CAR_Public/060206.mbx             C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

             Monday, February 6, 2006, Vol. 8, No. 26

                          Headlines

BAKER DRYWALL: Reaches Settlement with Workers over Salaries
BEARINGPOINT INC.: Va. Court Certifies Consolidated Stock Suit
CALIFORNIA: City Faces Potential Lawsuit over Utility Users Tax
CREDIT ACCEPTANCE: Mo. Circuit Court Adopts Certification Order
EXXON CORP: Fla. Judge Grants Preliminary Approval to $1B Deal

GROUP 1: Agreement Forged in Tex. State, Federal Antitrust Suits
GUAM: February Hearing on Income Tax Refund Lawsuit Scheduled
HEBRON AUTO: Facing Lawsuit over Alleged 'Car-Kiting' in Ky
HERTFORDSHIRE OIL: U.K. Law Firm Filing Suit over Oil Depot Fire
ILLINOIS: Wis. Woman Files Strip-Search Suit V. Cook County Jail

JOHNSON & JOHNSON: Court Certifies Drug Overpricing Lawsuit
MAJOR AUTOMOTIVE: Faces N.Y. Consumer Fraud Suit over Vehicles
MAJOR AUTOMOTIVE: Reaches Settlement in N.J. Consumer Fraud Suit
MEDIA COMPANIES: Accused of Muddling Writers-Union Relations
MEDICAL INFORMATION: Former Employee Files Suit in Mass. V. Plan

MICROSOFT CORP: Minn. Schools Get Windfall from Antitrust Deal
MISSOURI: Appeals Court Considers "Commencement" Issue in CAFA
NEW YORK: Facing Lawsuit for Evicting Harlem School Director
NEW YORK: Judge Upholds Plaintiff's Allegations in 9/11 Lawsuit
OUTOKUMPU COPPER: Rival Complains of Anti-Competitive Practice

PAUL REVERE: Calif. Judge Grants Motion to Remand Hangarter Suit
PHILIP MORRIS: $79.5M Penalty for Deceptive Advertising Upheld
PREMIER SALES: Home-Buyer Sues over Questionable Marketing
PROVIDENCE HEALTH: Patient Information Theft Spurs Lawsuit
RED ROBIN: Faces Purported Labor Suit in Calif. Superior Court

SOUTHERN STAR: Kans. Court Yet to Rule on Lawsuit Certification
SOUTHERN STAR: Kans. Court Hears Opinions for Suit Certification
TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Faces Purported Securities Lawsuit in N.Y.
TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Seeks to Consolidate GTA: SA Suits in N.Y.
VISA/MASTERCARD: U.S. Govt. Vies for Share in $3.1B Settlement

VIRGINIA: Firm Threatens to Sue State Over Indigent Defense Fees
WAL-MART STORES: Cites Appellate Ruling to End $1.39 Ill. Suit      


                 New Securities Fraud Cases

DOT HILL: Marc S. Henzel Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in Pa.
REPSOL YPF: Federman & Sherwood Lodges Securities Suit in N.Y.
REPSOL YPF: Marc S. Henzel Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in N.Y.
TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Barret Johnston Lodges Stock Suit in N.Y.
TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Goldman Scarlato Files Stock Suit in N.Y.

TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Lerach Coughlin Lodges Stock Suit in N.Y.


                          *********


BAKER DRYWALL: Reaches Settlement with Workers over Salaries
------------------------------------------------------------
A federal court approved a settlement between Baker Drywall Co.
Inc. of Dallas, Texas and the workers who filed a class action
against it in 2003 for alleged wage cuts, Express-News reports.

U.S. District Judge Orlando Garcia agreed to pay $350,000
without admitting wrongdoing.  The $150,000 part of the
settlement will go to 110 plaintiffs -- drywall finishers and
general construction workers -- who will receive between $91 and
$6,700.  Some $40,000 of the deal is to be split among four
foremen who sued separately but had similar claims, the report
said, citing court documents.  The plaintiffs' lawyers will get
a 40% cut, or $140,000, and another $20,000 for expenses.

The lawsuit was filed in October 2003 by Baker Drywall workers
and other laborers who alleged they were shortchanged
compensation of about one-and-a-half hours per day, which is in
violation of the federal Fair Labor Standards Act.  

Plaintiffs' attorney Enrique G. Serna told the judge some 150
more people could have had valid claims, but were unable to
join.  Baker Drywall's lead attorney is Peter R. Spanos of
Atlanta.


BEARINGPOINT INC.: Va. Court Certifies Consolidated Stock Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
The United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Virginia granted class action status to a consolidated
securities complaint filed against BearingPoint, Inc. (NYSE:BE)
and certain of its officials.

In and after April 2005, various separate complaints purporting
to be class actions were filed in the U.S. District Court for
the Eastern District of Virginia alleging that the Company and
certain of its current and former officers and directors
violated Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
(the "Exchange Act"), Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder and
Section 20(a) of the Exchange Act.  The complaints contained
varying allegations, including that the Company made materially
misleading statements with respect to its financial results for
the first three quarters of fiscal year 2004 in its SEC filings
and press releases.

Following the Court's appointment of Matrix Capital Management
Fund L.P. ("Matrix") as lead plaintiff, on October 7, 2005,
Matrix filed its Consolidated Complaint, which seeks class
action certification, contains varying allegations, including
that BearingPoint made materially misleading statements between
August 14, 2003 and April 20, 2005 with respect to its financial
results in its SEC filings and press releases and does not
specify the amount of damages sought. On December 2, 2005, a
hearing was held the Company's motion to dismiss the complaint.  
On January 17, 2006, the court certified a class.

The suit is styled, "In Re BearingPoint, Inc. Securities
Litigation, Case No. 1:05-cv-00454-TSE-TCB," filed in the U.S.
District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia under Judge
T. S. Ellis, III with referral to Judge Theresa Carroll
Buchanan.  Representing the Plaintiff/s is Steven Jeffrey Toll
of Cohen Milstein Hausfeld & Toll, PLLC, 1100 New York Ave.,
Suite 500, Washington, DC 20005-3965, Phone: (202) 408-4600.  
Representing the Defendant/s is Charles William McIntyre, Jr. of
McGuireWoods, LLP, 1050 Connecticut Ave., NW Suite 1200,
Washington, DC 20036-5317, Phone: (202) 857-1742.


CALIFORNIA: City Faces Potential Lawsuit over Utility Users Tax
---------------------------------------------------------------
The City of Palo Alto is facing a possible class action that, if
successful, would force the city to give back a 5 percent
utility users tax charged against cellular phone service since
1987, The Palo Alto Daily News reports.

In a lawsuit that could put the city on the line for $27
million, Plaintiff Allen Albert Atwood, III wants the city to
refund the $1,023 it has "erroneously, illegally and improperly"
collected from him since December 1997.  The city was recently
served with the suit.

Mr. Atwood's attorney Christopher Shenfield is aiming to build
on the city's recently failed suit to force Verizon Wireless
into levying and remitting the utility users tax.  The city sued
for approximately $2.4 million after discovering the company had
never done so.  The same arguments that led Santa Clara County
Superior Court Judge Jamie Jacobs-May to side with Verizon
Wireless will also apply to the residents who pay the tax on
their cellular phone bills, Mr. Shenfield told The Palo Alto
Daily News

In the Verizon case, attorneys for the cell phone giant pointed
to recent federal appeals court rulings that a 3 percent Federal
Excise Tax does not apply to phone companies that charge
customers based on call length rather than distance.  Judge
Jacobs-May agreed with the defense.  Essentially, cellular phone
companies' nationwide plans count as neither local nor toll
service and are exempt from being taxed, according to Mr.
Shenfield's reading of Judge Jacobs-May's ruling.

Palo Altans narrowly approved the utility users tax in 1987.  
The tax is charged against electricity, gas, water and phone
service.  It generates up to $8 million of the city's revenues.  
About $1.5 million comes from telephone service taxes, according
to city officials.

However, according to Ms. Shenfield, the actual statute only
allows the city to collect taxes on telephone service that is
intrastate or local.  Any resident who paid the tax on cellular
service would be eligible to join the suit regardless of his or
her service provider.  Ms. Shenfield told The Palo Alto Daily
News, "The voters approved a tax on intrastate telephone taxes,"
adding, "They did not approve a tax on nationwide cellular
service."

City Attorney Gary Baum dismissed the class action suit as
"without merit."  The city is filing the necessary paperwork to
contest the suit.  Mr. Baum told The Palo Alto News, "We will be
aggressively fighting it."

Class action lawsuits are new territory for the city.  Mr. Baum
told The Palo Alto Daily News that he had never heard of such a
suit being filed against a city.  For now, the city's defense
will be coordinated in-house.  According to Mr. Baum, "(Mr.
Shenfield is) using the wrong process," adding that, "It is not
a legally appropriate method to file this suit."

Nearly 100 residents and businesses have joined the class
action, Mr. Shenfield told The Palo Alto Daily News.  He is
planning to place advertisements in newspapers to inform the
public about the suit.  Mr. Shenfield estimates that 35,000
residents have paid the utility users tax on cellular phone
service and that the city may have received between $10.2
million and $27 million.

However, Mr. Baum scoffed at the $27 million estimate as well as
disagreed with Mr. Shenfield's assertion that he can collect
money back to 1987.  He explains to The Palo Alto Daily News,
"Their estimate is ridiculous.  There is a one-year limit on any
amount they could collect."

Santa Clara County Superior Court Judge Neal Cabrinha is
scheduled to meet with both sides in a case management
conference June 13.


CREDIT ACCEPTANCE: Mo. Circuit Court Adopts Certification Order
---------------------------------------------------------------
Credit Acceptance Corporation, which continues to defend against
a class action in the Circuit Court of Jackson, Missouri and
later removed to the United States District Court for the
Western District of Missouri, alleging violations of federal and
state consumer protection laws, reports that the District
Court's order that certifies the classes was adopted by the
Circuit Court.

The suit was initially filed in October 15, 1996.  On October 9,
1997, the District Court certified two classes on the claims
brought against the Company, one relating to alleged overcharges
of official fees, the other relating to alleged overcharges of
post-maturity interest.

In August 1998, the court granted partial summary judgment on
liability in favor of the plaintiffs on the interest overcharge
claims based upon its finding of certain violations but denied
summary judgment on certain other claims.  The court also
entered a number of permanent injunctions, which, among other
things, restrained the Company from collecting on certain class
accounts.  The District Court also ruled in favor of the Company
on certain claims raised by class plaintiffs.  Because the entry
of an injunction is immediately appealable, the Company appealed
the summary judgment order to the United States Court of Appeals
for the Eighth Circuit.

