of these lawsuits
were consolidated for hearing in state Court in San Diego,
California.

In May 2002, the Duke defendants served a cross-claim on the
Company.  Duke also cross-claimed against many of the other
sellers into California.  Duke asked for declaratory relief and
for indemnification for any damages that might ultimately be
imposed on it.

Several defendants removed the case to federal Court in
California.  The federal judge has entered an order remanding
the matter to state court, but the effect of that ruling has
been stayed pending appeal.  The Company has joined with other
cross-defendants in motions to dismiss the cross-claim.


RELIANT ENERGY: Units Continue to Face CA Energy Antitrust Suits
----------------------------------------------------------------
Certain of Reliant Energy, Inc.'s operating subsidiaries, along
with a number of other defendants, including a subsidiary of
CenterPoint Energy, continue to face several class action
lawsuits in California.  In general, the plaintiffs allege that
the Company's operating subsidiaries unlawfully conspired to
increase wholesale electricity prices in California from 2000 to
2001.  The lawsuits seek injunctive relief, treble damages,
restitution of overpayments, disgorgement of unlawful profits
and legal expenses.  These lawsuits fall into three groups.

The first group consists of six lawsuits originally filed in the
fourth quarter of 2000 and the first quarter of 2001 and
subsequently consolidated in one proceeding before the United
States District Court for the Southern District of California.
In December 2002, the Court ordered that the six lawsuits be
tried in California state Court.  The Court's order is under
appeal before the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth
Circuit.

The second group consists of eight lawsuits originally filed in
the second quarter of 2002 and subsequently consolidated into
one proceeding before the United States District Court for the
Southern District of California.  In August 2003, the Court
dismissed seven of the eight cases on the basis of federal
preemption and the filed rate doctrine, the eighth case not
having been served on any of the defendants.  The plaintiffs
have appealed to the United States Court of Appeals for the
Ninth Circuit.

The third group consists of a multi-state class action lawsuit
filed in May 2003 against an operating Company of the Company's
wholesale energy segment and a subsidiary of CenterPoint that is
currently pending before the United States District Court for
the Southern District of California.


RELIANT ENERGY: Plaintiffs Appeal CA Antitrust Lawsuit Dismissal
----------------------------------------------------------------
Plaintiffs appealed the dismissal of the class action filed
against one of Reliant Energy, Inc.'s wholesale energy segment
operating companies and a number of other defendants.

The Snohomish County Public Utility District (PUD) filed a
lawsuit on behalf of itself and its customer-owners in July
2002, alleging manipulation of the price of electricity
purchased by the utility for its customers in violation of
California's antitrust and unfair and unlawful business
practices laws.

In January 2003, the United States District Court for the
Southern District of California dismissed the lawsuit on the
basis of federal preemption and the filed rate doctrine.  The
plaintiffs have appealed to the United States Court of Appeals
for the Ninth Circuit.


RELIANT ENERGY: Continues To Face Natural Gas Antitrust Lawsuits
----------------------------------------------------------------
Reliant Energy, Inc. and certain of its operating companies,
along with a number of other defendants, including a subsidiary
of CenterPoint Energy, continue to face several class actions,
alleging a conspiracy to increase the price of natural gas in
California.

Two class action lawsuits are consolidated before the United
States District Court of Nevada, and a third has been
conditionally transferred to the United States District Court of
Nevada from the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of California.  The suits allege violations of the
Cartwright Act and California's antitrust and unfair and
unlawful business practices laws.  In one of the lawsuits, the
plaintiffs allege violations of the federal Sherman Act.  The
lawsuits seek injunctive and declaratory relief, treble the
amount of damages, restitution, disgorgement of unjust
enrichment, costs of suit and attorneys' fees.

A fourth class action was filed in February 2004, in Superior
Court of the State of California, San Diego County against one
of our operating subsidiaries and a number of other defendants.
Similar to the other class actions, plaintiffs allege a
conspiracy to increase the price of natural gas in California in
violation of the Cartwright Act and California's antitrust and
unfair and unlawful business practices laws.  The plaintiffs
seek injunctive and declaratory relief, treble the amount of
damages, disgorgement of unjust enrichment, costs of suit and
attorneys' fees.


