CAR_Public/090403.mbx             C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

             Friday, April 3, 2009, Vol. 11, No. 66

                           Headlines

APOLLO GROUP: Ariz. Judge Dismisses Claims in Securities Lawsuit
BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Approval of Securities & ERISA Suit Deal
BANK OF AMERICA: CFC Mortgage-Backed Securities Lawsuit Pending
BANK OF AMERICA: Faces Amended Consolidated Antitrust Complaint
BANK OF AMERICA: Faces Lehman Brothers' Securities & ERISA Suit

BANK OF AMERICA: Fraud Counterclaims v. Parmalat Remain Pending
BANK OF AMERICA: Merrill Lynch Faces Conn. Carpenters' Complaint
BANK OF AMERICA: Merrill Lynch Faces Miss. Public Employees Suit
BANK OF AMERICA: Merrill Lynch Merger-Related Actions Pending
BANK OF AMERICA: Miller Bid to Review BANA Ruling Still Pending

BANK OF AMERICA: Motion to Dismiss "Pender" Suit Pending in N.C.
BANK OF AMERICA: Motion to Dismiss Suit Over Enron Deals Pending
BANK OF AMERICA: Municipal Derivatives Antitrust Lawsuit Pending
BANK OF AMERICA: Unit Seeks Dismissal of La. Sheriffs' Lawsuit
DUKE ENERGY: Ohio Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Antitrust Litigation

FEDEX GROUND: Washington Jury Issues Verdict in "Anfinson" Suit
HALLIBURTON CO: Tex. Court Dismisses Securities Fraud Litigation
JPMORGAN CHASE: Calif. Retirement Plan Files Lawsuit in N.Y.
MASSACHUSETTS MUTUAL: Firm Files Mass. Lawsuit Over Madoff Fraud
MICROSOFT CORP: Wash. Judge Postpones Trial in "Kelley" Lawsuit

MIDAS CANADA: Ontario Court Certifies Class in Franchisees' Suit
NEVADA: Nev. Court Certifies Class in Suit Over Ely State Prison
PITTSBURGH MERCY: Faces Ex-Workers' FLSA Violations Suit in Pa.
PPG INDUSTRIES: Pa. Judge Allows Age Bias Case to Move Forward
SAFECO INSURANCE: Court Certifies Class in Medical Provider Case

VOLKSWAGEN OF AMERICA: Court Upholds Jetta Suit Certification
XTO ENERGY: Okla. Judge Certifies Class in $27M Royalties Suit
YAMAHA MOTOR: Canadian Litigation Commenced Over Rhino Tip-Overs

* Global Financial Crisis Triggers U.S. Filings Says PwC Study


                   New Securities Fraud Cases

INSIGHT ENTERPRISES: Bronstein Gewirtz Announces Lawsuit Filing
PERRIGO CO: Holzer Holzer Announces N.Y. Securities Suit Filing
OPPENHEIMER CALIFORNIA: Cohen Milstein Files Securities Lawsuit
REGIONS FINANCING: Coughlin Stoia Files Securities Fraud Lawsuit


                        Asbestos Alerts

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: General Re Reserves $1.8B for Claims in '08
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: BHRG Reserves $9.2B for A&E Losses in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Berkshire Reserves $10.7Bil for A&E in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Chubb, Units Facing Litigation in 3 States
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Actions v. EnPro Drop to 104,100 at Dec. 31

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 11 Garlock Sealing Trials Commenced in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Garlock Cites 4 Pending Appeals at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Garlock Records $307.4M Coverage at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Bucyrus Int'l Still Faces Liability Actions
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Alfacell to Explore Strategies for Onconase

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: PepsiAmericas Still Party to Cooper Lawsuit
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Ladish Co. Has Pending Claims in Ill., Wis.
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Hazard Found in Piedmont Pipelines in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Allis-Chalmers Still Facing Liability Cases
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Graybar Faces 2,339 Injury Cases at Dec. 31

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: United America Has $25.4MM Reserves in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 35,357 Claims Pending v. Colfax at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Colfax's Insurer Reimbursed $7.6Mil in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Colfax Has $35.2M Insurance Proceeds in '08
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: ABB Has $31Mil Loss From Closed Operations

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: ABB Ltd Units Face 7,500 Claims at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: TriMas Facing 784 Pending Cases at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Navistar Int'l. Still Facing Exposure Cases
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Alamo Reserves $276T for Gradall's Facility
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: CenterPoint Resources Facing Injury Claims

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Partial Deals in NL Actions Reached in Dec.
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: NL Industries Still Facing Exposure Actions
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: MYR Group Still Subject to Exposure Claims
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Sterlite Signs Deal to Buy ASARCO's Assets
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Int'l. Shipholding Reserves $276,000 in '08

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 1 Exposure Case Filed v. Great Lakes in '08
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Ameron Int'l. Facing 23 Actions at March 1
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Dana Holding Facing 31,000 Cases at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Dana Records $2M Receivable for CCR Claims
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Ballantyne Facing Stehman Action in Calif.

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: GenCorp Cites 138 Pending Cases at Feb. 28
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Boss Holdings Still Facing Exposure Actions
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: VWR Funding Still Involved in Product Suits
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Kaiser Ventures Records 18 Actions in 2008
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Dryships Inc. Subject to Exposure Lawsuits

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Nevamar's Injury Actions Settled on Nov. 21
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 24 Claims Filed From March 16-20 in Madison
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Surgers' Lawsuit Filed v. 82 Firms in Texas
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Peirce Law Firm Blamed for Asbestos Forgery
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Sinisgalli Suspected of Disposal Violations

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Names of 10 Japan Firms w/ Risks Disclosed
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Arguments in Travelers Case Heard March 30
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 8 Cases Filed From March 23-27 in Madison
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Suit v. Kansas City Southern Filed in Texas
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Reading Cites $8.1MM for Cleanup at Dec. 31

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: NYMAGIC Reserves $48.8MM for A&E at Dec. 31
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: FutureFuel Unit Subject to Exposure Actions
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Premix-Marbletite Facing Six Injury Claims
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Katy Ind. Faces 10 Ala. Cases w/ 324 Claims
ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Katy Ind. Cites 2,600 Sterling Fluid Cases

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: LaBour Pump Has 120 Active Cases at Dec. 31


                           *********

APOLLO GROUP: Ariz. Judge Dismisses Claims in Securities Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Broomfield of the U.S. District Court for the District of
Arizona dismissed some claims from a securities class-action
lawsuit alleging executives of Apollo Group Inc. the for-
profit company that runs the University of Phoenix backdated
stock option grants for five years, Law360 reports.

In his 138-page order issued on March 27, 2009, Judge Broomfield
agreed to grant in part Apollo's motion to dismiss the suit,
tossing several claims, according to the Law360 report.

The class-action complaint, captioned, "Teamsters Local 617
Pension & Welfare Funds v. Apollo Group, Inc. et al., Case No.
2:06-cv-02674-RCB," was filed on Nov. 2, 2006, and purported to
represent a class of shareholders who purchased the company's
stock between Nov. 28, 2001, and Oct. 28, 2006 (Class Action
Reporter, Nov. 3, 2008).

The complaint alleges that the company and certain of its
current and former directors and officers violated Sections
10(b) and 20(a) and Rule 10b-5 promulgated thereunder of the
U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934 by purportedly failing to
disclose alleged deficiencies in the company's stock option
granting policies and practices.  The plaintiffs seek
compensatory damages and other relief.

On Jan. 3, 2007, other shareholders, through their separate
attorneys, filed motions seeking appointment as lead plaintiff
and approval of their designated counsel as lead counsel to
pursue the action.  The court later appointed The Pension Trust
Fund for Operating Engineers as lead plaintiff and approved the
lead plaintiff's selection of lead counsel and liaison counsel.

On Nov. 23, 2007, the Lead Plaintiff filed an amended complaint
alleging that the defendants made misrepresentations concerning
the company's stock option granting policies and practices,
traded while in possession of material non-public information,
violated duties of care, candor and loyalty, and engaged in
self-dealing.

The Lead Plaintiff alleges violations of Sections 10(b), 20(a)
and 20(a) of the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and Rule
10b-5 promulgated thereunder, breach of fiduciary duty, and
civil conspiracy to commit fraud, and seeks unstated
compensatory and punitive damages and other relief on behalf of
the purported class.

Aside from the company, other named defendants are:

      -- John G. Sperling,
      -- Todd S. Nelson,
      -- Kenda B. Gonzales,
      -- Daniel E. Bachus,
      -- John M. Blair,
      -- Hedy F. Govenar,
      -- Brian E. Mueller,
      -- Dino J. DeConcini,
      -- Peter V. Sperling, and
      -- Laura Palmer Noone.

All defendants filed motions to dismiss the case on Jan. 22,
2008, which are now pending before the court.  Discovery in this
case has not yet begun, according to the company's Oct. 28, 2008
Form 10-K Filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2008.

The suit is "Teamsters Local 617 Pension & Welfare Funds v.
Apollo Group, Inc. et al., Case No. 2:06-cv-02674-RCB," filed in
the U.S. District Court for the District of Arizona, Judge
Robert C. Broomfield, presiding.

Representing the plaintiffs are:

         Ramzi Abadou, Esq. (ramzia@lerachlaw.com)
         Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins LLP
         655 W. Broadway, Ste. 1900
         San Diego, CA 92101
         Phone: 619-231-1058
         Fax: 619-231-7423

              - and -

         Patrick V. Dahlstrom, Esq. (pdahlstrom@pomlaw.com)
         Pomerantz Haudek Block Grossman & Gross LLP
         1 N La Salle St., Ste. 2225
         Chicago, IL 60602
         Phone: 312-377-1181
         Fax: 312-377-1184

Representing the defendants are:

         Michael J. Farrell, Esq. (mfarrell@jsslaw.com)
         Jennings Strouss & Salmon PLC
         Collier Ctr., 201 E. Washington, Ste. 1100
         Phoenix, AZ 85004-2385
         Phone: 602-262-5900
         Fax: 602-495-2618

              - and -

         Joseph E. Floren, Esq.
         Morgan Lewis & Bockius LLP
         101 Park Ave.
         New York, NY 10178-0060
         Phone: 212-309-6000


BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Approval of Securities & ERISA Suit Deal
----------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York's
approval of the settlement of the matter captioned In re Merrill
Lynch & Co., Inc. Securities, Derivative, and ERISA Litigation
remains pending.

Bank of America Corp. acquired Merrill Lynch on Jan. 1, 2009.

Beginning in October 2007, Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. and Merrill
Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc. and certain present and
former Merrill Lynch officers and directors were named in both
putative class actions filed on behalf of certain persons who
acquired Merrill Lynch securities (the Securities Action) or
participated in Merrill Lynch retirement plans (the ERISA
Action) and purported shareholder derivative actions (the
Derivative Actions) that have largely been consolidated under
the caption, "In re Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. Securities,
Derivative, and ERISA Litigation," filed in the U.S. District
Court for the Southern District of New York.

The complaints allege, among other things, that the defendants
misrepresented and omitted facts related to Merrill Lynch's
exposure to subprime collateralized debt obligations and
subprime lending markets in violation of the federal securities
laws, and seek damages in unspecified amounts.

The Securities Action plaintiffs allege harm to investors who
purchased Merrill Lynch securities during the class period; the
ERISA Action plaintiffs allege harm to employees who invested
retirement assets in Merrill Lynch securities, in violation of
the Employee Retirement Income Securities Act (ERISA); and the
plaintiffs in the derivative suits allege harm to Merrill Lynch
itself from alleged breaches of fiduciary duty.

In January 2009, Merrill Lynch agreed in principle to settle the
Securities Action for $475 million and the ERISA Action for $75
million.  The settlement is subject to a number of conditions,
including court approval and confirmatory discovery, and was
reached without any adjudication of the merits or finding of
liability.

On Feb. 17, 2009, the District Court granted the defendants'
motion to dismiss the Derivative Actions, according to the
Corporation's Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
Dec. 31, 2008.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: CFC Mortgage-Backed Securities Lawsuit Pending
---------------------------------------------------------------
A consolidated putative class action, entitled, "Luther v.
Countrywide Home Loans Servicing LP, et al.," is pending in the
Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los
Angeles, according to Bank of America Corp.'s Feb. 27, 2009 Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

Countrywide Financial Corp. (CFC), certain other Countrywide
entities, certain former CFC officers and directors, as well as
Banc of America Securities LLC (BAS), Merrill Lynch, Pierce,
Fenner & Smith, Inc. (MLPFS), are named as defendants in the
consolidated putative class action filed in the Superior Court
of the State of California, County of Los Angeles, that relates
to the public offering of various mortgage-backed securities.

The consolidated complaint alleges, among other things, that the
mortgage loans underlying these securities were improperly
underwritten and failed to comply with the guidelines and
processes described in the applicable registration statements
and prospectus supplements, in violation of Sections 11 and 12
of the Securities Act of 1933 and seeks unspecified compensatory
damages, among other relief.

In addition, in August 2008, a complaint was filed in the First
Judicial Court for the County of Santa Fe against CFC, certain
other CFC entities and certain former officers and directors of
CFC by three New Mexico governmental entities that allegedly
acquired certain of these mortgage-backed securities.  The
complaint asserts claims under the Securities Act and New Mexico
state law.  A motion to dismiss the complaint in the New Mexico
action is pending.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Faces Amended Consolidated Antitrust Complaint
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corp. faces an amended consolidated complaint in
the matter "In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant
Discount Antitrust Litigation, Case No. 1:05-md-01720-JG-CLP,"
in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.

BofA and certain of its subsidiaries were named as defendants in
actions filed on behalf of a putative class of retail merchants
that accept Visa and MasterCard payment cards.  The first of
these actions was filed in June 2005.

On April 24, 2006, putative class plaintiffs filed a first
consolidated and amended class action complaint.  The plaintiffs
therein allege that the defendants conspired to fix the level of
interchange and merchant discount fees and that certain other
practices, including various Visa and MasterCard rules, violate
federal and California antitrust laws.

On May 22, 2006, the putative class plaintiffs filed a
supplemental complaint against many of the same defendants,
including BofA and certain of its subsidiaries, alleging
additional federal antitrust claims and a fraudulent conveyance
claim under New York Debtor and Creditor Law, all arising out of
MasterCard's 2006 initial public offering.

The putative class plaintiffs seek unspecified treble damages
and injunctive relief.

Additional defendants in the putative class actions include
Visa, MasterCard, and other financial institutions.

The putative class-action suits are coordinated for pre-trial
proceedings in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District
of New York, together with additional, individual actions
brought only against Visa and MasterCard, under the caption "In
Re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Anti-Trust
Litigation."

Motions to dismiss portions of the first consolidated and
amended class action complaint and the supplemental complaint
are pending.

On May 8, 2008, the plaintiffs filed a motion for class
certification, to which the defendants have not yet responded.

The defendants have opposed that motion.  On Jan. 29, 2009, the
class plaintiffs filed an amended consolidated complaint.

The class plaintiffs have also filed two supplemental complaints
against certain defendants, including the Corporation and
certain of its subsidiaries, relating to, respectively,
MasterCard's 2006 initial public offering (MasterCard IPO) and
Visa's 2008 initial public offering (Visa IPO).  The
supplemental complaints, which seek unspecified treble damages
and injunctive relief, assert, among other things, claims under
federal antitrust laws.  On Nov. 25, 2008, the District Court
granted defendants' motion to dismiss the supplemental complaint
relating to MasterCard's IPO, with leave to amend.  On Jan. 29,
2009, plaintiffs amended this supplemental complaint and also
filed the supplemental complaint relating to Visa's IPO.

Responses to all of the complaints were due on March 16, 2009.

The Corporation and certain of its subsidiaries have entered
into agreements that provide for sharing liabilities in
connection with certain antitrust litigation against Visa (the
Visa-Related Litigation), including Interchange, according to
the company's Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended
Dec. 31, 2008.

The suit is "In re Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant
Discount Antitrust Litigation, Case No. 1:05-md-01720-JG-CLP,"
filed in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of New
York, Judge John Gleeson, presiding.

Representing the plaintiffs:

         Darla Jo Boggs, Esq. (djboggs@locklaw.com)
         Lockridge Grindal Nauen, P.L.L.P.,
         100 Washington Avenue South, Suite 2200
         Minneappolis, MN 55401
         Phone: 612-339-6900
         Fax: 612-339-0981

         Christopher M. Burke, Esq. (chrisb@lerachlaw.com)
         Lerach Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins
         655 W. Broadway, Suite 1900
         San Diego, CA 92101
         Phone: 619-231-1058
         Fax: 619-231-7423

              - and -

         Jason S. Cowart Esq. (jasoncowart@yahoo.com)
         Pomerantz Haudek Block Grossman & Gross, LLP
         100 Park Avenue, 26th Floor
         New York, NY 10017
         Phone: 212-661-1100
         Fax: 212-661-8665


BANK OF AMERICA: Faces Lehman Brothers' Securities & ERISA Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Several Bank of America Corp. entities defend a consolidated
class action complaint captioned "In re Lehman Brothers
Securities and ERISA Litigation," according to the Corporation's
Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

Beginning in September 2008, Banc of America Securities LLC
(BAS), Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc. (MLPFS),
Countrywide Securities Corporation and LaSalle Financial
Services Inc., along with other underwriters and individuals,
were named as defendants in several putative class action
complaints filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern
District of New York and state courts in Arkansas, California,
New York and Texas.

Plaintiffs allege that the underwriter defendants violated
Sections 11 and 12 of the Securities Act of 1933 by making false
or misleading disclosures in connection with various debt and
convertible stock offerings of Lehman Brothers Holdings, Inc.
and seek unspecified damages.

On Jan. 9, 2009, the U.S. District Court for the Southern
District of New York issued an order consolidating most of these
cases under the caption In re Lehman Brothers Securities and
ERISA Litigation.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Fraud Counterclaims v. Parmalat Remain Pending
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corp.'s counterclaims for fraud, negligent
misrepresentation and civil conspiracy against several Parmalat
entities remain pending.

On Oct. 7, 2004, Enrico Bondi filed an action in the U.S.
District Court for the Western District of North Carolina on
behalf of Parmalat and its shareholders and creditors against
the Corporation and various related entities, entitled, "Dr.
Enrico Bondi, Extraordinary Commissioner of Parmalat
Finanziaria, S.p.A., et al. v. Bank of America Corporation, et
al (the Bondi Action)."

The complaint alleged federal and state Racketeer Influenced and
Corrupt Organizations Act claims and various state law claims,
including fraud. The complaint seeks damages in excess of $10
billion.

The Bondi Action was transferred to the U.S. District Court for
the Southern District of New York for coordinated pre-trial
purposes with putative class actions and other related cases
against non-Bank of America defendants under the caption, "In re
Parmalat Securities Litigation."

Following orders on motions to dismiss, the remaining claims are
federal and state RICO claims, a breach of fiduciary duty claim,
and other state law claims with respect to three transactions
entered into between the Corporation and Parmalat.

The Corporation filed an answer and counterclaims seeking
damages.

