CAR_Public/050111.mbx              C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

              Tuesday, January 11, 2005, Vol. 7, No. 7


                          Headlines


ARIZONA: City Settles All But About 36 Property Damage Claims
AVENTIS PHARMACEUTICALS: $80 Mil Cardizem CD Settlement Delayed
CALIFORNIA: ACLU Lodges Lawsuit Over Proposition 69 Provisions
CALIFORNIA: Judge Clears The Way For Race-Bias Lawsuit V. City
CATHOLIC CHURCH: CA Diocese Clergy Sex Abuse Settlement Unsealed

CATHOLIC CHURCH: Ex-Priest's Lawyer Questions MA Sex Abuse Claim
CHARLOTTE RUSSE: Shareholders Launch Securities Suits in S.D. CA
CONEXANT SYSTEMS: Shareholders Launch Securities Lawsuits in NJ
DAIMLERCHRYSLER CORPORATION: Recalls 1T Trucks For Injury Risk
DIET PLANS: Study Reveals Diet Plans' Ineffectiveness

DRUID HILLS: Faces Fine For Refusing Benefits For Gays' Spouses
ENRON CORPORATION: 18 Former Directors Reach $168 M Settlement
HAWAII: Honolulu Substitute Teachers Launch Lawsuit V. Pay Cut
ISRAEL: Insurers Face $170.6 Million Lawsuit Over Car Premiums
J.C. PENNEY: PA Court Dismisses $1 Mil False Marketing Claims

MISSOURI: Drivers Prevail in Back Pay Lawsuit V. Trucking Firms
NORTH CAROLINA: County Court To Hear Dispute Over Impact Fees
OSI PHARMACEUTICALS: Shareholders Launch Stock Fraud Suits in NY
PFIZER INC.: Shareholders Launch Securities Lawsuits in S.D. NY
SOLECTRON CORPORATION: CA Court Certifies Securities Fraud Suit

SOUTH CAROLINA: Two Dead, 180 Injured in Train Collision in SC
SOUTH KOREA: Companies Dreading Onslaught Of Class Action Suits
TASER INTERNATIONAL: SEC Starts Probe On Stun Guns, Yearend Sale

                  New Securities Fraud Cases

ATHEROGENICS INC.: Chitwood & Harley Files Securities Suit in GA
CHINA AVIATION: Christopher J. Gray Lodges Securities Suit in NY
EMBARCADERO TECHNOLOGIES: Marc Henzel Lodges Stock Suit in CA
GEOPHARMA INC.: Christopher J. Gray Lodges Securities Suit in NY
OSI PHARMACEUTICALS: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Lawsuit in NY

PFIZER INC.: Emerson Poynter Sets Suit Lead Plaintiff Deadline
PFIZER INC.: Marc Henzel Initiates Securities Suit in S.D. NY
ROYAL GROUP: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in S.D. NY
SUPPORTSOFT INC.: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA
UTSTARCOM INC.: Lasky & Rifkind Lodges Securities Suit in CA

UTSTARCOM INC.: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA
VALASSIS COMMUNICATIONS: Marc Henzel Lodges Stock Lawsuit in MI
VIMPEL-COMMUNICATIONS: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Suit in NY


                            *********


ARIZONA: City Settles All But About 36 Property Damage Claims
-------------------------------------------------------------
The city of Tucson, Arizona settled all but about three dozen
property damage claims from delivery of Central Arizona Project
water for a fraction of the $15 million originally sought, the
Associated Press reports.

Tucsonans lodged thousands of complaints after Tucson Water
began delivering brackish, smelly and rust-colored CAP water to
homes in 1992. The water delivered from the Colorado River via
336 miles of canals by way of Phoenix was harder and had more
than twice the mineral salts found in Tucson's groundwater, it
was also responsible for the scouring and corroding of old water
pipes. Rusty water often poured out through spigots, pipes
sometimes burst, and water heaters and other appliances were
damaged, along with walls and floors. Clothing was ruined, and
pet fish died.

The city halted CAP deliveries in 1994, and about 4,800 class-
action claims were filed, demanding the $15 million in property
damages, the city was eventually forced to shut down its new,
$103 million water treatment plant.

Gary J. Cohen, a private lawyer representing the city, told AP
they challenged some claims, and the total was trimmed to about
3,300.  Mr. Cohen further said that there were many instances of
"exaggeration," although he declined to term them fraudulent.
"The plaintiffs, of course, have always denied that and accused
the city of being mean-spirited and delaying," he adds.

Out of thousands of claims, "We're very close to finishing,"
David Toone, a lawyer representing those who filed claims, told
AP.  The last should be completed "sometime in the next couple
of months," he said.

At first, trial was planned for the 3,300 claimants, but a Pima
County Superior Court judge eventually scheduled 30 of the cases
for trial. After 11 of those claims were dismissed as invalid,
"settlement discussions began with much more vigor," Mr. Cohen
said. He further stated that Tucson established a $1.5 million
fund to pay for about 3,100 of the claims seeking less than
$5,000 apiece, but it paid out about $850,000 when all those
claims were resolved by last year, based on arbitrator Lawrence
Fleischman's recommendations. That left roughly 200 claims for
more than $5,000. A three-member arbitration panel of Mr.
Fleischman, Thomas Chandler and former Arizona Supreme Court
Justice Thomas Zlaket has made recommendations totaling about
another $900,000 on all but about 36 cases, according to Mr.
Cohen.

Mr. Cohen also stated that no date has been scheduled for the
panel to hear the last group of claims, but it should be
completed by summer and that all claims involved personal
property damages.

"The city's position all along was that there were mistakes
made. There were some people who had some damages who were
entitled to some money," Cohen told AP.  He further states, "The
problem with this whole process has always been that there were
a lot of people who were just using this as an opportunity to
take advantage of a mistake and use it to fund repairs or
replacement of items that were damaged with no relationship to
CAP water."


AVENTIS PHARMACEUTICALS: $80 Mil Cardizem CD Settlement Delayed
---------------------------------------------------------------
An objection to an $80 million class-action settlement has held
up compensation for more than 76,000 consumers who overpaid for
blood pressure medication, the DetNews.com reports.

Attorney generals from 14 states, led by Michigan and New York,
filed suit against Aventis Pharmaceuticals and Andrx Corporation
in 2001, alleging that the companies illegally agreed to not
introduce a less expensive generic version of Cardizem CD, the
once-a-day prescription drug that used by millions of people to
treat high-blood pressure and angina.  The suit further alleges
that in return for non-production of a generic drug, Aventis
paid Andrx $90 million. France-based Aventis and Florida-based
Andrx didn't admit any wrongdoing in the settlement.

Under terms of the agreement that was made public in January
2003 and joined by attorneys general for all 50 states,
consumers who bought the drug between January 1998 and January
2003 were eligible to be compensated.  In November 2003, a
Tennessee woman, Eugenia Wynne Sams, filed an objection to the
settlement, demanding a hearing in the federal appeals court.
According to her attorney, her state's laws could have resulted
in a more generous settlement.  Last month, the 6th U.S. Circuit
Court rejected her appeal, but she has until March 14 to file
another appeal with the U.S. Supreme Court.

Nancy Pridgen, an assistant Michigan attorney general told the
DetNews.com, "It is impossible to know how many of the
(plaintiffs in the suit) have died since Ms. Sams and her legal
counsel pursued the meritless appeals." If Ms. Sams doesn't file
another appeal, the plaintiffs in the suit could receive
payments about mid-March.

Under the terms of the settlement, 76,400 consumers will split
$25 million, while insurance companies that overpaid for
prescription reimbursement costs will receive $30 million. In
Michigan, thousands of consumers will split $750,000; Michigan
insurance companies will get $1 million. The number of consumers
in Michigan and the per-person distribution has not been
determined, according to attorneys. Michigan will get $400,000
for its attorney fees, and state agencies will get another
$215,000.

The attorney generals say that, beginning in July 1998, Hoechst,
a pharmaceutical Company acquired by Aventis in 2000, paid Andrx
just less than $90 million not to market a generic version of
Cardizem.  The one-year delay in the availability of a generic
substitute meant consumers medical insurance companies and the
government were forced to buy the higher-priced brand name
version.  In 1997, Hoechst earned $700 million from the sale of
Cardizem, the Company's highest revenue producer, the states'
suit said.

In approving the settlement, U.S. District Judge Nancy G.
Edmunds said in October 2003, according to DetNews.com, "This
case has helped put prescription drug pricing and marketing
tactics at the forefront of medical, congressional and judicial
scrutiny."

There's been no attention to the continuing delays in getting
higher court approval for the settlement.  Just last month,
lawyers for Michigan and New York blasted the demands of Ms.
Sams' lawyer, Gordon Ball of Knoxville, Tennessee.  Ms. Pridgen
pointes out that Judge Edmunds has acknowledged "the callous
disregard Ms. Sams and her legal counsel displayed regarding the
elderly members" in the suit."  However, Mr. Ball counters by
saying that the states were attempting to harass, intimidate and
coerce his clients.  She "will not be deterred by these heavy-
handed efforts," Ball told DetNews.

The states had asked Judge Edmunds to fine Ms. Sams $6,200 for
rising administration costs as a result of her appeals. They
also asked Judge Edmunds to award the states $550,000 for
attorneys' fees and expert witness fees. If Ms. Sams files an
appeal, the Supreme Court could take months to decide whether to
grant a review.

The $80 million settlement has been paid by the two drug
companies and is in escrow at Fifth Third Bank, accruing
interest. The payments may be slightly more given the accruing
interest, said Robert Hubbard, director of litigation for the
New York attorney general's office.

In 2003, the states said the average user would be eligible to
recover 20 percent of the price paid by the individual for their
prescriptions. The average refund could be several hundred
dollars.  The deadline for joining in the class-action suit was
November 15, 2003. A $110 million separate settlement was
reached in a case filed in Detroit by direct purchasers in 2002.


CALIFORNIA: ACLU Lodges Lawsuit Over Proposition 69 Provisions
--------------------------------------------------------------
Just as the state begins to undertake the massive effort, an
American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) lawsuit is threatening to
halt the collection of DNA samples from felony suspects, the
L.A. Daily News reports.

Under Proposition 69, which was approved in November by
California voters, convicted felons and those arrested for
certain felonies are now required to give DNA by having the
inside of their cheeks swabbed. Since its approval, several
police agencies in Los Angeles, Alameda, Orange and San
Francisco counties have already turned in to the state DNA
samples they collected. The California Department of Corrections
started taking samples from parolees and inmates about to leave
state prison.

The ACLU filed the class-action lawsuit, claiming the new law is
unconstitutional because it violates a person's Fourth Amendment
rights as well as rights to due process and privacy. They are
asking the court to block the collection of DNA from people
arrested on felony charges and those who already completed
probation or parole.