SEI INVESTMENTS: Faces Securities Lawsuit Over PBHG Funds in MD
---------------------------------------------------------------
SEI Investments Distribution Company (SIDCO) was named as a
defendant in the putative consolidated amended class action
complaint filed in the United States District Court for the
District of Maryland titled "Stephen Carey v. Pilgrim Baxter &
Associates, LTD, et. al."

This complaint is purportedly made on behalf of all persons that
purchased or held PBHG mutual funds during the period from
November 1, 1998 to November 13, 2003 and relates generally to
various market timing practices allegedly permitted by the PBHG
Funds.  The complaint alleges that SIDCO was the named
distributor/ underwriter from November 1998 until July 2001 for
various PBHG funds in which market timing allegedly occurred
during that period.


SELFWORX.COM: FTC Sues Over Unsubstantiated Weight Loss Claims
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Federal Trade Commission filed a complaint in the U.S.
District Court, District of Maine, against Selfworx.com LLC,
Iworx LLC, and Jeffrey V. Kral.  The Scarborough, Maine-based
defendants advertised two weight-loss products: gel-„-thin - a
topical gel, and Ultra LipoLean - a dietary supplement tablet
described as a "fat blocker."

The complaint alleges that the defendants make false and
unsubstantiated claims that gel-„-thin, when rubbed into the
skin:

     (1) causes substantial weight loss, including as much as 21
         pounds in six weeks;

     (2) dissolves fat deposits in days; and

     (3) dissolves and removes cellulite from the body.

The complaint further alleges that defendants falsely claim that
clinical studies demonstrate that gel-„-thin will reduce fat and
cellulite deposits on contact.  The complaint further alleges
that the defendants make false and unsubstantiated claims that
LipoLean causes rapid and substantial weight loss, including as
much as four pounds per week, without the need to diet; and that
only two tablets of LipoLean absorb 20 to 30 grams of fat from a
meal.


WINNEBAGO INDUSTRIES: Recalls Minnie Motor Homes For Fire Hazard
----------------------------------------------------------------
Winnebago Industries, Inc. is cooperating with the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration by voluntarily recalling
several Winnebago Minnie motor homes, models 2003-2004

On motor homes built on Ford E-series Chassis and equipped with
gas engines, a diode in the anti-lock braking system (ABS)
module may experience an electrical short.

The electrical short may cause an ABS malfunction that would
illuminate the ABS warning light, or the module may overheat
resulting in a burning odor, smoke and/or fire.  This condition
may occur while the vehicle is being driven or unattended.

Ford Motor Company is conducting the owner notification and
remedy for this campaign.  Dealers will install a new fuse in
the ABS Circuit and install a heat shield over the ABS module.
Owners should contact Ford by Phone: 1-800-392-3673 or Winnebago
by Phone: 641-585-3535.  Customers can also contact the NHTSA's
auto safety hotline: 1-888-DASH-2-DOT (1-888-327-4236).


WINNEBAGO INDUSTRIES: Recalls Motorhomes For Fire, Damage Hazard
----------------------------------------------------------------
Winnebago Industries, Inc. is cooperating with the National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) by recalling
certain motorhomes, namely:

     (1) WINNEBAGO / MINNIE, model 2003

     (2) WINNEBAGO / MINNIE WINNIE, model 2004

On motor homes built on Ford E-series chassis, the air filter
element material process resulted in an air filter paper element
that can smolder or burn.  This change in filter paper
composition combined with the configuration of the air induction
system, may allow hot carbon particles to contact the air filter
element during certain driving conditions that create hot
particles.  These hot particles may ignite the air filter
element with the potential for air induction system damage or
underhood fire.

Ford Motor Company is conducting the owner notification and
remedy for this campaign.  Dealers will inspect and replace the
air filter element.  For more details, contact Ford by Phone: AT
1-800-392-3673 or Winnebago by Phone: 641-585-3535, or contact
the NHTSA's auto safety hotline: 1-888-DASH-2-DOT
(1-888-327-4236).


WORLDCOM INC.: Rejects Settlement For Right-of-Way Litigation
-------------------------------------------------------------
Worldcom, Inc. (now doing business as MCI, Inc.) rejected the
settlement of the class actions filed against it, involving
fiber optic cable on railroad, pipeline, and utility rights-of-
way.

Between September 1998 and February 2000, the Company was named
as a defendant in three putative nationwide and thirteen
putative state class actions, alleging that the railroad,
utility and/or pipeline companies from which the Company
obtained consent to install its fiber optic cable held only an
easement in the right-of-way, and that the consent of the
adjoining landowners holding the fee interest in the right-of-
way did not authorize installation.