According to the Corporation's Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing
with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal
year ended Dec. 31, 2008, the District Court granted in part a
motion to dismiss certain of the counterclaims, leaving intact
the counterclaims for fraud, negligent misrepresentation and
civil conspiracy against Parmalat S.p.A., Parmalat Finanziaria
S.p.A. and Parmalat Netherlands, B.V., as well as a claim for
securities fraud against Parmalat S.p.A. and Parmalat
Finanziaria S.p.A.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Merrill Lynch Faces Conn. Carpenters' Complaint
----------------------------------------------------------------
The class action complaint styled, "Connecticut Carpenters
Pension Fund, et al. v. Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., et al." is
pending, according to Bank of America Corp.'s Feb. 27, 2009 Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

On Dec. 5, 2008, a class action complaint was filed against
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner &
Smith, Inc., Merrill Lynch Mortgage Investors, Inc., Merrill
Lynch Mortgage Lending, Inc., and Merrill Lynch Credit
Corporation, Inc. and certain present and former Merrill Lynch
officers and directors in the Superior Court of the State of
California, County of Los Angeles on behalf of persons who
purchased Merrill Lynch Mortgage Trust Certificates pursuant or
traceable to registration statements that Merrill Lynch Mortgage
Investors, Inc. filed with the SEC on Aug. 5, 2005, Dec. 21,
2005, and Feb. 2, 2007.

The complaint alleges that the registration statements
misrepresented or omitted material facts regarding the quality
of the mortgage pools underlying the Trusts, the mortgages'
loan-to-value ratios, and other criteria that were used to
qualify borrowers for mortgages.

Plaintiffs seek to recover alleged losses in the market value of
the Certificates allegedly caused by the performance of the
underlying mortgages.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Merrill Lynch Faces Miss. Public Employees Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
A putative class-action suit styled, "Public Employees' Ret.
System of Mississippi v. Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc." was filed on
Feb. 17, 2009, according to Bank of America Corp.'s Feb. 27,
2009 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

The putative class-action lawsuit was filed against Merrill
Lynch and others in the U.S. District Court for the Southern
District of New York on behalf of persons who purchased Merrill
Lynch Mortgage Trust Certificates pursuant or traceable to
registration statements that Merrill Lynch Mortgage Investors,
Inc. filed with the SEC on Dec. 21, 2005 and Feb. 2, 2007.

The complaint alleges, among other things, that the registration
statements and related documents misrepresented or omitted
material facts regarding the underwriting standards used to
originate the mortgages in the mortgage pools underlying the
Trusts.

Plaintiffs seek to recover alleged losses in the market value of
the Certificates allegedly caused by the performance of the
underlying mortgages or to rescind their purchases of the
Certificates.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Merrill Lynch Merger-Related Actions Pending
-------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corp. faces various putative class actions
related to the approved merger between the Corporation and
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.

Beginning in January 2009, the Corporation and certain of its
officers and directors have been named as defendants in putative
class actions brought by shareholders alleging violations of
Sections 10(b), 14(a) and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act
of 1934, and SEC rules promulgated thereunder.

The violations are based on, among other things, the alleged
failure to disclose information concerning the financial
performance of Merrill Lynch during the fourth quarter of 2008
in connection with the proxy statement pursuant to which the
Corporation's shareholders approved the merger between the
Corporation and Merrill Lynch (the Merger) and certain other
public statements.

These actions, which seek unspecified damages and other relief,
include "Sklar v. Bank of America Corp., et al.," "Finger
Interests No. One Ltd. v. Bank of America Corp., et al.," "Fort
Worth Employees' Ret. Fund v. Bank of America Corp., et. al.,"
"Palumbo v. Bank of America Corp., et al., Zitner v. Bank of
America Corp., et al.," and "Stabbert v. Bank of America Corp.,
et al."  In the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of
New York, "Boorn v. Bank of America Corp., et. al." in the U.S
District Court for the Northern District of Georgia, and
"Cromier v. Bank of America Corp., et al." in the U.S. District
Court for the Northern District of California.

The Corporation and certain of its officers and directors have
also been named as defendants in a putative class action, "Stern
v. Bank of America Corp., et al.," brought in the Delaware Court
of Chancery by shareholders alleging breaches of fiduciary
duties in connection with the Merger.

Other putative class actions, including "Dailey v. Bank of
America Corp., et al.," "Wilson v. Bank of America Corp., et
al.," "Adams v. Bank of America Corp., et al.," "Wright v. Bank
of America Corp., et al.," and "Stricker v. Bank of America
Corp. Corporate Benefits Comm., et al.," have been filed in the
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
against the Corporation and certain of its officers and
directors seeking recovery for losses from the Bank of America
401(k) Plan pursuant to the Employee Retirement Income Security
Act.

The complaints allege, among other things, that defendants made
false and misleading statements in connection with the Merger
and failed to inform participants in the plan of risks
associated with investment in the Corporation's stock, according
to the Corporation's Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing with the
U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year
ended Dec. 31, 2008.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Miller Bid to Review BANA Ruling Still Pending
---------------------------------------------------------------
Paul J. Miller's petition to review of the California Court of
Appeal's judgment in favor of Bank of America, N.A. (BANA)
remains pending, according to Bank of America Corp.'s Feb. 27,
2009 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange
Commission for the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

On Aug. 13, 1998, a predecessor of BANA was named as a defendant
in a class action filed in Superior Court of California, County
of San Francisco, entitled, "Paul J. Miller v. Bank of America,
N.A.," challenging its practice of debiting accounts that
received, by direct deposit, governmental benefits to repay fees
incurred in those accounts.

The action alleges, among other claims, fraud, negligent
misrepresentation and other violations of California law.

On Oct. 16, 2001, a class was certified consisting of more than
one million California residents who have, had or will have, at
any time after Aug. 13, 1994, a deposit account with BANA into
which payments of public benefits are or have been directly
deposited by the government.

On March 4, 2005, the trial court entered a judgment that
purported to award the class restitution in the amount of $284
million, plus attorneys' fees, and provided that class members
whose accounts were assessed an insufficient funds fee in
violation of law suffered substantial emotional or economic harm
and, therefore, are entitled to an additional $1,000 statutory
penalty.  The judgment also purported to enjoin BANA, among
other things, from engaging in the account balancing practices
at issue.

On Nov. 22, 2005, the California Court of Appeal stayed the
judgment, including the injunction, pending appeal.

On Nov. 20, 2006, the California Court of Appeal reversed the
judgment in its entirety, holding that BANA's practice did not
constitute a violation of California law.

On March 21, 2007, the California Supreme Court granted
plaintiff's petition to review the Court of Appeal's decision.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Motion to Dismiss "Pender" Suit Pending in N.C.
----------------------------------------------------------------
A motion to dismiss a putative class-action suit entitled,
"William L. Pender, et al. v. Bank of America Corporation, et
al. (formerly captioned Anita Pothier, et al. v. Bank of America
Corporation, et al.)," remains pending.

The Corporation is a defendant in the putative class action,
which is pending in the U.S. District Court for the Western
District of North Carolina.

The action is brought on behalf of participants in or
beneficiaries of The Bank of America Pension Plan (formerly
known as the NationsBank Cash Balance Plan) and The Bank of
America 401(k) Plan (formerly known as the NationsBank 401(k)
Plan).

The Corporation, Bank of America, N.A. (BANA), The Bank of
America Pension Plan, The Bank of America 401(k) Plan, the Bank
of America Corporation Corporate Benefits Committee and various
members thereof, and PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP are defendants.

The complaint alleges violations of the Employee Retirement
Income Security Act (ERISA), including that the design of The
Bank of America Pension Plan violated ERISA's defined benefit
pension plan standards and that such plan's definition of normal
retirement age is invalid.

In addition, the complaint alleges age discrimination by The
Bank of America Pension Plan, unlawful lump sum benefit
calculation, violation of ERISA's "anti-backloading" rule, that
certain voluntary transfers of assets by participants in The
Bank of America 401(k) Plan to The Bank of America Pension Plan
violated ERISA, and other related claims.

The complaint alleges that plan participants are entitled to
greater benefits and seeks declaratory relief, monetary relief
in an unspecified amount, equitable relief, including an order
reforming The Bank of America Pension Plan, attorneys' fees and
interest.

On Dec. 1, 2005, the plaintiffs moved to certify classes
consisting of, among others, (i) all persons who accrued or who
are currently accruing benefits under The Bank of America
Pension Plan and (ii) all persons who elected to have amounts
representing their account balances under The Bank of America
401(k) Plan transferred to The Bank of America Pension Plan.

That motion, and a motion to dismiss the complaint, are pending,
according to the Corporation's Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing
with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal
year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Motion to Dismiss Suit Over Enron Deals Pending
----------------------------------------------------------------
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.'s motion to dismiss a consolidated
class action, entitled Newby v. Enron Corp. et al., remains
pending, according to Bank of America Corp.'s Feb. 27, 2009 Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

The Corporation acquired Merrill Lynch on Jan. 1, 2009.

On April 8, 2002, Merrill Lynch and Merrill Lynch, Pierce,
Fenner & Smith, Inc. (MLPFS) (collectively Merrill Lynch) were
added as defendants in a consolidated class action, entitled
Newby v. Enron Corp. et al., filed in the U.S. District Court
for the Southern District of Texas on behalf of certain
purchasers of Enron's publicly traded equity and debt
securities.

The complaint alleges, among other things, that Merrill Lynch
engaged in improper transactions that helped Enron misrepresent
its earnings and revenues.

The District Court denied Merrill Lynch's motion to dismiss and
certified a class action by Enron shareholders and bondholders
against Merrill Lynch and other defendants.

On March 19, 2007, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth
Circuit reversed the District Court's decision certifying the
case as a class action.

On Jan. 22, 2008, the Supreme Court denied plaintiffs' petition
to review the Fifth Circuit's decision.

The parties are awaiting the District Court's decision on
Merrill Lynch's request to dismiss the case based on the Fifth
Circuit's March 19, 2007 decision and the Supreme Court's Jan.
15, 2008 decision in another case, "Stoneridge Investment v.
Scientific Atlanta," which rejected liability on the same theory
asserted by plaintiffs in this case.

Over a dozen other actions have been brought against Merrill
Lynch and other investment firms in connection with their Enron-
related activities.  There has been no adjudication of the
merits of these claims.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Municipal Derivatives Antitrust Lawsuit Pending
----------------------------------------------------------------
The consolidated lawsuit tagged, "In re Municipal Derivatives
Antitrust Litigation, MDL No. 1950," remains pending in the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of New York, according
to Bank of America Corp.'s Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K filing with
the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the fiscal year
ended Dec. 31, 2008.

Beginning in March 2008, the Corporation, Bank of America, N.A.
(BANA) and other financial institutions, including Merrill Lynch
& Co., Inc., have been named as defendants in complaints filed
in federal courts in the District of Columbia, New York and
elsewhere.

Plaintiffs purport to represent classes of government and
private entities that purchased municipal derivatives from
defendants.

The complaints allege that defendants conspired to allocate
customers and fix or stabilize the prices of certain municipal
derivatives from 1992 through the present.

The plaintiffs' complaints seek unspecified damages, including
treble damages.

These lawsuits were consolidated for pre-trial proceedings in
the "In re Municipal Derivatives Antitrust Litigation, MDL No.
1950 (Master Docket No. 08-2516)," pending in the U.S. District
Court for the Southern District of New York, and plaintiffs have
filed a Consolidated Class Action complaint in this matter.

BANA, Banc of America Securities LLC (BAS), Merrill Lynch and
other financial institutions were also named in several related
individual suits filed in California state courts on behalf of a
number of cities and counties in California.  These complaints
allege a substantially similar conspiracy and assert violations
of California's Cartwright Act, as well as fraud and deceit
claims.

All of these state complaints have been removed to federal court
and are now part of "In re Municipal Derivatives Antitrust
Litigation, MDL No. 1950 (Master Docket No. 08-2516)."

Motions to remand these cases to state court were denied.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


BANK OF AMERICA: Unit Seeks Dismissal of La. Sheriffs' Lawsuit
--------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corp.'s subsidiary, Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc.,
seeks to dismiss the putative class action styled "Louisiana
Sheriffs' Pension & Relief Fund v. Conway, et al."

On Oct. 3, 2008, a putative class action was filed against
Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc., Merrill Lynch Capital Trust I,
Merrill Lynch Capital Trust II, Merrill Lynch Capital Trust III,
Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc., and certain present
and former Merrill Lynch officers and directors, and
underwriters, including Banc of America Securities LLC (BAS), in
New York Supreme Court.

The complaint seeks relief on behalf of all persons who
purchased or otherwise acquired Merrill Lynch debt securities
issued under a shelf registration statement dated March 31,
2006.

The complaint alleges that Merrill Lynch's prospectuses
misstated Merrill Lynch's financial condition and failed to
disclose its exposure to losses from investments tied to
subprime and other mortgages, as well as its liability arising
from its participation in the auction rate securities market.

On Oct. 22, 2008, the action was removed to federal court and on
Nov. 5, 2008, it was accepted as a related case to In re Merrill
Lynch & Co., Inc. Securities, Derivative, and ERISA Litigation.

On Feb. 9, 2009, Merrill Lynch filed a motion to dismiss the
action, according to the Corporation's Feb. 27, 2009 Form 10-K
filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for the
fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008.

Bank of America Corp. -- http://www.bankofamerica.com/-- is a
bank holding company.  Through its banking subsidiaries, and
various non-banking subsidiaries throughout the U.S. and in
selected international markets, Bank of America provides a
diversified range of banking and non-banking financial services
and products through three business segments: Global Consumer
and Small Business Banking, Global Corporate and Investment
Banking, and Global Wealth and Investment Management.  The
company operates in 32 states, the District of Columbia and 30
foreign countries.  In the U.S., it serves 59 million consumer
and small business relationships with 6,100 retail banking
offices, 18,500 automated teller machines, and 24 million active
online users.  It offers services in 13 states.


DUKE ENERGY: Ohio Judge Dismisses Lawsuit Antitrust Litigation
--------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Edmund A. Sargus, Jr. of the United States District Court
for the Southern District of Ohio granted Duke Energy Corp.'s
motion to dismiss an antitrust lawsuit accusing the utility of
paying millions of dollar in illegal rebates to large customers
in Greater Cincinnati to win support for a 2004 rate hike, Mike
Boyer of Cincinnati.com reports.

The lawsuit, which sought class-action status, was filed by Stan
Chesley and a group of lawyers on behalf of several small
businesses and residents accused the utility of conspiring with
two dozen large industrial and commercial customers in
negotiating so-called "side agreements" at the expense of other
ratepayers, according to the Cincinnati.com report.

In a 19-page decision issued on March 31, 2009, Judge Sargus
granted Duke's motion to dismiss the suit, echoing last month's
Ohio Supreme Court ruling that the Public Utilities Commission
of Ohio acted properly in reviewing the side agreements and the
2004 rate hike, Cincinnati.com reported.

In his decision, Judge Sargus accepted Duke's view that a 1922
U.S. Supreme Court decision called the "filed rate doctrine"
governing rate determinations by regulatory agencies weren't
subject to antitrust claims, reports Cincinnati.com.

"From this, it is clear that the filed rate doctrine bars
essentially all claims which seek judicial relief dependent upon
an attack on rates found by a regulatory agency to be fair and
reasonable," Judge Sargus wrote.

Charlotte Business Journal previously reported that Duke Energy
Corp. asked the court to dismiss a class-action lawsuit that
contends the company has overcharged tens of thousands of
residential and business customers in the Midwest (Class Action
Reporter, March 26, 2008).

According to BizJournal, the lawsuit was filed by Randy Freking
and Stan Chesley in federal court early 2008.  It accuses Duke
Energy and its predecessor companies, Cinergy Corp. and
Cincinnati Gas & Electric Co., of funneling kickbacks to
corporate customers in exchange for their withdrawal of
opposition to rate increases that the companies sought from Ohio
regulators.

In its dismissal motion, Duke Energy asserts that "[t]here is no
basis for any claim under federal or state law" for the suit.

"This matter has already been reviewed by regulators and the
Ohio Supreme Court, and our rates have been upheld," Mark Manly,
group executive and chief legal officer for Duke Energy, told
BizJournal.


FEDEX GROUND: Washington Jury Issues Verdict in "Anfinson" Suit
---------------------------------------------------------------
A jury from the Superior Court of Washington, King County
(Seattle) issued a verdict in a purported class-action lawsuit
against FedEx Ground Package System, Inc., a major service line
of FedEx Corp., which states that the defendant didn't illegally
deny overtime pay to contract delivery drivers who accused the
company of wrongly calling them entrepreneurs while treating
them as employees, Laurence Viele Davidson and Brad Broberg of
Bloomberg reports.

The verdict was in connection to the purported class-action
lawsuit captioned, "Anfinson v. FedEx Ground Package System
Inc., 04-2-39981."

In general, the lawsuit claims that the company's owner-
operators should be treated as employees, rather than
independent contractors (Class Action Reporter, Oct. 20, 2008).

The plaintiffs in "Anfinson" represent a class of FedEx Ground
single-route, pickup-and-delivery owner-operators in Washington
from Dec. 21, 2001, through Dec. 31, 2005, and allege that the
class members should be reimbursed as employees for their
uniform expenses and should receive overtime pay.

In January 2008, the suit was certified as a class action.  The
Anfinson case is scheduled for trial in October 2008.

FedEx Corp. -- http://www.fedex.com/-- provides a portfolio of
transportation, e-commerce and business services through
companies that compete collectively, operate independently and
manage collaboratively, under the respected FedEx brand.  These
companies are included in four segments: FedEx Express, Federal
Express Corp., is an express transportation company, offering
time-certain delivery within 1 to 3 business days; FedEx Ground,
FedEx Ground Package System, Inc., is a provider of small-
package ground delivery service; FedEx Freight, FedEx Freight
Corp., is a provider of less-than-truckload (LTL) freight
services through its FedEx Freight business (regional next-day
and second-day and interregional LTL freight services) and its
FedEx National LTL business (long-haul LTL freight services),
and FedEx Services, FedEx Corporate Services, Inc. provides
sales, marketing and information technology support, as well as
customer service support through FedEx Customer Information
Services, Inc.


HALLIBURTON CO: Tex. Court Dismisses Securities Fraud Litigation
----------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Barbara Lynn of the U.S. District Court for the Northern
District of Texas dismissed a putative securities fraud class-
action lawsuit against Halliburton Co., ruling that the
plaintiffs have not met the pleading requirements yet, but
leaving the door open for them to refile their charges, Law360
reports.

In a ruling issued on March 31, 2009, Judge Lynn dismissed
without prejudice the suit brought by lead plaintiff Patricia
Magruder, according to the Law360 report.


JPMORGAN CHASE: Calif. Retirement Plan Files Lawsuit in N.Y.
------------------------------------------------------------
Imperial County Employees' Retirement System, El Centro, Calif.,
filed a lawsuit against the $488 million plan's custodian,
JPMorgan Chase Bank, alleging breach of fiduciary duty,
negligence and breach of contract, Christine Williamson of
Pensions & Investments reports.

The suit was filed on March 27, 2009 in the U.S. District Court
for the Southern District of New York, under the caption, "Board
of Trustees of The Imperial County Employees' Retirement System
et al v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., Case No. 1:09-cv-03020-UA."