Oral argument on the appeals was heard on April 19, 1999.  In
September 1999, the appeals court overturned the August 1998
partial summary judgment order and injunctions against the
Company.  The appeals court held that the Federal Court lacked
jurisdiction over the interest overcharge claims and directed
the federal court to sever those claims and remand them to state
court.

On February 18, 2000, the District Court entered an order
remanding the post-maturity interest class to the Circuit Court
of Jackson County, Missouri while retaining jurisdiction on the
official fee class.  The Company then filed a motion requesting
that the District Court reconsider that portion of its order of
August 4, 1998, in which the District Court had denied the
Company's motion for summary judgment on the federal Truth-In-
Lending Act ("TILA") claim.  On May 26, 2000, the District Court
entered summary judgment in favor of the Company on the TILA
claim and directed the Clerk of the Court to remand the
remaining state law official fee claims to the appropriate state
court.

On September 18, 2001, the Circuit Court of Jackson County,
Missouri mailed an order assigning this matter to a judge.  On
October 28, 2002, the plaintiffs filed a fourth amended
complaint.  The Company filed a motion to dismiss the
plaintiff's fourth amended complaint on November 4, 2002.  On
November 18, 2002, the Company filed a memorandum urging the
decertification of the classes.

On February 21, 2003, the plaintiffs filed a brief opposing the
Company's November 4, 2002 motion to dismiss the case.  On May
19, 2004, the court released an order, dated January 9, 2004,
that denied the Company's motion to dismiss.  On November 16,
2005 the Circuit Court issued an order that, among other things,
adopted the District Court's order certifying classes.

The Company will continue its vigorous defense of all remaining
claims.  However, an adverse ultimate disposition of this
litigation could have a material negative impact on its
financial position, liquidity and results of operations.

The federal suit is styled, "Fielder, et al v. Credit
Acceptance, et al, Case No. 4:96-cv-01210-ODS," filed in the
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri under
Judge Ortrie D. Smith.  Representing the Plaintiff/s is Bernard
E. Brown of The Brown Law Firm, 3100 Broadway, Suite 223, Kansas
City, MO 64111, Phone: (816) 960-4777, (816) 960-6777, E-mail:
brlawofc@swbell.net.  Representing the Defendant/s is Nancy
Louise Ellingsworth of Bryan Cave, LLP, 1200 Main ST., Ste.
3500, Kansas City, MO 64105-2100, Phone: (816) 374-3200; Frank
W. Lipsman of Norton Hubbard Ruzicka & Kreamer, LC, 130 North
Cherry, P.O. Box 550, Olathe, KS 66051, Phone: (913) 782-2350,
Fax: (913) 782-2012, E-mail: flipsman@nhrk.com; and Robert M.
Moye and John P. Scotellaro of Bell, Boyd & Lloyd, 70 West
Madison St., Three First National Plaza, Chicago, IL 60602,
Phone: (312) 372-1121.


EXXON CORP: Fla. Judge Grants Preliminary Approval to $1B Deal
--------------------------------------------------------------
U.S. District Judge Alan Gold of Florida granted preliminary
approval of the settlement of a long-running dispute between
Exxon Corporation and a class of its service station dealers
under which Exxon will pay $1.075 billion and end its opposition
to dealer claims in the claims process established by the Court.

The lawsuit, filed in 1991, arose out of Exxon's Discount for
Cash program in effect between 1983 and 1994 in which Exxon had
promised its service station dealers a discount in the wholesale
price of motor fuel.  After a lengthy trial in February 2001, a
jury found that Exxon had breached its obligation to provide the
discount, and had fraudulently concealed the breach. Exxon
appealed the verdict all the way to the United States Supreme
Court, but the Supreme Court denied Exxon's last appeal in June
2005.  The settlement was achieved as a court-appointed Special
Master was in the process of assessing damages against Exxon on
individual dealer claims.

Nearly 11,000 class members will be mailed a notice scheduling a
hearing date on April 5, 2006 for the Court's consideration of
final approval of the settlement.  The $1.075 billion payment
represents payment in full of all compensatory damages and
prejudgment interest through October 31, 2005 on all valid
claims filed by December 19, 2005.  After the settlement payment
is made to a court-appointed financial institution, the claims
process before the Special Master will continue without Exxon's
further involvement, which is anticipated to accelerate the
approval and payment of individual dealer claims.

"This is an extraordinary achievement for the dealers," said
Miami attorney Eugene Stearns of Stearns Weaver Miller, who
represented the Class at trial and on appeal.  "After 14 years
of litigation, Exxon has exhausted its appeals and has finally
realized that its continued opposition in the claims process is
fruitless.  This will allow acceleration of the process to put
the money in the hands of the dealers. While many class actions
result in little real benefit to class members, in this case we
have basically achieved near one hundred percent recovery of
every dealer's damages, and because of our efforts to locate
everyone, almost all the dealers entitled to payment will share
in the recovery."

Eugene E. Stearns, Esq., Mark Dikeman and Toni Splichal, Phone:
+1-305-789-3200 or +1-305-372-1234, E-mail:
tsplichal@wraggcasas.com, Web sites:
http://www.exxondealerclassaction.comand  
http://www.exxondealerattorneys.com.


GROUP 1: Agreement Forged in Tex. State, Federal Antitrust Suits
----------------------------------------------------------------
Group 1 Automotive, Inc. reached a settlement for the three
class actions filed against certain of its Texas dealerships,
the Texas Automobile Dealers Association (TADA), and certain new
vehicle dealerships in Texas that are members of TADA.

Two state court class action lawsuits and one federal court
class action lawsuit were initially filed, alleging that since
January 1994, Texas dealers have deceived customers with respect
to a vehicle inventory tax and violated federal antitrust and
other laws.

In April 2002, the state court in which two of the actions are
pending certified classes of consumers on whose behalf the
action would proceed.  In October 2002, the Texas Court of
Appeals affirmed the trial court's order of class certification
in the state action.  The defendants requested that the Texas
Supreme Court review that decision and the Court declined that
request on March 26, 2004.  The defendants petitioned the Texas
Supreme Court to reconsider its denial, and that petition was
denied on September 10, 2004.  

In the federal antitrust action, in March 2003, the federal
district court also certified a class of consumers.  Defendants
appealed the district court's certification to the Fifth Circuit
Court of Appeals, which on October 5, 2004, reversed the class
certification order and remanded the case back to the federal
district court for further proceedings.  In February 2005, the
plaintiffs in the federal action sought a writ of certiorari to
the United States Supreme Court in order to obtain review of the
Fifth Circuit's order.  The defendants notified the U.S. Supreme
Court that they would not respond to the writ unless requested
to do so by the Court.

Also in February 2005, settlement discussions with the
plaintiffs in the three cases culminated in formal settlement
offers pursuant to which the Company could settle the state and
federal cases.  The Company has not entered into the settlements
at this time, and, if it does, the settlements will be
contingent upon court approval.  The proposed settlements
contemplate the Company's dealerships issuing certificates for
discounts off future vehicle purchases, refunding cash in some
circumstances, and paying attorneys' fees and certain costs.
Dealers participating in the settlements would agree to certain
disclosures regarding inventory tax charges when itemizing such
charges on customer invoices.  

In June 2005, the Company's Texas dealerships and certain other
defendants in the lawsuits entered settlements with the
plaintiffs in each of the cases.  The settlements are contingent
upon and subject to court approval.  Estimated expenses of the
proposed settlements include the Company's dealerships issuing
certificates for discounts off future vehicle purchases,
refunding cash in some circumstances, and paying attorneys' fees
and certain costs.  Dealers participating in the settlements
would agree to certain disclosures regarding inventory tax
charges when itemizing such charges on customer invoices.
Estimated expenses of the proposed settlements of $1.5 million
have been included in accrued expenses in the accompanying
consolidated balance sheet.


GUAM: February Hearing on Income Tax Refund Lawsuit Scheduled
-------------------------------------------------------------
The trial on the lawsuit filed against the government of Guam
over refunds under the Earned Income Tax Credit for the working
poor is set Feb. 24, 2006, according to Pacific Daily News.  

Charmaine Torres filed class action in July 2004 to demand EITC
refunds dating back 1995, full amount of tax credit, and
guarantees to ensure the government will pay tax credits in the
future.  The suit challenged another deal involving taxpayers.  

In February 2004, Julie Babauta Santos filed a class action that
resulted to a settlement between the attorney general and then-
acting Gov. Kaleo Moylan.  The agreement would have paid about
$60 million of the $120 million owed to taxpayers in EITC
refunds dating back to 1998, the report said.  But Gov. Felix
Camacho did not approve of the settlement.  He increased the
settlement to $90 million, specifying this will come from 15% of
the money set aside for tax refunds each year.  The deal also
includes two additional tax years.

Ms. Santos' attorney, Mike Phillips, said the first agreement is
valid until the federal court approves Gov. Camacho's proposal.
Taxpayers will be allowed to claim the credit on their tax forms
for this tax-filing season, however, he said it's not clear when
their EITC refunds will be paid.


HEBRON AUTO: Facing Lawsuit over Alleged 'Car-Kiting' in Ky
-----------------------------------------------------------
Two customers of Hebron Auto Sales filed a class action against
the company and consumer credit company Credit Acceptance Corp.,
according to Kentucky Post.

Attorney Brandon Voelker filed the suit in Boone County circuit
court on behalf of Vincent and Jessica Childers of Hebron,
Kentucky.  The suit alleged Hebron Auto engaged in 'car-kiting'
or selling vehicles without valid titles.

Hebron Auto, which is now under receivership, closed its outlets
in Richwood and in Colerain Township in Hamilton County, Ohio,
and Middletown, Ohio, in January.  The closure left about 80
customers without clear titles, according to the report.

Credit Acceptance allegedly assisted Hebron in the scheme by
advancing loan proceeds for the cars without requiring proof of
title or a perfected security interest, according to a report by
WLWT.

Customer contact, Phone: (859)491-5551.  Credit Acceptance on
the Net: http://www.credaccept.com/.


HERTFORDSHIRE OIL: U.K. Law Firm Filing Suit over Oil Depot Fire
----------------------------------------------------------------
The class action filed on behalf of victims of the Buncefield
oil depot fire in Hertfordshire is to be heard for the first
time at the U.K. High Court in mid-March, according to Post
Magazine.

U.K.-based law firm Collins Solicitors applied last week for
group litigation order against Hertfordshire Oil Storage.  It is
due to receive a response 10 days after the filing.  

Collins Solicitors expects to represent more than 200 fire
victims from an oil depot explosion in December.  People who
claimed they lost jobs or suffered post-traumatic stress, as a
direct result of the explosion are expecting claims to come at
several million pounds.

The law firm informed HOS, as well as British Pipeline Agency,
which also operates from the oil depot, about the application.  
British Pipeline denied liability, while HOS did not make any
reply.  Collins is taking the action against HOS alone.