The complaints allege that because such consent was not
obtained, the fiber optic network owned and operated by the
Company trespasses on the property of putative class members.
The complaints allege causes of action for trespass, unjust
enrichment and slander of title, and seek compensatory damages,
punitive damages and declaratory relief.

The Company executed a settlement agreement in February 2002
regarding all right-of-way litigation in Louisiana and in June
2002 regarding all other railroad right-of-way litigation
nationwide.  However, following the Petition Date the Company
opted out of the nationwide settlement agreement because the
Oregon Court did not approve it, and the Company did not elect
to proceed to seek approval in Illinois.  During the bankruptcy
proceedings, the Company rejected the Louisiana right-of-way
settlement agreement.


WORLDCOM INC.: Reaches Settlement for NY Consolidated ERISA Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Southern District of
New York granted approval to the settlement of the litigation
filed against Worldcom, Inc. (now doing business as MCI, Inc.)
and two of its former executive officers, alleging violations of
the Employee Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA).

On March 18, 2002, one current and one former employee filed
suit in federal Court in California against the Company and two
of its former executive officers on behalf of a putative class
of participants in the WorldCom 401(k) plan and its predecessor
plans, claiming that defendants breached their fiduciary duties
under the ERISA with respect to the administration of the plans
by, among other things, misrepresenting the Company's financial
results and by allowing plan participants to continue to invest
in the Company's stock as one of their plan options.

Following the Company's June 25, 2002, restatement announcement,
participants in 401(k) plans for the Company and various of its
affiliates filed approximately 15 additional putative class
action suits against the Company and certain of its executive
officers in federal Courts in New York, Mississippi, Florida,
Oklahoma, and the District of Columbia.

On July 10, 2002, certain of the Company's directors submitted
to the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation motions to
centralize these actions.  On October 8, 2002, the Panel issued
an order centralizing 39 cases arising under the federal
securities and ERISA laws before Judge Denise L. Cote in the
United States District Court for the Southern District of New
York.  On September 18, 2002, Judge Cote entered an order
consolidating the ERISA cases pending in the Southern District
of New York, and thereafter designated lead plaintiffs for the
consolidated cases.  The Panel subsequently entered final orders
transferring initial and additional cases to Judge Cote for
consolidated or coordinated pretrial proceedings.

On December 20, 2002, the lead plaintiffs filed a consolidated
complaint alleging that defendants breached their fiduciary
duties under ERISA and seeking damages and other relief.  The
complaint, which was amended January 24, 2003, sought to certify
a class of persons who participated in the WorldCom 401(k) plan
and certain predecessor plans during the period from at least
September 14, 1998, to the present.

On January 24, 2003, defendants filed motions to dismiss the
amended complaint pursuant to Fed.R.Civ.P. 8(a), 9(b), and
12(b)(6), asserting that the complaint failed to allege that the
individual defendants were ERISA fiduciaries of the 401(k)
Salary Savings Plan and, therefore, cannot be liable for
fiduciary breach claims.  On June 17, 2003, Judge Cote issued a
decision granting the motion to dismiss filed by the former
directors and certain employees and denying the motions, in
whole or in part, filed by other defendants.

On July 25, 2003, Judge Cote issued an order establishing a
schedule for class certification proceedings, initial discovery
and the filing of an amended complaint.  Lead plaintiffs
subsequently filed second and third amended complaints pursuant
to Judge Cote's July 25 order.  The third amended complaint
charges the defendants with breaching their fiduciary duties
under ERISA.  Certain individual defendants filed a joint motion
to dismiss the third amended complaint on October 13, 2003.
Briefing on the motion to dismiss was completed on November 14,
2003.

On January 15, 2004, the U.S. Department of Labor filed an
amicus brief in opposition to the individual defendants' motion
to dismiss.  The individual defendants filed a response to the
Secretary's Amicus brief on January 30, 2004.  On September 12,
2003, lead plaintiffs also filed a motion for class
certification on their claims.  The defendants filed a joint
motion opposing class certification on October 31, 2003.

On July 6, 2004, plaintiffs filed a Motion for Order
Preliminarily Approving Settlement, Certifying a Class, and
Setting a Fairness Hearing.  Attached to the Motion was a fully
executed Settlement Agreement between the plaintiffs and the
Company, the Company's fiduciary liability insurance carriers,
and all of the individual defendants, with the exception of
Scott Sullivan and Merrill Lynch Trust Company, F.S.B. (the
"Settlement Agreement").