It alleges that JPMorgan Chase incurred losses in the securities
lending cash collateral pools it managed for the plan through an
investment in medium-term notes issues by Sigma Finance despite
"unmistakable yet unheeded warnings concerning Sigma,"
according to the Pensions & Investments report.

According to court filings obtained by Pensions & Investments,
the suit also noted that JPMorgan "earned substantial fees and
interest through providing short-term repurchase agreements
financing for Sigma."

Pensions & Investments reported that the suit seeks recovery of
unspecified losses as well as restoration of profits that
JPMorgan Chase gained through its financing agreement with
Sigma.  The plan also is seeking class-action status.

The suit is "Board of Trustees of The Imperial County Employees'
Retirement System et al v. JP Morgan Chase Bank, N.A., Case No.
1:09-cv-03020-UA," filed in the U.S. District Court for the
Southern District of New York.

Representing the plaintiffs are:

          Milo Silberstein, Esq.
          (msilberstein@dealysilberstein.com)
          Dealy & Silberstein, LLP
          225 Broadway, Suite 1405
          New York, NY 10007
          Phone: (212) 385-0066
          Fax: (212) 385-2117

          Bradley E. Beckworth, Esq. (bbeckworth@nixlawfirm.com)
          Nix, Patterson & Roach, LLP
          205 Linda Drive
          Daingerfield, TX 75638
          Phone: (903)-645-7333
          Fax: (903)-645-4415

               - and -

          Darren J. Check, Esq.
          Barroway Topaz Kessler Meltzer & Check, LLP
          280 King of Prusia Road
          Radnor, PA 19087
          Phone: 610-667-7706
          Fax: 610-667-7056


MASSACHUSETTS MUTUAL: Firm Files Mass. Lawsuit Over Madoff Fraud
----------------------------------------------------------------
The law firm of Berman DeValerio Pease Tabacco Burt & Pucillo
filed what it said was the first class-action case on behalf of
Massachusetts investors who lost money with Bernard Madoff in a
hedge fund controlled by Massachusetts Mutual Life Insurance
Co., the Rye Select Broad Market Prime Fund, Beth Healy of The
Boston Globe reports

The law firm filed the lawsuit on April 1, 2009 in Suffolk
Superior Court in Massachusetts on behalf of Family Swimmers
Limited Partnership, a Newton entity that invested $250,000 with
Mr. Madoff, reports The Boston Globe.

Named in the lawsuit are Rye, MassMutual, and two other units of
the Springfield insurer that oversee Rye, as well as a number of
executives, according to the The Boston Globe report.

For more details, contact:

          Berman DeValerio Pease Tabacco Burt & Pucillo
          One Liberty Square
          Boston, MA 02109
          Phone: (800) 516-9926 or (617) 542-8300
          Fax: (617) 542-1194
          e-mail: law@bermanesq.com


MICROSOFT CORP: Wash. Judge Postpones Trial in "Kelley" Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Marsha Pechman of the U.S. District Court for the Western
District of Washington postponed the upcoming trial of the
"Vista Capable" lawsuit, which was set to start April 13, 2009,
Gregg Keizer of Computerworld reports.

According to court documents, Judge Pechman said in her ruling,
"Plaintiffs' motion presents novel arguments that require
thorough analysis.  Without taking any position on the motion
for narrowed class certification, the court believes a
continuance is appropriate," reports Computerworld.

Judge Pechman had promised attorneys for both parties that she
would rule on the plaintiffs' motion to restore class-action
status to the case by March 31, 2009, however, she acknowledged
that she could not meet that deadline.  Juuge Pechman gave no
indication when she would issue her ruling, according to the
Computerworld report.

"The trial date and all remaining pretrial dates are stricken,"
Judge Pechman said.  "The court will contact the parties to
schedule a trial date after it rules on plaintiffs' motion,"
Computerworld reported.

Elizabeth Montalbano of IDG News Service previously reported
that Microsoft Corp. opposed an attempt to reinstate class-
action status to an ongoing lawsuit over Windows Vista entitled,
"Kelley v. Microsoft Corp., Case No. 2:07-cv-00475-MJP" (Class
Action Reporter, March 17, 2009).

In court papers filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western
District of Washington, Microsoft asked the court not to
reconsider applying class-action status to the suit because
people knew exactly which version of Vista they would receive
through a coupon program called Express Upgrade Guarantee.  The
program allowed customers to buy PCs with Windows XP installed
on them but then had to upgrade to Vista when the OS was
released, according to the IDG News Service report.

Microsoft also said that the plaintiffs took too long to ask for
a narrowing of the class, even based on "theories known to them
for more than a year," according to court papers obtained by IDG
News Service.

Joseph Tartakoff of the Seattle Post Intelligencer previously
reported that the plaintiffs in a recently decertified class-
action lawsuit against Microsoft Corp. for the alleged deceptive
promotion of its flagship software, Windows Vista, have asked
Judge Marsha Pechman to reinstate the class-action status of the
case, under a narrower scope (Class Action Reporter, March 3,
2009).

In recent filing, plaintiffs asked Judge Pechman of the U.S.
District Court for the Western District of Washington to certify
a class-action under two more narrowed criteria.

Initially, the class included anyone who bought Windows Vista
Capable PCs.  Now plaintiffs are asking the judge to certify the
class based on two subgroups: Those who participated in a Vista
upgrade program and those who purchased Vista Capable PCs that
could not support a specific driver, which plaintiffs say is
essential to run Vista.

The motion for narrowed class certification is under seal, but
it is described in another filing.  A copy of the motion is
available at http://ResearchArchives.com/t/s?3a00.

John Letzing of MarketWatch previously reported that the U.S.
District Court for the Western District of Washington
decertified the class-action lawsuit filed against Microsoft
Corp. (Class Action Reporter, Feb. 20, 2009).

In an order filed on Feb. 17, 2009, Judge Marsha Pechman wrote
that, "At this juncture, the Court believes the most appropriate
remedy for Plaintiffs' failure to present evidence suggesting
class-wide causation is decertification."  Judge Pechman
specifically cited a lack of evidence for a "class-wide price
inflation theory" put forward by the plaintiffs, according to
the MarketWatch report.

Judge Pechman allowed the lawsuit to proceed, because Microsoft
has not "demonstrated that no material issue of fact exists for
Plaintiffs' individual claims."  In essence, the ruling forces
plaintiffs to pursue their cases individually, reports
MarketWatch.

                         Case Background

Previously, Joseph Tartakoff of seattlepi.com reported that
Microsoft Corp. sought for the dismissal of plaintiffs' claims
in a class-action lawsuit, which revolves around the company's
marketing before the debut of its Windows Vista operating system
in early 2007 (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 24, 2008).

The suit, captioned, "Kelley v. Microsoft Corp., Case No. 2:07-
cv-00475-MJP," was filed in the U.S. District Court for the
Western District of Washington (Class Action Reporter, Oct. 8,
2008).

In early 2006, Microsoft executives approved a plan allowing PC
makers to designate computers as "Vista Capable" even if they
would only be able to run the most basic version of Vista,
called "Vista Home Basic," according to seattlepi.com.

The plaintiffs in the case claim that through the "Vista
Capable" program Microsoft violated the Washington Consumer
Protection Act and unjustly enriched itself because the false
designation drove up demand for personal computers and,
therefore, prices, reports seattlepi.com.

As reported in the Class Action Reporter on Feb. 25, 2008, Judge
Marsha Pechman granted class-action status to the lawsuit filed
against Microsoft over allegations that the company unjustly
enriched itself by promoting PCs as "Windows Vista Capable" even
if they are not.  The slogan was emblazoned on PCs during the
2006 holiday shopping season as part of a campaign by Microsoft
to maintain sales of Windows XP computers after the launch of
Windows Vista was delayed, according to the CAR report.

However, according to seattlepi.com, Judge Pechman dismissed
plaintiffs' claim that Microsoft had deceived consumers into
buying PCs they would not otherwise have bought.  She instead
allowed them to argue that Microsoft had illegally driven up
prices.

A subsequent CAR report on March 13, 2008, stated that Microsoft
appealed against the court's decision affording class action
status to the Vista lawsuit.  However, in a brief order dated
April 21, 2008, the the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth
Circuit rejected Microsoft's request to overturn Judge Pechman's
decision.

In motions that the company filed with court on Nov. 20, 2008,
the company rebuts the claims and asks the judge to decertify
the class.  "Because it is clear that Plaintiffs cannot prove
any element of their 'price inflation' theory, Microsoft moves
for summary judgment," the company's filing reads.

In the filing, which was obtained by seattlepi.com, Microsoft
dismissed the plaintiffs' underlying argument that the most
basic version of Vista was not Vista because it lacked certain
features, including the Aero interface.

Microsoft's attorneys wrote, "The fact that Windows Vista Home
Basic lacks some features available in premium editions of
Windows Vista (as Microsoft always disclosed) shows only that
Microsoft properly markets Windows Vista Home Basic as a
distinct budget edition."  They re-iterated, "Windows Vista Home
Basic falls well within the Windows Vista family as a technical
matter."

In addition, Microsoft lawyers said that plaintiffs -- who have
calculated how much money Microsoft generated from the sales of
its operating systems on Vista Capable PCs -- had not shown that
that revenue was attributable to increased sales of the PCs
because of the program, reports seattlepi.com.

The suit is "Kelley v. Microsoft Corp., Case No. 2:07-cv-00475-
MJP," filed in the U.S. District Court for the Western District
of Washington, Judge Marsha J. Pechman, presiding.

Representing the plaintiff is:

          Gordon Tilden Thomas & Cordell, LLP
          1001 4th Ave., Ste. 4000, Seattle, WA 98154
          Phone: 206-467-6477
          Fax: 206-467-6292
          Web site: http://www.gordontilden.com/
          e-mail: office@gordontilden.com


MIDAS CANADA: Ontario Court Certifies Class in Franchisees' Suit
----------------------------------------------------------------
     On March 26, 2009, the Ontario Superior Court of Justice
certified a Canada-wide class action lawsuit by Midas
franchisees against Midas Canada, Inc., a subsidiary of Midas
Inc.

     The lawsuit concerns Midas' decision in 2003 to cease
distributing parts to its Canadian franchisees at discounted
prices through its wholly-owned distribution system.  The
franchisees allege that this decision deprived them of the right
to purchase parts at a 14.5% discount below net wholesale prices
and other advantages which they previously enjoyed.

     Midas' actions in 2003 were part of its international
business restructuring which resulted in a dramatic business
turnaround of the international auto parts franchisor.  However,
the franchisees assert in the lawsuit that Midas' restructuring
caused them significant financial losses and was carried out at
their expense.  The court stated that the claim by the
franchisees if proven at trial "could justify a finding of
liability in damages, and ... an abatement of the royalty (paid
by the franchisees) in the future."

     According to plaintiff's lawyer, David Sterns, "this case
will be of considerable importance to franchisees whenever a
franchisor makes one-sided changes to the business terms of its
franchise system."  The court stated that a franchisor may not
fundamentally change the business terms of the system to the
franchisees' detriment.  As such, even if Midas' actions did not
run afoul of the precise terms of the franchise agreement, the
franchisees may be entitled to compensation and an improved
royalty structure for the future.

     Franchising represents a significant part of the Canadian
economy.  This decision highlights the need for fair dealing
between franchisors and franchisees.

For more details, contact:

          David Sterns (dsterns@sotosllp.com)
          Allan D.J. Dick (adjdick@sotosllp.com)
          Sotos LLP
          Phone: (416) 977-0007


NEVADA: Nev. Court Certifies Class in Suit Over Ely State Prison
----------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. District Court for the District of Nevada issued a
court order certifying that a lawsuit by the American Civil
Liberties Union against Ely State Prison and the Nevada
Department of Corrections is a class-action suit, John Plestina
of the Ely Times reports.

The order that Judge Larry Hicks issued includes the following
language: "Plaintiffs have provided persuasive evidence on each
of the Rule 23(g)'s requirements. In response, defendants
offered only largely irrelevant arguments that are unsupported
by any evidence.  The court therefore orders that Plaintiffs'
attorneys shall be appointed as class counsel," according to the
Ely Times report.

In March 2008, the American Civil Liberties Union filed a class-
action lawsuit against the director of Nevada's Department of
Corrections and other top governmental officials in Nevada for
failing to rectify a pervasive pattern of grossly inadequate
medical care at the Ely State Prison that creates a substantial
risk of serious medical harm for each of the prison's 1,000
inmates (Class Action Reporter, March 10, 2008).

The lawsuit charges that the prison lacks the most basic
elements of an adequate prison health care system and deprives
prisoners of the minimal civilized measure of life's
necessities.

"The state just hasn't shown a sense of urgency in addressing
the crisis at Ely," said Amy Fettig, staff counsel with the
ACLU's National Prison Project.  "They assured us that they were
going to carry out far-reaching reforms to address the problems
we brought to their attention, but that was months ago and
they've made only half-hearted gestures to fix their broken
system.  We had hoped to avoid litigation but we can't in good
conscience wait any longer, with the men at Ely still at such
risk."

The filing of the lawsuit comes nearly three months after the
release of a medical report that documented how gravely ill
prisoners at Ely are routinely denied treatment for
excruciatingly painful and potentially fatal medical conditions
and revealed what Dr. William Noel, the medical expert
commissioned by the ACLU to investigate medical conditions
inside Ely and author of the report, called "a pattern of gross
medical abuse."

On the heels of the report's release last December, ACLU
attorneys proposed in a consent decree a series of basic reforms
that would have dramatically improved prison health care at Ely,
including complying with nationally recognized standards for
correctional health care.  The proposed consent decree was
rejected by Nevada's Board of State Prison Commissioners.

The ACLU's National Prison Project retained Noel to review the
medical records of 35 prisoners at Ely because the ACLU of
Nevada had been receiving an extraordinarily large number of
complaints about grossly inadequate medical treatment at the
prison.

"Prisoners at the Ely State Prison have written to us in
desperate need of help, in desperate need of quality medical
treatment," said Lee Rowland, staff attorney with the ACLU of
Nevada.  "It is unfortunate that this action was necessary to
prompt corrections officials to uphold their constitutional
obligation of providing a basic level of medical care to the
inmates in their care, but quality care is an immediate need
that cannot be delayed any longer."

The lawsuit, filed on behalf of all of Ely's prisoners more
than 60 of whom are currently sitting on death row contains
six named plaintiffs, including 36-year-old David Riker who,
according to the lawsuit, suffers from rheumatoid arthritis and
fibromyalgia that cause debilitating chronic pain.

The lawsuit alleges that Riker has never received prescribed
medications and x-rays ordered by an outside physician and was
told by Ely medical staff that treating chronic pain is against
the policy of the prison.

In his report, Noel calls Riker's untreated protopathic nerve
pain "a living hell" and says he finds it "simply unimaginable"
that a medical professional would refuse to treat such severe,
chronic pain.

The ACLU names as defendants in its lawsuit:

     -- Nevada Governor James Gibbons,

     -- Secretary of State Ross Miller,

     -- Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto,

     -- Howard Skolnik, director of the Nevada Department of
        Corrections (NDOC),

     -- Robert Bannister, NDOC's medical director, and

     -- E.K. McDaniel, the warden of Ely State Prison.

"The level of medical care provided at Ely is as horrific as any
we have ever seen at any of the prison systems that we track
across the country," said Margaret Winter, Associate Director of
the ACLU's National Prison Project.  "We have been stunned at
the amount of human suffering that is allowed to go on there.
And while we had hoped that working collaboratively with the
Department of Corrections and the governor's office would lead
to the resolution of some of the most pressing issues at Ely, it
simply has not."

Other named plaintiffs in the lawsuit include 42-year-old Roger
Libby, whose requests for surgery to repair his softball-sized
hernia have been denied, 46-year-old Rickey Sechrest, whose
chronic intermittent Herpetic Iritis of his right eye has gone
untreated and could cause blindness and who has not received
treatment for his Hepatitis C, 36-year-old Terrence Brothers who
has suffered from untreated open sores on his scalp for more
than 10 years, 36-year-old Jeffrey Hosmer whose chronic severe
back and neck pain and numbness on his left side have gone
untreated despite his living in the prison's infirmary and whose
medication for bi-polar disorder is often interrupted, and 47-
year-old Mark Whittington, who has suffered continual problems
with arbitrarily discontinued medications and dosages of
prescribed medications running out for his serious medical
conditions.

Additional information about the ACLU's efforts to improve
medical conditions at the Ely State Prison, including the ACLU's
lawsuit, the proposed consent decree, Dr. William Noel's medical
report, an ACLU letter to Nevada Gov. James Gibbons and an ACLU
letter to Nevada Department of Corrections Director Howard
Skolnik can be found online at http://www.aclu.org/ely.


PITTSBURGH MERCY: Faces Ex-Workers' FLSA Violations Suit in Pa.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Pittsburgh Mercy Health System, Inc. faces a purported class-
action lawsuit in Pennsylvania alleging violations of the Fair
Labor Standards Act, Paula Reed Ward of The Pittsburgh Post-
Gazette reports.

The suit, captioned, "Taylor et al v. Pittsburgh Mercy Health
System, Inc., et al., Case No. 2:2009-cv-00377," was filed on
March 31, 2009 in the U.S. District Court for the Western
District of Pennsylvania by two former employees, Yvonne Taylor
and Karen Camesi.

It named as defendants: Pittsburgh Mercy Health System, Inc.,
The Mercy Hospital of Pittsburgh, St. Pius X Residence, Inc.,
Kenneth Eshak, and Kristen Bell.

The former workers, who worked at Mercy Hospital before it
became UPMC Mercy in January 2008, alleged that the health
system failed to pay them for training and for work they did
during meal breaks over at least a three-year period, reports
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

The plaintiffs -- represented by J. Nelson Thomas, Esq., an
attorney for the Rochester, N.Y., law firm Dolin, Thomas &
Solomon --  allege that hospital officials knew that extra work
was being performed and that employees were not being
appropriately paid for it.

The lawsuit seeks class-action status and could cover as many as
4,000 people who worked for the hospital system.  It also seeks
damages, as well as injunctive relief to prevent the hospital
system from continuing the alleged illegal practice, The
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

According to the suit, the health system deducts 30 minutes per
day from employees' paychecks to cover meal breaks, even though
employees often don't take such breaks, or they are required to
perform some work during them.

Further, the plaintiffs allege that work done before or after
employees' shifts often isn't compensated and should be
calculated at overtime rates.  Another allegation is that the
hospital did not pay employees for time spent in various
training programs, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
report.

The suit is "Taylor et al v. Pittsburgh Mercy Health System,
Inc., et al., Case No. 2:2009-cv-00377," filed in the U.S.
District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania, Judge
Nora Barry Fischer, presiding.

Representing the plaintiffs is:

          J. Nelson Thomas, Esq.
          (nthomas@theemploymentattorneys.com)
          Dolin, Thomas & Solomon
          693 East Avenue
          Rochester, NY 14607
          Phone: (585) 272-0540
          Fax: (585) 272-0574


PPG INDUSTRIES: Pa. Judge Allows Age Bias Case to Move Forward
--------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Arthur J. Schwab of the U.S. District Court for the
Western District of Pennsylvania says an age discrimination
lawsuit against PPG Industries Inc. can move forward as a class-
action case, The Associated Press reports.