However, the action hasn't stopped the state from distributing
DNA collection kits or the police from taking samples.  Nathan
Barankin, spokesman for the state Attorney General's Office,
told the Daily News "If they got a court order we would. But
right now, it's just a lawsuit."

The spokesman for the state Attorney General's Office even told
the L.A. Daily News that they've distributed 55,000 buccal swab
collection kits and plans to order 200,000 more. Though he
didn't know how many samples have been turned in from the four
counties.

Locally, only the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is
taking DNA samples. It has collected more than 200 samples from
felony suspects, said Cmdr. Marc Klugman of the sheriff's
Correctional Services Division. "We received 8,000 kits. We are
using them but doing it on a limited basis," Cmdr. Klugman adds.

The county is starting with the Sheriff's Department, which runs
the county jails, and branching out from there.  Lisa Kahn,
deputy district attorney who also worked on Proposition 69, told
the Daily News "You have to keep in mind this is an enormous
undertaking for Los Angeles County." She also said that the vast
majority of samples would be collected at conviction, which
affects those in custody and felons out of custody. She said
they are working on a countywide protocol to dictate where
felons out of custody can go to give DNA samples.

Voters passed Proposition 69 on November 2, which in effect
broadened the list of those who must give DNA. Before
Proposition 69, California already collected DNA from certain
convicted felons like murderers, rapists and child molesters.
What the new law does is require all convicted felons and anyone
arrested on a felony charge to give a DNA sample.

Proposition 69 took effect immediately for felons and for
suspects in murder, rape, sodomy, forcible oral copulation and
forcible child molestation cases. But most felony suspects won't
be required to give a sample until 2009.

One of the ACLU's arguments is that the law calls for taking DNA
from people arrested but not yet convicted of a crime.  Ricardo
Garcia, criminal justice director for the ACLU of Southern
California, told the Daily News "People can be arrested for a
number of reasons. We live in a society still (where) you are
presumed innocent until proven guilty." The courts have found
that collecting DNA from convicted felons is OK and that isn't a
battle the ACLU is taking on, he adds.

However, Harriet Salarno, president of the Sacramento-based
Crime Victims United of California, argues the ACLU's contention
and said that the people of California sent a clear message by
passing Proposition 69. She also told the Daily News that, she
doesn't buy the ACLU's argument that DNA shouldn't be taken from
felony suspects, according to her, "If you're innocent, who
cares? If you haven't committed anything . If you're innocent,
it doesn't matter."

Suspects acquitted or who don't get charged with a crime must
ask the court to remove their DNA from the state database. The
law doesn't automatically expunge their sample. Mr. Garcia said
the judges wouldn't approve such a request unless the prosecutor
signs off on it. And there is no way to appeal the court's
decision. "It puts an onerous burden on the citizen to prove
their innocence," he said.

Mr. Barankin said the state is working with the legislators to
make it easier for people to remove their sample from the
database, and Kahn said she is drafting a one-page form for
people who want to have their DNA removed.


CALIFORNIA: Judge Clears The Way For Race-Bias Lawsuit V. City
--------------------------------------------------------------
A federal judge in Riverside, California ruled that "former or
current" employees of the city of Desert Hot Springs can proceed
with a class-action discrimination lawsuit, the Desert Sun
reports.

The suit was filed more than six years ago against the city by
two former employees but had been held up in a legal morass
because of delays caused by the city's bankruptcy situation.
The city had emerged from bankruptcy protection last fall after
it issued more than $12.7 million in bonds to pay off debt
incurred through a failed 14-year legal battle with a developer
over a private housing project. The city had filed for Chapter 9
protection after it got stung by $6 million in judgment and
legal fees in a protracted housing discrimination case, and owed
more than 500 creditors a total of $10 million.

William J. Davis, attorney with a Los Angeles-based law firm
that handled the lawsuit for the plaintiffs, told the Desert Sun
this latest legal ruling, issued by a federal judge recently, is
significant because it allows anyone harmed by the city's
alleged discrimination practices to recover damages. He explains
that the lawsuit may allow more than 100 individuals who worked
for the city, applied for jobs, or were discouraged from
applying for jobs, to recover unspecified monetary damages. He
further explains, "The certification of the lawsuit also means
that the city is liable to change its employment practices as it
relates to people of color. It is likely that the city will have
judicial supervision to make sure this doesn't happen again."

Recently, Robert J. Timlin, a federal judge with the U.S.
District Court for the Central District of California in
Riverside, certified the class-action lawsuit. Former city
employees Edward Moore Jr. and Albert Pimentel against the city,
former city manager Robert Wilburn, and police officers Richard
Mosley and Steve O'Connor filed the suit.

Mr. Moore and Mr. Pimentel alleged employment discrimination
based on race, according to a copy of Judge Timlin's ruling that
was issued just recently. Mr. Moore also alleges that city
employees frequently called him various racial slurs and
compared him to a "black bowling ball." On the other hand, Mr.
Pimentel, who is Hispanic, alleged that he was replaced by a
"white employee" to whom the city paid twice as much as Pimentel
had been paid as a kennel technician at its animal shelter in
the mid-1990s.

Legal documents revealed that Mr. Pimentel was later fired in
July 1997 by the city after receiving some negative evaluations
and complaints regarding his "demeanor at work."  Meanwhile, Mr.
Moore, who was employed with the city from August 24, 1994,
through July 1997 has recently claimed that he was allegedly
beaten up by police officers, causing "injury and bleeding" to
his face, after the lawsuit was filed.


CATHOLIC CHURCH: CA Diocese Clergy Sex Abuse Settlement Unsealed
----------------------------------------------------------------
Details of a record $100 million settlement between the Roman
Catholic Diocese of Orange and alleged victims of priest sexual
abuse were unsealed, with church leaders saying it would make
the diocese a "holier, humbler and healthier church," the
Associated Press reports.

The settlement resolves 90 lawsuits filed against the diocese,
including allegations against 31 priests, 10 lay personnel, one
religious brother and two nuns.  The parties reached the
settlement on December 2,2003, but was under court seal for a
month as they signed off on it.  The settlement surpasses the
$85 million the Archdiocese of Boston agreed to pay 552
plaintiffs in 2002.

The earliest allegation dated to 1936; the latest came in 1996.
Payouts were based on the length and severity of abuse and other
factors, but how much each plaintiff is getting remains
confidential.  Half of the payout will come from the diocese and
the other half will be paid by its eight insurance carriers. The
agreement also calls for the release of nearly all confidential
documents from diocesan personnel files of the accused after a
judge's review; attorneys estimated the first records could be
released within two months, AP reports.

Alleged victims were emotional as they spoke publicly about the
deal with the diocese.  Some thanked Bishop Tod D. Brown, who as
head of the diocese negotiated what has become the largest
clergy abuse settlement in history.

"Let this be what everyone remembers from today: that nothing is
more important than the protection of our children and our
youth," Bishop Brown said as he sat alongside plaintiffs and
their attorneys, AP reports.  "I seek their forgiveness, I hope
for reconciliation and I know that they have now begun their
healing process."

"Today, we can stand and we can say, I forgive you. And of
course I do, of course we forgive you," said Mark Curran, one of
those whose lawsuits against the diocese led to the settlement,
AP reports.

Around 800 clergy abuse lawsuits are still pending statewide and
plaintiffs used the settlement announcement to call on other
bishops - particularly Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony - to
follow Brown's example.  The Archdiocese of Los Angeles faces
more than 500 lawsuits that are still locked in settlement
negotiations.  Trial dates for a handful of those cases are
expected to be set Friday.


CATHOLIC CHURCH: Ex-Priest's Lawyer Questions MA Sex Abuse Claim
----------------------------------------------------------------
The lawyer of defrocked Massachusetts priest Paul Shanley
questioned the claims of an alleged victim, stating that the
victim recalled the abuse only after contacting a law firm
handling hundreds of clergy sex abuse cases, the Associated
Press reports.

The now-73 year old former priest was arrested in 2002 after
four men accused him of molesting them between 1979 and 1989,
when they were altar boys at a parish in Newton, Massachusetts.
He has been free on bail while awaiting trial.  All four
accusers were initially involved in the criminal case; over the
past year, prosecutors dropped two alleged victims and plan to
drop a third, leaving just the man with the recovered memory.

Attorney Frank Mondano asserted that court documents show the
alleged victim contacted Boston law firm Greenberg Traurig
before he recalled the alleged molestation by Mr. Shanley.  The
man says he remembered the alleged abuse after the scandal broke
in the Boston Archdiocese in 2002.

The man asserted that he did not contact attorneys until after
he recalled the alleged abuse on February 11,2002, Mr. Mondano
asserted, according to AP.  However, Mr. Mondano asserted that
documents filed with the court - including a journal the man
began February 1, 2002, about the alleged abuse - demonstrate
he'd been in contact with lawyers before the date he claims to
have recalled the molestation.  He added that the man didn't
formally retain lawyers from Greenberg Traurig until February
20, but an attorney's fee schedule turned over to the court was
dated February 11.

"I submit that the reason it looks like a textbook case (of
recovered memory) is because it came right out of a textbook,"
attorney Frank Mondano said at a pretrial hearing, according to
AP. "People are trying real hard to obfuscate the fact that the
cart came before the horse."

Atty. Mondano intends to question the accuser before the start
of Mr. Shanley's criminal trial on January 18.  There was no
immediate ruling by Judge Stephen Neel.

Assistant District Attorney Katherine Folger said the issue
should be decided by a jury. "I think it is time to move
forward," she told the judge, AP reports.

Greenberg Traurig lawyer David G. Thomas said the fee schedule
mistakenly bore an earlier date.  "We strongly and unequivocally
disagree with Mr. Mondano's position," Thomas said after the
hearing, AP reports.  The firm represented about half the 550
alleged victims who settled with the Boston Archdiocese for $85
million in 2003.


CHARLOTTE RUSSE: Shareholders Launch Securities Suits in S.D. CA
----------------------------------------------------------------
Charlotte Russe Holding, Inc. faces several securities class
actions filed in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of California on behalf of purchasers of the
Company's securities from January 22,2004 to December 6,2004.

The complaints charge the Company, Mark Hoffman, and Daniel
Carter with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
Charlotte is a mall-based specialty retailer of apparel and
accessories targeting young women between the ages of 15 and 35.
The Company has two distinct store concepts: Charlotte Russe and
Rampage.

More specifically, the complaints allege 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 strategic repositioning of the Rampage stores
         was failing to produce tangible results;

     (2) that other measures, promoted by management, as actions
         designed to improve operations, were proving futile in
         both the merchandising and store organizations; and

     (3) that as a result of the above, the defendants' fiscal
         2004 projections were lacking in any reasonable basis
         when made.