According to the report, a spokesman for HOS said the company
donated GBP150,000 to the Mayor's recovery fund for the people
of Hemel Hempstead.  It is advising people affected to consult
their own insurers.

Collins Solicitors on the Net: http://www.collinslaw.co.uk;
Hertfordshire Oil Storage Ltd. Phone: 01442 263738; Fax: 01442
234698.  


ILLINOIS: Wis. Woman Files Strip-Search Suit V. Cook County Jail
----------------------------------------------------------------
A Milwaukee, Wisconsin woman launched a lawsuit over the
humiliating and dehumanizing procedures that she was subjected
to by guards from Illinois' Cook County Jail, NBC5.com reports.

The woman, Kim Young, told NBC5.com that she was strip-searched
after a traffic violation.  The lawsuit is a class action filed
against Cook County, the Department of Corrections and the chief
operating officer of Cermak Health Services.

In her suit, Ms. Young claims that she was in Chicago, Illinois
last January for a funeral when she was pulled over for a
traffic violation.  It was discovered that Ms. Young had a prior
traffic warrant, and she was taken to the Cook County Jail.

Ms. Young said that she was processed with 30 other women who
were strip-searched.  According to her, she was given a pap
smear and strip-searched by doctors from Cermak Hospital.  She
told NBC5.com, "They violated my rights because I didn't give
them permission to do it.  It was terrible.  Yes, they used
gloves, but I'll go to my own doctor if I want a pap smear.  
What do I want the jail to do it for?"  She considered her
treatment humiliating and degrading considering she just got a
traffic ticket.

"They're doing this to everybody," Mike Kanovitz, an attorney
representing Ms. Young in the case told NBC5.com.  He adds,
"People who, like Ms. Young, who are going to be making bail
shortly and are not going to be put in the jail.  People who are
not arrested for something having to do with a drug offense, as
are most of the people who are checked into Cook County Jail
are. There is no reason to suspect that someone who is picked up
on a traffic ticket has decided to secret drugs inside of their
bodies and then force them to undergo what has happened in this
case."

In a statement, officials with the Cook County Sheriff's
Department said that they believe the suit will be dismissed.
The statement read, "Intake searches are conducted at every
single jail in the nation to protect inmates and staff from
contraband that would otherwise be smuggled into the facility."  
It added, "The search guidelines that are followed by the staff
have been tested in court and have been approved by the federal
judiciary system."  Dividers were installed after another class
action settlement in 2000.

In the current case, only a few plaintiffs have come forward,
attorneys though believe that there were 200,000 other people
who were allegedly violated from 2004 to 2006.  Mr. Kanovitz
told NBC5.com,  "There are several of these procedures that
they're using that, have not, in fact, been approved.  Every
case is specific, and what's approved is doing intimate searches
only if necessary when you have good reason to believe that a
specific person has done something."


JOHNSON & JOHNSON: Court Certifies Drug Overpricing Lawsuit
-----------------------------------------------------------
Federal Judge Patti B. Saris granted class-action status to a
nationwide lawsuit against four big drug companies that
allegedly defied pricing rules set out by the Average Wholesale
Price formula.  

According to Bloomberg News, Johnson & Johnson, Bristol-Myers
Squibb Co., AstraZeneca Plc and GlaxoSmithKline Plc, stands to
face repayments worth hundreds of millions of dollars should
they be found guilty of overcharging (Class Action Reporter,
Jan. 23, 2006).  In the recent ruling, she excluded drugs made
by Schering-Plough Corp., saying plaintiffs hadn't presented
evidence against it, according to Bloomberg.  

The government uses the Average Wholesale Price formula to set
reimbursements from federal health programs.  Plaintiffs claim
the companies artificially inflated the figures to consumers and
third-party payers.  The report said the decision only affects
companies that make drugs that must be administered by
physicians.

Judge Saris is still considering suits over the formula against
dozens of other drugmakers, including Pfizer Inc. and Abbott
Laboratories.

Tom Sobol, a managing partner at Hagens Berman LLP in Boston, is
acting on behalf of consumer groups such as the Florida Alliance
of Retired Americans who have complained against the drugmakers'
practices.  The groups represent patients, including the
Congress of California Seniors and the states of Illinois,
Kentucky, New Jersey, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Nevada and Montana.

The suit is styled, "In re Average Wholesale Price Litigation,
Case No. 1:01-cv-12257-PBS," filed in the United States District
Court in Massachusetts, under Judge Patti B. Saris.  
Representing the Plaintiff/s are, David J. Bershad and J.
Douglas Richards of Milberg Weiss Bershad Hynes & Lerach LLP,
One Pennsylvania Plaza, 49th Floor, New York, NY 10119, Phone:
212-594-5300.  Representing the Defendant/s are, Daniel E.
Reidy, Jeremy P. Cole, Jessie A. Witten, Tina M. Tabacchi, and
Toni-Ann Citera of Jones Day, 77 West Wacker Drive, Chicago, IL
60601-1692, Phone: 312-782-3939, E-mail:
tmtabacchi@jonesday.com, jawitten@jonesday.com,
tcitera@jonesday.com; and Jeffrey I. Weinberger, Munger Tolles &
Olson, 355 S. Grand Avenue, Suite 3500, Los Angeles, CA 90071-
1560, Phone: 213-683-9100.


MAJOR AUTOMOTIVE: Faces N.Y. Consumer Fraud Suit over Vehicles
--------------------------------------------------------------
Major Automotive Companies, Inc. faces a summons and complaint
filed in December 2004 in the New York State Supreme Court,
County of the Bronx, styled, "Justin Jung et al. v. Major
Automotive Companies, Inc."

The suit alleges the Company sold defective or otherwise
dangerous vehicles.  Named plaintiff bases his suit on a single-
vehicle accident.  The action includes provisions for the
possible promulgation of a class action regarding the previous
accusations.


MAJOR AUTOMOTIVE: Reaches Settlement in N.J. Consumer Fraud Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Major Automotive Companies, Inc. forged a settlement in the
class action filed against it in the Superior Court of the State
of New Jersey, styled, "Maryann Cerbo, et al. v. Ford of
Englewood, Inc., et al."

The lead plaintiff had alleged the systematic overcharge by all
New Jersey Licensed Automotive Dealers for the documentation
fees for the registration of new/used vehicles.

Under advice of counsel, the Company, through its Compass Dodge,
Inc. franchise, agreed to accept the proposed settlement offer
by the plaintiff's counsel.  Using a complex set of guidelines,
including total sales and ratio of new and used vehicles sold,
we agreed to comply with the settlement provisions.  The current
estimated cost of settlement is approximately $30,000, which has
been accrued in the fourth quarter of 2004.  The settlement
proposal awaits approval by the New Jersey Superior Court.


MEDIA COMPANIES: Accused of Muddling Writers-Union Relations
------------------------------------------------------------
Writers Guild of America, West filed an unfair labor practices
complaint with the National Labor Relations Board charging
several production companies of interfering with the guild's
campaign to organize reality television writers.

WGAW is concerned that ABC, CBS, WB Network, Fox and several
production companies, which are defendants in a class action by
non-union members, are trying to keep in the way of the legal
process, according to Back Stage.

"They've been using the discovery process to intrude into the
relationship between the union and the plaintiffs," said Jeff
Hermanson, WGAW's newly appointed director of organizing.  The
companies have issued five subpoenas to WGAW leaders, including
Interim Executive Director David Young and former Executive
Director John McLean.  The concerned individuals have resisted
the order.

WGAW helped two sets of nonunion writers file suit in the Los
Angeles Superior Court against the production companies for
alleged violations of California labor law.  The case, filed by
attorney Tony Segall, WGAW's outside counsel, seeks union's
jurisdiction over reality TV writers and story editors.  

The suit alleged that the companies routinely denied nonunion
writers and editors overtime and meal breaks, and require them
to falsify work time records to save on cost.  The two cases
have been merged into one at the request of the companies, whose
lawyer includes Jeffrey Richardson.  The NLRB charge was also
filed against Syndicated Prods., Dawn Syndicated Prods., Next
Entertainment, Telepictures Prods., Turner Broadcasting System
and Rocket Science Laboratories.

According to the report, the guild hopes the NLRB will bar any
investigation of the union's activities.  A decision is expected
within 30-45 days.


MEDICAL INFORMATION: Former Employee Files Suit in Mass. V. Plan
----------------------------------------------------------------
Medical Information Technology, Inc. (MEDITECH) faces a
purported class action complaint in the United States District
Court for the District of Massachusetts that was filed by a
former employee over the Company's profit sharing plan.

On February 10, 2005, Michael Hubert, a former Meditech
employee, filed a complaint against the Medical Information
Technology Profit Sharing Plan, A. Neil Pappalardo, its Trustee
and Company Director, and the other five Company Directors,
Lawrence A. Polimeno, Roland L. Driscoll, Edward B. Roberts,
Morton E. Ruderman and L.P. Dan Valente.

The complaint is purportedly brought on Plaintiff's own behalf
and on behalf of a purported class consisting of "all
participants in the [Plan] who have received any distribution
since January 1, 1998 and who did not receive the fair value of
their benefits".  The complaint alleges:

     (1) the Trustee and Directors are fiduciaries of the
         Plan in valuing Meditech's common stock for purposes of
         redemption and payment of a participant's benefits
         under the Plan;

     (2) the Directors, in connection with an annual
         contribution of the Company's common stock to the Plan,
         have undervalued the Company's common stock and have
         not paid retiring or terminating participants in the
         Plan the fair value of their interests in the Plan;

     (3) Meditech's founders and controlling shareholders,
         including some of the Directors, have been buyers of
         Meditech common stock and have benefited from the low
         price established by Mr. Pappalardo and approved
         without adequate care by the other Directors;

     (4) Mr. Pappalardo is not independent and that neither
         he nor the other Directors have relied upon an
         independent appraiser;

     (5) by failing to fairly value the benefits due each
         employee participating in the Plan upon his or her
         termination, that all of the defendants violated their
         fiduciary duties to the participants of the Plan and
         that as a result Plaintiff and members of the purported
         class are due benefits from the Plan; and

     (6) the Directors violated fiduciary duties to the
         participants of the Plan in violation of the Employee
         Retirement Income Security Act.

The complaint seeks certification as a class action, a judgment
against the defendants, a permanent injunction ordering the Plan
to consult an outside appraiser in valuing the Plan's assets,
removal of Mr. Pappalardo as the Plan Trustee, and damages,
interest, attorneys' fees and costs.