Judge Schwab says PPG must produce a list by April 13 of
salaried employees who were at least 40 when they lost jobs in
2006 as the Pittsburgh-based paint, glass and chemical company
downsized certain divisions, reports The Associated Press.

The decision clears the way for similarly situated workers to
join the lawsuit, according to AP.

Jason Cato of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review previously reported
that Judge Arthur J. Schwab of the U.S. District Court for the
Western District of Pennsylvania has ruled that PPG Industries
Inc. erred by forcing fired workers to sign waivers barring them
from suing the company for age discrimination.

In an order signed on Feb. 26, 2009, Judge Schwab adopted the
recommendations of a special master handling a 2007 civil
lawsuit in which five former employees accused PPG of firing
them for being too old and costly, according to the Pittsburgh
Tribune-Review.

The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review reported that Judge Schwab's
decision paves the way for him to certify the suit as a class-
action case that could be joined by other fired PPG employees
and allow the case to go to trial.

Joyce Gannon of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette previously reported
that five former employees of PPG Industries Inc. filed a class-
action complaint alleging the company pressured them and other
workers to retire or resign because of their age (Class Action
Reporter, May 29, 2007).

The same five plaintiffs who are in their 50s and early 60s also
charged the company of age discrimination last year with the
federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

The complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Pittsburgh,
Pa. alleges:

     * PPG didn't give them salary, bonuses, vacation time, and
       insurance as well as pension benefits because they were
       forced to leave before their retirement age;

     * during the past 10 years the company has put in place
       aggressive workforce reductions that targeted older
       employees who had higher salaries and were close to
       retirement;

     * senior management of PPG instilled a corporate-wide
       mentality that the older employees were 'not pulling
       their weight';

     * older employees often were dismissed without notice and
       without explanation;

     * in some cases, PPG fabricated poor performance reviews of
       older employees they wanted to terminate; and

     * the pattern of discrimination began when Raymond LeBoeuf
       assumed the positions as chairman and chief executive
       officer and retired in 2005.

The plaintiffs in the case -- with their ages at the time of its
filing in May 2007 -- are: Linda K. Austin, 56, of Richland;
Arthur C. Rupert, 58, of Cheswick; Larry L. Campbell, 61, of
Raleigh, N.C.; Wade C. Bittner, 52, of Union Grove, N.C.; and
Kenneth J. Hunt, 58, of Irmo, S.C., according to the Pittsburgh
Tribune-Review report.

Their lawsuit accuses PPG of violating the federal Age
Discrimination in Employment Act by firing hundreds of
employees, beginning in the late 1990s, based on their age to
save money.

When fired, the employees claim, they were forced to sign
waivers stating they would not sue the company for any reason,
including age discrimination.  If they did, PPG threatened to
recoup any severance and sue for legal fees.

Downtown lawyer Kevin P. Lucas, Esq., the special master
appointed in the case, determined those waivers were not legal
to which Judge Schwab agreed, reports the Pittsburgh Tribune-
Review.

Bruce C. Fox, Esq. of Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP,
which is presenting the plaintiffs, told the Pittsburgh Tribune-
Review that with the ruling as many as 200 additional former PPG
employees could join the lawsuit.

For more details, contact:

          Bruce C. Fox, Esq.
          Obermayer Rebmann Maxwell & Hippel LLP
          One Mellon Center, Suite 5240, 500 Grant Street
          Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 15219
          Phone: 412-288-2462
          Cell Phone: 412-352-6216
          Fax: 412-566-1508
          Web Site: http://www.obermayer.com


SAFECO INSURANCE: Court Certifies Class in Medical Provider Case
----------------------------------------------------------------
     An Illinois Circuit Court certified a class action case
against Safeco Insurance Company of America and Safeco Insurance
Company of Illinois.

     The case covers medical providers and policyholders who
accuse the company of implementing a third-party biased computer
auditing program to reduce payouts under the medical payments
coverage of property and casualty insurance.

     The case is pending in the Third Judicial Circuit, Madison
County, Illinois (Cause No. 05-L-152).  The Court certified the
following class:

     All persons insured by Safeco property and casualty
insurance companies in the states of Arkansas, Colorado,
Connecticut, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Mississippi, New
Hampshire, New Mexico, Ohio, South Dakota, Texas, Wisconsin and
West Virginia (and their assignee medical providers), who:

       -- during the period from January 1, 1997 to the date of
          this Order, submitted one or more claims for payment
          of medical expenses pursuant to an automobile policy's
          medical payments coverage;

       -- had their claim(s) adjusted and reviewed by computer
          bill review software incorporating Ingenix "MDR
          modules;" and

       -- received or were tendered payment in an amount less
          than the submitted medical expenses due to charges
          purportedly exceeding the usual, customary or
          reasonable amount, based on the Ingenix "MDR modules."

     Jonathan Piper, Attorney for LakinChapman, LLC, said, "This
is the first step to successfully litigating this case.  This
lawsuit challenges Safeco's targeting of medical providers, and
their legitimate billing practices, by utilizing a computer
program that unilaterally and improperly reduces bills to a pre-
determined arbitrary cap that Safeco selects."

     LakinChapman, LLC regularly represents medical providers
and consumers in class action litigation.  "Unfortunately,
Safeco and other carriers in the industry use computer programs
to cut legitimate bills of medical providers which leads to
substantial financial losses for medical providers and out of
pocket expenses for Safeco's own policyholders.  In return, the
insurance company profits," said Brad Lakin, Managing Partner of
LakinChapman, LLC.

     The firm is pursuing similar cases against other insurance
companies in the industry.  LakinChapman, LLC regularly
represents medical providers and consumers in class action
litigation.

For more details, contact:

          LakinChapman, LLC
          300 Evans Ave.
          P.O. Box 229
          Wood River, Illinois 62095
          Phone: 618-208-4240 or 866-839-2021
          Web site: http://www.lakinlaw.com/


VOLKSWAGEN OF AMERICA: Court Upholds Jetta Suit Certification
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Oklahoma Court of Civil Appeals upheld the certification of
a class in a lawsuit against Volkswagen of America, Inc. over
defects in its Jettas, Janice Francis-Smith of The Journal
Record reports.

Volkswagen does not design, manufacture or assemble its Jetta
model anywhere in the United States, but the company has its
corporate headquarters in Michigan, according to The Journal
Record report.

The ruling was in connection to a class-action claim against
Volkswagen that was filed in the District Court of Pottawatomie
County in Oklahoma filed by two Oklahoma residents, Rajina Hess
and Kelly Parsons.

The plaintiffs claim the front bumper cover on some Volkswagen
Jettas is low enough to the ground to catch on curbs and wheel-
tops, causing the bumper to be damaged or pulled off the car,
and is thus defective.  The class would encompass nationwide
owners of 1999 to 2003 Volkswagen Jettas, of which there are
about 650,000.

The Journal Record reported that Volkwagen executives testified
the company has received only 1,500 complaints of bumper damage.
Only 663 of those complaints indicated that the damage was
caused by contact with a parking stop or curb, thus such damage
has occurred, on average, once for every 7 million times the
vehicles in the class have been parked, the company's expert
testified.

The civil appeals court found the trial court acted
appropriately in certifying the class action -- a decision that
has no bearing on the merits of the claims presented by the
plaintiffs.  The court highlighted Volkswagens argument that the
majority of the class members included have never experienced
bumper damage and have no basis for a claim, reports The Journal
Record.

"This raises the question of whether a breach of warranty action
can be brought by a plaintiff for an allegedly defective product
that has the 'potential' for damage, but which has not yet
'manifested' damage," the court found.  "Oklahoma and Michigan
have not yet answered this question."

The Journal Record reported that the appeals court quoted a
recent finding of the Texas Supreme Court, which stated, "the
law in most states (including Texas) is unclear" on "whether to
permit express warranty claims for unmanifested defects."

Establishing the likelihood of injury resulting from the alleged
defect is enough to justify certification of the class, the
court found, reports The Journal Record.


XTO ENERGY: Okla. Judge Certifies Class in $27M Royalties Suit
--------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Tim Leonard of the U.S. District Court for the Western
District of Oklahoma granted class-action status to a $27
million lawsuit that alleges XTO Energy Inc. has short-changed
royalty owners on about 290 natural gas wells in the Oklahoma
Panhandle and southwestern Kansas, Randy Ellis of NewsOK.com
reports.

Royalty owners claim XTO has underpaid them 15 percent on some
wells and 20 percent on others by selling the natural gas to a
wholly owned subsidiary at a below market price.  The natural
gas is later sold to an unaffiliated company at a higher price,
the royalty owners contend, NewsOK.com reported.

XTO has disputed the allegation in court documents, claiming
that royalty owners "are paid on 100 percent of the volume of
gas measured at the well ... and are not suffering a deduction
in their royalties," reports NewsOK.com.

About 220 of the wells involved are located in the Oklahoma
Panhandle and 70 are in Kansas, said Oklahoma City attorney
Edward L. White, who is representing royalty owners in the
lawsuit, according to the NewsOK.com report.


YAMAHA MOTOR: Canadian Litigation Commenced Over Rhino Tip-Overs
----------------------------------------------------------------
     A proposed national class action claim has been issued with
the Ontario Superior Court of Justice on behalf of all persons
in Canada who suffered personal injury following tip-over
accidents involving Yamaha Rhino Recreational Utility Vehicles
(Rhinos), and family members of those injured Canadians.

     The claim was issued as a result of the death of thirteen
year old Wyatt Bauer, who died when the Rhino he was driving
flipped over, causing multiple injuries, including fatal head
trauma.  The claim will be amended to include the allegations of
Colin Baker, whose foot was trapped by the unpadded roll cage of
a door-less Rhino that tipped over, resulting in multiple
corrective surgeries.

     The class action alleges that the Rhino is prone to tip
over because of its narrow track-width, high platform, high
center of gravity and top-heavy design, all of which lead the
vehicle to easily tip over under normal and foreseeable driving
conditions, including at low speeds on even terrain.

      Since the introduction of these vehicles in 2003, Rhino
accidents have caused at least 46 deaths in the United States
alone, and have injured and maimed literally hundreds of
consumers, often causing severe crush injuries requiring surgery
or amputation. The majority of the fatal accidents in the U.S.
involved tip-overs which were allegedly caused by the Rhino's
extraordinary stability and passenger containment defects.

     On March 31, 2009, after investigating more than 50
incidents involving 46 driver and passenger deaths in two Rhino
models, the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC),
announced a repair program for all Rhino 450, 660, and 700
models, in cooperation with Yamaha Motor Corp. U.S.A., to
address rollover safety defects.  The CPSC found that "...of the
rollover-related deaths and hundreds of reported injuries, some
of which were serious, many appear to involve turns at
relatively low speeds and on level terrain".  It is unclear
whether any of these recommendations will be implemented for the
benefit of Canadian consumers.

     "These vehicles have been inherently dangerous since they
were first marketed by Yamaha", said Joel P. Rochon, a partner
at Rochon Genova LLP.  "No parent should have to experience the
Bauers' unbearable loss and no person should have to undergo the
medical complications that Mr. Baker is continuing to face.
These outcomes would have been avoidable had Yamaha met the
minimum safety standards.  We urge Yamaha to take immediate
responsibility by recalling the vehicles and extending
compensation to victims".

     The allegations raised in the claim have not yet been
proven in court.

For more details, contact:

          Rochon Genova LLP
          121 Richmond St. West
          Suite 900
          Toronto, Ontario, M5H 2K1
          Phone: (416) 363-1867 or 1 (866) 881-2292
          Fax: (416) 363-0263
          Web site: http://www.rochongenova.com/


* Global Financial Crisis Triggers U.S. Filings Says PwC Study
--------------------------------------------------------------
     Companies will face increasing scrutiny in 2009 as the
global financial crisis continues to transform the financial
services industry and necessitates a reengineering of future
regulation according to the annual PricewaterhouseCoopers
Securities Litigation study released on April 1, 2009.

     Fueled by the financial crisis, U.S. federal securities
class actions continued to climb, and jumped to 210 in 2008, an
increase from 163 case filings in 2007.  This represents a 29
percent increase over last year and an increase of approximately
15 percent over the average number of filings (182) since the
enactment of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act
(PSLRA) in 1995.

     "The unprecedented financial events of 2008 eclipsed all
other issues during the year. What started as the subprime
crisis quickly turned into the credit crisis, which soon
thereafter became the global financial crisis," said Grace
Lamont, principal and U.S. securities litigation practice leader
for PricewaterhouseCoopers.  "Not surprisingly, the majority of
filings during 2008 were related to the financial crisis, with
investment banks most often named as the defendants."

     The total value of settlements in federal securities class
actions amounted to $3.6 billion in 2008 - a decrease of 45
percent from 2007, primarily driven by the mega settlement by
Tyco in 2007 of $3.2 billion.  Excluding the Tyco settlement,
the total settlement value increased by approximately 9 percent
over 2007 - from $3.3 billion in 2007 to $3.6 billion in 2008.

     Also in 2008, the number of accounting-related cases as a
percentage of total filings continued to decline for yet another
year, falling from 52 percent in 2007 to 40 percent - the lowest
since the PSLRA was enacted.  Notably, though, the highest nine
settlements of the year were exclusively accounting-related
settlements.

     Ponzi schemes rose to prominence as 2008 came to a close.
According to the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC), there
were 70 Ponzi cases between 2007 and 2008, averaging three a
month.  The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) saw the
number of related leads to Ponzi schemes more than double in the
past year, resulting in the prosecution of 15 Ponzi schemes.

     Although new accounting-related SEC litigation releases
issued in connection with the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act
(FCPA) dropped, the SEC and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ)
pledged to continue their commitment to pursuing FCPA violations
going forward.

     Within the past year, the number of class actions filed
against foreign companies listed on U.S. stock exchanges reached
an all time high since the passage of the PSLRA.  In 2008 there
were 36 in total, compared to 27 in 2007 - an increase of 33
percent.

Other key findings in the 2008 study include:


       -- High-tech is no longer the top target - The increase
          in filings against the financial services industry
          group began in 2007 with the dawning of the financial
          crisis, and by year-end 2007, 21 percent of all
          filings involved financial services companies compared
          to 6 percent in 2006.  In 2008, 48 percent of cases,
          the largest against one specific group since the
          enactment of the PSLRA, were in this financial
          services industry.

       -- Actions against Fortune 500 increase - The percentage
          of federal securities class action lawsuits filed
          against Fortune 500 companies during 2008 increased by
          6 percent from 2007.  During 2008, 18 percent of
          filings involved a Fortune 500 company compared to 12
          percent in 2007.

       -- The Second and Ninth Circuits dominate Filing
          activity was more frequent in the Second and Ninth
          Circuits than ever before.  Second Circuit filings
          accounted for most filings, jumping ten percentage
          points from 34 percent of total filings in 2007 to 44
          percent in 2008.  This increase was driven by the
          financial-crisis-related filings.  Additionally,
          filing in the First Circuit had a six percent
          increase.

       -- Total settlements fall - The number of settlements
          recorded during 2008 declined to the lowest number
          recorded in any year this decade. A total of 95
          settlements were made in 2008.

       -- Institutions tighten the reins - The largest
          settlements in 2008 all had a large institutional
          investor as a lead plaintiff, including all six of the
          settlements over $100 million dollars.

     "Unlike the losses incurred by the shareholders of
companies involved in corporate and accounting scandals in 2002
- which resulted in the regulatory response of Sarbanes-Oxley -
the crisis affecting 2008 is a global issue which has negatively
impacted the share price of almost every listed entity around
the world," said Patricia Etzold, partner and author of the
section of the study dealing with foreign companies listed on
the U.S. exchanges.

     According to the study, three areas where companies will
want to remain especially vigilant over the coming years are
institutional-plaintiff activity (particularly activity related
to public and union pension funds), internal controls
accounting-related allegations, and FCPA enforcement.

     "As the U.S. and countries across the world attempt to
repair the damage that the global financial crisis has wreaked
on their economies and financial markets, companies in all
industries should take heed that now more than ever before, they
are under the microscope," stated Lamont.  "Looking ahead to
2009 and beyond, the implications of 2008 activity are clear:
those that vigilantly prepare for potential crises and
litigation will be better positioned to travel the bumpy road."

     For the full PricewaterhouseCoopers Securities Litigation
Study please visit http://www.10b5.com.

PricewaterhouseCoopers http://www.pwc.com provides industry-
focused assurance, tax and advisory services to build public
trust and enhance value for its clients and their stakeholders.
More than 155,000 people in 153 countries across its network
share their thinking, experience and solutions to develop fresh
perspectives and practical advice.  "PricewaterhouseCoopers"
refers to PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP or, as the context
requires, the PricewaterhouseCoopers global network or other
member firms of the network, each of which is a separate and
independent legal entity.


                   New Securities Fraud Cases

INSIGHT ENTERPRISES: Bronstein Gewirtz Announces Lawsuit Filing
---------------------------------------------------------------
     Bronstein, Gewirtz and Grossman, LLC announces that a class
action lawsuit has been filed in the United States District
Court for the District of Arizona on behalf of those who
purchased or otherwise acquired the securities of Insight
Enterprises, Inc. (NASDAQ: NSIT) during the period from January
30, 2007 through and including February 6, 2009.

     The Complaint charges Insight Enterprises and certain of
the Company's current and former executive officers with
violations of federal securities laws.

     On February 9, 2009, Insight Enterprises shocked the market
when it revealed that the Company's management and Audit
Committee had determined that Insight Enterprises would have to
restate previously reported earnings as a result of its
historical accounting treatment of aged trade credits.

     Insight announced that it expected to restate financial
statement included in the Company's most recently filed Form 10-
K for the year ended December 31, 2007, Form 10-Q for the first
three quarters of fiscal year 2008, and incur a charge to
retained earnings of $50 to $70 million.

     On this news, shares of the Company declined $2.85 per
share, more than 48% to close on February 9, 2009 at $3.05 per
share, on unusually heavy call volume.

     No Class has yet been certified in the above action.

For more details, contact:

          Peretz Bronstein, Esq.
          Eitan Kimelman (eitan@bgandg.com)
          Bronstein, Gewirtz & Grossman, LLC
          Phone: 212-697-6484
          Web site: http://www.bgandg.com/


PERRIGO CO: Holzer Holzer Announces N.Y. Securities Suit Filing
---------------------------------------------------------------
     Holzer Holzer & Fistel, LLC announces that it has filed a
class action lawsuit in the United States District Court for the
Southern District of New York on behalf all persons or entities
who purchased shares of Perrigo Company (NASDAQ: PRGO) between
November 6, 2008 and February 2, 2009.

     The complaint alleges that Perrigo and certain of its
officers and directors violated the Securities Exchange Act of
1934.  The complaint alleges, among other things, that the
Company failed to adequately disclose its exposure to risks
associated with Auction Rate Securities (ARS).  The complaint
further alleges that disruptions in the ARS market forced
Perrigo to write off its entire investment in ARSs in February
2009, wiping out over a third of the Company's earnings for the
quarter.