The complaints further allege that on September 9, 2004,
Charlotte reported revised guidance for the fourth quarter of
fiscal 2004, which will end on September 25, 2004. News of this
shocked the market. Shares of Charlotte fell $3.43 per share, or
23.44 percent, on September 9, 2004, to close at $11.20 per
share. Then on December 6, 2004, Charlotte reported that Donna
Desrosiers, Executive Vice President and GMM for the Charlotte
Russe chain, had resigned for personal reasons. The Company also
announced that, as a result of weaker than expected sales during
the quarter to date, it was now forecasting that comparable
stores sales would decline mid to high single-digits during the
first quarter of fiscal 2005 ending on December 25, 2004. The
Company had previously guided investors to expect a low single-
digit comparable sales increase for the quarter. On this news
shares of Charlotte fell $0.82 per share, or 7.52 percent, on
December 7, 2004, to close at $10.09 per share.

The first identified complaint in this litigation is styled
"David Phillips, et al. v. Charlotte Russe Holding, Inc., et
al., case no. 04-CV-2528."  The plaintiff firms in this
litigation are:

     (1) Hulett Harper LLP, 550 West C Street, Suite 1600, San
         Diego, CA, 92101, Phone: (619)338-1133, Fax:
         (619)3381139, E-mail:office@hulettharper.com

     (2) Schatz & Nobel, P.C., 330 Main Street, Hartford, CT,
         06106, Phone: 800.797.5499, Fax: 860.493.6290,
         sn06106@AOL.com

     (3) Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP, 3 Bala Plaza E, Bala Cynwyd,
         PA, 19004, Phone: 610.667.7706, Fax: 610.667.7056, E-
         mail: info@sbclasslaw.com


CONEXANT SYSTEMS: Shareholders Launch Securities Lawsuits in NJ
---------------------------------------------------------------
Conexant Systems, Inc. faces several securities class actions
filed in the United States District Court for the District of
New Jersey on behalf of purchasers of the Company's common stock
from March 1,2004 to November 4,2004.

The complaints allege that Conexant violated federal securities
laws by issuing false or misleading statements concerning its
integration with Globespan.  More specifically, the complaint
alleges that on March 1, 2004, Conexant acquired Globespan.
Conexant claimed, "We have made outstanding progress toward
integrating the organizations, systems, technologies and
processes of Conexant and GlobespanVirata over the past two
months and are in a strong position as we begin combined
operations today." However, the merger had not been successful,
as was later admitted, and the Company faced severe problems
combining the two companies' parallel DSL and wireless
technology offerings. Sales and administration operations also
experienced integrations problems.

Conexant claimed that the growth in its wireless LAN ("WLAN")
business was slowing. Integration problems also beset the
Company's WLAN business, formerly the top producer for WLAN.
Defendants also neglected research and development of new
products, resulting in huge market share losses.

The complaints further allege that on November 4, 2004, Conexant
announced that its "fourth fiscal quarter 2004 revenues of
$213.1 million decreased 20 percent from the third fiscal
quarter revenues of $267.6 million." As a result of this
disclosure, Conexant's stock price fell 10% on November 5, 2004.
Murray, Frank & Sailer LLP and its predecessor firms have
devoted its practice to shareholder class actions and complex
commercial litigation for more than thirty years and have
recovered hundreds of millions of dollars for shareholders in
class actions throughout the United States.

The complaints have been filed on behalf of all persons who
purchased the publicly traded securities of Conexant Systems,
Inc. between March 1, 2004 and November 4, 2004, including all
former holders of GlobespanVirata, Inc. who acquired Conexant
shares in the merger completed March 1, 2004.

The firs identified complaint is styled "Joseph Witriol, et al.
v. Conexant Systems, Inc., et al."  The plaintiff firms in this
or similar lawsuits are:

     (1) Charles J. Piven, World Trade Center-Baltimore,401 East
         Pratt Suite 2525, Baltimore, MD, 21202, Phone:
         410.332.0030, E-mail: pivenlaw@erols.com

     (2) Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins (San
         Diego), 401 B Street, Suite 1700, San Diego, CA, 92101,
         Phone: 619.231.1058, Fax: 619.231.7423, E-mail:
         info@lerachlaw.com

     (3) Murray, Frank & Sailer LLP, 275 Madison Ave 34th Flr,
         New York, NY, 10016, Phone: 212.682.1818, Fax:
         212.682.1892, E-mail: email@rabinlaw.com

     (4) Schatz & Nobel, P.C., 330 Main Street, Hartford, CT,
         06106, Phone: 800.797.5499, Fax: 860.493.6290, E-mail:
         sn06106@AOL.com


DAIMLERCHRYSLER CORPORATION: Recalls 1T Trucks For Injury Risk
--------------------------------------------------------------
DaimlerChrysler Corporation is cooperating with the United
States National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) by
voluntarily recalling 1,142 Dodge Dakota pick-up trucks, model
2005.

On these pick-up trucks equipped with the optional side curtain
air bag, the curtain fasteners may not have been properly
tightened.  This could result in an improper side air bag
curtain deployment in certain side crash conditions, which can
increase the risk of injury to vehicle occupants.

Dealers will tighten the side air bag curtain fasteners to the
proper specification.  The recall is expected to begin during
January 2005.  For more details, contact the Company by Phone:
1-800-853-1403, or contact the NHTSA's auto safety hotline:
1-888-327-4236.


DIET PLANS: Study Reveals Diet Plans' Ineffectiveness
------------------------------------------------------
A review of 10 of the nations most popular weight-loss programs
found that only one of these diets offered enough proof that
they actually work at helping people shed pounds and keep them
off, the Associated Press reports.

The review, published in Tuesday last week's Annals of Internal
Medicine, found that only Weight Watchers had strong
documentation that it worked - with one study showing that
participants lost around 5 percent (about 10 pounds) of their
initial weight in six months and kept off about half of it two
years later.  However, researches qualified that the lack of
scientific evidence should not be viewed as an attack on diet
programs.

"There are no data on weight loss when you go to a health club,
either," Thomas Wadden, a University of Pennsylvania weight-loss
expert and the study's co-author, told AP.  "We hope that
doctors and patients will use this information to make more
informed decisions."

About 45 million Americans diet each year.  People in this
country spend $1 billion to 2 billion per year on weight-loss
programs.  However, millions of those who enroll in weight-loss
programs every year do not have much to go on when choosing a
plan because few studies have been done that pass scientific
muster.

The review aimed to replace glossy ads and dramatic testimonials
with information about program components, safety, staff
qualifications, cost and effectiveness - and should serve as a
call to programs to conduct more strenuous research, Mr. Wadden
told AP.

According to AP, Karen Miller-Kovach, chief scientific officer
of Weight Watchers International Inc., said of the findings:
"Our commitment to science and research has increased over the
years and is ongoing, and it's nice to see this validation of
what we've been doing."

The review also examined Carlsbad, California-based Jenny Craig,
Inc., which typically provides prepared meals and diet and
exercise counseling.  Lisa Talamini, chief nutritionist for the
Carlsbad, Calif.-based Company, told AP that Jenny Craig will
soon start a large study of the sort urged by the review
authors.  She also cited a recent analysis by The Cooper
Institute, a research organization that focuses on exercise,
that found people who followed Jenny Craig for a year lost 15
percent, or an average of 22 pounds, of their initial body
weight.

The authors of the latest review could not find any published
evaluations about another big commercial plan, LA Weight Loss.
And they said there was insufficient evidence to prove the
effectiveness of self-help programs like Overeaters Anonymous
and Take Off Pounds Sensibly.  As for doctor-supervised, low-
calorie diets Optifast and Health Management Resources, which
cost around $2,000 for the first three months, the data on their
long-term success rates are not highly promising, researchers
said, according to AP.  However, they said such plans still can
be appropriate for severely overweight people who need
aggressive weight loss.


DRUID HILLS: Faces Fine For Refusing Benefits For Gays' Spouses
---------------------------------------------------------------
Atlanta, Georgia Mayor Shirley Franklin warned the Druid Hills
Golf Club, over its alleged refusal to extend spousal benefits
to the partners of the club's gay members, the Associated Press
reports.

In a letter, Mayor Franklin said the club violated the state's
human rights ordinance, requiring businesses to treat domestic
partners registered with the city as married couples.  Two gay
members challenged the club's policy and are seeking spousal
benefits for their partners, including golfing privileges and
the right to visit the club on their own.

It is the first time the city has enforced the four-year-old
ordinance, which allows the mayor to pull liquor and business
licenses or impose fines against businesses found to be
discriminatory.  Mayor Franklin said in her letter that she is
ordering the city solicitor to fine the club $500 a day for up
to six months - a total of $90,000 - unless the rule is changed.
The solicitor will decide when the fines will begin.

"Atlanta has a very proud history of promoting and celebrating
diversity," she wrote, according to AP.  "Given the club's
failure to address the issues internally, I am compelled to
act."

The club's Board said in an e-mail to members that Franklin has
no right to impose a fine.  "We continue to believe there is a
legitimate and legally recognized distinction between `spouse'
and `domestic partner' and our policies are non-discriminatory,"
the board said, according to AP.


ENRON CORPORATION: 18 Former Directors Reach $168 M Settlement
--------------------------------------------------------------
Eighteen former directors of the Enron Corporation have agreed
to a $168 million settlement deal in a shareholder lawsuit over
the collapse of the energy firm, according to the University of
California, the leading plaintiff in the case.

The University of California also revealed that 10 of the former
directors would pay an additional $13m from their own pockets
and that the settlement will be put to the courts for approval
soon.

As previously reported in the January 13, 2004 edition of the
Class Action Reporter, in February 2002, the University of
California was named lead plaintiff in the Enron shareholders'
class action suit previously filed against 29 top executives of
Enron Corporation and its accounting firm, Arthur Andersen LLP.
UC filed a consolidated complaint on April 8, 2002, adding nine
banks and two law firms as defendants in the case.

In April 2003, U.S. District Court Judge Melinda Harmon
completed her rulings on the various defendants' motions to
dismiss and lifted the stay on discovery. Following those
rulings, UC filed a second amended complaint on May 14, 2003.

Before its collapse, the firm was the seventh largest publicly-
held US company by revenue. Its demise sent shockwaves through
financial markets and dented investor confidence in corporate
America.

According to William Lerach, the lawyer leading the class action
suit against Enron, "The settlement is very significant in
holding these outside directors at least partially personally
responsible. Hopefully, this will help send a message to
corporate boardrooms of the importance of directors performing
their legal duties."

Under the terms of the $168 million settlement ($155 million of
which will be covered by insurance) none of the 18 former
directors will admit any wrongdoing.

The deal is the fourth major settlement negotiated by lawyers
who filed a class action on behalf of Enron's shareholders
almost three years ago. So far, including the latest deal, just
under $500m has been retrieved for investors.

However, the latest deal does not include former Enron chief
executives Ken Lay and Jeff Skilling. Both men are facing
criminal charges for their alleged misconduct in the run up to
the firm's collapse. Neither does it cover Andrew Fastow, who
has pleaded guilty to taking part in an illegal conspiracy while
he was chief financial officer at the group.