The Settlement Agreement provides for the creation of a
Settlement Fund consisting of approximately $47 million in cash,
and another potential amount between $450,000 and $4 million in
a promissory note from former WorldCom, Inc. Chief Executive
Officer, Mr. Ebbers.  The cash will be put into the fund by the
Company, Mr. Ebbers, and the Company's fiduciary liability
insurance carriers, both primary and excess.  The Company's
contribution to the settlement fund was approximately $23
million which was paid in September 2004.  The Settlement
Agreement was approved by the Bankruptcy Court and an
independent fiduciary for the 401(k) Plan.  On October 15, 2004,
Judge Cote approved the settlement.


                  New Securities Fraud Cases

AON CORPORATION: Murray Frank Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in IL
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Murray, Frank & Sailer LLP initiated a class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Northern District of Illinois on behalf of purchasers of the
securities of AON Corporation ("Aon" or the "Company")
(NYSE:AON) between October 31, 2002, and October 22, 2004,
inclusive (the "Class Period").

The complaint alleges that defendants' publicly disseminated
Class Period statements were materially false and misleading
because, unbeknownst to investors, Aon engaged in an illegal
scheme engineered by defendants to steer business to favored
insurance companies in exchange for lucrative contingent
commissions. In collusion with preferred insurance carriers, Aon
routinely orchestrated illusory bidding competitions in which it
would designate a winner first and then urge other favored
insurance companies to submit inflated bids with the
understanding that Aon would make similar favorable arrangements
for the "losing" bidders in subsequent competitions. Aon
presented clients with the fictitious high quotes from the
insurance companies to create the appearance of a fair bidding
competition. Thus, the complaint alleges, Aon's Class Period
representations regarding its performance were materially false
and misleading because, among other reasons, they failed to
disclose that a material portion of defendants' revenues were
derived from illegal bid rigging and kickback schemes that was
inherently unsustainable and which subjected the Company to a
serious risk of regulatory penalties, potential criminal and
civil liability, and the loss of goodwill among its clients,
thereby compromising the Company's overall financial condition
and prospects for future business.

On October 14, 2004, New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer
issued a press release, headlined "Investigation Reveals
Widespread Corruption in Insurance Industry," announcing his
filing of an action, in New York state Court, against insurance
broker Marsh & McLennan Cos. and two executives for rigging bids
and collecting fees from insurers for steering business their
way, pursuant to "contingent commission" agreements. The civil
complaint accuses the defendants of engaging in fraudulent
business practices, antitrust violations, securities fraud,
unjust enrichment and common law fraud. The press release
described wide-ranging fraud and improper conduct within the
insurance industry. In response to this announcement, and
widespread media coverage of the action, which sent shockwaves
throughout the insurance industry, the price of Aon common stock
dropped dramatically, falling 16% in one day, from a closing
price of $27.66 per share on October 13, 2004 to a closing price
of $23.18 per share on October 14. On October 15, 2004, The Wall
Street Journal reported that Aon was a target of Mr. Spitzer's
probe, having been served with a subpoena for documents related
to its contingent commission agreements. Numerous similar
articles, highlighting the corruption alleged in Mr. Spitzer's
complaint, and the fruits of their own investigations, were
published since then, causing Aon's stock price to decline
further. On October 22, 2004, SmartMoney reported that Mr.
Spitzer's office criticized Aon for "dragging its feet" in
complying with the investigation. Also that day, Aon issued a
press release announcing that "it is eliminating its practice of
accepting contingent commissions from underwriters." Aon's stock
closed at $19.35 on October 22, 2004, 30% below its closing
price prior to the breaking of the scandal.

For more details, contact Eric J. Belfi or Aaron Patton of
Murray, Frank & Sailer LLP by Mail: (800) 497-8076 or
(212) 682-1818 by Fax: (212) 682-1892 or by E-mail:
info@murrayfrank.com


ASPEN TECHNOLOGY: Lerach Coughlin Lodges Securities Suit in MA
--------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins
LLP ("Lerach Coughlin") initiated a class action in the United
States District Court for the District of Massachusetts on
behalf of purchasers of Aspen Technology, Inc. ("AspenTech")
(NASDAQ: AZPN) common stock during the period between August 8,
2000 and October 29, 2004 (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Aspen Technology, Inc. and certain of its
officers and directors with violations of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934. Defendant AspenTech describes itself as
the "leading supplier of integrated software and services to the
process industries, which consist of oil and gas, petroleum,
chemicals, pharmaceuticals and other industries that manufacture
and produce products from a chemical process."