For more details, contact:

          Michael I. Fistel, Jr., Esq., (mfistel@holzerlaw.com)
          Marshall P. Dees, Esq. (mdees@holzerlaw.com)
          Holzer Holzer & Fistel, LLC
          Phone: (888) 508-6832
          Web site: http://www.holzerlaw.com


OPPENHEIMER CALIFORNIA: Cohen Milstein Files Securities Lawsuit
---------------------------------------------------------------
     The law firm of Cohen Milstein Sellers & Toll PLLC filed a
class action complaint in the United States District Court for
the Northern District of California on behalf of purchasers of
shares of Oppenheimer California Municipal Fund (NASDAQ: OPCAX,
OCABX, OCACX) from September 27, 2006 through November 28, 2008,
inclusive.

     The complaint charges OppenheimerFunds Inc. and certain of
its affiliates, officers and directors with violations of the
Securities Act of 1933 and the Investment Company Act of 1940,
alleging that the Fund's Registration Statements and
Prospectuses made false and misleading statements of material
fact about the Fund's investment objectives and strategies.

     The complaint alleges that the Registration Statements and
Prospectuses failed to disclose that the Fund:

       -- deviated from its investment objective of seeking
          interest income consistent with the preservation of
          capital by over-concentrating its holdings in higher-
          risk, lower-quality instruments and engaging in
          excessive leverage and borrowing strategies;

       -- increased its concentration of limited types of
          investments, thus failing to spread and reduce risk;
          and

       -- violated its industry concentration policy by
          investing more than 25% of its holdings in the real
          estate development industry including so-called "dirt
          bonds" land development bonds whose proceeds are
          used to finance the infrastructure requirements of new
          real estate development.

     As a result, the Funds performance fell and the share price
collapsed. The Fund presently trades in the range of $6.00 per
share.

For more details, contact:

          Steven J. Toll, Esq. (stoll@cmht.com)
          Cohen, Milstein, Hausfeld & Toll, P.L.L.C.
          1100 New York Avenue, N.W.
          West Tower, Suite 500
          Washington, D.C. 20005
          Phone: (888) 240-0775 or (202) 408-4600


REGIONS FINANCING: Coughlin Stoia Files Securities Fraud Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
     Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins LLP announced that a
class action has been commenced in the United States District
Court for the Southern District of New York on behalf of all
persons who acquired the 8.875% Trust Preferred Securities of
Regions Financing Capital Trust III (NYSE: RF-PZ) pursuant or
traceable to a materially false and misleading registration
statement and prospectus issued in connection with the April
2008 offering of the Securities.

     The complaint charges Regions Financial Corporation,
certain of its officers and directors, its auditor, and the
underwriters of the Offering with violations of the Securities
Exchange of 1933.

     Regions provides consumer and commercial banking, trust,
securities brokerage, mortgage and insurance products and
services.

     The complaint alleges that in April 2008, Regions
consummated the Offering pursuant to the false and misleading
Registration Statement, selling 13.8 million shares of the
Securities at $25 per share for proceeds of $345 million.  The
Registration Statement incorporated Regions' financial results
for 2007.  Then, on January 20, 2009, Regions issued a press
release announcing a loss for the quarter and year ended
December 31, 2008, including a loss for the quarter ended
December 31, 2008 of $9.01 per diluted share, which was "largely
driven by a $6 billion non-cash charge for impairment of
goodwill."  As a result of this disclosure, the price of the
Securities dropped significantly.

     According to the complaint, the true facts which were
omitted from the Registration Statement were:

       -- the Company failed to properly record provisions for
          loan losses;

       -- the Company failed to properly account for impaired
          assets;

       -- the Company failed to properly account for goodwill;

       -- the Company's internal controls were inadequate to
          prevent it from improperly recording provisions for
          loan losses, improperly accounting for impaired
          assets, and improperly accounting for goodwill; and

       -- the Company was not as well capitalized as
          represented.

     Plaintiff seeks to recover damages on behalf all persons
who acquired the Securities pursuant or traceable to the
Registration Statement issued in connection with the Offering.

For more details, contact:

         David A. Rosenfeld, Esq. (djr@csgrr.com)
         Coughlin Stoia Geller Rudman & Robbins LLP
         Phone: 800-449-4900 or 619-231-1058
         Web site:  http://www.csgrr.com/cases/regionspfd/


                        Asbestos Alerts

ASBESTOS LITIGATION: General Re Reserves $1.8B for Claims in '08
----------------------------------------------------------------
Berkshire Hathaway Inc.'s subsidiary, General Re Corporation,
had unpaid mass tort reserves of about US$1.8 billion gross
(US$1.2 billion net of reinsurance) at Dec. 31, 2008 for unpaid
mass tort reserves.

Those reserves were about US$1.8 billion gross and US$1.2
billion net of reinsurance as of Dec. 31, 2007.

Overall industry-wide loss experience data and informed judgment
are used when internal loss data is of limited reliability, such
as in setting the estimates for mass tort, asbestos and
hazardous waste (collectively, "mass tort") claims.

Mass tort net claims paid were about US$69 million in 2008. In
2008, ultimate loss estimates for asbestos and environmental
claims were increased by US$45 million.

In addition to the previously described methodologies, General
Re considers "survival ratios" based on net claim payments in
recent years versus net unpaid losses as a rough guide to
reserve adequacy. The three year survival ratio was 14 years as
of Dec. 31, 2008. The insurance industry's comparable survival
ratio for asbestos and pollution reserves was nine years.

Headquartered in Omaha, Nebr., Berkshire Hathaway Inc. owns
subsidiaries engaged in diverse business activities. The most
important of these are insurance businesses conducted on both a
primary basis and a reinsurance basis.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: BHRG Reserves $9.2B for A&E Losses in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Berkshire Hathaway Reinsurance Group's (BHRG) reserves for
environmental, asbestos, and latent injury losses and loss
adjustments expenses were US$9.2 billion at Dec. 31, 2008 and
US$9.7 billion at Dec. 31, 2007.

BHRG is a Berkshire Hathaway Inc. subsidiary.

Losses paid in 2008 attributable to these exposures were about
US$700 million.

The maximum losses payable by BHRG under retroactive policies
are not expected to exceed US$24.3 billion as of Dec. 31, 2008.
Absent significant judicial or legislative changes affecting
asbestos, environmental or latent injury exposures, management
currently believes it unlikely that unpaid losses as of Dec. 31,
2008 (US$16.6 billion) will develop upward to the maximum loss
payable or downward by more than 15 percent.

Headquartered in Omaha, Nebr., Berkshire Hathaway Inc. owns
subsidiaries engaged in diverse business activities. The most
important of these are insurance businesses conducted on both a
primary basis and a reinsurance basis.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Berkshire Reserves $10.7Bil for A&E in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
Berkshire Hathaway Inc.'s liabilities for environmental,
asbestos and latent injury claims and claims expenses net of
reinsurance recoverables were about US$10.7 billion at Dec. 31,
2008 and US$11.2 billion at Dec. 31, 2007.

These liabilities included about US$9.2 billion at Dec. 31, 2008
and US$9.7 billion at Dec. 31, 2007 of liabilities assumed under
retroactive reinsurance contracts.

Headquartered in Omaha, Nebr., Berkshire Hathaway Inc. owns
subsidiaries engaged in diverse business activities. The most
important of these are insurance businesses conducted on both a
primary basis and a reinsurance basis.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Chubb, Units Facing Litigation in 3 States
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Chubb Corporation, its subsidiary, Chubb Indemnity Insurance
Company, and various other subsidiaries are parties to asbestos
insurance litigation pending in Texas, Ohio, and California
courts.

Beginning in December 2002, Chubb Indemnity was named in a
series of actions commenced by various plaintiffs against Chubb
Indemnity and other non-affiliated insurers in the District
Courts in Nueces, Travis and Bexar Counties in Texas. The
plaintiffs generally allege that Chubb Indemnity and the other
defendants breached duties to asbestos product end-users and
conspired to conceal risks associated with asbestos exposure.

The plaintiffs seek to impose liability on insurers directly.
The plaintiffs seek unspecified monetary damages and punitive
damages.

Under the asbestos reform bill passed by the Texas legislature
in May 2005, these actions were transferred to the Texas state
asbestos Multidistrict Litigation on Dec. 1, 2005. Chubb
Indemnity has been successful in getting a number of them
dismissed through summary judgment, special exceptions, or
voluntary withdrawal by the plaintiff.

Beginning in June 2003, Chubb Indemnity was also named in a
number of similar cases in Cuyahoga, Mahoning, and Trumbull
Counties in Ohio. The allegations and the damages sought in the
Ohio actions are substantially similar to those in the Texas
actions.

In May 2005, the Ohio Court of Appeals sustained the trial
court's dismissal of a group of nine cases for failure to state
a claim. Following the appellate court's decision, Chubb
Indemnity and other non-affiliated insurers were dismissed from
the remaining cases filed in Ohio, except for a single case
which had been removed to federal court and transferred to the
federal asbestos Multidistrict Litigation.

There has been no activity in that case since its removal.

In December 2007, certain of the Company's subsidiaries were
named in an action filed in the Superior Court of Los Angeles
County, Calif., that contains allegations similar to those made
in the Texas and Ohio actions.

In August 2008, the Company's motion to dismiss the complaint
was granted, but permitted plaintiffs to amend their complaint.
The Company's motion to dismiss the amended complaint was
granted, with prejudice, in January 2009.

Headquartered in Warren, N.J., The Chubb Corporation provides
property and casualty insurance for personal and commercial
customers worldwide through 8,500 independent agents and
brokers. The Company's global network includes branches and
affiliates throughout North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia
and Australia.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Actions v. EnPro Drop to 104,100 at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
EnPro Industries, Inc., at Dec. 31, 2008, faced 104,100 open
asbestos-related cases, of which it was aware of about 4,600
cases involve claimants alleging mesothelioma.

At Sept. 30, 2008, the Company faced about 105,100 open
asbestos-related cases. (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 14, 2008)

Certain of the Company's subsidiaries, primarily Garlock Sealing
Technologies LLC and The Anchor Packing Company, are among a
large number of defendants in actions filed in various states by
plaintiffs alleging injury or death as a result of exposure to
asbestos fibers.

To date, neither Garlock nor Anchor has been required to pay any
punitive damage awards, although there can be no assurance that
they will not be required to do so in the future. Liability for
compensatory damages has historically been allocated among
responsible defendants.

Since the first asbestos-related lawsuits were filed against
Garlock in 1975, Garlock and Anchor have processed more than
900,000 asbestos claims to conclusion (including judgments,
settlements and dismissals) and, together with their insurers,
have paid almost US$1.4 billion in settlements and judgments and
over US$400 million in fees and expenses.

Of those claims resolved, three percent have been claims of
plaintiffs alleging the disease mesothelioma, seven percent have
been claims of plaintiffs with lung or other cancers, and 90
percent have been claims of plaintiffs alleging asbestosis,
pleural plaques or other non-malignant impairment of the
respiratory system.

The mix of cases filed in 2008 contains 27 percent mesothelioma
claims and 17 percent lung or other cancer claims. In the
remaining 56 percent of the new cases, either the plaintiffs'
alleged non-malignant impairment or the disease or condition is
not alleged and remains unknown to the Company.

The number of new actions filed against the Company's
subsidiaries in 2008 (5,500) was about five percent higher than
the number filed in 2007 (5,200) but was significantly lower
than the number filed in 2006 (7,700).

Garlock's product defenses have enabled it to be successful more
often than not at trial. Garlock won defense verdicts in three
of the six cases tried to verdict in 2008, and in seven of 12
cases tried to verdict in the three-year period 2006 through
2008.

In the successful jury trials, the juries determined that either
Garlock's products were not defective, that Garlock was not
negligent, or that the claimant was not exposed to Garlock's
products.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., EnPro Industries, Inc.
produces sealing products, metal polymer and filament wound
bearings, compressor systems and components, diesel and dual-
fuel engines and other engineered products for use in critical
applications by industries worldwide.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 11 Garlock Sealing Trials Commenced in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
EnPro Industries, Inc.'s subsidiary, Garlock Sealing
Technologies LLC, in 2008, began 11 asbestos-related trials
involving 13 plaintiffs.

Garlock received three jury verdicts in its favor, one in an
Ohio case and two in a Pennsylvania trial involving two
plaintiffs. In a Kentucky lung cancer case, the jury awarded the
plaintiff US$1.52 million. Garlock's share of this verdict was
about US$682,000; Garlock will appeal. In a Pennsylvania lung
cancer case the jury awarded the plaintiff US$400,000. Garlock's
share was US$200,000, 50 percent of the total verdict.

In an Illinois case the jury awarded US$500,000 against Garlock
to a plaintiff with asbestosis. Garlock will appeal. Also in
Pennsylvania, four lawsuits involving five plaintiffs settled
during trial before the jury reached a verdict.

A lawsuit in California also dismissed during trial. In South
Carolina, Garlock obtained a dismissal in one case during trial
because there was insufficient evidence of exposure to Garlock
products.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., EnPro Industries, Inc.
produces sealing products, metal polymer and filament wound
bearings, compressor systems and components, diesel and dual-
fuel engines and other engineered products for use in critical
applications by industries worldwide.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Garlock Cites 4 Pending Appeals at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
EnPro Industries, Inc.'s subsidiary, Garlock Sealing
Technologies LLC, at Dec. 31, 2008, recorded four appeals
pending from adverse verdicts totaling US$2.2 million.

This amount was up from US$1.4 million at Dec. 31, 2007 and down
from US$6.8 million at Dec. 31, 2006.

In June 2007, the New York Court of Appeals, in a unanimous
decision, overturned a US$800,000 verdict that was entered
against Garlock in 2004, granting a new trial. In March 2006, a
three-judge panel of the Ohio Court of Appeals, in a unanimous
decision, overturned a US$6.4 million verdict that was entered
against Garlock in 2003, granting a new trial. The case
subsequently settled.

On the other hand, the Maryland Court of Appeals denied
Garlock's appeal from a 2005 verdict in a mesothelioma case in
Baltimore, and Garlock paid that verdict, with post-judgment
interest, in the fourth quarter of 2006.

In a separate Baltimore case in the fourth quarter of 2006, the
Maryland Court of Special Appeals denied Garlock's appeal from
another 2005 verdict. The subsequent appeal of that decision was
also denied and Garlock paid that verdict in the second quarter
of 2007.

In some cases, appeals require the provision of security in the
form of appeal bonds, potentially in amounts greater than the
verdicts. The Company is required to provide cash collateral or
letters of credit to secure the full amount of the bonds, which
can restrict the use of a significant amount of the Company's
cash for the periods of those appeals.

At Dec. 31, 2008, the Company had about US$1.7 million of appeal
bonds secured by letters of credit rather than cash collateral.
This amount securing appeal bonds compares to US$1.1 million at
Dec. 31, 2007 and US$1.3 million at Dec. 31, 2006.

In 2007 and 2006, the cash collateral relating to appeal bonds
was recorded as restricted cash on the Company's Consolidated
Balance Sheet.

Garlock settles and disposes of actions on a regular basis.
Garlock's historical settlement strategy was to settle only
cases in advanced stages of litigation. In 1999 and 2000,
however, Garlock employed a more aggressive settlement strategy.

The purpose of this strategy was to achieve a permanent
reduction in the number of overall asbestos claims through the
settlement of a large number of claims, including some early-
stage claims and some claims not yet filed as lawsuits. Due to
this short-term aggressive settlement strategy and a significant
overall increase in claims filings, the settlement amounts paid
in those years and several subsequent years were greater than
the amounts paid in any year prior to 1999.

In 2001, Garlock resumed its historical settlement strategy and
focused on reducing settlement commitments to match insurance
recoveries. As a result, Garlock reduced new settlement
commitments from US$180 million in 2000 to US$94 million in 2001
and US$86 million in 2002.

New settlement commitments totaled US$84 million in 2006, US$76
million in 2007 and US$71 million in 2008. About US$15 million
of the 2006 amount and about US$5 million of the 2007 amount
were committed in settlements to pay verdicts that had been
rendered in the years 2003 2005.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., EnPro Industries, Inc.
produces sealing products, metal polymer and filament wound
bearings, compressor systems and components, diesel and dual-
fuel engines and other engineered products for use in critical
applications by industries worldwide.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Garlock Records $307.4M Coverage at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
EnPro Industries, Inc.'s subsidiary, Garlock Sealing
Technologies LLC, at Dec. 31, 2008, had available US$307.4
million of insurance and trust coverage that the Company said it
believes will be available to cover current and future asbestos
claims and certain expense payments.

The Company said it believes that Garlock may also recover some
additional insurance from insolvent carriers over time. Garlock
collected about US$100,000 in 2008 and US$1 million in 2007 from
insolvent carriers.

Of the US$307.4 million of collectible insurance and trust
assets, the Company considers US$295.8 million (96 percent) to
be of high quality because (a) the insurance policies are
written or guaranteed by U.S.-based carriers whose credit rating
by Standard & Poor's Ratings Services is investment grade (BBB)
or better, and whose AM Best rating is excellent (A-) or better,
or (b) in the form of cash or liquid investments held in
insurance trusts resulting from commutation agreements.

The Company considers US$11.6 million (four percent) to be of
moderate quality because the insurance policies are written with
(a) other solvent U.S. carriers who are unrated or below
investment grade (US$7.8 million) or (b) with various London
market carriers (US$3.8 million).

Of the US$307.4 million, US$228.7 million is allocated to claims
that have been paid by Garlock and submitted to its insurance
companies for reimbursement and the remainder is allocated to
pending and estimated future claims.

Arrangements with Garlock's insurance carriers limit the amount
of insurance proceeds that Garlock is entitled to receive in any
one year. Based on these arrangements, which include settlement
agreements in place with most of the carriers involved, the
Company anticipates that its remaining solvent insurance will be
collected during the period 2009 through 2018 in about the
following annual amounts: 2009 and 2010 US$67 million per
year; 2011 US$40 million; 2012 and 2013 US$25 million per
year; 2014 through 2016 US$20 million per year; and 2017 and
2018 US$12 million per year.

The Company collected US$73 million of insurance in 2008.

During the fourth quarter of 2006, the Company reached an
agreement with a significant group of related U.S. insurers.
These insurers had withheld payments pending resolution of a
dispute. The agreement provides for the payment of the full
amount of the insurance policies (US$194 million) in various
annual payments to be made from 2007 through 2018. Under the
agreement, Garlock received US$20 million in 2008 and US$22
million in 2007.

In May 2006, the Company reached agreement with a U.S. insurer
that resolved two lawsuits and an arbitration proceeding. Under
the settlement, Garlock received US$3 million in 2008, US$3
million in 2007 and US$4 million in 2006 and is scheduled to
receive another US$11 million in the future.

In the second quarter of 2004, the Company reached agreement
with Equitas, the London-based entity responsible for the pre-
1993 Lloyds' of London policies in the Company's insurance
block, concerning settlement of its exposure to the Company's
subsidiaries' asbestos claims. As a result of the settlement,
US$88 million was placed in an independent trust.

In the fourth quarter of 2004, the Company reached agreement
with a group of London market carriers (other than Equitas) and
one of its U.S. carriers that has some policies reinsured
through the London market. As a result of the settlement,
US$55.5 million was placed in an independent trust. At Dec. 31,
2008, the aggregate market value of the funds remaining in the
two trusts was US$20.6 million, which was included in the
US$307.4 million of insurance and trust coverage available to
pay future asbestos-related claims and expenses.