Enron's shareholders are still seeking damages from a long list
of other big name defendants including the financial
institutions JP Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Merrill Lynch and
Credit Suisse First Boston.

The University of California said the trial in the case is
scheduled to begin in October 2006. It had joined the lawsuit in
December 2001 alleging "massive insider trading" and fraud,
claiming it had lost $145m on its investments in the Company.


HAWAII: Honolulu Substitute Teachers Launch Lawsuit V. Pay Cut
--------------------------------------------------------------
Public school substitute teachers in Honolulu, Hawaii initiated
a class-action lawsuit against the state in an attempt to block
a proposed pay cut this month, the Honolulu Advertiser reports.

Substitute teachers Allan Kliternick, David Garner, Jo Jennifer
Goldsmith and David Hudson on behalf of the state's 9,000
substitute teachers filed the lawsuit in state Circuit Court and
named as defendants Schools Superintendent Pat Hamamoto, the
Board of Education and the Department of Education.

The DOE had announced last October that the daily pay for
substitute teachers would drop from $119.80 to $111.41 beginning
November 1. It later amended the change, saying the reduction
would be to $112.53 and would take effect January 24.

However, the substitute teachers allege that the pay cut
violates a 1996 law that sets pay schedules. If the law were
being followed, the substitutes argued they should be getting
about $30 more per day.

In 2002, substitute teachers filed a similar lawsuit, claiming
that the state had not followed the pay schedule since the law
was enacted in 1996. They were seeking $25 million in damages.
Circuit Judge Karen Ahn ruled last month that the lawsuit could
proceed, but she limited the period for which the teachers can
seek damages to the two years prior to the filing of the 2002
lawsuit. With the ruling, the amount of damages sought will be
reduced to about $15 million.

The pay cut is based on an October 2004 memorandum signed by the
Schools Superintendent and Joan Husted, executive director of
the Hawaii State Teachers Association. That agreement set
classifications for teachers as well as substitutes, even though
the HSTA does not represent the substitutes.

However, the lawsuit alleges that the new classifications affect
only the substitutes and not full-time teachers. The lawsuit
also accused the state of initiating the memorandum "for the
sole purpose of undermining the rights of substitute teachers."

The attorney general's office has argued that substitutes are
earning the correct amount, the same pay as instructors with
four years of college education or who hold a bachelor's degree.


ISRAEL: Insurers Face $170.6 Million Lawsuit Over Car Premiums
--------------------------------------------------------------
A massive class action was initiated against four leading local
insurance companies in Israel totaling some NIS 750 million
($170.6 million), for overcharging corporate clients for car
insurance, the Ha'aretz reports.

The class action suits claim that the four insurers Menorah,
Harel, Israel Phoenix and Clal Insurance have misled their
corporate clients by charging vehicle insurance premiums based
on the full value of cars. However, if something happens to the
cars, the insurers pay compensation based on that value minus
VAT.

The claimants allege the insurance firms do not disclose the
asymmetry when closing contracts. They also allege that when
asked about the discrepancy, the insurance agents merely
shrugged and said, "That is how the insurance companies
operate." The insurance companies have yet to file their
response.


J.C. PENNEY: PA Court Dismisses $1 Mil False Marketing Claims
-------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit in Philadelphia
recently ruled J.C. Penney Life was within its rights to
withhold payment to the sons of an Old Forge, Pennsylvania woman
even though it had made false statements in its marketing
literature, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.

Elaine Pilosi had bought an accidental-death insurance policy in
1995 on the promise that she would be covered for $1 million if
she were killed aboard a bus, train, plane - or any common
carrier. However, when the woman died in a plane crash five
years later, the J.C. Penney Life Insurance Co. rejected the $1
million claim of her two adult sons and offered them $50,000
instead.

Documents in the case show that in its marketing materials,
Company employees and even its president made broad pledges
about $1 million worth of coverage. But when her sons tried to
collect, the Company pointed to narrow language in Mrs. Pilosi's
policy to deny the claim.

Mrs. Pilosi's son Christian, 32, of Moosic said that he and his
brother, James, 30, were shocked by the court's decision. He
told the Philadelphia Inquirer, "We've been fighting for
something we thought was owed from the very beginning. It's true
that this is a claim for money, but it's more about our mom and
justice."

Daniel T. Brier, a Scranton lawyer who represents the Pilosi
brothers, said he intended to pursue further litigation but
declined to say more.

Elaine Pilosi, 46, was an administrator at a children's day-care
center in Blakely, Pa. She was killed on May 21, 2000, aboard a
charter flight taking a group of Northeastern Pennsylvania
residents on a day-trip gambling excursion to Atlantic City.

Mrs. Pilosi had made an impromptu decision to join her mother on
the trip, which was sponsored by Caesars Atlantic City Hotel-
Casino. On the return flight, the plane apparently ran out of
fuel and crashed near Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International
Airport. Mrs. Pilosi and her mother were killed along with 15
other passengers and two crewmembers.  Families of all the
victims filed claims against the charter service, which were
eventually settled.

Other policyholders have also accused J.C. Penney Life, based in
Plano, Texas of refusing to honor claims. In a pending class
action lawsuit in Corpus Christi, Texas, J.C. Penney Life is
being sued for fraud, nonpayment of claims, and unjust
enrichment. Records of the National Association of Insurance
Commissioners list 190 consumer complaints - many involving
nonpayment of benefits - filed against the Company last year.

Laura Robinson, a spokeswoman for the Company - which has
changed its name to Stonebridge Life Insurance Co. - declined to
comment on the court's decision or on other complaints against
the Company.

In 2002, a U.S. District Court judge in Harrisburg ordered the
insurance Company to pay the $1 million claim. J.C. Penney Life
appealed that decision and argued that the plane on which Mrs.
Pilosi died, a bimonthly flight chartered by Caesars was
excluded from coverage because it was not licensed, as the
policy required, for "regular passenger service."

After a minute dissection of the policy language, the appeals
court agreed. A three-judge panel ruled that the flight was
excluded from coverage and the Company had no duty to pay. At
the same time, the court concluded that J.C. Penney Life had
made false statements in its promotional literature - but that
those statements did not constitute bad faith.

"Admittedly, some of J. C. Penney Life's conduct may have
created an appearance of bad faith," Judge Max Rosenn wrote in
the court's opinion. "... Company officials testified under oath
that [marketing] statements were false, 'probably false' or 'not
necessarily totally true.' "

One of those statements was made in a "welcome letter" that
Elaine Pilosi received shortly after she bought her accidental-
death policy. The letter, signed by Fred A. Williams, president
of J.C. Penney Life, pledged $1 million in coverage if Mrs.
Pilosi were to be killed aboard a common carrier, defined in the
letter as "any licensed public transportation such as an
airplane, bus, subway, taxi, ship or train."

Charles K. Costa, the Company's vice president for claims,
testified in a deposition in 2001 that the letter's description
of the coverage was "not a true statement for the contract."

In his opinion, Judge Rosenn said that such misrepresentations
did not amount to bad faith because, under the law, the narrow
language of the policy gave the Company a "reasonable basis" to
deny the claim.

But, Christian Pilosi said that made no sense to him. He and his
brother contend that the Company engaged in flagrant bad faith.
Spurred by that belief, he told the Philadelphia Inquirer,
"We're going to pursue justice."


MISSOURI: Drivers Prevail in Back Pay Lawsuit V. Trucking Firms
---------------------------------------------------------------
After a recent federal court ruling, three local trucking firm
owners could be forced to pay thousands in back pay to nearly
700 drivers, the Blue Springs Examiner reports.

U.S. District Court Judge Fernando Gaitan Jr., recebtly ruled
that Ledar Transport, Hawthorn Leasing, and Company officers
Carl Higgs, Norma Higgs and Scott Higgs, all of Independence,
owe nearly 700 drivers, thousands of back pay for failing to pay
mileage, improperly withholding compensation and inappropriately
charging the drivers from June 1996 to January 2001.

According to Randall Herrick-Stare of Cullen Law Firm, which
represents the drivers, the amount of damages in the case will
likely be determined after lawyers from both sides meet with
Judge Gaitan in about a week. He expects the damages to be
"substantial" based on the number of plaintiffs, but said the
damages were secondary in the case to determining if the
defendants were liable.

The drivers, with support from the Owner-Operator Independent
Drivers Association, or OOIDA, a national organization based in
Grain Valley, entered into a class-action lawsuit against the
defendants in April 2002. Judge Gaitan made his ruling after
three days of testimony in August 2004.

The drivers had alleged the Higgs family and their companies
accepted escrow funds paid by the drivers for trucks but did not
properly account for or return them at the end of the leases. In
addition, they said Mr. Ledar improperly charged drivers for
insurance, taxes, fuel and other fees and withheld pay to cover
the debts.

The defendant's attorney, Russell Powell of McDowell, Rice,
Smith and Buchanan, told the Blue Springs Examiner that his
clients plan to appeal the ruling. He adds, "My clients are
convinced that once we get to the 8th Circuit Court of Appeals
and back to (district court), no damages will be assessed. This
process will take years."

Mr. Herrick-Stare said the case was unusual because the Company
owners were found liable in addition to their organizations. He
said the carrier essentially created a separate entity to avoid
its truth-in-lending obligations. In legalese, such a move is
called "piercing the corporate veil," Mr. Herrick-Stare
explains. Furthermore, he explains, "The court basically found
they set up these corporations as a shell and the three persons
didn't honor their corporate responsibilities," and adds that
the ruling was "simply a way to prevent people from dodging
regulations."

In a press release, OOIDA President and Chief Executive Officer
Jim Johnston said Judge Gaitan's ruling would help protect
drivers. According to him, "This decision by the court to hold
owners and officers of companies liable for violations of the
federal regulations will go a long way in helping us recover
driver accounts from carriers, especially those that hide behind
bankruptcy protection filings and the quick sale or manipulation
of corporate assets."


NORTH CAROLINA: County Court To Hear Dispute Over Impact Fees
-------------------------------------------------------------
The protracted dispute over whether Durham County has the power
to make homebuilders help pay for schools finally should have
its day in court, the Durham Herald Sun reports.

According to County Attorney Chuck Kitchen, the class-action
lawsuit over whether the county has the right to impose the
charges, called impact fees, on new construction is to be heard
at 2:30 p.m. Tuesday, in the grand jury courtroom on the sixth
floor of the Durham County Courthouse.

Hank Fordham, one of the attorneys for the people who filed the
suit, and Mr. Kitchen declined to comment on the case before the
trial.

The issue dates back to September 2003, when Durham County
became the first county in the state to approve school impact
fees without prior legislative authority. Orange and Chatham
counties also charge impact fees for schools. But both received
authority from the General Assembly, which has since frowned
upon such measures.

Durham County approved impact fees after a decade of controversy
and requests to the General Assembly for the authority to levy
the fees. The County charges a $2,000 impact fee for each new
house permit and $1,155 for each new apartment or townhouse with
county officials expecting the fees to raise about $5 million a
year.