The suit is styled, "Hubert v. Medical Information Technology
Profit Sharing Plan et al, Case No. 1:05-cv-10269-RWZ," filed in
the U.S. District Court for the District of Massachusetts under
Judge Rya W. Zobel.  Representing the Plaintiff/s is Michael A.
Collora of Dwyer & Collora, LLP, Federal Reserve Building, 600
Atlantic Ave., 12th Floor, Boston, MA 02210, Phone:
617-371-1002, Fax: 617-371-1037, E-mail:
mcollora@dwyercollora.com.  Representing the Defendant/s is
Kevin P. Martin and Stephen D. Poss of Goodwin Proctor, LLP,
Phone: 617-570-1000 and 617-570-1886, Fax: 617-523-1231, E-mail:
Kmartin@goodwinprocter.com and sposs@goodwinprocter.com.


MICROSOFT CORP: Minn. Schools Get Windfall from Antitrust Deal
--------------------------------------------------------------
Minnesota's Albert Lea schools will be receiving $297,466.40
from a class action settlement with Microsoft Corporation, money
that will be used for new computer hardware and software, The
Albert Lea Tribune reports.

Any consumer or business that bought certain software from
Microsoft was eligible to receive vouchers to purchase new
technology, and after the deadline half the value of the
unclaimed vouchers was given to the state's Department of
Education.  Money will be allocated based on free and reduced
lunch costs.

The money is left over from a settlement to a class-action
lawsuit in which Minnesota customers and businesses claimed the
Company was violating antitrust laws by overcharging for its
Windows operating system and its Excel and Word programs.  The
company had denied the charges saying that the prices on its
products had dropped, (Class Action Reporter, Feb. 2, 2006).

In 2000, the Company faced a flurry of lawsuits back for using
its market power to force customers to pay higher prices for its
Windows operating system.  Those federal cases were later
consolidated in the United States District Court for Maryland.  
These cases allege that the Company competed unfairly and
unlawfully monopolized alleged markets for operating systems and
certain software applications, and they seek to recover alleged
overcharges for these products.  

To date, courts have dismissed all claims for damages in cases
brought against the Company by indirect purchasers under federal
law and in 17 states.  Nine of those state court decisions have
been affirmed on appeal.  An appeal of one of those state
rulings is pending.  There was no appeal in four states.  Claims
under federal law brought on behalf of foreign purchasers have
been dismissed by the U.S. District Court in Maryland as have
all claims brought on behalf of consumers seeking injunctive
relief under federal law, (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 2, 2005).

The ruling on injunctive relief and the ruling dismissing the
federal claims of indirect purchasers are currently on appeal to
the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit, as is
a ruling denying certification of certain proposed classes of
U.S. direct purchasers.  Courts in eleven states have ruled that
indirect purchaser cases may proceed as class actions, while
courts in two states have denied class certification, (Class
Action Reporter, Nov. 2, 2005).

Although it was originally believed Albert Lea would not qualify
for money, the district received an e-mail last fall that said
it would qualify after all.  The online application system said
the district had just two weeks to decide what they wanted to
purchase before they submitted the application.  Two weeks of
frenetic decision-making passed, while technology teams from the
district and each building put together a wish list.

"The big thing with this is that it's not to supplant (the
technology budget). It's not necessarily to replace a computer
lab. Now, if you were putting something new in, it would work,"
Floyd Harves, Albert Lea's director of technology told Albert
Lea Tribune.  The deadline for decision-making has since been
extended, allowing Mr. Harves and the technology teams to go
back and rethink some of the items on their application list.

Originally, the list of approved items schools could spend their
money on was about 13 pages long.  The list has since been
extended to 48 pages, giving the district's additional decision-
making time more importance.

Mr. Harves told The Albert Lea Tribune, "A lot of the things we
took out (from the original wish list), now when we go back, we
can put them back in.  What we are going to do is go back and
meet with each building, and go over the plan we currently have
that we put together in September, and then we will re-evaluate,
simply because it was done way too fast."

The science department had wanted computers and some scientific
probes, and when the district originally applied, the probes
didn't qualify.  With the new list, the probes do qualify.  The
district will have six years to spend the money.

Because the money is allocated based on free and reduced lunch
costs, all the schools will not receive the same amount of
money.  The high school will get $78,873.66, and Southwest
Middle School will receive $49,577.74.  Of the elementary
schools, Halverson will receive the most, $45,296.  Hawthorne
Elementary will get $39,436.84, Lakeview will get $38,986.12,
and Sibley will receive $36,507.24.  Brookside's ALC, with its
nine classrooms of nonmainstreamed kids, will get $8,788.78.

Possible uses of the money include math software, computers for
biology, a mini-lab, computers for video editing, and computers
for family and consumer science classrooms.  The district will
be purchasing SmartBoards, an interactive whiteboard system.

According to Mr. Harves, "I will present this to the school
board.  This is going to be an ongoing process, I'm director of
technology, everything comes through me, we work in committees.  
I report to our administration, keep them all in the loop, and
report to the school board, so if there's any questions along
the way, they get answered or we don't move forward."


MISSOURI: Appeals Court Considers "Commencement" Issue in CAFA
--------------------------------------------------------------
In the case entitled, "Plubell v. Merck & Co., No. 05-4217," the
United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit recently
tackled an issues that taken up so much of the Class Action
Fairness Act of (CAFA) 2005 judicial energy during the first
year of the CAFA Revolution, according to McGlinchey Stafford of
http://www.cafalawblog.com/.

Specifically, the court considered whether a new action was
commenced post-CAFA by the substitution of the class
representative upon discovery that the original representative
did not have a colorable claim.  This particular legal battle
began when plaintiffs sued Merck & Co. in Missouri state court
in December, 2004, before the adoption of CAFA, claiming that
the Company engaged in deceptive trade practices linked to the
development and marketing of Vioxx.

However, the original class representative was mistaken about
the manufacturer of her pain medication, so the plaintiffs asked
the court for leave to substitute another class member as class
representative.  The state court, prior to class certification,
granted leave to amend in August 2005 to allow the plaintiffs to
replace the former class representative with class member Mary
Plubell.

Immediately upon the amendment of the petition, the Company
removed the case to federal court under CAFA, arguing that the
plaintiffs' substitution of class representatives "commenced" a
new action.  Judge Howard F. Sachs, U.S. District Judge for the
Western District of Missouri, denied the Company's motion and
remanded the case to state court.  The Company decided,
presumably due to the facts surrounding the original
representative's unfounded claim, to appeal the ruling to the
Eighth Circuit.

Judge William Duane Benton, writing for the court, held that the
amended petition substituting Ms. Plubell related back to the
original 2004 filing, preceding the effective date of CAFA.  
Most of the opinion centers on Missouri state law, since state
law controls whether an amended petition relates back to the
original petition.

However, the panel referenced Rule 15(c) of the Federal Rules of
Civil Procedure, since the applicable Missouri rule was derived
from Rule 15(c), for guidance in determining whether the
amendment related back to the original petition.  The fact that
the amended pleading added a new plaintiff rather than a new
defendant presented an unusual angle, the Eighth Circuit
observed, but the twist did not change the court's analysis
since Rule 15 is extended to the addition of plaintiffs by
analogy, per the advisory committee's notes following Rule 15.

Conducting his analysis according to the blueprint provided by
Missouri Rule 55.33 and Fed. R. Civ. P. 15, Judge Benton
addressed the question of whether the claim asserted in the
amended pleading arose out of the same conduct, transaction, or
occurrence as that set forth in the original pleading.  Further,
if the amended claim did arise out of the same occurrence, the
original complaint must have given the defendant sufficient
notice of the amended claim, and amendment of the claim must not
result in prejudice to the defendant.

Although the Company argued that Ms. Plubell's claim did not
arise out of the same conduct, transaction or occurrence since
the original representative did not have a colorable claim, the
court concluded that the true inquiry is whether the amended
claim arises out of the same conduct, transaction, or occurrence
set forth in the complaint.  The court reasoned that whether the
original representative purchased a Company product was
inconsequential -- the complaint set forth that she did, and
therefore, the Company had notice of the amended claim.

Moreover, the court concluded that the Company would suffer no
prejudice by allowing the petition to be amended, since the
amended pleadings were identical to the original.  Thus, Judge
Benton concluded, "Merck was in no way prejudiced by the
identical allegations in the amended pleadings."

At the end, the Company made a last-ditch attempt to stay in
federal court that CAFA conferred on Merck a "right" to be in
federal court.  However, Judge Benton quickly dismissed this
argument stating, "While some defendants may benefit by having
their cases in federal instead of state court, this is not a
stated purpose of the Act."

The issue of when an action is "commenced" under the Class
Action Fairness Act is the subject of heavy litigation at the
district court level.  With this decision, the Eighth Circuit
joins the Seventh, Ninth and Tenth Circuits as having addressed
the CAFA commencement issue.

The federal suit is styled, "Plubell v. Merck & Co, Inc., Case
No. 4:05-cv-00831-HFS," on petition for leave to appeal from the
U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri under
Judge Howard F. Sachs.  Representing the Plaintiff/s are, Don M.
Downing of Gray, Ritter & Graham, PC, 701 Market St., Suite 800,
St. Louis, MO 63101, Phone: (314) 241-5620, Fax: (314) 241-4140,
E-mail: ddowning@grgpc.com; and Todd Eugene Hilton, Norman Eli
Siegel and Patrick J. Stueve of Stueve, Siegel, Hanson, Woody,
LLP, 330 West 47th St., Suite 250, Kansas City, MO 64112, Phone:
(816) 714-7118, (816) 714-7112 and (816) 714-7110, Fax:
(816) 714-7101, E-mail: hilton@sshwlaw.com.  Representing the
Defendant/s are, John Christian Aisenbrey and George Francis
Verschelden of Stinson, Morrison, Hecker, LLP, 1201 Walnut St.,
Suite 2800, Kansas City, MO 64106, Phone: (816) 691-3111,
(816) 842-8600 and (816) 691-3495, Fax: (816) 691-3795, E-mail:
jaisenbrey@stinsonmoheck.com and gverschelden@stinsonmoheck.com.

For more details, visit: http://researcharchives.com/t/s?4f6
(Plubell Opinion, 8th Cir.), http://researcharchives.com/t/s?4d7
(Knudsen Opinion, 7th Cir.), http://researcharchives.com/t/s?4dc
(Bush Opinion, 9th Cir.) and http://researcharchives.com/t/s?4d9
(Pritchett Opinion, 10th Cir.).


NEW YORK: Facing Lawsuit for Evicting Harlem School Director
---------------------------------------------------------
Parents of students in the Choir Academy of Harlem filed a
federal class action in relation to the eviction of the musician
who founded the Boys Choir of Harlem, according to New York
Daily News.  The choir is also suing the City.