Insurance coverage for asbestos claims is not available to cover
exposures initially occurring on and after July 1, 1984.
Although Garlock and Anchor continue to be named as defendants
in new actions, a few allege initial exposure after July 1,
1984.

Headquartered in Charlotte, N.C., EnPro Industries, Inc.
produces sealing products, metal polymer and filament wound
bearings, compressor systems and components, diesel and dual-
fuel engines and other engineered products for use in critical
applications by industries worldwide.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Bucyrus Int'l Still Faces Liability Actions
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bucyrus International, Inc., at Dec. 31, 2008, continues to be a
co-defendant in numerous personal injury liability cases
alleging damages due to exposure to asbestos and other
substances, according to the Company's 2008 annual report filed
with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The cases are pending in courts in various states. In all of
these cases, insurance carriers have accepted or are expected to
accept defense. These cases are in various pre-trial stages.

The Company faced about 300 personal injury liability cases
alleging damages due to exposure to asbestos and other
substances, involving about 600 plaintiffs. (Class Action
Reporter, Nov. 28, 2008)

Headquartered in South Milwaukee, Wis., Bucyrus International,
Inc. designs and manufactures mining equipment for the
extraction of coal, copper, oil sands, iron ore and other
minerals in mining centers. The Company also provides the
aftermarket replacement parts and service for this equipment.
The Company operates in two business segments: surface mining
and underground mining.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Alfacell to Explore Strategies for Onconase
----------------------------------------------------------------
Par Pharmaceuticals Companies, Inc. says that Alfacell
Corporation intends to continue to explore strategic
alternatives and additional capital for Onconase (ranpirnase),
which is intended for the treatment of inoperable malignant
mesothelioma, according to the Company's 2008 annual report
filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Mesothelioma is a rare cancer affecting the lungs usually
associated with exposure to asbestos.

In January 2008, Strativa Pharmaceuticals entered into an
exclusive license agreement with Alfacell under which it
received the exclusive U.S. commercialization rights to
Alfacell's Onconase.

In May 2008, Alfacell reported that the preliminary data from
its Phase III clinical trial, which assessed treatment with
Onconase plus doxorubicin compared to treatment with doxorubicin
alone, did not meet statistical significance for the primary
endpoint of overall survival in unresectable malignant
mesothelioma.

However, based on the preliminary data from the Phase III study,
statistically significant results were achieved in the subset of
evaluable unresectable malignant mesothelioma in patients who
failed a prior chemotherapy regimen before entering this
clinical trial. This subset of patients achieved a statistically
significant increase in overall survival when treated with
Onconase plus doxorubicin compared to treatment with doxorubicin
alone.

On Jan. 27, 2009, Alfacell reported that it has conducted a pre-
NDA (New Drug Application) meeting with the U.S. Food and Drug
Administration (FDA) to discuss its planned submission of the
final components of the Onconase rolling New Drug Application
for the treatment of unresectable malignant mesothelioma
patients. At the pre-NDA meeting, the FDA provided guidance to
Alfacell recommending that an additional clinical trial be
conducted in unresectable malignant mesothelioma patients that
have failed one prior chemotherapy regimen, prior to submitting
a NDA.

Alfacell's current financial situation does not allow it to
pursue an additional clinical trial prior to submitting a NDA
until other sources of capital are secured.

Under the Company's agreement, the next milestone payment to
Alfacell is payable upon approval of Onconase by the FDA for
unresectable malignant mesothelioma. The Company does not have
an obligation to provide Alfacell with any additional funding to
conduct the FDA-required additional clinical trial.

Headquartered in Woodcliff Lake, N.J., Par Pharmaceutical
Companies, Inc. develops, manufactures, and distributes generic
and branded drugs in the United States. In October 2008, the
Company announced a resizing of its generic segment that
included the reduction of its internal research and development
operations.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: PepsiAmericas Still Party to Cooper Lawsuit
----------------------------------------------------------------
PepsiAmericas, Inc. and other parties are still party to
asbestos-related insurance litigation filed by Cooper
Industries, LLC in Cook County Circuit Court, Ill.

The case is styled Cooper Industries, LLC v. PepsiAmericas,
Inc., et al., Case No. 05 CH 09214.

On May 31, 2005, Cooper filed and later served the lawsuit
against the Company, Pneumo Abex, LLC, and the Trustee of the
Trust. The claims involved a Trust and insurance policy.

Cooper asserted that it was entitled to access US$34 million
that previously was in the Trust and was used to purchase the
insurance policy. Cooper claimed that Trust funds should have
been distributed for underlying Pneumo Abex asbestos claims
indemnified by Cooper. Cooper complained that it was deprived of
access to money in the Trust because of the Trustee's decision
to use the Trust funds to purchase the insurance policy
described above.

Pneumo Abex, the corporate successor to the Company's prior
subsidiary, has been dismissed from the suit.

During the second quarter of 2006, the Trustee's motion to
dismiss, in which the Company had joined, was granted and three
counts against the Company based on the use of Trust funds were
dismissed with prejudice, as were all counts against the
Trustee, on the grounds that Cooper lacked standing to pursue
these counts because it was not a beneficiary under the Trust.

The Company then filed a separate motion to dismiss the
remaining counts against it. The Company's motion was also
granted during the second quarter of 2006 and all remaining
counts against it were dismissed with prejudice. Cooper
subsequently filed a notice of appeal with regard to all rulings
by the court dismissing the counts against the Company and the
Trustee.

Prior to any oral argument, the appellate court on Sept. 7, 2007
issued an opinion affirming the trial court's opinion. Cooper
subsequently filed motion papers asking the Illinois Supreme
Court to accept a discretionary appeal of the rulings. The
Trustee then filed an opposition brief explaining why the
Illinois Supreme Court should not allow another appeal, and the
Company joined in that brief.

On Nov. 29, 2007, the Supreme Court of Illinois denied Cooper's
petition for leave to appeal the appellate court's Sept. 7, 2007
ruling. Cooper did not file a petition for certiorari seeking
discretionary review by the U.S. Supreme Court by the Feb. 27,
2008 deadline for such filing.

The Company also has certain indemnification obligations related
to product liability and toxic tort claims that might emanate
out of the 1988 agreement with Pneumo Abex. Other companies not
owned by or associated with the Company also are responsible to
Pneumo Abex for the financial burden of all asbestos product
liability claims filed against Pneumo Abex after a certain date
in 1998, except for certain claims indemnified by the Company.

In fiscal year 2004, the Company noted that three mass-filed
lawsuits accounted for thousands of claims for which Pneumo Abex
claimed indemnification. During the fourth quarter of fiscal
year 2005, these and other related claims were resolved. The
Company has received year-end 2008 claim statistics from law
firms and Pneumo Abex, which reflect the resolution of those
claims and the remaining cases for which Pneumo Abex claims
indemnification from the Company.

After giving effect to the noted resolution of prior mass-filed
claims, there are less than 6,000 such claims for which
indemnification is claimed as of the end of fiscal year 2008. Of
these claims, about 5,450 are filed in federal court and are
subject to orders issued by the Multi-District Litigation panel,
which effectively stay all federal claims, subject to specific
requests to activate a particular claim or a discrete group of
claims.

As of the end of fiscal years 2008 and 2007, The Company had
accrued US$5.1 million as of the end of fiscal year 2008 and
US$4 million as of the end of fiscal year 2007 related to
product liability.

The Company also has additional amounts accrued for legal and
other costs associated with obtaining insurance recoveries for
previously resolved and currently open claims and their related
costs. These amounts are included in the total liabilities of
US$36.1 million accrued as of the end of fiscal year 2008.

In addition to the known and probable asbestos claims, the
Company may be subject to additional asbestos claims that are
possible for which no reserve had been established as of the end
of fiscal year 2008. These additional reasonably possible claims
are primarily asbestos-related and the aggregate exposure
related to these possible claims is estimated to be in the range
of US$4 million to US$17 million.

Headquartered in Minneapolis, PepsiAmericas, Inc. sells various
brands that it bottles under licenses from PepsiCo, Inc. or
PepsiCo joint ventures, which accounted for about 80 percent of
the Company's total net sales in fiscal year 2008. The Company
accounts for about 19 percent of all PepsiCo beverage products
sold in the United States.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Ladish Co. Has Pending Claims in Ill., Wis.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Ladish Co., Inc., as of Dec. 31, 2008, had two asbestos claims
remaining in Illinois and one in Wisconsin, according to the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 4, 2009.

The Company has been named as a defendant in a number of
asbestos cases in Mississippi, Illinois, Wisconsin and
California.

As of Dec. 31, 2008, the Company has been dismissed from the
case in California and the majority of the claims in
Mississippi.

The Company has never manufactured or processed asbestos. The
Company's only exposure to asbestos involves products the
Company purchased from third parties. The Company has notified
its insurance carriers of these claims.

The Company has not made any provision in its financial
statements for the asbestos litigation.

Headquartered in Cudahy, Wis., Ladish Co., Inc. engineers,
produces and markets forged and cast metal components for
various load-bearing and fatigue-resisting applications in the
jet engine, aerospace and industrial markets.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Hazard Found in Piedmont Pipelines in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
During 2008, one of Piedmont Natural Gas Company, Inc.'s
operating districts was found to have coatings on their
pipelines containing asbestos, according to the Company's
quarterly report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 9, 2009.

The Company has taken action to educate employees on the hazards
of asbestos and to implement procedures for removing these
coatings from its pipelines when it must excavate and expose
small portions of the pipeline.

The Company continues to determine the impacts and related costs
to it, if any, and the impact to employees and contractors, if
any.


COMPANY PROFILE:
Piedmont Natural Gas Company, Inc.
4720 Piedmont Row Drive
Charlotte, N.C. 28210
Tel. No.: (704) 364-3120

Description:
The Company distributes natural gas to more than one million
residential, commercial, and industrial customers (including
62,000 wholesale customers) in the Carolinas and Tennessee. The
Company also has gas transportation and storage operations and
sells residential and commercial gas appliances in Tennessee.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Allis-Chalmers Still Facing Liability Cases
----------------------------------------------------------------
Allis-Chalmers Energy Inc. continues to be a defendant in
product liability lawsuits alleging personal injuries resulting
from the Company's activities prior to its 1988 reorganization
involving asbestos.

These claims are referred to and handled by a special products
liability trust formed to be responsible for such claims in
connection with the Company's reorganization.

Since 1988, no court has ruled that the Company is responsible
for products liability claims. The Company has not manufactured
products containing asbestos since its reorganization in 1988.

Headquartered in Houston, Allis-Chalmers Energy Inc. provides
services and equipment to oil and natural gas exploration and
production companies throughout the U.S. including Texas,
Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas, Pennsylvania, New Mexico,
Colorado, offshore in the Gulf of Mexico, and internationally
primarily in Argentina, Mexico and Brazil.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Graybar Faces 2,339 Injury Cases at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Graybar Electric Company, Inc., as of Dec. 31, 2008, faced 2,339
asbestos-related actions, of which 2,194 are individual cases
and 145 are class actions, according to the Company's annual
report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on
March 10, 2009.

About 3,027 individual asbestos cases and 168 asbestos class
actions, as of Dec. 31, 2007, were pending against the Company.
(Class Action Reporter, April 4, 2008)

These actions allege actual or potential asbestos-related
injuries resulting from the use of or exposure to products
allegedly sold by the Company. More claims will likely be filed
against it in the future.

The Company's insurance carriers have historically borne
virtually all costs and liability with respect to this
litigation and are continuing to do so. Accordingly, the
Company's future liability with respect to pending and
unasserted claims is dependent on the continued solvency of its
insurance carriers.

Headquartered in St. Louis, Graybar Electric Company, Inc.
distributes electrical, communications and data networking
products and provides related supply chain management and
logistics services to electrical and comm/data contractors,
industrial plants, telephone companies, federal, state and local
governments, commercial users, and power utilities in North
America.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: United America Has $25.4MM Reserves in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
United America Indemnity, Ltd., as of Dec. 31, 2008, had US$25.4
million of net loss reserves for asbestos-related claims and
US$11.6 million for environmental claims, according to the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 10, 2009.

One of the Company's insurance subsidiaries was recently
dismissed from a lawsuit seeking coverage from it and other
unrelated insurance companies. The suit involved issues related
to about 3,900 existing asbestos related bodily injury claims
and future claims. The dismissal was the result of a settlement
of a disputed claim related to accident year 1984.

The settlement is conditioned upon certain legal events
occurring which will trigger financial obligations by the
insurance company.

Headquartered in George Town, Cayman Islands, United America
Indemnity, Ltd. is a specialty property and casualty insurer,
which provides its insurance products across a full distribution
network binding authority, program, brokerage and reinsurance.
The Company manages the distribution of these products in two
segments: (a) Insurance Operations and (b) Reinsurance
Operations.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 35,357 Claims Pending v. Colfax at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Colfax Corporation faced 35,357 unresolved asbestos claims
during the year ended Dec. 31, 2008, compared with 37,554 claims
during the year ended Dec. 31, 2007, according to the Company's
2008 annual report.

The Company faced 36,607 unresolved asbestos claims at Sept. 26,
2008, compared with 38,477 claims at Sept. 28, 2007. (Class
Action Reporter, Nov. 21, 2008)

Two of the Company's subsidiaries are each one of many
defendants in a large number of lawsuits that claim personal
injury as a result of exposure to asbestos from products
manufactured with components that are alleged to have contained
asbestos.

Those components were acquired from third-party suppliers, and
were not manufactured by any of the subsidiaries nor were the
subsidiaries producers or direct suppliers of asbestos. The
manufactured products that are alleged to have contained
asbestos generally were provided to meet the specifications of
the subsidiaries' customers, including the U.S. Navy.

The subsidiaries settle asbestos claims for amounts management
considers reasonable given the facts and circumstances of each
claim. The annual average settlement payment per asbestos
claimant has fluctuated during the past several years. To date,
the majority of settled claims have been dismissed for no
payment.

During the year ended Dec. 31, 2008, the Company recorded 4,729
claims filed and 6,926 claims resolved. The average cost of
resolved claims was US$5,378.

During the year ended Dec. 31, 2007, the Company recorded 6,861
claims filed and 19,327 claims resolved. The average cost of
resolved claims was US$5,232.

Headquartered in Richmond, Va., Colfax Corporation supplies
fluid handling products, including pumps, fluid handling systems
and controls, and specialty valves. The Company also offers
customized fluid handling solutions to meet individual customer
needs.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Colfax's Insurer Reimbursed $7.6Mil in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
Colfax Corporation, in the fourth quarter of 2008, reimbursed a
primary insurer for US$7.6 million in asbestos-related
deductibles and retrospective premiums.

In 2006, the primary insurer asserted that certain primary
insurance policies contain deductibles and retrospective premium
provisions. As a result, the Company had a reserve of US$7.5
million recorded as a reduction to its asbestos insurance asset
at Dec. 31, 2007, for the probable and reasonably estimable
liability the Company expected to pay related to these policy
provisions. The Company reimbursed the primary insurer for
US$7.6 million in deductibles and retrospective premiums and has
no further liability to the insurer under these provisions of
the primary policies.

Until recently, a Company subsidiary has had all of its
liability and defense costs covered in full by its primary and
umbrella insurance carrier. This carrier has informed the
subsidiary that the primary insurance policies are now
exhausted.

In May 2008, the carrier provided notice that one of 14 umbrella
policies had exhausted and in October 2008, notified the
subsidiary that two additional umbrella policies had been
exhausted.

In November 2008, the subsidiary entered into a settlement
agreement with the primary and umbrella carrier governing all
aspects of the carrier's past and future handling of the
asbestos related bodily injury claims against the subsidiary. As
a result of this agreement, during the third quarter of 2008,
the Company increased its insurance asset by US$7 million
attributable to resolution of a dispute concerning certain pre-
1966 insurance policies and recorded a corresponding gain.

The additional insurance will be allocated by the carrier to
cover any gaps in coverage up to US$7 million resulting from
exhaustion of umbrella policies and/or the failure of any excess
carrier to pay amounts incurred in connection with asbestos
claims. The primary and umbrella insurer is once again paying
100 percent of all liability and defense costs.

In 2003, another one of the Company's subsidiaries brought legal
action against a number of its insurers and its former parent to
resolve a variety of disputes concerning insurance for asbestos-
related bodily injury claims asserted against it. For this other
subsidiary it was determined by court ruling in the fourth
quarter of 2007, that the allocation methodology mandated by the
New Jersey courts will apply.

This allocation methodology, referred to as the Carter-Wallace
methodology, was applied in the New Jersey Supreme Court in the
case of Carter-Wallace, Inc. v. Admiral Ins. Co., 154 N.J. 312
(N.J. 1998), which provides that the loss is allocated to each
policy year based on the proportion of the policyholder's total
triggered coverage that was purchased in that year.

The Company increased its expected recovery percentage to 87.5
percent from 75 percent of all liability costs recorded after
Sept. 28, 2007 and revalued its insurance asset at that date.
The subsidiary increased its expected recovery percent of future
liability cost from 87.5 percent to 88.5 percent as of Dec. 31,
2008.

In 2007 and 2008, certain insurance carriers agreed to settle
with this subsidiary by reimbursing the subsidiary for amounts
it paid for liability and defense costs as well as entering into
formal agreements detailing the payments of future liability and
defense costs in an agreed to allocation. In addition, a number
of non-settling insurance carriers have paid significant amounts
for liability and defense costs paid by the subsidiary in the
past and continue to pay a share of costs as they are incurred.

Presently, certain insurers are paying 22.7 percent of costs for
current asbestos-related liability and defense costs as they are
incurred.

Headquartered in Richmond, Va., Colfax Corporation supplies
fluid handling products, including pumps, fluid handling systems
and controls, and specialty valves. The Company also offers
customized fluid handling solutions to meet individual customer
needs.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Colfax Has $35.2M Insurance Proceeds in '08
----------------------------------------------------------------
Colfax Corporation recorded total asbestos-related insurance
proceeds of US$35,201,000 during the year ended Dec. 31, 2008,
compared with US$65,451,000 during the year ended Dec. 31, 2007.

The Company has established reserves of US$357.3 million as of
Dec. 31, 2008 and US$376.2 million as of Dec. 31, 2007 for the
probable and reasonably estimable asbestos-related liability
cost it believes the subsidiaries will pay through the next 15
years. It has also established recoverables of US$304 million as
of Dec. 31, 2008 and US$305.2 million as of Dec. 31, 2007 for
the insurance recoveries that are deemed probable during the
same time period.

Net of these recoverables, the expected cash outlay on a non-
discounted basis for asbestos-related bodily injury claims over
the next 15 years was US$53.3 million as of Dec. 31, 2008 and
US$71 million as of Dec. 31, 2007. In addition, the Company has
recorded a receivable for liability and defense costs previously
paid in the amount of US$36.4 million as of Dec. 31, 2008 and
US$44.7 million as of Dec. 31, 2007.

The income related to these liabilities and legal defense was
US$4.8 million, net of estimated insurance recoveries, for the
year ended Dec. 31, 2008, compared with US$63.9 million for the
year ended Dec. 31, 2007.