Officials also said that the fees went into effect in January
2004, but since the filing of the suit, the money has been
placed in an escrow account until the lawsuit is resolved. So
far the county has received $2.8 million in impact fees, said
county spokesman Deborah Craig-Ray.

In November 2003, a homebuilders group filed a lawsuit
challenging the county's authority to enact the fees and asking
that they be rescinded. The lawsuit contends that the county
overstepped its constitutional authority by passing the fees
without specific approval from the Legislature.

Nick Tennyson, a former Durham mayor and currently the executive
vice president of the Homebuilders Association of Durham and
Orange Counties, said the fees unfairly ask the homebuilding
industry to pay for a widely used service. According to him, "I
don't think there is any precedent for taking the action the
county took, and I believe that is the way the judge will rule."
Builders, who pay the fees when their units are ready to be
sold, also have argued that the fees increase housing costs, he
further adds.

In May, a judge granted class-action status to the lawsuit.
Class-action status makes everyone who paid the fee eligible for
refunds if the homebuilders prevail -- regardless of whether
they were part of the original lawsuit. If the fees are
refunded, the money would go to the builders who paid them.

The companies listed in the lawsuit are Anderson Homes Inc.,
Cimarron Capital Inc., The Drees Co., M/I Homes of Raleigh, Olde
South Homes Inc., R.D. Construction Inc., Randell H. Stewart,
Sun Rivers Builders Inc., Thomas Hugh Mullen, 3-D Builders Inc.,
Vance Crabtree Builders, Westfield Homes of the Carolinas, St.
Lawrence Homes and the Durham Land Owners Association, an
unincorporated association.


OSI PHARMACEUTICALS: Shareholders Launch Stock Fraud Suits in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
OSI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. faces several securities class actions
filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of New York, on behalf of purchasers of the Company's
common stock from October 26,2004 to November 22,2004.

The complaints allege that the Company, Colin Goodard, Robert I.
Ingram, Gabriel Leung, Nicole Onetto, Robert L. Van Nostrand,
John P. White and certain members of the Company's Board of
Director violated Section 11, 12(a)(2) and 15 of the Securities
Act of 1933 having caused, allowed or permitted false and
materially misleading registration statement and prospectus
dated November 10, 2004 to be issued, whereby $445,000,000 of
OSIP's stock was sold to the investing public at artificially
inflated prices.

In addition, defendants violated Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule 10b-5 promulgated
thereunder, by issuing a series of material misrepresentations
about the Company's new anti-cancer drug Tarecva, which failed
to disclose and /or misrepresented the following adverse facts,
among others, that the defendants knew, at least as early as
October 26, 2004 that:

     (1) the Food and Drug Administration ("FDA") would require
         that OSIP disclose in it labeling for Tarceva that no
         survival benefit was observed in the epidermal growth
         factor receptor ("EGFR")-negative subgroup; and

     (2) OSIP did not have sufficient data to claim that Tarceva
         provided a survivability benefit for EGFR-negative
         patients.

As a result of the foregoing, the defendants' positive
statements only served to artificially inflate the Company's
stock price.

The complaint further alleges that on November 19, 2004, a Piper
Jaffray analyst report commented on the FDA's approval of
Tarceva and a "surprise" in the labeling of Tarceva. The
"surprise" in labeling shows that contrary to the Company's
prior representation to the investing public, there is currently
no scientifically significant data for OSIP's statement that
Tarceva provided a survivability benefit for EGFR-negative
patients. The revelation in this analyst report caused OSIP's
stock price to drop from $64.25 per share on November 18, 2004
to $58.16 per share on November 19, 2004, on volume of
18,496,800 -- over ten times the previous day's volume. The
Company's common stock price continued to drop following the
publication of the Piper Jaffray analyst report to $54.22 per
share on Monday, November 22, 2004.

The plaintiff firms in this litigation are:

     (i) Dyer & Shuman, LLP, 801 East 17th Avenue, Denver, CO,
         80218-1417, Phone: 303.861.3003, Fax: 800.711.6483, E-
         mail: info@dyershuman.com

    (ii) Schoengold & Sporn, P.C., 233 Broadway 39Th Floor, New
         York, NY, 10279, Phone: 212.964.0046,


PFIZER INC.: Shareholders Launch Securities Lawsuits in S.D. NY
---------------------------------------------------------------
Pfizer, Inc. faces several securities class actions filed in the
United States District Court for the Southern District of New
York, on behalf of purchasers of the Company's common stock from
November 1,2000 to November 10,2004.

The complaints allege that, throughout the Class Period,
defendants misrepresented and omitted material facts concerning
the safety and marketability of Pfizer's Celebrex and Bextra
products.  Specifically, Plaintiffs allege that at all times
during the Class Period, Defendants were aware of strong
indicators that Celebrex and Bextra, drugs known as "Cox-2
Inhibitors," posed serious undisclosed health risks to
consumers, that these undisclosed health risks would limit their
marketability, and that the potential financial liability Pfizer
faced from the harms these drugs caused posed a serious threat
to the Company's finances.  Nevertheless, Defendants concealed
these facts from the investing public.

Toward the close of the Class Period, a series of factual
revelations from several sources caused the market to gradually
perceive the truth about Pfizer's Bextra and Celebrex products.
For example, on November 4, 2004, the Calgary Herald reported
that "Celebrex, a popular pain drug touted as the safe
alternative after Vioxx was pulled from drugstore shelves, is
suspected of causing at least 14 deaths and numerous heart and
brain side effects." Then, on November 10, 2004, the New York
Times further shocked the market by reporting on a study finding
that "[t]he incidence of heart attacks and strokes among
patients given Pfizer's painkiller Bextra was more than double
that of those given placebos." The complaint further alleges
that as a result of these and other revelations, Pfizer's share
price dropped from a closing price of $29.45 on November 3, 2004
to $27.15 on November 11, 2004 -- a drop of 8%.

The plaintiff firms in this litigation are:

     (1) Finkelstein, Thompson & Loughran, 1050 30th Street, NW,
         Washington, DC, 20007, Phone: 202.337.8000, Fax:
         202.337.8090, E-mail: contact@ftllaw.com

     (2) Johnson & Perkinson, 1690 Williston Road, South
         Burlington, VT, 05403, Phone: 802.862.0030, Fax:
         802.862.0060, E-mail: JPLAW@adelphia.net

     (3) Murray, Frank & Sailer LLP, 275 Madison Ave 34th Flr,
         New York, NY, 10016, Phone: 212.682.1818, Fax:
         212.682.1892, E-mail: email@rabinlaw.com

     (4) Wolf, Haldenstein, Adler, Freeman & Herz LLP, 270
         Madison Avenue, New York, NY, 10016, Phone:
         212.545.4600, Fax; 212.686.0114, E-mail:
         newyork@whafh.com


SOLECTRON CORPORATION: CA Court Certifies Securities Fraud Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Northern District of
California granted class certification to the lawsuit filed
against Solectron Corporation and certain of its officers,
styled "In re Solectron Corporation Securities Litigation, Case
No. C-03-0986 CRB."

On March 6, 2003, a putative shareholder class action lawsuit
was filed, alleging claims under Section 10(b) and 20(a) of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder. The complaint alleged that the
defendants issued false and misleading statements in certain
press releases and SEC filings issued between September 17, 2001
and September 26, 2002.  In particular, plaintiff alleged that
the defendants failed to disclose and to properly account for
excess and obsolete inventory in the former Technology Solutions
business unit during the relevant time period.

Additional complaints making similar allegations were
subsequently filed in the same court, and pursuant to an order
entered June 2, 2003, the Court appointed lead counsel and
plaintiffs to represent the putative class in a single
consolidated action.  The Consolidated Amended Complaint, filed
September 8, 2003, alleges an expanded class period of June 18,
2001 through September 26, 2002, and purports to add a claim for
violation of Section 11 of the Securities Act of 1933, as
amended, on behalf of a putative class of former shareholders of
C-MAC Industries, Inc., who acquired Solectron stock pursuant to
the October 19, 2001 Registration Statement filed in connection
with Solectron's acquisition of C-MAC Industries, Inc.

In addition, while the initial complaints focused on alleged
inventory issues at the former Technology Solutions business
unit, the Consolidated Amended Complaint adds allegations of
inadequate disclosure and failure to properly account for excess
and obsolete inventory at Solectron's other business units.  The
complaint seeks an unspecified amount of damages on behalf of
the putative class.

On June 14, 2004 the lead plaintiffs filed a Motion for Class
Certification seeking to have the court declare this matter a
class action litigation.  The court heard the Motion on October
1, 2004.

The suit is styled "In re Solectron Corporation Securities
Litigation, Case No. C-03-0986 CRB," filed in the United States
District Court for the Northern District of California, under
Judge Charles R. Breyer.

Representing the Company is Ellen H. Ehrenpreis, Wilson Sonsini
Goodrich & Rosati, 650 Page Mill Road, Palo Alto CA 94304-1050
Phone: 650-493-9300 or by Fax: 650-565-5100.  Plaintiff firms in
this litigation are:

     (1) Cauley Geller Bowman Coates & Rudman, LLP (New York),
         200 Broadhollow, Suite 406, Melville, NY, 11747, Phone:
         631.367.7100, Fax: 631.367.1173,

     (2) Green & Jigarjian LLP, 235 Pine Street, 15th Floor, San
         Francisco, CA, 94104, Phone: 415.477.6700, Fax:
         415.477.6710,

     (3) Schiffrin & Barroway, LLP, 3 Bala Plaza E, Bala Cynwyd,
         PA, 19004, Phone: 610.667.7706, Fax: 610.667.7056, E-
         mail: info@sbclasslaw.com


SOUTH CAROLINA: Two Dead, 180 Injured in Train Collision in SC
--------------------------------------------------------------
Two people were killed and 180 were injured as a Norfolk
Southern freight train crashed into a parked train on January
6,2005 in Graniteville, South Carolina, the Associated Press
reports.

The Norfolk Southern freight train was carrying chlorine gas,
when it struck a parked train about 2:30 a.m. at an Avondale
Mills facility in this textile town near the Georgia line.
Thirteen cars were derailed.  Most of the injured were treated
for respiratory ailments and released, authorities said.  At
least 46 people remained in the hospital, including 13 who were
in critical condition.

Gov. Mark Sanford declared a state of emergency for the county,
activating the state emergency operations center and making
state resources available.  "Our job at the state level is going
to be making sure that folks on the ground responding to this
emergency have everything they need," Sanford, who was heading
to Graniteville to be briefed on the crash, told AP.

The Company initially announced that two crewmembers were taken
to the hospital after inhaling chlorine.  No one was on the
parked train, Norfolk Southern spokesman Robin Chapman told AP.
Three of the 42 cars on the moving train were carrying chlorine,
he said, but he didn't know how many of the cars were damaged.
Chlorine gas can damage the throat, nose and eyes and can be
fatal. Those who were exposed were told to report to
decontamination units at two schools. Others in the area were
told to stay inside their homes.