The choir gets free space at school in exchange for offering
music instruction to students.  But New York City authorities
ordered Mr. Turnbull and his choir to leave the school last
month after they ran out of money and failed to pay its music
teachers, who have now stopped giving lessons.  According to the
report, the choir also allegedly failed to comply with a demand
by the city that it replace Mr. Turnbull as director in the wake
of a 2001 sexual abuse scandal.

The choir claims the education department broke the terms of its
lease.  Students and parents are accusing the department of
trying to discredit the choir, punishing students who perform in
it, and racial bias, according to The Guardian.


NEW YORK: Judge Upholds Plaintiff's Allegations in 9/11 Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Berger & Montague, P.C. reports that Judge
Deborah A. Batts, United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York, ruled that a class action lawsuit brought
on behalf of residents, workers and office workers in Lower
Manhattan and Brooklyn can proceed with respect to the
Plaintiffs' allegations that Christine Todd Whitman, former head
of the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
violated the proposed class' Fifth Amendment Constitutional
right to be free from bodily harm when she made materially
misleading statements regarding the safety of the air quality in
Lower Manhattan shortly after September 11, 2001.

Judge Batts, while dismissing the Plaintiffs' mandamus and
CERCLA claims against the E.P.A., rejected the EPA's arguments
in allowing the Plaintiffs' Administrative Procedure Act claims
to go forward based on the EPA's misleading statements about air
quality and its failure to adhere to applicable standards with
respect to the clean-up of Lower Manhattan and Brooklyn after
the collapse of the World Trade Center.

"We are happy that Judge Batts' decision helps clear the way for
important issues to finally be addressed regarding the EPA's
failure to adhere to its Constitutional and statutory duties
after September 11th when it misled New Yorkers as to the safety
of the air quality after September 11th and compounded this
wrong by its failure to properly decontaminate Lower Manhattan
and Brooklyn in the months thereafter," stated Sherrie R.
Savett, lead counsel for Plaintiffs.

The Berger firm is working on this matter with Bert A. Blitz of
the New York law firm Shandell, Blitz, Blitz & Bookson, LLP,
which has been one of the leading plaintiffs' trial firms in New
York City for over 30 years. Berger has also associated with
Joel R. Kupferman of the New York Environmental Law & Justice
Project.

The suit is styled, "Benzman et al v. Whitman et al, Case No.
1:04-cv-01888-DAB," filed in the U.S. District Court for the
Southern District of New York under Judge Deborah A. Batts.  
Representing the Plaintiff/s are, Bert A. Blitz of Shandell,
Blitz, Blitz & Bookson, L.L.P, 150 Broadway, 14th Floor, New
York, NY 10038-4498, Phone: (212) 513-1300 and Sherrie R.
Savett, Esq. of Berger Montague, P.C., 1622 Locus St.,
Philadelphia, PA 19103, Phone: (205) 875-3000.  Representing the
Defendant/s are, Glenn Stewart Greene, U.S. Dept. of Justice,
Torts Branch, Civil Div., P.O. Box 7146, Ben Franklin Station,
1331 Pennsylvania Ave., N.W., Suite 8002 South Tower,
Washington, DC 20044, Phone: 202-616-4143, Fax: 202-616-4314, E-
mail: glenn.greene@usdoj.gov; and Scott Jeffrey Jordan, U.S.
Department of Justice (DC), 1331 Pennsylvania Ave., NW Rm. 1150
North Washington, DC 20004, Phone: 202-514-9365, Fax:
202-514-8865, E-mail: scott.jordan@usdoj.gov.

For more details, contact Jeanne Markey, Berger & Montague,
P.C., Phone: +1-215-875-3005.


OUTOKUMPU COPPER: Rival Complains of Anti-Competitive Practice
--------------------------------------------------------------
Outokumpu Oyj said at its annual accounts statement that
Outokumpu Copper (USA), Inc. has been served with a complaint in
a case filed in Federal District Court in Memphis, Tennessee, by
plaintiff American Copper & Brass, Inc.

The complaint alleges claims and damages under the U.S.
antitrust laws and purports to be a class action on behalf of
all direct purchasers of copper plumbing tubes in the U.S. from
1988 to March 31, 2001.  Outokumpu believes that the allegations
in this case are groundless and will defend itself in any such
proceeding.

In connection with the transaction to sell the fabricated copper
products business to Nordic Capital, Outokumpu has agreed to
indemnify and hold harmless Nordic Capital with respect to this
class action.

Outokumpu Oyj on the Net: http://www.outokumpu.com.


PAUL REVERE: Calif. Judge Grants Motion to Remand Hangarter Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
United States District Judge William Alsup, writing for the
Northern District of California, granted the motion to remand
that was filed by class representative Joan Hangarter in the
suit styled, "Hangarter v. The Paul Revere Life Insurance Co.,"
according to McGlinchey Stafford of http://www.cafalawblog.com/.

In his ruling the judge determined that the portion of Ms.
Hangarter's claim against the defendant John Garamendi, the
California Insurance Commissioner, fell within the Class Action
Fairness Act's (CAFA) "state-action exemption."  Although CAFA
substantially expanded federal jurisdiction over class actions
initially filed in state court, the Act also carved out certain
exceptions, such as the state-action exemption, which
essentially states that "district courts have no jurisdiction
over class actions in which the primary defendants are States,
State officials, or other governmental entities."

Ms. Hangarter initially filed her class action in California
state court, listing seven causes of action against The Paul
Revere Life Insurance Co. and other insurance providers alleging
they unlawfully accepted premiums on disability insurance
policies while never intending to pay benefits, and then denied
valid claims. Her suit also asserted an eighth cause of action
against Commissioner Garamendi, alleging that he failed to
prevent the sale of misleading or unsound policies, and sought
relief for this claim in the form of a Writ of Mandamus ordering
the Commissioner to revoke, rescind or reform the allegedly
misleading policies.  The insurance company defendants later
removed the case to federal court, asserting diversity
jurisdiction under CAFA.

Judge Alsup distilled the remand motion to the singular
determination of whether Commissioner Garamendi was a "primary
defendant" under the state-action exemption.  The Company and
its fellow defendants argued that the Commissioner was no more
than a "bit player" in the litigation, since the plaintiffs
sought no damages against the Commissioner and only requested
official acknowledgments and clarifications.  However, Judge
Alsup disagreed, finding that the Commissioner was a primary
defendant since he was the only defendant who could provide the
relief requested in the eighth cause of action.  Moreover, Judge
Alsup determined that the defendants had minimized, without
justification, the relief sought by the plaintiffs on this
count, and made clear that injunctive relief was in no way
inferior to damages.

The Company also argued that CAFA's legislative history,
particularly Senate Report 109-14, provided guidance in applying
this exemption.  Judge Alsup though was unmoved by the offering,
instead believing that the Report was "of dubious value as an
interpretive aid," and summarily dismissing the notion that the
Report held any sway over the Legislator's interpretation of
CAFA, since it was issued ten days after the President signed
CAFA into law.  

The judge did, however, give weight to the provisions of the
Report that stated "plaintiffs should not be permitted to name
state entities as defendants as a mechanism to avoid federal
jurisdiction over class actions that largely target non-
governmental defendants."  Judge Alsup posited that this comment
suggested that secondary or collateral defendants do not fall
within the state action exemption.  This determination was of no
help to the Company, as the court held that the Commissioner was
the only target of the eighth cause of action and was therefore
a "primary defendant" to that particular claim.

The court averred, "In summary, the Commissioner is a primary
defendant because the relief sought from him is substantial in
its own light, because he is the only defendant potentially
liable on the eighth cause of action and because he would be
liable to the entire class."  Thus, Judge Alsup found that the
state action exception applied to the claim asserted against
Commissioner Garamendi, and the case went galloping back to
state court.

The suit is styled, "Hangarter v. The Paul Revere Life Insurance
Company et al., Case No. 3:05-cv-04558-WHA," filed in the U.S.
District Court for the Northern District of California under
Judge William H. Alsup.  Representing the Plaintiff/s are, Ray
Francis Bourhis, Esq. and David M. Lilienstein, Esq. of Bourhis
& Wolfson, 1050 Battery St., San Francisco, CA 94111, Phone:
415-392-4660, Fax: 415-421-0259, E-mail: rfbourhis@aol.com and
davidlilienstein@hotmail.com; and Joshua Konecky, Elisa P. Laird
and Todd M. Schneider of Schneider & Wallace, 180 Montgomery
St., Suite 2000, San Francisco, CA 94104, Phone: (415) 421-7100,
Fax: (415) 421-7105, E-mail: jkonecky@schneiderwallace.com,
elaird@schneiderwallace.com and tschneider@schneiderwallace.com.  
Representing the Defendant/s are, William J. Kayatta, Jr. and
Gavin G. McCarthy of Pierce Atwood, One Monument Sq., Portland,
ME 04101, Phone: (207) 791-1100 and 207-791-1170, Fax:
(207) 791-1350; and Sean P. Nalty of Kelly Herlihy & Klein, LLP,
44 Montgomery St., Suite 2500, San Francisco, CA 94104-4217,
Phone: 415-951-0535, Fax: 415-391-7808, E-mail:
nalty@kelher.com.

For more details, visit: http://researcharchives.com/t/s?4f7
(Hangarter Opinion).


PHILIP MORRIS: $79.5M Penalty for Deceptive Advertising Upheld
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Oregon Supreme Court upheld a lower court ruling ordering
tobacco company Philip Morris to pay $79.5 million in punitive
damages to the family of a smoker who died of lung cancer,
according to The Associated Press.  

The ruling called Philip Morris' cigarette marketing practices
reprehensible.  "Philip Morris knew that smoking caused serious
and sometimes fatal disease, but it nevertheless spread false or
misleading information to suggest to the public that doubts
remained about the issue," the court said.  Philip Morris, which
considers the award "grossly excessive" plans to appeal to the
U.S. Supreme Court.

The suit was filed by the family of Jesse D. Williams, a
Portland janitor who smoked Marlboros for four decades and died
in 1997 from lung cancer (Class Action Reporter, Jan. 2, 2003).  
The suit alleged Mr. Williams kept smoking because he did not
believe a company would sell something that was truly harmful.  
James S. Coon is the attorney for Mr. Williams' family.

In March 1999, a Multnomah County jury awarded the Williams
family $821,485 in compensatory damages and $79.5 million in
punitive damages.  At the time, the $80.3 million award was the
largest in an individual smoker case.  The judge reduced the
punitive damage award to $32 million, saying it was excessively
large, however, the Oregon Court of Appeals restored the verdict
in June 2002.

In 2003, The U.S. Supreme Court ordered Oregon courts to review
whether the award is not unconstitutionally excessive under new
standards for punitive damages adopted by the high court.  In
20004, a state appeals court said it wasn't excessive, and the
state Supreme Court decision upholds that decision.