Legal costs related to the subsidiaries' action against their
asbestos insurers were US$17.2 million for the year ended Dec.
31, 2008, compared with US$13.6 million for the year ended Dec.
31, 2006.

Headquartered in Richmond, Va., Colfax Corporation supplies
fluid handling products, including pumps, fluid handling systems
and controls, and specialty valves. The Company also offers
customized fluid handling solutions to meet individual customer
needs.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: ABB Has $31Mil Loss From Closed Operations
----------------------------------------------------------------
ABB Ltd. says that the asbestos-related loss from discontinued
operations, net of tax for the year ended Dec. 31, 2008 was
US$31 million, according to the Company's annual report, on Form
20-F, filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March
10, 2009.

Net cash provided by operating activities in 2008 included
US$100 million of asbestos payments. In 2007, US$382 million of
asbestos payments were made, of which US$204 million was paid
upon the sale of Lummus Global.

Under subsidiary Combustion Engineering, Inc.'s Plan of
Reorganization, the Company and certain of its subsidiaries have
contingent payment obligations of US$50 million, for which the
Company has established a provision as of Dec. 31, 2008.

CE was a co-defendant in a large number of lawsuits claiming
damage for personal injury resulting from exposure to asbestos.
A smaller number of claims were also brought against Lummus as
well as against other entities of the Company.

Separate plans of reorganization for CE and Lummus, as amended,
were filed under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code. The CE
plan of reorganization became effective on April 21, 2006 and
the Lummus plan of reorganization became effective on Aug. 31,
2006.

Under the Plans, separate personal injury trusts were created
and funded to settle future asbestos related claims against CE
and Lummus and on the respective Plan effective dates,
channeling injunctions were issued under Section 524(g) of the
U.S. Bankruptcy Code under which all present and future
asbestos-related personal injury claims filed against the
Company and its affiliates and certain other entities that
relate to the operations of CE and Lummus are channeled to the
CE Asbestos PI Trust or the Lummus Asbestos PI Trust.

Funding of the CE Asbestos PI Trust has been made on certain
scheduled payment dates. In addition, US$204 million was paid to
this Trust on Nov. 14, 2007, as required in conjunction with the
sale of Lummus which occurred on Nov. 16, 2007. Funding of the
Lummus Asbestos PI Trust was completed on May 2, 2007 upon the
payment to that Trust of US$28 million.

Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, ABB Ltd. provides power
and automation technologies to utility, industrial, and
commercial customers. Power products include transmission and
distribution components, as well as turnkey substation systems.
Automation technologies are used to monitor and control
equipment and processes in industrial plants and utilities. The
Company gets nearly half of its sales in Europe.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: ABB Ltd Units Face 7,500 Claims at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Other ABB Ltd entities (aside from Combustion Engineering, Inc.
and former unit Lummus Global) face 7,500 asbestos-related
claims at Dec. 31, 2008, compared with 9,500 claims at Dec. 31,
2007.

ABB entities that are subject to such claims will continue to
resolve them in the tort system, or otherwise. The Company
generally seeks dismissals from claims where there is no
apparent linkage between the plaintiff's claimed exposure and a
product of the Company.

The Company is also liable on a contingent basis under the ABB
Promissory Note for two additional payments of US$25 million
each. One additional payment of US$25 million is payable in 2010
or 2011 if the Company attains an earnings before interest and
taxes (EBIT) margin of nine percent for 2009 or 14 percent in
2010. The other additional payment of US$25 million is payable
in 2011 if the Company attains an EBIT margin of 9.5 percent in
2010.

During 2008, the Company recorded both of these contingent
payment obligations as, based on forecasted financial results,
it expects to achieve the target EBIT margins in 2009 and 2010.

If the Company is found by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to have
defaulted on its payment obligations under the ABB Promissory
Note, the CE Asbestos PI Trust may petition the Bankruptcy Court
to terminate the CE channeling injunction and the protections
afforded by that injunction to the Company and other ABB
entities as well as certain other entities, including Alstom SA.

Headquartered in Zurich, Switzerland, ABB Ltd. provides power
and automation technologies to utility, industrial, and
commercial customers. Power products include transmission and
distribution components, as well as turnkey substation systems.
Automation technologies are used to monitor and control
equipment and processes in industrial plants and utilities. The
Company gets nearly half of its sales in Europe.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: TriMas Facing 784 Pending Cases at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
TriMas Corporation, as of Dec. 31, 2008, was a party to 784
pending asbestos-related cases involving an aggregate of 7,524
claimants, according to the Company's annual report filed with
the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 10, 2009.

As of Sept. 30, 2008, the Company faced about 721 pending
asbestos cases involving an aggregate of about 7,497 claimants.
(Class Action Reporter, Dec. 5, 2008)

These cases allege personal injury from exposure to asbestos
containing materials formerly used in gaskets (both encapsulated
and otherwise) manufactured or distributed by certain of the
Company's subsidiaries for use primarily in the petrochemical
refining and exploration industries.

During the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2008, the Company recorded
723 claims filed during period, 2,668 claims dismissed during
period, and 75 claims settled during period. The average
settlement per claim during period was US$1,813 and the total
defense costs during period were US$3,448,000.

During the fiscal year ended Dec. 31, 2007, the Company recorded
619 claims filed during period, 1,484 claims dismissed during
period, and 142 claims settled during period. The average
settlement per claim during period was US$9,243 and the total
defense costs during period were US$4,982,000.

In addition, the Company acquired various companies to
distribute its products that had distributed gaskets of other
manufacturers prior to acquisition. The Company said it believes
that many of its pending cases relate to locations at which none
of its gaskets were distributed or used.

Of the 7,524 claims pending at Dec. 31, 2008, 193 set forth
specific amounts of damages (other than those stating the
statutory minimum or maximum). About 156 of the 193 claims
sought between US$1 million and US$5 million in total damages
(which includes compensatory and punitive damages), about 35
sought between US$5 million and US$10 million in total damages
(which includes compensatory and punitive damages) and two
sought over US$10 million in total damages (which includes
compensatory and punitive damages).

Solely with respect to compensatory damages, about 161 of the
193 claims sought between US$50,000 and US$600,000, about 30
sought between US$1 million and US$5 million and 2 sought over
US$5 million.

Solely with respect to punitive damages, about 157 of the 193
claims sought between US$0 and US$2.5 million, 35 sought between
US$2.5 million and US$5 million and one sought over US$5
million.

Total settlement costs (exclusive of defense costs) for all
those cases, some of which were filed over 20 years ago, have
been about US$5.2 million. All relief sought in the asbestos
cases is monetary in nature.

Headquartered in Bloomfield Hills, Mich., TriMas Corporation
manufactures highly engineered and applied products serving
focused markets in commercial, industrial and consumer
applications.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Navistar Int'l. Still Facing Exposure Cases
----------------------------------------------------------------
Navistar International Corporation continues to be subject to an
increase in the number of asbestos-related claims in recent
years, according to the Company's quarterly report filed with
the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 11, 2009.

In general, these claims relate to illnesses alleged to have
resulted from asbestos exposure from component parts found in
older vehicles, although some cases relate to the alleged
presence of asbestos in its facilities.

In these claims, the Company is not the sole defendant, and the
claims name as defendants numerous manufacturers and suppliers
of a wide variety of products allegedly containing asbestos.

Headquartered in Warrenville, Ill., Navistar International
Corporation is a holding company whose principal operating
subsidiaries are Navistar, Inc. and Navistar Financial
Corporation. The Company operates in four principal industry
segments: Truck, Engine, Parts, and Financial Services.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Alamo Reserves $276T for Gradall's Facility
----------------------------------------------------------------
Alamo Group Inc. has a reserve of US$276,000 over a potential
asbestos issue at its Gradall facility in New Philadelphia,
Ohio, according to the Company's annual report filed with the
Securities and Exchange Commission on March 11, 2009.

The Company had a reserve of US$278,000 over a potential
asbestos issue at its Gradall facility. (Class Action Reporter,
Nov. 28, 2008)

At Dec. 31, 2008, the Company had an environmental reserve in
the amount of US$1,607,000 related to the acquisition of
Gradall's facility in Ohio. Three specific remediation projects
that were identified prior to the acquisition are in process of
remediation with a remaining reserve balance of US$143,000.

The balance of the reserve, US$1,188,000, is mainly for
potential ground water contamination/remediation that was
identified before the acquisition and believed to have been
generated by a third party company located near the Gradall
facility.

Headquartered in Seguin, Tex., Alamo Group Inc. designs,
manufactures, distributes, and services high quality equipment
for right-of-way maintenance and agriculture. The Company's
products include tractor-mounted mowing and other vegetation
maintenance equipment, street sweepers, excavators, vacuum
trucks, snow removal equipment, pothole patchers, agricultural
implements and related aftermarket parts and services.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: CenterPoint Resources Facing Injury Claims
----------------------------------------------------------------
CenterPoint Energy Resources Corp. or its predecessor companies
continue to face lawsuits filed by certain individuals who claim
injury due to exposure to asbestos during work at those formerly
owned facilities.

The Company anticipates that additional claims like those
received may be asserted in the future, according to the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 11, 2009.

Headquartered in Houston, CenterPoint Energy Resources Corp.
owns and operates natural gas distribution systems in six
states. Its subsidiaries own interstate natural gas pipelines
and gas gathering systems and provide various ancillary
services. The Company is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of
CenterPoint Energy, Inc.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Partial Deals in NL Actions Reached in Dec.
----------------------------------------------------------------
NL Industries, Inc., in December 2008, reached partial
settlements with plaintiffs in the two insurance cases, under
which two former insurance carriers agreed to pay the Company an
aggregate of about US$7.2 million in settlement of certain
counter-claims related to past lead pigment and asbestos defense
costs.

The Company received these funds from the carriers in January
2009.

The Company is involved in certain legal proceedings with a
number of its former insurance carriers regarding the nature and
extent of the carriers' obligations to it under insurance
policies with respect to certain lead pigment and asbestos
lawsuits.

The issue of whether insurance coverage for defense costs or
indemnity or both will be found to exist for the Company's lead
pigment and asbestos litigation depends upon various factors.
The Company has not considered any potential insurance
recoveries for lead pigment or asbestos litigation matters in
determining related accruals.

In October 2005, the Company was served with a complaint in
OneBeacon American Insurance Company v. NL Industries, Inc., et
al. (Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York,
Index No. 603429-05). The plaintiff, a former insurance carrier,
seeks a declaratory judgment of its obligations to the Company
under insurance policies issued to it by the plaintiff's
predecessor with respect to certain lead pigment lawsuits filed
against the Company.

In March 2006, the trial court denied the Company's motion to
dismiss. In April 2006, the Company filed a notice of appeal of
the trial court's ruling, and in September 2007, the Supreme
Court Appellate Division (First Department) reversed and
ordered that the OneBeacon complaint be dismissed. The Appellate
Division did not dismiss the counterclaims and cross claims.

In February 2006, the Company was served with a complaint in
Certain Underwriters at Lloyds, London v. Millennium Holdings
LLC et al. (Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of
New York, Index No. 06/60026). The plaintiff, a former insurance
carrier of the Company, seeks a declaratory judgment of its
obligations to the Company under insurance policies issued to it
by the plaintiff with respect to certain lead pigment lawsuits.

In connection with the December 2008 partial settlements, the
Company agreed to dismiss the case captioned NL Industries, Inc.
v. OneBeacon America Insurance Company, et al. (District Court
for Dallas County, Texas, Case No. 05-11347), and in January
2009, the Company filed a notice of non-suit without prejudice
in that matter. The remaining claims in New York state cases are
proceeding in the trial court.

Headquartered in Dallas, NL Industries, Inc. is primarily a
holding company. It operates in the component products industry
through majority-owned subsidiary, CompX International Inc. The
Company operates in the chemicals industry through its non-
controlling interest in Kronos Worldwide, Inc.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: NL Industries Still Facing Exposure Actions
----------------------------------------------------------------
NL Industries, Inc. continues to be a defendant in various
lawsuits in several jurisdictions, alleging personal injuries as
a result of occupational exposure primarily to products
manufactured by the Company's former operations containing
asbestos, silica and mixed dust.

About 465 of these types of cases remain pending, involving a
total of about 5,400 plaintiffs, according to the Company's
annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission
on March 12, 2009.

About 460 of these types of cases remain pending, involving a
total of about 5,500 plaintiffs. (Class Action Reporter, Nov.
14, 2008)

In addition, the claims of about 4,400 former plaintiffs have
been administratively dismissed or placed on the inactive docket
in Ohio state courts. The Company does not expect that these
claims will be re-opened unless the plaintiffs meet the courts'
medical criteria for asbestos-related claims.

The Company has not accrued any amounts for this litigation
because of the uncertainty of liability and inability to
reasonably estimate the liability, if any. To date, the Company
has not been adjudicated liable in any of these matters.

In addition, from time to time, the Company has received notices
regarding asbestos or silica claims purporting to be brought
against former subsidiaries, including notices provided to
insurers with which the Company has entered into settlements
extinguishing certain insurance policies. These insurers may
seek indemnification from the Company.

Headquartered in Dallas, NL Industries, Inc. is primarily a
holding company. It operates in the component products industry
through majority-owned subsidiary, CompX International Inc. The
Company operates in the chemicals industry through its non-
controlling interest in Kronos Worldwide, Inc.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: MYR Group Still Subject to Exposure Claims
----------------------------------------------------------------
MYR Group Inc. continues to be subject to asbestos-related
exposure claims concerning historic operations of a predecessor
affiliate, according to the Company's annual report filed with
the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 12, 2009.

The Company said it believes that it has strong defenses to
these claims and adequate insurance coverage in the event any
asbestos-related claim is not resolved in its favor.

Headquartered in Rolling Meadows, Ill., MYR Group Inc. provides
utility and electrical construction services with a network of
local offices located throughout the continental United States.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Sterlite Signs Deal to Buy ASARCO's Assets
----------------------------------------------------------------
Sterlite Industries (India) Limited, on March 7, 2009, announced
that it has signed a new agreement with ASARCO LLC, a Tucson-
Ariz.- based mining, smelting and refining company, for purchase
of substantially all the operating assets of Asarco, according
to a Sterlite report, on Form 8-K, filed with the Securities and
Exchange Commission on March 7, 2009.

The purchase consideration comprises (a) a cash payment of
US$1.1 billion on closing; and (b) a senior secured non-interest
bearing promissory note for US$600 million, payable over a
period of nine years.

Sterlite will assume operating liabilities but not legacy
liabilities for asbestos and environmental claims for ceased
operations. The consideration being paid is towards the gross
fixed assets and working capital of Asarco.

Asarco, formerly known as American Smelting and Refining
Company, is a 110 year old company and is currently the third
largest copper producer in the United States. It sold about
237,000 tons of refined copper in 2008. Asarco's mines currently
have estimated reserves of 5 million tons of contained copper.

Headquartered in Mumbai, India, Sterlite Industries (India)
Limited is a non-ferrous metals and mining company with
interests and operations in aluminum, copper and zinc and lead.
It is a subsidiary of Vedanta Resources plc, a London-based
diversified FTSE 100 metals and mining group.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Int'l. Shipholding Reserves $276,000 in '08
----------------------------------------------------------------
International Shipholding Corporation's reserves for asbestos
and hearing loss lawsuits were US$276,000 as of Dec. 31, 2008,
compared with US$350,000 as of Dec. 31, 2007, according to the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 13, 2009.

The Company has been named as a defendant in numerous lawsuits
claiming damages related to occupational diseases, primarily
related to asbestos and hearing loss. The Company's current
overall exposure to the numerous lawsuits in question, after
considering insurance coverage for these claims, has been
estimated to be about US$280,000.

The Company said it believes that potential additional claims,
if pursued, would be covered under an indemnification agreement
with a previous owner of one of its subsidiaries and/or under
one or more of its existing insurance policies with deductibles
ranging from US$2,500 to US$25,000 per claim.

Headquartered in Mobile, Ala., International Shipholding
Corporation operates a diversified fleet of U.S. and
International flag vessels that provide international and
domestic maritime transportation services to commercial and
governmental customers under medium to long-term time charters
or contracts of affreightment. At Feb. 28, 2009, the Company
owned or operated 31 ocean-going vessels and related shoreside
handling facilities, including three Newbuildings presently on
order.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 1 Exposure Case Filed v. Great Lakes in '08
----------------------------------------------------------------
Great Lakes Dredge & Dock Corporation says that one asbestos
exposure case was filed against the Company in 2008, according
to the Company's annual report filed with the Securities and
Exchange Commission on March 13, 2009.

The Company or its former subsidiary, NATCO Limited Partnership,
faces 263 asbestos lawsuits, the majority of which were filed
between 1989 and 2000.

In these lawsuits, the plaintiffs allege personal injury,
primarily fibrosis or asbestosis, from exposure to asbestos on
the Company's vessels. Most of these lawsuits have been filed in
the Northern District of Ohio and a few in the Eastern District
of Michigan.

All of the cases filed against the Company prior to 1996 were
administratively dismissed in May 1996 and any cases filed since
that time have similarly been administratively transferred to
the inactive docket. Plaintiffs in these cases could seek to
reinstate the cases at a future date without being barred by the
statute of limitations.

However, to date, no plaintiffs with claims against the Company
have sought reinstatement.

Headquartered in Oak Brook, Ill., Great Lakes Dredge & Dock
Corporation provides dredging services in the United States. The
Company also owns a majority interest in NASDI, a demolition
services provider located in the Boston area. The Company
operates in two reportable segments: dredging and demolition.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Ameron Int'l. Facing 23 Actions at March 1
----------------------------------------------------------------
Ameron International Corporation was a defendant in 23 asbestos-
related cases as of March 1, 2009, compared with 24 cases as of
Nov. 30, 2008, according to the Company's quarterly report filed
with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 27, 2009.

The Company was a defendant in asbestos-related cases involving
31 claimants as of Aug. 31, 2008, compared with 29 claimants as
of June 1, 2008. (Class Action Reporter, Oct. 3, 2008)

The Company is a defendant in a number of asbestos-related
personal injury lawsuits. These cases generally seek unspecified
damages for asbestos-related diseases based on alleged exposure
to products previously manufactured by the Company and others.

During the quarter ended March 1, 2009, two new asbestos-related
cases were filed, two cases dismissed, one case settled, no
judgments and aggregate net costs and expenses of US$200,000.

Headquartered in Pasadena, Calif., Ameron International
Corporation designs, makes, and markets fiberglass-composite
pipes for trasmitting oil, chemicals, corrosive liquids, and
other specialty materials. The Company also makes and sells
concrete and steel pipe to developers, contractors, and
government agencies in the western United States.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Dana Holding Facing 31,000 Cases at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Dana Holding Corporation had about 31,000 active pending
asbestos personal injury liability claims at Dec. 31, 2008,
compared with 41,000 claims pending at Dec. 31, 2007, according
to the Company's annual report filed with the Securities and
Exchange Commission on March 16, 2009.

In addition, about 16,000 mostly inactive claims have been
settled and are awaiting final documentation and dismissal, with
or without payment. The Company has accrued US$124 million for
indemnity and defense costs for settled, pending and future
claims at Dec. 31, 2008, compared with US$136 million at Dec.
31, 2007.