Two other hazardous materials, cresol and sodium hydroxide, were
being carried on the train in liquid form, Thom Berry, spokesman
for the Department of Health and Environmental Control, told AP.
Those materials are corrosive but only in direct contact, so
they are of less concern than the chlorine gas. It is not yet
known if either spilled.

More than a half-dozen textile plants operated by Avondale Mills
in Graniteville and Warrenville were closed because of the
wreck, Sheriff's Lt. Michael Frank told AP.  Four area schools
also were closed.  National Transportation Safety Board
spokeswoman Lauren Peduzzi said the agency will send
investigators to the scene later Thursday.

Hazardous materials teams were trying to determine the condition
of the car containing the gas, Mr. Berry said. Officials were
securing the area before determining how much of the chemicals
spilled, he said.  The gas was expected to dissipate as
temperatures warmed during the day, he added.


SOUTH KOREA: Companies Dreading Onslaught Of Class Action Suits
---------------------------------------------------------------
As the class-action lawsuit system took effect on Jan. 1, 2005,
companies with at least 2 trillion won ($1.9 billion) in assets
are now exposed to legal attacks from minority shareholders, the
Joongang Ilbo reports.

In order to give companies a chance to correct past violations,
The government and the governing Uri Party last year drew up a
revision to the class-action bill to exclude accounting
violations from being subject to the lawsuits for another two
years. However, that revision did not pass because of the strong
opposition of the Legislation & Judiciary Committee of the
National Assembly. The committee had questioned whether
companies would voluntarily report their irregularities even if
granted more time for corrections. The Uri Party and the
opposition Grand National Party are set to discuss the matter in
the National Assembly very soon.

Under the newly implemented system, the securities class-action
lawsuit allows minority shareholders, numbering at least 50
investors whose total holdings make up 0.01 percent of a firm's
shares, to file lawsuits against companies for accounting fraud
or other crimes that hurt stock prices. The law now applies to
companies with more than 2 trillion won in assets with all
companies being subject to it in 2007.

Because compensation goes not only to the plaintiff, but also to
all shareholders, companies hit by class-action lawsuits could
be mortally wounded.

One of the biggest of companies' concerns is accounting.
Companies are saying that there are a number of vague terms in
the accounting standards in Korea, and that the law is overly
harsh when applied to accounting errors, not just fraud.
According to the Financial Supervisory Service, among the 12
companies where accounting inaccuracies were found from December
2001 and December 2004, only three or four, including SK
Networks (currently SK Global) and Hyundai Merchant Marine,
intentionally manipulated their books.

Companies insist that the government should give them an
opportunity to correct previous mistakes made due to vague
accounting standards, or the damage would increase dramatically
and that the government should promise light penalties, even for
accounting fraud, if companies voluntarily correct the mistake,
because the purpose of the class-action system is to make
Company accounts more transparent.

According to Lee Sang-bin, a professor at Hanyang University,
"Even in the United States, where accounting standards are
elaborately described, accounting violations are a major target
of class-action lawsuits. If the government punishes companies
for past accounting fraud based on the law without any
exceptions and ultimately makes them the target of class-action
lawsuits, companies may try even harder to hide accounting
fraud."

Another major concern for companies is their scheduled
disclosure, such as quarterly reports. Although the government
doesn't allow earnings reports to be used as the basis of class-
action lawsuits, scheduled disclosures that must be presented
frequently and must contain comprehensive content are still a
burden to companies, according to a corporate source.

Between January 2000 and October 2004, 82 companies with at
least 2 trillion won in assets as of at the end of September
2004 have posted 1,282 scheduled disclosures. A quarter of them
were corrected later. While 48 out of 69 cases in which
companies were punished for disclosure violations during the
same period were for false and insincere business reports.
Forty-two cases of the 48 were for accounting manipulation, and
the rest six were non-financial affairs, such as hiding
financial transactions with their largest shareholders.

An official at the Financial Supervisory Service stated, "Many
companies still passively disclose or hide items related to
their largest shareholders. If such false disclosures are
uncovered now, affected companies will be the targets of class-
action suits because the discovery could slam share prices." The
same official also stated that the regulators changed disclosure
regulations in order to prevent companies being sued over minor
errors.

However, companies are still complaining that scheduled
disclosures are too concrete and comprehensive, claiming that it
is too much for them to report incomplete investment plans or
new product development plans. There are concerns that many
companies could delist themselves from the stock markets
beginning 2007 when class-action suits are applied to all
companies. The cost of preparing for potential class-action
lawsuits, such as hiring extra legal and accounting staff, is
too high.

Bae Ji-hun, a senior researcher at LG Economic Research
Institute states, "Companies cannot help considering delisting
themselves, because with a single accounting fraud or a single
false disclosure, a Company's image could be hit hard and it
would have to pay huge compensation."


TASER INTERNATIONAL: SEC Starts Probe On Stun Guns, Yearend Sale
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Securities and Exchange Commission launched an informal
inquiry of Arizona firearms manufacturer, Taser International,
Inc. over claims it made about safety studies for its stun guns,
the Associated Press reports.

Several newspapers have conducted several probes that have
called into question the stun gun's safety record and the
Company's reports to shareholders.  Reports in The Arizona
Republic have linked the stun gun to 11 deaths and to several
injuries involving police officers.  The Company has repeatedly
said its stun guns have never caused a death or serious injury.

Questions about the safety of the guns have already caused some
police departments around the country to back off purchases of
Tasers.  ome medical experts believe Taser shocks may exacerbate
a risk of heart failure in cases where people are agitated,
under the influence of drugs or have underlying health problems.
Human rights advocates want law enforcement to stop using Tasers
until scientific evidence can show they don't kill.

The SEC is also looking into a $1.5 million, end-of-year sale of
stun guns by Taser International Inc. to a Prescott firearms
distributor that some stock analysts have questioned because it
appears to inflate sales to meet annual projections.

Last week, a Scottsdale investment analyst raised questions
about the sale of 1,000 new consumer stun guns and other
products to the distributor Davidson's Inc. that Taser announced
on December 20.  "It's a deal that could maybe make a quarter,"
Rob Miceli, analyst with the Scottsdale firm Gradient Analytics
Inc., told AP.  "Any time we see something like that it bears
further investigation."

"We're confident that this is going to come out in our favor,"
Taser's president Tom Smith said late Thursday in announcing
that it was cooperating with the SEC informal inquiry, according
to AP. An informal inquiry is a step below a formal
investigation, where regulators have subpoena power.

Mr. Smith added that the Scottsdale-based Company stands by its
safety statements and the recent sale.  "We feel very confident
that the statements that we've made surrounding the safety of
our products are supported with the safety studies," Smith said.

Davidson's has done business with Taser since 1999 and Company
CEO Bryan Tucker told AP there was no pressure from Taser
executives to complete the deal before Taser's quarter and year
end.


                  New Securities Fraud Cases


ATHEROGENICS INC.: Chitwood & Harley Files Securities Suit in GA
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Chitwood & Harley LLP initiated a securities
fraud class action complaint in the United States District Court
for the Northern District of Georgia against AtheroGenics, Inc.
("AtheroGenics" or the "Company"), Michael Henos, Russell
Medford, Mark Colonnese and Robert Scott on behalf of persons
who purchased AtheroGenics common stock (NYSE: AGIX-News) on
September 27, 2004 in after hours trading, following the
Company's announcement of its interim study results, through and
including December 31, 2004 (the "Class Period"). The case
number is 1:05- CV-0070.

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. The class period begins on September 27,
2004 after Defendants announced the interim results of the CART
2 study of the AGI-1067 drug. The Complaint alleges, among other
things, that the Company's statements regarding the CART 2 study
of AGI-1067 in the September 27, 2004 press release and
conference call and in the September 28, 2004 interview that
defendant Medford gave were false and misleading because the
interim results were incomplete, misleading and resulted from
manipulation of the study. Plaintiffs claim that defendants were
motivated to manipulate the study to produce results that would
induce a major pharmaceutical Company to partner with it to
complete the development and commercialization of AGI-1067. In
response to defendants' hyping of the misleading interim
results, Plaintiff charges, Atherogenics' stock price
skyrocketed, rising 71% in unusually heavy after hours trading
on September 27, 2004.

On November 22, 2004, defendants were forced to admit that the
percentage of regression of plaque in patients using AGI-1067
was only slightly more than half as much as had been reported in
the interim results defendants had announced two months earlier.
In addition, defendants revealed that the Phase IIb results,
though based on twice the patient population, showed that the
relative difference between treatment with AGI-1067 and Standard
of Care regime was not statistically significant. The market was
stunned, and the stock price dropped precipitously. Then, on
January 3, 2005, the Company announced that it had decided to
increase the number of patients in the Phase III study for the
drug from 4000 to 6000 patients, that the study would be longer
in duration, and that the Company needed to raise more cash to
fund the study. On this news, the Company's stock fell again,
this time 20% to close at $18.72 on unusually heaving trading.
On January 5, 2005, the Company disclosed in a SEC filing that
the SEC and NASD had commenced informal inquiries into the
Company's September 27, 2004 announcement of interim results of
the study.

For more details, contact Lauren S. Antonino, Esq. or Nichole B.
Adams, Esq. of Chitwood & Harley by E-mail: lsa@classlaw.com or
nba@classlaw.com or visit their Web site:
http://www.classlaw.com.


CHINA AVIATION: Christopher J. Gray Lodges Securities Suit in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Office of Christopher J. Gray, P.C. in New York City
initiated a class action lawsuit on behalf of all purchasers of
the publicly traded securities of China Aviation Oil (Singapore)
Corporation Ltd. ("China Aviation")(Pink Sheets:CAOLF) between
February 5, 2004 and November 30, 2004, inclusive (the "Class
Period"). The lawsuit asserts claims under Sections 10(b) and
20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5
promulgated by the SEC thereunder and seeks to recover damages.
Any member of the class may move the Court to be named lead
plaintiff. If you wish to serve as lead plaintiff, you must move
the Court no later than March 7, 2005.

The China Aviation class action lawsuit is pending in the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of New York (500 Pearl
Street, New York, New York), Docket No. 05-CV-60, and has been
assigned to the Hon. Robert P. Patterson, Jr., U.S. District
Judge.

China Aviation trades in petroleum products, including jet fuel,
gas oil, fuel oil, crude oil, plastics and oil derivatives. The
complaint alleges that during the Class Period, defendants
issued false and misleading statements concerning the Company's
business and risk management controls and that, as a result of
the defendants' false statements, China Aviation shares traded
at artificially inflated prices during the Class Period. The
complaint alleges that defendants' false and misleading
statements helped the Company's parent Company and controlling
shareholder to complete a sale of $120 million worth of China
Aviation shares.