Throughout the Class Period, defendants issued numerous positive
statements and filed quarterly reports with the SEC, which
described the Company's increasing financial performance. These
statements were materially false and misleading because they
failed to disclose and misrepresented the following adverse
facts, among others:

     (1) that the Company had improperly and prematurely
         recognized revenue for certain software license and
         service agreement transactions entered into with
         certain alliance partners and other customers during
         fiscal years 2000-2002 and possibly other periods;

     (2) that the Company lacked adequate internal controls and
         was therefore unable to ascertain its true financial
         condition; and

     (3) that as a result of the foregoing, the values of the
         Company's revenues, earnings, assets and/or liabilities
         for fiscal years 2000-2002 and possibly other periods
         were materially overstated and may have to be restated.

On October 27, 2004, the Company shocked the market when it
issued a press release announcing that its Audit Committee had
undertaken a detailed review of the accounting for certain
software license and service agreement transactions entered into
with certain alliance partners and other customers during fiscal
years 2000-2002. The press release continued stating that the
review could lead to a restatement and that the Audit Committee
was reassessing the time periods in which revenue was recognized
for these transactions and whether any of these transactions
have prior or current material financial statement impact.

Upon this shocking news, on October 28, 2004, shares of the
Company's stock fell to an intraday low of $5.50 per share, or
approximately 20%, before closing at $6.68 per share, on
unusually heavy trading volume.

Then, on October 29, 2004, the Company announced that federal
prosecutors launched a probe into the Company's accounting
practices from 2000 through 2002. The Company said it received a
subpoena from the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern
District of New York requesting documents relating to
transactions that it entered into during those years, and other
documents dating from January 1, 1999.

Upon this shocking news, shares of the Company's stock fell an
additional $0.67, or approximately 10%, to close at $6.01, on
unusually heavy trading volume. Plaintiff seeks to recover
damages on behalf of all purchasers of AspenTech common stock
during the Class Period (the "Class"). The plaintiff is
represented by Lerach Coughlin, which has expertise in
prosecuting investor class actions and extensive experience in
actions involving financial fraud.

For more details, contact Samuel H. Rudman or David A. Rosenfeld
of Lerach Coughlin by Phone: 800/449-4900 by E-mail:
wsl@lerachlaw.com or visit their Web site:
http://www.lerachlaw.com/cases/aspentech/


ASPEN TECHNOLOGY: Schatz & Nobel Lodges Securities Lawsuit in MA
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Schatz & Nobel, P.C. initiated a lawsuit seeking
class action status has been filed in the United States District
Court for the District of Massachusetts on behalf of all persons
who purchased the publicly traded securities of Aspen Technology
(Nasdaq: AZPN) ("Aspen") between August 8, 2000 and October 29,
2004, inclusive (the "Class Period"). Also included are all
those who acquired Aspen's shares through its acquisitions of
ICARUS, e- Chemicals, Hyprotech and Broner Systems.

The Complaint alleges that Aspen and certain of its officers and
directors issued materially false statements concerning the
Company's financial performance. Specifically, defendants failed
to disclose:

     (1) that Aspen had improperly and prematurely recognized
         revenue for certain software license and service
         agreement transactions entered into with certain
         alliance partners and other customers during fiscal
         years 2000-2002 and possibly other periods; and

     (2) that as a result, the values of the Company's revenues,
         earnings, assets and/or liabilities for fiscal years
         2000-2002 and possibly other periods were materially
         overstated and may have to be restated.

On October 27, 2004, Aspen announced that its Audit Committee
had undertaken a review of the accounting for certain software
license and service agreement transactions. Aspen said that the
review could lead to a restatement and that the Audit Committee
was reassessing the time periods in which revenue was recognized
for these transactions and whether any of these transactions
have prior or current material financial statement impact. Then,
on October 29, 2004, Aspen announced that federal prosecutors
launched a probe into the Company's accounting practices from
2000 through 2002. Aspen said it received a subpoena from the
U.S. Attorney's Office for the Southern District of New York
requesting documents relating to transactions that it entered
into during those years.