PREMIER SALES: Home-Buyer Sues over Questionable Marketing
----------------------------------------------------------
A Maryland man is suing the developers of the planned Promenade
condos for an alleged crafty profit-making scheme.  

Philip Zlotnick is filing a case against Premier Sales Group
Inc., Boynton Waterways Investment Associates LLC and Panther
Real Estate Partners Inc., according to Palm Beach Post.  He
wants the court to certify the suit as class action on behalf of
nearly 300 would-be buyers of the firms' condos.  Mr. Zlotnick
is represented by Eric Lee.

The complaint says that in December, Panther Real Estate
Partners of Miami, The Promenade's developer cancelled purchase
reservations due to increase in construction materials and labor
prices.  It offered a $15,000-a-unit refund for deposits.  
However, a month after, it informed prospective clients that
sales were starting back up again, under different terms,
including increased prices.

According to the report, under the new "special program," Mr.
Zlotnick would have to pay $60,000 more than he originally
agreed to.  Based on Mr. Zlotnick's situation, the developer
could end up making $18 million more than on the old prices,
according to the lawsuit.  The developer is represented by
Attorney Paul D'Arelli.  


PROVIDENCE HEALTH: Patient Information Theft Spurs Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------
Providence Health Care system is facing a lawsuit for an alleged
failure of the hospital operator to protect patient information,
according to ConsumerAffairs.com.  Attorney David Sugarman, who
filed the lawsuit in behalf of Laurie Paul, is seeking class-
action status for the suit, the report said.

Some 365,000 medical and personal records of 365,000 patients
were lost when a laptop containing the information was stolen on
Dec. 31 from an information services analyst who worked for
Providence.  The data also contained information on 1,500
current and former Providence employees.  

The company, which operates hospitals in Oregon and Washington,
disclosed the theft only on Jan. 25, more than three weeks after
the incident.  The report said Oregon has no law requiring
companies to report data thefts to customers.  State authorities
are now conducting investigations since the theft occurred.

Taking home backup copies of patient data was an accepted
practice for specific employees, Rick Cagen, Providence's chief
of operations in Oregon said, according to ConsumerAffairs.com.  
The computer records were not encrypted.  Mr. Cagen said
Providence already introduced a policy of encrypting all data on
laptops and storing offsite data in more secure locations since
the theft occurred.  Associated Press said law enforcement
authorities have so far found no evidence the stolen information
was used illegally.


RED ROBIN: Faces Purported Labor Suit in Calif. Superior Court
--------------------------------------------------------------
Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc. (RRGB) reports that it was
recently served with a purported class action lawsuit, "Huggett
v. Red Robin International, Inc.," in the Superior Court of the
State of California.

The suit is related to an alleged failure to comply with
California wage and hour regulations, including those governing
meal and rest periods, payment of wages upon termination and
provision of itemized statements to employees, as well as
unlawful business practices and unfair competition.  It states
claims for damages, including punitive and exemplary damages,
and injunctive relief.

For more details, contact Don Duffy, Integrated Corporate
Relations, Red Robin Gourmet Burgers, Inc., Phone: 203-682-8200.


SOUTHERN STAR: Kans. Court Yet to Rule on Lawsuit Certification
---------------------------------------------------------------
The District Court for Stevens County, Kansas has yet to rule on
the motions for and against class certification for the lawsuit
filed against Southern Star Central Corporation and other
natural gas companies, including El Paso Natural Gas Co., styled
"Will Price, et al. v. El Paso Natural Gas Co., et al., Case No.
99 C 30."

In this putative class action filed May 28, 1999, the named
plaintiffs (Plaintiffs) have sued over 50 defendants, including
the Company.  Asserting theories of civil conspiracy, aiding and
abetting, accounting and unjust enrichment, their Fourth Amended
Class Action Petition alleges that the defendants have
undermeasured the volume of, and therefore have underpaid for,
the natural gas they have obtained from or measured for
Plaintiffs.  Plaintiffs seek unspecified actual damages,
attorney fees, pre- and post-judgment interest, and reserved the
right to plead for punitive damages.

On August 22, 2003, an answer to that pleading was filed on
behalf of the Company.  Despite a denial by the court on April
10, 2003 of their original motion for class certification, the
Plaintiffs continue to seek the certification of a class.  The
Plaintiffs' motion seeking class certification for a second time
was fully briefed and the court heard oral argument on this
motion on April 1, 2005.

In connection with the purchase of Central by the Company from
The Williams Companies, Inc. (Williams) in 2002, a Litigation
Cooperation Agreement was executed pursuant to which Williams
agreed to cooperate in and assist with the defense of Central
with respect to the cases, "United States ex rel, Grynberg v.
Williams Natural Gas Company, et al, (the Grynberg Litigation)"
and the Price Litigation.  Pursuant to that agreement, Williams
agreed to provide information and data to Central, make
witnesses available as necessary, assist Central in becoming a
party to certain Joint Defense Agreements and to cooperate in
general with Central in the preparation of its defense.


SOUTHERN STAR: Kans. Court Hears Opinions for Suit Certification
----------------------------------------------------------------
The District Court for Stevens County, Kansas heard oral
arguments for and against class certification for the lawsuit
filed against Southern Star Central Corporation and other
natural gas companies, styled "Will Price, et al. v. El Paso
Natural Gas Co., et al., Case No. 03 C 23."

In this putative class action filed May 12, 2003, the named
Plaintiffs from Case No. 99 C 30 (discussed above) have sued the
same defendants, including the Company.  Asserting substantially
identical legal and/or equitable theories, the Original Class
Action Petition alleges that the defendants have undermeasured
the British thermal units (Btu) content of, and therefore have
underpaid for, the natural gas they have obtained from or
measured for Plaintiffs.  Plaintiffs seek unspecified actual
damages, attorney fees, pre- and post-judgment interest, and
reserved the right to plead for punitive damages.

On November 10, 2003, an answer to that pleading was filed on
behalf of the Company.   The Plaintiffs' motion seeking class
certification for a second time was fully briefed and the court
heard oral argument on this motion on April 1, 2005.

In connection with the purchase of Central by the Company from
The Williams Companies, Inc. (Williams) in 2002, a Litigation
Cooperation Agreement was executed pursuant to which Williams
agreed to cooperate in and assist with the defense of Central
with respect to the cases, "United States ex rel, Grynberg v.
Williams Natural Gas Company, et al, (the Grynberg Litigation)"
and the Price Litigation.  Pursuant to that agreement, Williams
agreed to provide information and data to Central, make
witnesses available as necessary, assist Central in becoming a
party to certain Joint Defense Agreements and to cooperate in
general with Central in the preparation of its defense.


TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Faces Purported Securities Lawsuit in N.Y.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., reports it has been advised
that a purported class action was filed in the Southern District
of New York against the Company.

The suit was filed on behalf of St. Clair Shores General
Employees Retirement System and other similarly situated
plaintiffs against the Company and certain individuals alleging
violations of the Securities Exchange Act regarding purported
breaches of fiduciary duty and illegal insider trading.  The
Company has not been served in the action as well as obtained or
reviewed a copy of the complaint.

The suit is styled, "St. Clair Shores General Employees
Retirement System v. Eibeler et al, Case No. 1:06-cv-00688-MBM,"
filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of
New York under Judge Michael B. Mukasey.  Representing the
Plaintiff/s are, James Joseph Sabella of Grant & Eisenhofer P.A.
(NY2), 45 Rockefeller Center, 630 Fifth Avenue, 15th Floor, New
York, NY 10111, Phone: 646-722-8520, Fax: 212 755 6503, E-mail:
jsabella@gelaw.com.


TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Seeks to Consolidate GTA: SA Suits in N.Y.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc., reports that the Company
filed motions that seek the consolidation of all pending
litigation concerning its Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas ("GTA:
SA") game under a New York federal lawsuit entitled, "In re
Grand Theft Auto Video Game Consumer Litigation."  

In July 2005, the Company received purported class action
complaints filed against it and its Rockstar Games ("Rockstar")
publishing label.  Two of the three suits were filed in the
United States District Court for the Southern District of New
York (New York Actions"), while the remaining one was filed in
the United States District Court, Eastern District of
Pennsylvania (Pennsylvania Action).  On September 8, 2005,
another similar complaint was filed in the Circuit Court for the
Twentieth Judicial District, St. Clair County, Illinois
("Illinois Action").

The plaintiffs in the cases, who are alleged purchasers of the
GTA: SA game, allege that the Company and Rockstar engaged in
consumer deception, false advertising and common law fraud and
were unjustly enriched as a result of the alleged failure of the
Company and Rockstar to disclose that the GTA: SA game contained
"hidden" content, which resulted in the game receiving an "M"
rating from the ESRB rather than an "AO" rating.  The complaints
seek unspecified damages, declarations of various violations of
law and litigation costs.

The New York and Pennsylvania Action(s) were consolidated in the
Southern District of New York under the caption, "In re Grand
Theft Auto Video Game Consumer Litigation, Case No. 05-CV-6734
(BSJ)."  The Illinois Action was removed to the United States
District Court for the Southern District of Illinois, and the
Company moved the Judicial Panel on Multidistrict Litigation for
an order transferring the Illinois Action to the Southern
District of New York for coordinated or consolidated proceedings
with the actions pending in New York.  

The suit is styled, "In Re Grand Theft Auto Video Game Consumer
Litigation v. Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. et al, Case
No. 1:05-cv-06734-BSJ-MHD," filed in the U.S. District Court for
the Southern District of New York under Judge Barbara S. Jones
with referral to Judge Michael H. Dolinger.  Representing the
Defendant/s are, Roy Laurence Jacobs of Roy Jacobs & Associates,
60 East, 42nd St., 46th Floor, New York, NY 10165, Phone:
212-867-1156, Fax: 212-504-8343, E-mail: rljacobs@pipeline.com;
David Jonathan Meiselman of Meiselman, Denlea, Packman, Carton &
Eberz, P.C. (WPl), 1311 Mamaroneck Ave., White Plains, NY 10605,
Phone: (914) 517-5000, Fax: (914) 517-5055, E-mail:
dmeiselman@mdpelaw.com; and Laurence Paskowitz of Paskowitz &
Associates, 60 East, 42nd St., 46th Floor, New York, NY 10165,
Phone: (212)-685-0969, Fax: (212)-685-2306, E-mail:
classattorney@aol.com.


VISA/MASTERCARD: U.S. Govt. Vies for Share in $3.1B Settlement
--------------------------------------------------------------
The United States government is joining retailers vying for a
share of the $3.1 billion being paid by Visa and MasterCard as
part of a 2003 antitrust settlement involving improper debit-
card fees, The Wall Street Journal (WSJ) reports.