The complaint alleges that unbeknownst to investors, defendants
concealed material facts from the investing public including as
follows:

     (1) that contrary to the Company's prospectus, the Company
         did not have sufficient risk management controls in
         place for hedging and trading;

     (2) that funds raised in a private placement of China
         Aviation stock were used not to fund an acquisition,
         but rather to meet margin calls for massive derivative
         instrument trading losses; and

     (3) that the Company's financial statements were grossly
         overstated or the Company was hiding liabilities
         totaling in excess of $550 million in derivative
         trading losses.

The complaint alleges that when the truth about China Aviation's
mammoth trading losses was revealed on November 30, 2004, when
Bloomberg reported that China Aviation was seeking court
protection after losing $550 million in connection with
speculative investments in derivative instruments linked to the
price of oil, trading in the Company's shares was suspended
after the shares plummeted to below $.60 per share.

For more details, contact the Law Office of Christopher J. Gray,
P.C. by Phone: (212) 838-3221 or by E-mail: gray@cjgraylaw.com.


EMBARCADERO TECHNOLOGIES: Marc Henzel Lodges Stock Suit in CA
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the United States
District Court for the Northern District of California on behalf
of purchasers of Embarcadero Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: EMBT)
common stock during the period between April 20, 2004 and
October 27, 2004.

The complaint charges Embarcadero and certain of its officers
and directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934. Embarcadero is a provider of data lifecycle management
solutions that help organizations cost-effectively build,
optimize, test and manage their critical data, database and
application infrastructures.

The complaint alleges that during the Class Period, defendants
issued false and misleading forecasts for the second quarter of
2004, which artificially inflated the value of Embarcadero's
stock. Specifically, Embarcadero did not have sufficient time in
the second quarter of 2004 to close enough large sales to meet
defendants' forecasts. As defendants have admitted, larger
deals, meaning those over $100,000, took more time to close
because they involved more elaborate approval processes at the
customer level. As a result of these long lead-times, defendants
simply could not close the number of large deals necessary to
fulfill their forecasts in the second quarter of 2004. This is
demonstrated by the fact that, as defendants have admitted,
Embarcadero's second quarter 2004 shortfall was not caused by
one or two deals slipping, or even three or four deals slipping,
but by the fact that 10 to 12 large deals failed to close in the
quarter.

As a result, Embarcadero closed no deals over $100,000 in the
second quarter of 2004. Because of the large number of deals at
issue, their size, and the long lead-times involved, defendants
knew or recklessly disregarded that Embarcadero could not meet
their forecasts for the second quarter of 2004. The true facts,
which were known by each of the defendants but concealed from
the investing public during the Class Period, were as follows:

     (1) that the Company had manipulated the financial reports
         at its U.K. unit in order to bolster the Company's
         income statement;

     (2) that the Company lacked adequate internal controls to
         ensure that the Company's financial statements would
         not be falsified; and

     (3) that as a result, the Company's accounting did not
         comply with Generally Accepted Accounting Principles.

According to the complaint, as a result of defendants' false
statements, Embarcadero's stock traded at inflated levels during
the Class Period, increasing to as high as $14.49. While the
stock was inflated, the Company's CEO sold more than $700,000
worth of his own shares. Then, when the truth was revealed,
Embarcadero's stock plummeted from $11.76 to $8.60 per share in
a single day, later falling another 20% from $9.83 to $7.81 per
share when the Company announced it would have to postpone its
third quarter 2004 earnings announcement.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com


GEOPHARMA INC.: Christopher J. Gray Lodges Securities Suit in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Office of Christopher J. Gray, P.C. initiated a class
action lawsuit on behalf of all persons who purchased,
converted, exchanged or otherwise acquired the securities of
defendant GeoPharma, Inc. (Nasdaq:GORX) between July 13, 2004
and December 2, 2004, inclusive. The lawsuit asserts claims
under Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934 and Rule 10b-5 promulgated by the SEC thereunder and seeks
to recover damages. Any member of the class may move the Court
to be named lead plaintiff. If you wish to serve as lead
plaintiff, you must move the Court no later than January 31,
2005.

The GeoPharma class action lawsuit is pending in the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of New York (500 Pearl
Street, New York, New York), Docket No. 05-CV-188, and has been
assigned to the Hon. Shira H. Scheindlin, U.S. District Judge.
According to the complaint, defendants made misstatements of
material facts and omitted to state material facts in violation
of the federal securities laws, including in a press release on
December 1, 2004 in which defendants publicized the supposed
U.S. Food and Drug Administration ("FDA") approval of a product
known as "Mucotrol," which defendants characterized as in the
nature of a prescription drug. According to the complaint
defendants claimed that Mucotrol could generate sales of up to
$300 million per year. The complaint alleges that, unbeknownst
to the public and contrary to defendants' claims, the FDA did
not categorize Mucotrol as a prescription drug, did not approve
Mucotrol, and in fact permitted Mucotrol to be sold only because
it was categorized as a medical device that did not require FDA
approval.

The lawsuit alleges that after reporters discovered that
(contrary to defendants' press release and other statements)
Mucotrol was not really an FDA-approved drug, but was merely a
medical device that the FDA was permitting to be sold, and after
GeoPharma acknowledged that Mucotrol was not really a drug,
GeoPharma's stock, which had rocketed to as high as $11.25 on
the news of Mucotrol's "approval," plunged to $6.81. GeoPharma's
share price has since sunk to as low as $4.55 per share in after
hours trading on January 7, 2005, a drop of 60% in a little over
one month.

The class action lawsuit seeks to recover investors' losses
resulting from defendants' alleged misrepresentations concerning
Mucotrol.

For more details, contact the Law Office of Christopher J. Gray,
P.C. by Phone: (212) 838-3221 or by E-mail: gray@cjgraylaw.com.


OSI PHARMACEUTICALS: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Lawsuit in NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of New York on behalf of all persons who purchased the
publicly traded securities of OSI Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq:
OSIP) between April 26, 2004 and November 18, 2004, including
all persons who acquired shares in OSI's equity offering priced
on November 10, 2004.

The complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period, OSI
violated federal securities laws by issuing false and misleading
statements concerning the survival benefits of OSI's cancer
treatment drug Tarceva and false and misleading statements about
the size of Tarceva's potential market. On April 26, 2004, OSI
announced that Tarceva had met its primary end-points and that
it would be seeking FDA approval for Tarceva based upon its
findings in its clinical trials. OSI stated that the study
showed that patients who took Tarceva lived on average two
months longer than patients who took a placebo. On this news,
OSI stock increased $52.96 per share, rising from a close of
$38.14 on April 23, 2004, to close at $91.10 per share on the
next trading day.

On November 17, 2004, OSI completed an equity offering for $445
million in proceeds. The very next day, OSI announced that the
FDA had approved Tarceva for use in the treatment of patients
with advanced lung cancer. However the market also learned about
severe limitations on the number of patients who could use
Tarceva to obtain the survival benefits of the drug. On this
disclosure, OSI Pharmaceuticals' stock price fell from a close
of $64.25 on November 18, 2004, to close at $58.16 per share on
November 19, 2004.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com


PFIZER INC.: Emerson Poynter Sets Suit Lead Plaintiff Deadline
--------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Emerson Poynter LLP, is informing all parties
that the Lead Plaintiff deadline is February 14, 2005 in the
securities fraud class action lawsuit it has brought on behalf
of shareholders who purchased or otherwise acquired Pfizer, Inc.
("Pfizer" or the "Company") (NYSE:PFE) securities between
November 1, 2000 and December 16, 2004. In addition, Emerson
Poynter LLP has continued its investigation into possible
violations of the Employee Retirement Income Security Act of
1974 ("ERISA") relating to the Pfizer Savings Plan and other
Pfizer retirement Plans.

The securities class action complaint alleges that defendants
misrepresented and omitted material facts about the safety and
marketability of Pfizer's Celebrex and Bextra products. In fact,
on November 4, 2004, the Calgary Herald reported that,
"Celebrex, which was touted as a safe alternative pain drug
after Vioxx was pulled from the market, is suspected of causing
at least 14 deaths and numerous heart and brain side effects."
The New York Times also reported that a study revealed that "...
incidents of heart attacks and strokes among patients given
Pfizer's painkiller Bextra was more than double that of those
given placebos. Then, prior to the stock market opening on
December 17, 2004, Pfizer revealed that in a recent trial,
"patients taking 400mg and 800mg of Celebrex daily had an
approximately 2.5 fold increase in their risk of experiencing a
major or not-fatal cardiovascular event compared with those
patients taking placebos." According to the Company's website,
Pfizer voluntarily pulled its Celebrex ads from all media after
the safety of the product came under question. The price of
Pfizer's shares dropped precipitously in response to this news.

For more details, contact Michelle Raggio, Charles Gastineau or
Tanya Autry of Emerson Poynter LLP by Phone: (800) 663-9817 by
E-mail: epllp@emersonpoynter.com or visit their Web site:
http://www.emersonpoynter.com.


PFIZER INC.: Marc Henzel Initiates Securities Suit in S.D. NY
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York, on behalf of all persons who purchased the
common stock of Pfizer, Inc. (NYSE: PFE) between November 1,
2000 and December 16, 2004, inclusive, against defendants Pfizer
and certain officers and directors of the Company.

The complaint arises out of defendants' false and misleading
statements and omissions concerning the safety and marketability
of Pfizer's Celebrex and Bextra products. At all times during
the Class Period, defendants were aware that Celebrex and
Bextra, drugs known as "Cox-2 inhibitors," posed serious
undisclosed health risks to consumers. Defendants knew or
recklessly disregarded that the undisclosed health risks posed
by these drugs would limit their marketability, and that
potential financial liability Pfizer faced from the harms these
drugs caused posed a serious threat to the Company's financial
condition. Nonetheless, defendants concealed these facts from
the investing public, thereby damaging Plaintiff and the Class.

Toward the close of the Class Period, a series of factual
revelations from several sources caused the market to gradually
perceive the truth about Pfizer's Bextra and Celebrex products.
On December 17, 2004, Pfizer issued a press release announcing
the Company has discovered an increased risk of heart problems
with patients taking its painkiller Celebrex. The press release
came after a study revealed that the use of Celebrex in patients
taking 400mg to 800mg of the drug daily were found to have a
risk of 2.5 times greater of experiencing major heart problems
than those who were not. This level of risk was even greater
than the one found in patients taking Vioxx that led Merck to
withdraw Vioxx from the marketplace.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com.


ROYAL GROUP: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in S.D. NY
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York on behalf of purchasers of Royal Group
Technologies Limited (NYSE: RYG) common stock during the period
between February 11, 1999 and October 13, 2004.

The complaint charges Royal Group and certain of its officers
and directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934. Royal Group is a vertically integrated manufacturer of
polymer-based home improvement, consumer and construction
products. Royal Group's operations are located primarily in
Canada and the United States, with international locations in
Mexico, South America, Europe and Asia.