For more details, contact Nancy A. Kulesa or Wayne T. Boulton by
Phone: Tel.: (800) 797-5499 by E-mail: sn06106@aol.com or visit
their Web site: http://www.snlaw.net


JAKKS PACIFIC: Wolf Haldenstein Lodges Securities Lawsuit in NY
---------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Wolf Haldenstein Adler Freeman & Herz LLP filed
a class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for
the Southern District of New York on behalf of all persons who
purchased or otherwise acquired the common stock of JAKKS
Pacific, Inc. ("JAKKS" or the "Company") (Nasdaq: JAKK) between
October 26, 1999 and October 19, 2004, inclusive (the "Class
Period"), against defendants JAKKS and certain officers and
directors of the Company.

The case name is Quantum Equities LLC v. JAKKS Pacific, Inc., et
al., 04-CV-08877. The complaint alleges that defendants violated
the federal securities laws by issuing materially false and
misleading statements throughout the Class Period that had the
effect of artificially inflating the market price of the
Company's securities.

Specifically, the Complaint alleges that defendants' statements
were each materially false and misleading because they failed to
disclose and misrepresented the following adverse facts:

     (1) the Company had obtained the WWE license as a result of
         its participation in an illicit bribery scheme;

     (2) the Company's success in obtaining at least one
         lucrative license was not reflective of the Company's
         ability to enter into licensing agreements through
         arms-length transactions but was, instead, reflective
         of the Company's perpetration of an unsustainable
         business tactic;

     (3) discovery of the Company's participation in the bribery
         scheme would substantially impact the Company's past,
         present and future revenue stream from the WWE license
         as the terms of the license could be materially
         modified, or revoked in its entirety, and the Company
         would be exposed to significant liability in the form
         of damages sought by WWE;

     (4) the Company's viability as an ongoing business
         operation would be materially impacted by potential
         business partners' reluctance to conduct business with
         an entity involved in such a bribery scheme; and

     (5) the Company's revenues and earnings would have been
         significantly less had the Company not engaged in the
         bribery scheme.

For more details, contact Fred Taylor Isquith, Esq., Christopher
S. Hinton, Esq., or Derek Behnke of Wolf Haldenstein Adler
Freeman & Herz LLP by Phone: 270 Madison Avenue, New York, NY
10016 by Phone: (800) 575-0735 by E-mail: classmember@whafh.com
or visit their Web site:
http://www.whafh.com/modules/case/index.php?action=view&id=728


MARSH & MCLENNAN: Brodsky & Smith Lodges Securities Suit in NY
--------------------------------------------------------------
The law offices of Brodsky & Smith, LLC initiated a securities
class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of New York on behalf of shareholders who
purchased the common stock and other securities of Marsh &
McLennan Companies, Inc. ("Marsh & McLennan" or the "Company")
(NYSE:MMC), between October 15, 1999 and October 14, 2004
inclusive (the "Class Period").

The Complaint alleges that defendants violated federal
securities laws by failing to disclose to investors that in
spite of its claims to the contrary, Marsh & McLennan did not
consider its clients' best interest but, rather, derived
substantial reported revenue by price fixing, kickbacks and bid
rigging. This conduct is alleged to have had a materially
adverse effect on Marsh & McLennan's financial performance and
prospects. No class has yet been certified in the above action.

For more details, contact Marc L. Ackerman, Esq. or Evan J.
Smith, Esq. of Brodsky & Smith, LLC, Two Bala Plaza, Suite 602,
Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004 by Phone: 877-LEGAL-90 or by E-mail:
clients@brodsky-smith.com


MARSH & MCLENNAN: Scott + Scott Lodges ERISA Lawsuit in NJ
----------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Scott + Scott, LLC initiated a class action
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New Jersey on behalf of participants and
beneficiaries of the Marsh & McLennan Companies (NYSE:MMC) Stock
Investment Plan (401(k)).

Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. (MMC) is a global professional
services firm. The Company is the parent Company of subsidiaries
and affiliates that provide clients with analysis, advice and
transactional capabilities in the fields of risk and insurance
services, investment management and consulting. MMC's risk and
insurance services are provided by its subsidiaries and their
affiliates as broker, agent or consultant for insureds,
insurance underwriters and other brokers on a worldwide basis in
the areas of risk management and insurance broking, reinsurance
broking and services and related insurance services. Investment
management and related services are provided by Putnam
Investments Trust and its subsidiaries, and consulting services
through Mercer, Inc. In June 2004, the Company formed a new
organization merging the administration business of Putnam
Investments and Mercer HR Outsourcing to create a unified, full-
service global Company engaged in human resources outsourcing.