The government's claim, according to the WSJ report, is
estimated to be valued at $100 million, which exceeds the $80
million that lead plaintiff Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. expects to
collect.  The U.S. books millions of debit-card transactions
each year on "everything from stamps to souvenirs at the
Smithsonian Institution's museums and cigarettes on military
bases."

The WSJ report revealed that Lloyd Constantine of New York's
Constantine Cannon, which is representing the retailers in the
lawsuit, sent a letter to Judge John Gleeson of the Eastern
District of New York.  In that letter, Mr. Constantine raised "a
serious question" over whether the government should participate
as a member of the class.  He would also later request a hearing
on the matter.

The $3.1 billion settlement fund stems from class action
captioned "In re Visa Check/MasterMoney Antitrust Litigation
(United States District Court, Eastern District of New York,
Case No. 96-CV-5238 (JG))."  The suit was between retailers
nationwide and credit providers Visa and MasterCard and relates
to how the stores process transactions made with debit cards,
which deduct cash from consumers' existing bank accounts, rather
than building up their debt with credit accounts.  It charges
both MasterCard and Visa USA with violating U.S. antitrust law
by monopolistic and anticompetitive business practices
concerning debit cards, (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 24, 2005)
reports.

On the eve of trial, the parties agreed to settle with the final
settlement agreements being signed on June 4, 2003 and the
federal judge overseeing the case, Judge Gleeson, granting
preliminary approval to the deal and the notice plan on June 13,
2003.  Objections to the terms of the settlements and plan of
allocation were due last September 5, 2003.  A fairness hearing
took place on September 25, 2003, in U.S. District Court for the
Eastern District of New York before Judge Gleeson, (Class Action
Reporter, July 24, 2003).

The settlement will bring awards ranging from healthy to
adequate.  According to those overseeing the suit, the $3
billion-plus compensation should begin early next year.  They
say that the antitrust class award would go to all businesses
and organizations in the United States that accepted Visa and
MasterCard debit and credit cards between October 25, 1992 and
June 21, 2003, (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 24, 2005).

Alongside the $3 billion compensation award, the settlement also
called for the providers to stop requiring merchants that accept
credit cards to also accept certain debit card transactions.  
The companies also agreed to lower debit card fees that they
charge merchants for an interim period, by one-third, (Class
Action Reporter Nov. 24, 2005).

Some of retail's heaviest hitters led the suit, including Wal-
Mart Stores Inc., Sears Roebuck and Co., Circuit City Stores
Inc. and Safeway Inc.  Those stores will collect exponentially
more than a business the size of the smaller companies involved
in the case, (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 24, 2005) reports.

The suit is styled, "Wal-Mart Stores, Inc, et al v. Visa USA,
Inc., et al, Case No. 1:96-cv-05238-JG-RLM," filed in the U.S.
District Court for the Eastern District of New York, under Judge
John Gleeson with referral to Roanne L. Mann.  Representing the
Plaintiff/s are: Lloyd Constantine, Matthew L. Cantor, Jeffrey
Issac Shinder and Robert L. Begleiter of Constantine Cannon,
P.C., 477 Madison Ave., 11th Floor, New York, NY 10022, Phone:
212-350-2700, Fax: 212-350-2701, E-mail: lconstatine@cpny.com,
mcantor@cpny.com, jshinder@cpny.com and rbegleiter@cpny.com.  
Representing the Defendant/s are: Kevin J. Arquit of Simpson
Thacher & Bartlett, 425 Lexington Ave., 29th Floor, New York, NY
10017, Phone: (212) 455-7680 or -2000, Fax: (212) 455-2502, E-
mail: karquit@stblaw.com and Stephen V. Bomse, Brian P.
Brosnahan and Thomas P. Brown of Heller, Ehrman, White and
McAuliffe, 333 Bush St., Suite 3100, San Francisco, CA 94104-
2878, Phone: (415) 772-6000, E-mail: sbomse@hewm.com,
bbrosnahan@hewm.com and tbrown@hewm.com.


VIRGINIA: Firm Threatens to Sue State Over Indigent Defense Fees
----------------------------------------------------------------
A Washington, Virginia law firm vowed to sue the State if the
General Assembly does not pass legislation this winter, which
increases the fees paid to lawyers who represent indigent
clients, The Virginia Pilot reports.

Sarah L. Wilson of Covington & Burling told The Virginian Pilot
that the firm is prepared to file a class action civil rights
suit on behalf of indigent Virginians who have been charged with
criminal offenses.  The planned suit will be claiming that they
have been denied effective legal representation and due process.  

Virginia's caps on indigent defense are the lowest in the
nation, ranging from $120 for a district court misdemeanor or
juvenile court case to $1,235 for a felony punishable by 20
years in prison.  The fees actually paid to lawyers vary from
$112 to $1,186 because the General Assembly hasn't fully funded
the programs.

State Sen. Kenneth W. Stolle, R-Virginia Beach, and Del. David
B. Albo, R-Fairfax, recently introduced identical bills that
would eliminate the caps and allow trial judges to set fees for
each case before them.  Sen. Stolle's bill is SB573, while Sen.
Albo's is HB313.  

Both legislators told The Virginian Pilot that they do not know
the total cost of the measures.  Sen. Stolle even said, "We
probably incarcerate violent felons longer than any other state
in the nation.  We utilize the death penalty on a frequent
basis.  If we're going to do that and maintain the confidence of
the people, we have to have confidence in the criminal justice
system."


WAL-MART STORES: Cites Appellate Ruling to End $1.39 Ill. Suit      
--------------------------------------------------------------
Wal-Mart Stores, Inc. moved to dismiss a claim that it should
give change on gift cards, in light of a new decision from the
5th District Appellate Court, The St. Clair Record reports.

In December, the appeals judges ruled in "Harris vs. ChartOne"
that the voluntary payment doctrine barred a suit over charges
for copies of records.  Company attorney Jennifer Kingston, of
Bryan Cave in St. Louis, relied on that decision in a Jan. 17
motion to dismiss a complaint that shopper Ashley Peach filed in
2004.  "Harris has full application to this case," Ms. Kingston
wrote in a supporting memorandum to Madison County Circuit Judge
Nicholas Byron in Illinois.

Ms. Peach filed the suit against the Company on June 16, 2004,
alleging that the cashier at Wal-Mart failed to return a $1.39
balance on her gift card.  Represented by Jeffery Millar of The
Lakin Law Firm, she alleges in her suit that the Company
wrongfully retained unused balances on gift cards.  In her
complaint, she states that sometime after Mother's Day in May of
2004 she purchased shampoo, conditioner, and other toiletries
from the Granite City Wal-Mart, using two separate $10 gift
cards to pay for the purchase that totaled $18.61, (Class Action
Reporter, Aug. 18, 2005).

However, after the sale was complete, Ms. Peach, who has also
filed class actions against Fashion Bug and K-Mart alleging the
retailers also would not give her cash for gift card balances,
alleges the cashier would not give her back the $1.39 balance as
cash even though she demanded it. According to her, that balance
on the gift card represents money to which she and the class has
the right to immediately possess, (Class Action Reporter, Aug.
18, 2005).

According to Count I of the complaint, Ms. Peach claims she has
been damaged in the amount of the remaining balance on the gift
card, legal interest, as well as reasonable attorney fees and
court costs, plus treble punitive damages, but in no event an
amount in excess of $75,000 exclusive of costs and interest.  In
Count II of her complaint, Ms. Peach alleges that Wal-Mart's
improper conduct constitutes unjust enrichment and it would
violate the fundamental principles of justice, equity, and good
conscience.  The Company's consistent corporate practices
wrongfully retain the benefits received from the class,
according to the complaint, (Class Action Reporter, Aug. 18,
2005).

The Company moved last February 2005 to dismiss, arguing that
under the voluntary payment Ms. Peach had failed to state a
claim.  Ms. Peach's other attorney, Thomas Maag of the Lakin Law
Firm, did not respond to the motion.

Ms. Kingston filed her Jan. 17 motion as a supplement to last
year's motion.  She wrote that Ms. Peach asked to delay a
hearing until she could respond to the motion.  

Ms. Kingston wrote that in Harris, the Fifth District upheld
retired Madison County Circuit Judge Phillip Kardis in
dismissing a claim for recovery of charges for copies of medical
records, under the doctrine of voluntary payment.  She pointed
out that the appeals judges expressed a "universally recognized
rule that absent fraud, duress or mistake of fact, money
voluntarily paid on a claim of right to the payment cannot be
recovered on the ground that the claim was illegal."

In addition, Ms Kingston argues that judges applied the doctrine
whether a claim was premised on a contractual relationship or a
statutory obligation.  She expounds that they rejected a claim
of mistake of fact, finding that invoices described what
ChartOne purported to charge and that they rejected a claim of
duress, finding that duress must amount to compulsion.



                New Securities Fraud Cases


DOT HILL: Marc S. Henzel Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in Pa.
------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a class action
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York on behalf of purchasers of Dot Hill Systems
Corp. (NASDAQ: HILL) common stock during the period between
April 23, 2003 and February 3, 2005 (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Dot Hill and certain of its officers and
directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934.  Dot Hill is a provider of innovative design and delivery
of storage network solutions to channel and OEM partners
worldwide.  The Company provides scalable, rugged, highly
available data storage products for mission-critical
applications.

The complaint alleges that during the Class Period, defendants
issued materially false and misleading financial statements to
the investing public due to improper revenue recognition and
inadequate internal controls. As a result of defendants' false
financial statements, Dot Hill stock traded at artificially
inflated prices.

On February 3, 2005, the Company announced its preliminary Q4 04
financial results and that it would be restating its 2004
unaudited financial results due to a data entry error that the
Company attributed to "the material weaknesses in its internal
control over its financial closing process." The Company also
stated that it had "identified other errors pertaining to the
quarters ended March 31, 2004, June 30, 2004 and September 30,
2004 that it deems immaterial, including: the incorrect
classification of certain product costs as operating expenses,
the failure to eliminate corresponding revenue and cost of goods
sold entries and the presence of duplicate entries."

The complaint alleges that the facts, known by each of the
defendants but concealed from the investing public during the
Class Period, were as follows:

     (1) the Company's accounting department suffered from
         material weaknesses and deficiencies and lacked the
         necessary staff and resources to perform its required
         functions;

     (2) the Company's inadequate internal accounting process
         and controls enabled Dot Hill management to manipulate
         the Company's Costs of Goods Sold ("COGS") and
         routinely and inappropriately misclassify "expenses"
         causing Dot Hill to issue false financial statements;

     (3) multiple areas of the Company's internal controls
         suffered serious deficiencies;

     (4) the Company lacked effective internal controls in its
         financial reporting process; and

     (5) the Company falsely reported its Q1-Q3 04 financial
         results by improperly recognizing revenue and by
         improperly recording expenses.