The complaint alleges that during the Class Period, defendants
caused Royal Group's shares to trade at artificially inflated
levels through the issuance of false and misleading financial
statements. The statements were materially false and misleading
because defendants knew, but failed to disclose that:

     (1) defendants were enjoined in a scheme to packet ill-
         gotten monies in violation of applicable law, including
         laws governing "fraud" and "conspiracy";

     (2) defendants used a resort partially owned by them as a
         vehicle to steal money from the Company;

     (3) the Company's inventory was overstated as defendants
         delayed the writedown of these assets to prevent
         further earnings erosion;

     (4) the Company's U.S. window business was not poised for
         growth but faltering, contrary to defendants'
         portrayal;

     (5) the defendants' margins were being eroded by the
         increase of higher raw material costs; and

     (6) as a result of the above, defendants' projections for
         FY 2003-2004 were grossly overstated.

On October 15, 2004, Royal Group disclosed the first Royal
Canadian Mounted Police ("RCMP") production order for three
Royal Group current or former executives who faced allegations
of defrauding shareholders and creditors. The court documents
named Company founder, controlling shareholder and non-executive
chairman Vic De Zen, former CFO Gary Brown and then current
President and CEO Douglas Dunsmuir. The investigation relates to
allegations that De Zen, Brown and Dunsmuir violated sections of
the Criminal Code for fraud and conspiracy by circulating or
publishing a prospectus or statement or account which they knew
was false, for a period between January 1996 and July 2004. Upon
this news, shares of Royal Group fell $1.12 per share, or almost
15%, to close at $7.85 per share on the next trading day on
unusually heavy trading volume. On October 28, 2004, these
allegations widened to include current CFO Ronald Goegan and
large shareholders Domenic D'Amico and Fortunato Bordin, and
expanded the time period to between January 1996 to present.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com


SUPPORTSOFT INC.: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Northern
District of California on behalf of all securities purchasers of
SupportSoft, Inc. (Nasdaq: SPRT) between January 20, 2004 and
October 1, 2004, inclusive.

The complaint charges SupportSoft, Radha R. Basu, and Brian M.
Beattie with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.
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 Company failed to close two $4.5 million
         transactions, due to major flaws in SupportSoft's
         internal controls;

     (2) that the Company was experiencing sales execution
         issues;

     (3) that SupportSoft's product pipeline was heavily
         weighted toward perpetual deals;

     (4) that due to the saturation of the domestic broadband
         market, the Company was facing a more challenging
         software spending environment of authorization
         signatures and longer sales cycles; and

     (5) that as a result of the above, the defendants' fiscal
         2004 projections were lacking in any reasonable basis
         when made.

On October 4, 2004, SupportSoft announced preliminary financial
results for the quarter ended September 30, 2004. The Company
expected total revenues for the third quarter 2004 to be in the
range of $11.9 million to $12.3 million versus $13.5 million for
the same period last year. GAAP loss per share was expected to
be in the range of $0.01 to $0.04, this was well below
expectations. News of this shocked the market. Shares of
SupportSoft fell $3.41 per share, or 35.45 percent, to close at
$6.21 per share.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com.


UTSTARCOM INC.: Lasky & Rifkind Lodges Securities Suit in CA
------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Lasky & Rifkind, Ltd., initiated a lawsuit in
the United States District Court for the Northern District of
California, on behalf of persons who purchased or otherwise
acquired publicly traded securities of UTStarcom, Inc.
("UTStarcom" or the "Company") (NASDAQ:UTSI) between April 16,
2003 and September 20, 2004, inclusive, (the "Class Period").
The lawsuit was filed against UTStarcom 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
UTStarcom issued a series of false and misleading statements
concerning its operations during the class period. More
specifically, the Company failed to disclose that it had
significant supply chain constraints, that margins were eroding
in China, that the Company lacked internal control over its
ability to analyze revenue recognition criteria, that the
Company failed to meet the independent director requirements as
set forth by NASDAQ, and that the Company had significantly
overstated its Japanese- related revenue projections.

On August 10, 2004, the Company announced that it would delay
the reporting of its filing of its Form 10-Q with the Securities
and Exchange Commission. Specifically, the Company had
identified a single equipment sale transaction in a single
geographical market in the amount of approximately $1.9 million
that was improperly recorded as revenue. In reaction to the
news, shares traded to $15.37 per share.

For more details, contact Lasky & Rifkind by Phone:
(800) 495-1868 or by E-mail: investorrelations@laskyrifkind.com.


UTSTARCOM INC.: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Suit in N.D. CA
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the United States
District Court for the Northern District of California on behalf
of purchasers of UTStarcom, Inc. ("UTStarcom") (NASDAQ: UTSI)
common stock during the period between April 16, 2003 and August
11, 2004.

The complaint charges UTStarcom and certain of its officers and
directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934. UTStarcom designs, manufactures and sells
telecommunications equipment and products, and provides services
associated with their operation.

The complaint alleges that during the Class Period, defendants
caused UTStarcom's shares to trade at artificially inflated
levels through the issuance of false and misleading financial
statements. As a result of this inflation, UTStarcom was able to
raise proceeds of $475 million through a secondary offering and
the Company insiders were able to reap $56 million in illegal
insider trading proceeds. The true facts, which were known by
each of the defendants but concealed from the investing public
during the Class Period, were as follows:

     (1) the Company had massive supply chain constraints
         delaying legitimate revenue recognition;

     (2) the Company's prime margins were eroding in China;

     (3) the Company lacked internal control over its ability to
         analyze revenue recognition criteria;

     (4) the Company was in violation of Nasdaq rules requiring
         that the Board of Directors have a majority which is
         independent;

     (5) the Company's Japanese-related revenue projections were
         overstated by $290 million; and

     (6) as a result, defendants' projections for FY 2004 and
         2005 were grossly inflated.

On August 10, 2004, the Company issued a press release
announcing that it had "filed a request with the Securities and
Exchange Commission for a five-day extension with respect to the
filing of its Quarterly Report on Form 10-Q for the period ended
June 30, 2004 .... Specifically, in connection with its second
quarter closing and review process, UTStarcom identified a
single equipment sale transaction in a single geographical sales
market in the amount of approximately $1.9 million that was
initially proposed to be recorded as revenue for the second
quarter. Upon further analysis, UTStarcom determined that this
transaction did not meet the qualification requirements for
recognition within the second quarter and as a result did not
include this as revenue in the release of its second quarter
results." The stock dropped to $15.37 per share on this news.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com


VALASSIS COMMUNICATIONS: Marc Henzel Lodges Stock Lawsuit in MI
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Eastern
District of Michigan on behalf of purchasers of Valassis
Communications, Inc. (NYSE: VCI) common stock during the period
between April 25, 2002 and October 23, 2002.

The complaint charges Valassis Communications and certain of its
officers and directors with violations of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934. Valassis prints, markets and distributes
coupons and newspaper advertising inserts. The Company provides
free-standing inserts ("FSI"), solo specialized promotional
programs, newspaper-delivered sampling programs, consumer
promotion and direct response merchandising and advertising on
the pages of newspapers. Historically, more than two-thirds of
Valassis' revenues and more than 90% of its profits have been
derived from its FSI business.

The complaint alleges that throughout the Class Period,
defendants issued materially false and misleading statements
concerning the Company's performance and future prospects,
causing Valassis' shares to trade at artificially inflated
levels. As alleged in the complaint, these statements were
materially false and misleading because defendants knew, but
failed to disclose:

     (1) that the price increase implemented by the Company in
         2001 in its FSI business and then retracted in February
         2002 was negatively impacting the Company's ability to
         win contracts;

     (2) that the Company was experiencing increased competition
         from News America who was offering customers lower
         prices and longer contract terms; and

     (3) based on the foregoing, defendants lacked a reasonable
         basis for their positive statements about the Company
         and their earnings forecasts which were false when
         made.

On October 24, 2002, Valassis released its financial and
operational results for the third quarter ended September 30,
2002, and shocked the investing public when it announced that it
would dramatically lower its earnings' guidance for 2003 to
$2.22 per share, well below analysts' consensus of $2.70 per
share. Market reaction was swift and negative, with Valassis
stock falling from a close of $34.96 on October 23, 2002 to a
close of $26.01, or a single-day decline of more than 25%, on
extremely heavy trading volume.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com


VIMPEL-COMMUNICATIONS: Marc Henzel Lodges Securities Suit in NY
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a securities class
action in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York, on behalf of all persons who purchased or
otherwise acquired the securities of Open Joint Stock Company
"Vimpel-Communications"(NYSE: VIP) between March 25, 2004 and
December 7, 2004, inclusive, seeking to pursue remedies under
the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.  The action is pending
against the Company, Alexander V. Izosimov (CEO) and Elena A.
Shmatova (CFO).

According to the complaint, defendants violated sections 10(b)
and 20(a) of the Exchange Act, and Rule 10b-5, by issuing a
series of material misrepresentations to the market during the
Class Period.

VimpelCom is an Open Joint Stock Company organized under the
laws of the Russian Federation that maintains principal
executive offices in Moscow. The primary trading market for its
securities is the New York Stock Exchange where its shares trade
as American Depositary Receipts ("ADR"s), with each ADR
representing one quarter of a share of VimpelCom common stock.
The Company provides wireless telecommunications services under
the Bee Line and EXCESS brands. Most of the Company's operating
income is generated by its wholly-owned subsidiary, KBI Impulse
("KBI").

The complaint alleges that at all relevant times the Company's
financial statements were materially false and misleading
because defendants failed to report millions of dollars of
contingent tax liability arising from intra-Company transfers
between VimpelCom and KBI, despite defendants' knowledge or
reckless disregard of the Company's tax exposure. The truth was
revealed on December 8, 2004, when defendants disclosed that the
Company had received "an act with preliminary conclusions"
stating that the Company owes approximately $90 million in
unpaid tax and $67 million in fines and penalties. On this
announcement, the Company's ADR price dropped 32%, from an
opening price of $40.30 on December 7, 2004 to a closing price
of $27.10 on December 8, 2004 on extremely heavy trading volume

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, by Mail: 273
Montgomery Ave., Suite 202, Bala Cynwyd, PA 19004, by Phone:
610.660.8000, 888.643.6735 (toll-free) by Fax: 610.660.8080 or
by E-Mail: mhenzel182@aol.com


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A list of Meetings, Conferences and Seminars appears in each
Wednesday's edition of the Class Action Reporter. Submissions
via e-mail to carconf@beard.com are encouraged.

Each Friday's edition of the CAR includes a section featuring
news on asbestos-related litigation and profiles of target
asbestos defendants that, according to independent researches,
collectively face billions of dollars in asbestos-related
liabilities.

                          *********


S U B S C R I P T I O N   I N F O R M A T I O N

Class Action Reporter is a daily newsletter, co-published by
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Copyright 2005.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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