The complaint alleges that defendants Marsh & McLennan
Companies; its Employee Benefits Policy Committee, and certain
of its officers and directors breached their duties under ERISA
(Employee Income Security Act) by, among other things:

     (1) failing to properly manage the Plans' assets by
         imprudently investing a significant amount of the
         Plans' assets in Merck stock;

     (2) failing to provide complete and accurate information to
         participants and beneficiaries;

     (3) failing to monitor those defendants who were charged
         with managing the Plans and their assets; and

     (4) failing to avoid conflicts of interest with respect to
         the Plans.

Specifically, Plaintiff alleges that the Defendants, responsible
for the investment of the assets of the Plans, breached their
fiduciary duties to Plaintiff in violation of ERISA (Employee
Retirement Income Security Act) by failing to prudently and
loyally manage the Plans' investment in Marsh McClellan stock.
Next, Plaintiff alleges that Defendants who communicated with
participants regarding the Plans' assets, or had a duty to do
so, failed to provide participants with complete and accurate
information regarding Marsh stock sufficient to advise
participants of the true risks of investing their retirement
savings in Marsh stock. Plaintiff also alleges that Defendants,
responsible for the selection, removal, and, thus, monitoring of
the Plans' fiduciaries, failed to properly monitor the
performance of their fiduciary appointees and remove and replace
those people whose performance was inadequate. Finally,
Plaintiff alleges that Defendants breached their duties and
responsibilities to avoid conflicts of interest and serve the
interests of the participants in and beneficiaries of the Plans
with undivided loyalty.

As a result of Defendants' fiduciary breaches the Plans have
suffered substantial losses, resulting in the depletion of
hundreds of millions of dollars of the retirement savings and
anticipated retirement income of the Plans' participants. Under
ERISA, the breaching fiduciaries are obligated to restore to the
Plans the losses resulting from their fiduciary breaches.

For more details, contact Neil Rothstein of Scott + Scott, LLC
by Phone: 800-404-7770 (EDT) or 800-332-2259 (PDT) or
619-233-4565 (California) or by E-mail:
nrothstein@scott-scott.com


STAR GAS: Goodking Labaton Lodges Securities Fraud Lawsuit in CT
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Goodkind Labaton Rudoff & Sucharow LLP initiated
a class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for
the District of Connecticut, on behalf of persons who purchased
or otherwise acquired publicly traded securities of Star Gas
Partners, L.P. ("Star Gas" or the "Company") (NYSE:SGU) between
December 4, 2003 and October 18, 2004, inclusive, (the "Class
Period"). The lawsuit was filed against Star Gas and certain
officers and directors ("Defendants").

The complaint alleges that Defendants violated Sections 10(b)
and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder. Specifically the complaint alleges that
Defendants, during the Class Period caused Star Gas's shares to
trade at artificially inflated prices because it issued
materially false and misleading statements. More specifically,
Defendants concealed from investors that the Company was
experiencing extensive delays in centralizing its dispatch
system, causing customers to flock to competitors, that the
Company's Petro heating oil division's process improvement
program was not delivering the benefits claimed by Defendants,
and that contrary to prior indications the Company could not
maintain profit margins in its heating oil segment.

On October 18, 2004, the Company indicated that results at its
heating oil unit were expected to decline significantly, which
would inhibit it from meeting borrowing conditions under its
working capital credit line. In reaction to this news, shares of
Star Gas collapsed, falling from $21.60 per share to close at
$4.32 the following day.