As a result of defendants' allegedly false statements, Dot
Hill's stock traded at inflated levels during the Class Period,
increasing to as high as $17.37 on December 1, 2003. The
Company's shares now trade at around $6.00 per share, 66% below
the Class Period high.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, Esq. of The Law
Offices of Marc S. Henzel, 273 Montgomery Ave, Suite 202 Bala
Cynwyd, PA 19004-2808, Phone (888) 643-6735 or (610) 660-8000,
Fax: (610) 660-8080, E-mail: Mhenzel182@aol.com, Web site:
http://members.aol.com/mhenzel182.


REPSOL YPF: Federman & Sherwood Lodges Securities Suit in N.Y.
--------------------------------------------------------------
Federman & Sherwood initiated a class action lawsuit was filed
in the United States District Court for the Southern District of
New York against Repsol YPF, S.A. (REP).

The complaint alleges violations of federal securities laws,
Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934
and Rule 10b-5, including allegations of issuing a series of
material misrepresentations to the market which had the effect
of artificially inflating the market price.  The class period is
from July 28, 2005 through January 27, 2006.

For more details, contact William B. Federman of FEDERMAN &
SHERWOOD, 120 N. Robinson, Suite 2720, Oklahoma City, OK 73102,
Phone: (405) 235-1560, Fax: (405) 239-2112, E-mail:
wfederman@aol.com, Web site: http://www.federmanlaw.com.


REPSOL YPF: Marc S. Henzel Lodges Securities Fraud Suit in N.Y.
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Law Offices of Marc S. Henzel initiated a class action
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York on behalf of purchasers of Repsol YPF, S.A.
(NYSE:REP) American Depository Receipts ("ADRs") between July
28, 2005 and January 27, 2006 (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Repsol and certain of its officers and
directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934.  Repsol engages in the exploration, development, and
production of crude oil and natural gas primarily in Spain and
Argentina.

The complaint alleges that, throughout the Class Period,
defendants issued numerous materially false and misleading
statements that, among other things, highlighted the Company's
proven reserves.  Reserves are the estimates of oil and natural
gas a company has in the ground and expects to eventually pump
and sell.  Reserves serve as a crucial metric for oil-company
investors trying to gauge a company's growth prospects.  As
alleged in the complaint, these statements were materially false
and misleading because defendants failed to disclose and/or
misrepresented the following adverse facts, among others:

     (1) that the Company was materially overstating its proven
         reserves. The Company has now admitted that it will
         downgrade its proven reserves by 25% and take an asset
         impairment charge of approximately EUR50 million;

     (2) that the Company was experiencing increasing political
         pressure in Bolivia which will have an adverse effect
         on the Company's operations;

     (3) that the Company was experiencing difficulties in its
         production of gas in Bolivia;

     (4) that contracts with the Company's existing customers
         would likely not be extended due to complications in
         extracting gas from certain fields in Argentina; and

     (5) as a result of the foregoing, defendants lacked a
         reasonable basis for their positive statements about
         the Company and its business prospects.

Then, on January 26, 2006, the Company filed its Form 6-K with
the SEC in which it announced that it was cutting its oil and
gas reserves estimate by 25 percent due mostly to problems that
it had experienced in Bolivia and Argentina.  Upon this shocking
news, on January 26, 2006, Repsol ADRs closed at $27.99 per ADR,
a decline of $2.12 per ADR, or over 7%.  On January 27, 2006,
Respol ADRs continued to decline, falling another $1.34 per ADR,
or approximately 5%, as the market continued to absorb the truth
about the Company.

For more details, contact Marc S. Henzel, Esq. of The Law
Offices of Marc S. Henzel, 273 Montgomery Ave, Suite 202 Bala
Cynwyd, PA 19004-2808, Phone (888) 643-6735 or (610) 660-8000,
Fax: (610) 660-8080, E-mail: Mhenzel182@aol.com, Web site:
http://members.aol.com/mhenzel182.


TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Barret Johnston Lodges Stock Suit in N.Y.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Barrett, Johnston & Parsley initiated a class action lawsuit in
the United States District Court for the Southern District of
New York on behalf of purchasers of Take-Two Interactive
Software, Inc. ("Take-Two" or "the Company") (TTWO) common stock
during the period between October 25, 2004 and January 27, 2006
(the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Take-Two and certain of its officers and
directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934.  Take-Two, together with its subsidiaries, is a global
developer, marketer, distributor and publisher of interactive
entertainment software games and accessories for personal
computers and game consoles, such as PlayStation(r).  The
Company derives the significant majority of its sales in the
U.S. and its largest customers include Best Buy, Blockbuster,
Circuit City, Electronics Boutique, GameStop, Target, Toys R Us,
Wal-Mart, and other national and regional drug store,
supermarket and discount store chains and specialty retailers.

The Complaint alleges that, during the Class Period, defendants
made numerous representations about the success of the Company's
video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and the strong
contribution that it was making to the Company's overall
revenues.  However, as alleged in the Complaint, defendants
failed to disclose that, in order to distinguish this new
product in an already saturated videogame market, the Company
improperly hid pornographic materials directly in the
programming of the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas game.  The
Complaint further alleges that defendants failed to disclose the
inclusion of the pornographic materials in order to obtain a
rating of "Mature 17+" by the powerful Entertainment Software
Rating Board ("ESRB"), a private group that rates video games.
As alleged in the Complaint, had the ESRB known of the
pornographic materials contained in the game, it would have
assigned it a rating of "Adults Only 18+" and it would not have
been carried for sale in the major retail chains, such as Wal-
Mart and Target, who refuse to carry such games.  Indeed, when
it was subsequently disclosed that the ESRB had revised its
rating on the game to "Adults Only 18+," the Company was forced
to reduce its financial guidance.

Then, on January 27, 2006, it was announced that the City
Attorney for the City of Los Angeles filed an action against the
Company and its subsidiary, Rockstar, in the Superior Court of
the State of California alleging, among other things, that the
Company and Rockstar violated sections of the California
Business and Professions Code by publishing untrue and
misleading statements and engaging in unfair competition.

Following this announcement, Take-Two's stock price plunged
below $14 per share, on more than 20 million shares traded --
approximately ten times the average daily trading volume during
the entire preceding 12 months.

For more details, contact Timothy L. Miles of Barrett, Johnston
& Parsley, Phone: 615/244-2202, E-mail:
tmiles@barrettjohnston.com.


TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Goldman Scarlato Files Stock Suit in N.Y.
---------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Goldman Scarlato & Karon, P.C., initiated a
lawsuit in the United States District Court for the Southern
District of New York, on behalf of persons who purchased or
otherwise acquired publicly traded securities of Take-Two
Interactive Software, inc. ("Take-Two" or the "Company") (TTWO)
between October 25, 2004 and January 27, 2006, inclusive, (the
"Class Period").  The lawsuit was filed against Take-Two and
certain officers and directors ("Defendants").

The complaint alleges that Defendants violated Sections 10(b)
and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and Rule 10b-5
promulgated thereunder.  Specifically, the complaint alleges
that Defendants made many representations about the success of
the Company's primary product - Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
and the positive contribution it was making to the Company's
revenues.  However, it is alleged that Defendants failed to
disclose that the Company improperly hid embedded pornographic
materials directly in the programming of the game.  The
Complaint also alleges that Defendants failed to disclose this
in order to obtain a rating of Mature 17+, versus a rating of
Adults Only 18+, thereby enabling it to market the game to a
wider audience.

On January 27, 2006, the City Attorney for the City of Los
Angeles filed an action against the Company and its subsidiary,
Rockstar, in the Superior Court of the State of California,
alleging that the Company and Rockstar violated sections of the
California Business and Professions Code by publishing untrue
and misleading statements and engaging in unfair competition.  
In reaction to the announcement, share of Take-Two dropped from
$17.03 to $14.69, or 13.7% on heavy volume.

For more details, contact Mark S. Goldman, Esq. of The Law Firm
of Goldman Scarlato & Karon, P.C., Phone: 888-753-2796.


TAKE-TWO INTERACTIVE: Lerach Coughlin Lodges Stock Suit in N.Y.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins, LLP, initiated a
class action lawsuit has been commenced in the United States
District Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf
of purchasers of Take-Two Interactive Software, Inc. ("Take-Two"
or "the Company") (TTWO) common stock during the period between
October 25, 2004 and January 27, 2006 (the "Class Period").

The complaint charges Take-Two and certain of its officers and
directors with violations of the Securities Exchange Act of
1934.  Take-Two, together with its subsidiaries, is a global
developer, marketer, distributor and publisher of interactive
entertainment software games and accessories for personal
computers and game consoles, such as PlayStation(R).  The
Company derives the significant majority of its sales in the
U.S. and its largest customers include Best Buy, Blockbuster,
Circuit City, Electronics Boutique, GameStop, Target, Toys R Us,
Wal-Mart, and other national and regional drug store,
supermarket and discount store chains and specialty retailers.

The Complaint alleges that, during the Class Period, defendants
made numerous representations about the success of the Company's
video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and the strong
contribution that it was making to the Company's overall
revenues.  However, as alleged in the Complaint, defendants
failed to disclose that, in order to distinguish this new
product in an already saturated videogame market, the Company
improperly hid pornographic materials directly in the
programming of the Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas game.  The
Complaint further alleges that defendants failed to disclose the
inclusion of the pornographic materials in order to obtain a
rating of "Mature 17+" by the powerful Entertainment Software
Rating Board ("ESRB"), a private group that rates video games.
As alleged in the Complaint, had the ESRB known of the
pornographic materials contained in the game, it would have
assigned it a rating of "Adults Only 18+" and it would not have
been carried for sale in the major retail chains, such as Wal-
Mart and Target, who refuse to carry such games. Indeed, when it
was subsequently disclosed that the ESRB had revised its rating
on the game to "Adults Only 18+," the Company was forced to
reduce its financial guidance.

Then, on January 27, 2006, it was announced that the City
Attorney for the City of Los Angeles filed an action against the
Company and its subsidiary, Rockstar, in the Superior Court of
the State of California alleging, among other things, that the
Company and Rockstar violated sections of the California
Business and Professions Code by publishing untrue and
misleading statements and engaging in unfair competition.

Following this announcement, Take-Two's stock price plunged
below $14 per share, on more than 20 million shares traded -
approximately ten times the average daily trading volume during
the entire preceding 12 months.

For more details, contact William Lerach, Samuel H. Rudman and
David A. Rosenfeld of Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman &
Robbins, LLP, Phone: 800-449-4900, E-mail: wsl@lerachlaw.com.


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asbestos defendants that, according to independent researches,
collectively face billions of dollars in asbestos-related
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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 2006.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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