For more details, contact Christopher Keller, Esq. of the Law
Firm of Goodkind Labaton Rudoff & Sucharow LLP by Phone:
800-321-0476 or visit their Web site:
http://www.glrslaw.com/get/?case=StarGas


SWIFT TRANSPORTATION: Schiffrin & Barroway Files AZ Stock Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP initiated a class
action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of Arizona on behalf of all securities
purchasers of Swift Transportation Co., Inc. (Nasdaq: SWFT)
("Swift" or the "Company") from October 16, 2003 through October
1, 2004, inclusive (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Swift, Gary R. Enzor, Patrick J. Farley,
Jerry C. Moyes, and William F. Riley III with violations of
Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder. More specifically, the
complaint alleges that the Company failed to disclose and
misrepresented the following material adverse facts which were
known to defendants or recklessly disregarded by them:

     (1) that the conditional safety rating given to the Company
         by the FMSCA was not an error, but rather a true
         representation of Swift's performance;

     (2) that making the internal changes necessary to improve
         the rating was fiscally prohibitive;

     (3) that the Company had to absorb the cost of the new
         Department of Transportation regulations requiring that
         drivers be paid for loading time and time waiting to
         load;

     (4) that as a consequence of the foregoing, the Company was
         losing its competitive position and revenue, however,
         in order to maintain the appearance of financial well-
         being, for the benefit of defendant Moyes' personal
         finances, the Company systematically under-depreciating
         its capital assets thereby artificially inflating its
         revenues;

     (5) that as a result of this, the Company's financial
         results were in violation of Generally Accepted
         Accounting Principles ("GAAP");

     (6) the Company lacked adequate internal controls; and

     (7) the Company's financial results were materially
         inflated at all relevant times.

On September 15, 2004, Swift announced that it had adopted a new
repurchase program, under which it may acquire up to $150
million of its common stock over the next several months.
Additionally, Swift also announced that it expects Q3 earnings
to range between 26 cents and 31 cents per share. This news
shocked the market. Shares of Swift fell $2.18 per share, or
14.9 percent, on September 15, 2004, to close at $16.09 per
share. On October 1, 2004, Swift announced that the previously
disclosed informal inquiry by the SEC into certain stock trades
by the Company and insiders, including defendant Moyes, had
become a formal investigation. The investigation centers around
certain stock trades made by defendant Moyes as well as selected
the Company repurchases. On this news, shares of Swift tumbled
an additional $.95 per share, or 5.4 percent, on October 4,
2004, to close at $16.54 per share.

For more details, contact Marc A. Topaz, Esq. or Darren J.
Check, Esq. of Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP by Phone:
1-888-299-7706 or 1-610-667-7706 or by E-mail:
info@sbclasslaw.com


UNITED RENTALS: Lerach Coughlin Lodges Securities Lawsuit in CT
---------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins
LLP ("Lerach Coughlin") initiated a class action lawsuit in the
United States District Court for the District of Connecticut on
behalf of purchasers of United Rentals, Inc. ("United Rentals")
(NYSE:URI) common stock during the period between October 23,
2003 and August 30, 2004 (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges United Rentals and certain of its officers
and directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934. United Rentals is an equipment rental Company with a
network of more than 730 rental locations in the United States,
Canada and Mexico.

The Complaint alleges that, throughout the Class Period,
defendants issued numerous positive statements concerning the
Company's financial performance. The statements were materially
false and misleading because defendants knew, but failed to
disclose:

     (1) that the Company, in an effort to generate a more
         favorable stock price and raise capital, manipulated
         its financial results through the use of restructuring
         charges, asset writedowns and debt refinancing;

     (2) that the Company improperly delayed recognition of bad
         accounts receivable;

     (3) that as a result of these manipulations, the Company's
         announced financial results were in violation of
         Generally Accepted Accounting Principles ("GAAP"); and

     (4) that the Company's financial results were materially
         inflated at all relevant times.

On August 30, 2004, United Rentals announced that it had
received notice that the Securities and Exchange Commission
("SEC") was conducting a non-public, fact-finding inquiry of the
Company. The notice was accompanied by a subpoena requesting the
production of documents relating to certain of the Company's
accounting records. United Rentals stated it "intends to
cooperate fully with the SEC." News of the SEC inquiry shocked
the market causing shares of United Rentals stock to fall 21.53
percent, to close at $16 per share on August 30, 2004 on
unusually heavy trading volume.

For more details, contact Samuel H. Rudman or David A. Rosenfeld
of Lerach Coughlin by Phone: 800/449-4900 by E-mail:
wsl@lerachlaw.com or visit their Web site:
http://www.lerachlaw.com/cases/unitedrentals/



                            *********


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via e-mail to carconf@beard.com are encouraged.

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news on asbestos-related litigation and profiles of target
asbestos defendants that, according to independent researches,
collectively face billions of dollars in asbestos-related
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                            *********


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Class Action Reporter is a daily newsletter, co-published by
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Copyright 2004.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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