The Company had about 41,000 active pending asbestos personal
injury liability claims at Sept. 30, 2008, including about
11,000 claims that were settled but are awaiting final
documentation and payment. (Class Action Reporter, Nov. 28,
2008)

Prior to 2006, the Company reached agreements with some of its
insurers to commute policies covering asbestos personal injury
claims. At Dec. 31, 2008, the Company had recorded US$63 million
as an asset for probable recovery from its insurers for the
pending and projected asbestos personal injury liability claims,
compared to US$69 million recorded at Dec. 31, 2007.

The Company's asbestos personal injury liability was US$105
million at Dec. 31, 2008, compared with US$145 million at Dec.
31, 2007.

Headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, Dana Holding Corporation supplies
axle, driveshaft, structural, sealing and thermal management
products for global vehicle manufacturers. At Dec. 31, 2008, the
Company employed about 29,000 people in 26 countries and
operated 113 major facilities throughout the world.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Dana Records $2M Receivable for CCR Claims
----------------------------------------------------------------
Dana Holding Corporation, at Dec. 31, 2008, had a receivable of
US$2 million for the Center for Claims Resolution (CCR)
asbestos-related claims to be recovered, according to the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 16, 2009.

At Sept. 30, 2008, the Company had a receivable of US$10 million
that it expected to recover from available insurance and surety
bonds relating to CCR asbestos claims. (Class Action Reporter,
Nov. 28, 2008)

After the CCR discontinued negotiating shared settlements for
asbestos claims for its member companies in 2001, some former
CCR members defaulted on the payment of their shares of some
settlements and some settling claimants sought payment of the
unpaid shares from other members of the CCR at the time of the
settlements, including from the Company.

The Company has been working with the CCR, other former CCR
members, its insurers and the claimants over a period of several
years in an effort to resolve these issues.

Through Dec. 31, 2008, the Company had paid US$47 million to
claimants and collected US$45 million with respect to these
claims.

The Company received US$20 million in the fourth quarter of 2008
as a result of resolving administrative disputes with several of
its insurers. Efforts to recover additional CCR-related payments
from surety bonds and other claims are continuing.

Additional recoveries are not assured and accordingly have not
been recorded as assets at Dec. 31, 2008.

Headquartered in Toledo, Ohio, Dana Holding Corporation supplies
axle, driveshaft, structural, sealing and thermal management
products for global vehicle manufacturers. At Dec. 31, 2008, the
Company employed about 29,000 people in 26 countries and
operated 113 major facilities throughout the world.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Ballantyne Facing Stehman Action in Calif.
----------------------------------------------------------------
Ballantyne of Omaha, Inc. is still a defendant in an asbestos
case entitled Larry C. Stehman and Leila Stehman v. Asbestos
Corporation, Limited and Ballantyne of Omaha, Inc. individually
and as successor in interest to Strong International, Strong
Electric Corporation and Century Projector Corporation, et al.

The case was filed on Dec. 8, 2006 in the Superior Court of the
State of California, County of San Francisco.

The case is scheduled for trial to commence on May 26, 2009.

Headquartered in Omaha, Nebr., Ballantyne of Omaha, Inc.
manufactures, distributes, and provides services to the theatre
exhibition industry. The Company also design, develop,
manufactures, and distributes lighting systems to the
entertainment lighting industry through its Strong Entertainment
lighting division.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: GenCorp Cites 138 Pending Cases at Feb. 28
----------------------------------------------------------------
GenCorp Inc. faced 138 asbestos-related cases pending as of Feb.
28, 2009, compared with 157 cases as of Nov. 30, 2008, according
to the Company's quarterly report filed with the Securities and
Exchange Commission on March 27, 2009.

The Company has been, and continues to be, named as a defendant
in lawsuits alleging personal injury or death due to exposure to
asbestos in building materials, products, or in manufacturing
operations. Most of the cases have been filed in Madison County,
Ill., and San Francisco.

During the three months ended Feb. 28, 2009, the Company
recorded 11 claims filed, 21 claims consolidated, and nine
claims dismissed.

During the year ended Nov. 30, 2008, the Company recorded 33
claims filed, 31 claims dismissed, and five claims settled.
Aggregate settlement costs were US$246,000 and average
settlement costs were US$49,000.

Headquartered in Rancho Cordova, Calif., GenCorp Inc.
manufactures aerospace and defense systems with a real estate
segment that includes activities related to the entitlement,
sale, and leasing of the Company's excess real estate assets.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Boss Holdings Still Facing Exposure Actions
----------------------------------------------------------------
Boss Holdings, Inc. is still a defendant in several lawsuits
alleging past exposure to asbestos contained in gloves sold by
one of the its predecessors-in-interest, according to the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 27, 2009.

These actions are defended by one or more of the Company's
general liability or products liability insurers.

Headquartered in Kewanee, Ill., Boss Holdings, Inc.'s primary
operating subsidiary is Boss Manufacturing Company. The Company
operates primarily in the work gloves and protective wear
business segment. The Company also conducts operations in the
pet supplies business segment and promotional and specialty
products segments.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: VWR Funding Still Involved in Product Suits
----------------------------------------------------------------
VWR Funding, Inc. continues to be involved in litigation
resulting from the alleged prior distribution of products
containing asbestos by certain of the Company's predecessors or
acquired companies.

No other asbestos-related matters were disclosed in the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 30, 2009.

Headquartered in West Chester, Pa., VWR Funding, Inc. provides
distribution services. Products distributed include chemicals,
glassware, equipment, instruments, protective clothing,
production supplies and other assorted laboratory products. The
Company has operations in more than 20 countries and process
about 50,000 order lines daily from more than 20 strategically
located distribution centers.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Kaiser Ventures Records 18 Actions in 2008
----------------------------------------------------------------
Kaiser Ventures LLC, in 2008, recorded 18 active asbestos-
related lawsuits, according to the Company's annual report filed
with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 30, 2009.

The Company said that 15 active suits were pending, primarily
bodily injury, against Kaiser LLC and Kaiser Steel Corporation
(the bankruptcy estate of Kaiser Steel Corporation is embodied
in KSC Recovery, Inc.). (Class Action Reporter, April 18, 2008)

There are pending asbestos litigation claims, primarily bodily
injury, against Kaiser LLC and Kaiser Steel Corporation.

Many of the plaintiffs allege that they or their family members
were aboard Kaiser ships or worked in shipyards in the
Oakland/San Francisco, Calif., area or Vancouver, Washington
area in the 1940s and that the Company and/or KSC Recovery were
in some manner associated with one or more shipyards or has
successor liability.

However, there are an increasing number of claims related to
other facilities such as the former Kaiser Steel Mill Site
Property.

Most of these lawsuits are third party premises claims alleging
injury resulting from exposure to asbestos or asbestos
containing products and involve multiple defendants. The Company
anticipates that it, often along with KSC Recovery, will be
named as a defendant in additional asbestos lawsuits.

Of the claims resolved to date, about 70 percent have been
resolved without payment to the plaintiffs.

Headquartered in Ontario, Canada, Kaiser Ventures LLC oversees
recycling and solid waste investments. The Company's holdings
include an 83.1 percent stake in Mine Reclamation Corporation
(MRC) and a 50 percent stake in West Valley Materials Recovery
Facility and Transfer Station, which separates waste materials
for recycling or storage.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Dryships Inc. Subject to Exposure Lawsuits
----------------------------------------------------------------
Dryships Inc., from time to time, may be involved in various
litigation matters including asbestos and other toxic tort
claims.

No other asbestos-related matters were disclosed in the
Company's annual report, on Form 20-F, filed with the Securities
and Exchange Commission on March 30, 2009.


COMPANY PROFILE:
Dryships Inc.
80 Kifissias Avenue
GR 15125 Amaroussion
Greece
Tel. No.: + 011 30 210-80 90-570
Fax No.: + 011 30 210 80 90 585

Description:
The Company's vessels carry commodities like coal, iron ore,
grain, bauxite, fertilizers, and steel products. The fleet,
which is made up mainly of Panamax vessels but also includes
Capesize and Supramax units, has an overall capacity of more
than 3.1 million deadweight tons (DWT).


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Nevamar's Injury Actions Settled on Nov. 21
----------------------------------------------------------------
Panolam Industries International, Inc., on Nov. 21, 2008,
entered into a settlement agreement with International Paper to
settle the asbestos-related workers' compensation claims of the
Company's subsidiary, Nevamar Company LLC.

During 2006, Nevamar was named a defendant in numerous workers
compensation claims filed on behalf of current and former
employees at the Hampton, S.C., facility alleging injury in the
course of employment due to alleged exposure to asbestos and
unidentified chemicals.

Under the ownership of Westinghouse Electric Corporation, the
Hampton facility manufactured asbestos-based products until
1975. In 2004 and 2005, Nevamar, Westinghouse and International
Paper settled 10 workers' compensation claims related to alleged
asbestos exposure.

Under a 2005 agreement with International Paper, Nevamar's
liability for workers compensation claims related to alleged
exposure to asbestos brought by employees hired before July 1,
2002, was capped at 15 percent of any damages it shares with
International Paper until Nevamar has paid an aggregate of
US$700,000 at which point the Company would have no
responsibility for any additional shared damages.

On Nov. 21, 2008, the Company and International Paper settled
all of these workers' compensation claims for a cash sum
including any related claims that are filed by any person who
was previously employed, is currently employed or becomes
employed by Nevamar on or before Dec. 31, 2008.

Employees hired by Nevamar after Dec. 31, 2008 and who file
claims related to alleged exposure to asbestos are not covered
by this settlement agreement. The Company paid the settlement
amount in November 2008.

Headquartered in Shelton, Conn., Panolam Industries
International, Inc. designs, manufactures and distributes
decorative laminates in the United States and Canada. Products
are marketed under the Panolam, Pluswood, Nevamar and Pionite
brand names.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 24 Claims Filed From March 16-20 in Madison
----------------------------------------------------------------
During the week of March 16, 2009 through March 20, 2009, 24 new
asbestos-related lawsuits were filed in Madison County Circuit
Court, Ill., The Madison St. Clair Record reports.

These claims are:

-- (Case No. 09-L-0272) Paul Adams Sr. of Pennsylvania claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of his deceased wife, Beverly Adams,
   who worked as a telephone operator, retail clerk and laborer
   at various locations. Robert Phillips, Esq., and Perry J.
   Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill.,
   represent Mr. Adams.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0280) Mary Ahlrich of Florida claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased husband, Stephen
   Ahlrich, who worked as a busboy, life guard, substitute
   teacher, pilot trainer and laborer at various locations. He
   was also exposed to asbestos fibers through his father, who
   worked as an electrician. Nicholas J. Angelides, Esq., of
   SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill., represents Mrs. Ahlrich.

-- (Case No. 09-L-286) Rafael Casanova, cafeteria worker,
   janitor, laborer, expediter, inspector, geologist, and
   scientist, claims mesothelioma. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and
   Barry Julian, Esq., of Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton,
   Ill., represent Mr. Casanova.

-- (Case No. 09-L-283) Sherridan Crapo of Indiana claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased father, Charles Morby,
   who worked as a carpenter's mate and as a civil engineer.
   Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian, Esq., of Gori, Julian
   and Associates in Alton, Ill., represents Mrs. Crapo.

-- (Case No. 09-L-285) David Davidson of Texas claims his
   deceased wife, Selma Davidson, developed mesothelioma after
   her work in the industrial industry. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and
   Barry Julian, Esq., of Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton,
   Ill., represent Mr. Davidson.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0258) Kandi Edwards of Florida claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased father, Mathias
   Koenig, who worked at Illinois Bell Telephone Company in
   Chicago. He was also exposed to asbestos fibers through his
   father, who was an assembly line worker at Hot Point
   Appliances. Nicholas J. Angelides, Esq., and Taylor L. Kerns,
   Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill. Represent Mrs.
   Edwards.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0282) Donald B. Enneking of California, a
   project engineer, mechanic and maintenance manager, claims
   mesothelioma. T. Barton French Jr., Esq., and Nate Mudd,
   Esq., of French and Mudd in St. Louis represent Mr. Enneking.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0277) Anna M. Fey of Kentucky claims lung
   cancer on behalf of her deceased husband, Eugene C. Fey Sr.,
   who worked as a sheet metal worker and maintenance worker.
   Robert Phillips, Esq., and Perry J. Browder, Esq., of
   SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill., represent Mrs. Fey.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0271) Rebecca Figge of Iowa claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased father, Raymond
   Kutcher, who worked as an insulator at various locations.
   Robert Phillips, Esq., and Perry J. Browder, Esq., of
   SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill., represent Mrs. Figge.

-- (Case No. 09-L-284) Kristine Freed of Ohio claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased father, Karl Maurer,
   who worked as a driver, as a machinist, as a maintenance
   technician, as a laborer, and as a security guard. Randy L.
   Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian, Esq., of Gori, Julian and
   Associates in Alton, Ill., represent Mrs. Freed.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0261) Cheryl Lefler of Illinois claims lung
   cancer on behalf of her deceased husband, Gerald Lefler, who
   worked in the U.S. Army and from 1960 until 2008 as a
   bricklayer. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian, Esq., of
   Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton, Ill., represent Mrs.
   Lefler.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0274) Dorothy Moore of Missouri claims
   asbestosis on behalf of her deceased husband, James W. Moore,
   who worked as a laborer at various locations. Robert
   Phillips, Esq., and Perry J. Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCoooper
   in East Alton, Ill., represent Mrs. Moore.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0278) Gina Nash-Alfonzo of Florida claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased mother, Angela R.
   Nash, who worked as a helicopter pilot, special projects
   officer, flight instructor, delivery driver, security officer
   and maintenance worker. Robert Phillips, Esq., and Perry J.
   Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill.,
   represent Mrs. Nash-Alonzo.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0276) Ann Oligschlaeger of Missouri claims
   asbestosis on behalf of her deceased husband, John
   Oligschlaeger, who worked as a laborer. Robert Phillips,
   Esq., and Perry J. Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East
   Alton, Ill., represent Mrs. Oligschlaeger.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0270) Jim Podner of Illinois claims lung
   cancer on behalf of his deceased father, Jack Podner, who
   worked as a laborer. Robert Phillips, Esq., and Perry J.
   Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill.,
   represent Jim Podner.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0275) Henry Puckett of Missouri claims
   asbestosis on behalf of his deceased father, John H. Puckett
   Jr., who worked as a laborer. Robert Phillips, Esq., and
   Perry J. Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill.,
   represent Henry Puckett.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0262) JoAnn Reece of Missouri claims lung
   cancer on behalf of her deceased husband, Fred A. Reece Sr.,
   who worked as a laborer, as a brazier and welder, and as a
   leadman. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian, Esq., of
   Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton, Ill., represent Mrs.
   Reece.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0287) Robert J. Romer of Virginia, a plumber,
   claims lung cancer. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian,
   Esq., of Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton, Ill.,
   represent Mr. Romer.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0273) Patricia Rouelle of Vermont claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased husband, James
   Rouelle, who worked as a surveyor. Robert Phillips, Esq., and
   Perry J. Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill.,
   represent Mrs. Rouelle.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0260) Glen Wease of Wyoming, a roughneck at
   oil rigs and a laborer at Brinkerhoff-Signal, claims lung
   cancer. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian, Esq., of Gori,
   Julian and Associates in Alton, Ill., represent Mr. Wease.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0295) Jakob A. and Beverly Weber of Alabama
   claim Mr. Weber developed mesothelioma after his work as a
   machinist, as a laborer for the U.S. Army, as a laborer at a
   company that rebuilt slugs for locomotives, and as a laborer
   at his own business. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian,
   Esq., of Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton, Ill.,
   represent the Webers.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0257) Tim Wilson of Michigan claims
   mesothelioma on behalf of his deceased father, Lowell Wilson,
   who worked as a stockboy, lineman and office worker. Nicholas
   J. Angelides, Esq., and Taylor L. Kerns, Esq., of
   SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill., represent Mr. Wilson.

-- (Case No. 09-L-0279) Jill Renee Woods of Illinois claims lung
   cancer on behalf of her deceased father, Donnie Smith, who
   worked as a cab company owner, restaurant owner, turbine and
   generator inspector and farmer at various locations. John A.
   Barnerd, Esq., and Randy S. Cohn, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in
   East Alton, Ill., represent Mrs. Woods.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Surgers' Lawsuit Filed v. 82 Firms in Texas
----------------------------------------------------------------
Alfredene Surgers, on behalf of her late husband Joseph Wayne
Surgers, on March 23, 2009, filed an asbestos-related lawsuit in
Jefferson County District Court, Tex., The Southeast Texas
Record reports.

Some of the 82 defendants in the suit are A.W. Chesterton
Company, Able Supply Llc, Aerojet-General Corporation, AMETEK
Inc., A.O. Smith, Aqua-Chem Inc., Asbestos Corp., Babcock,
Bechtel Group Inc., Bondex, Carrier Corporation, CertainTeed
Corporation, ConocoPhillips, Crane Co., Crown Cork & Seal
Company Inc, Daimler Chrysler, Fisher Controls International
LLC, Flowserve Corporation, Fluro, Ford Motor Company, Garlock
Sealing Technologies LLC, General Motors Corporation, Georgia-
Pacific LLC, The Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co., HB Zachary, Hilton
Hotels Corporation, Ingersoll-Rand Company Limited, Kaiser
Gypsum, Kelly-Moore Paint Co., Metropolitan Life, Owens-Illinois
Inc., Texaco Inc., Union Carbide Corporation, Uniroyal, and Zurn
Industries.

Before his death, Mr. Surgers experienced physical pain,
suffering, mental anguish and disfigurement, the suit says.

Mrs. Surgers claims she incurred medical costs, funeral and
burial expenses, lost earnings, the loss of Mr. Surgers care,
maintenance, support, advice, counsel, companionship, society
and consortium and experienced mental anguish.

Mrs. Surgers seeks unspecified general, special, exemplary and
punitive damages, plus costs, pre- and post-judgment interest
and other relief to which she may be entitled.

Lou Thompson Black, Esq., Hillary G. Reagin, Esq., and Jason
Lloyd Cansler, Esq., of Brent Coon and Associates in Houston
will represent Mrs. Surgers.

Case No. B183-603 has been assigned to Judge Gary Sanderson,
60th District Court.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Peirce Law Firm Blamed for Asbestos Forgery
----------------------------------------------------------------
CSX Transportation Inc.'s attorney Marc Williams, Esq., in a
March 18, 2009 report to Circuit Judge Arthur Recht, traced a
forgery to asbestos plaintiff, Huntington, W.Va.-based Rodney
Chambers, but blamed the law firm of Peirce, Raimond and
Coulter, The West Virginia Record reports.

Mr. Chambers apparently forged a signature on an X-ray report so
he could repay an improper US$750 advance from the Pittsburgh
law firm.

Peirce lawyers advised Mr. Chambers that to obtain a settlement
he needed to find a doctor who would sign a report confirming
one already on file. Three times the firm sent Mr. Chambers a
form for a doctor to sign, Mr. Williams wrote, but he could not
find a doctor.

A week after the firm sent a fourth form, Mr. Williams wrote,
Mr. Chambers forged a report.

Mr. Williams wrote that West Virginia rules of professional
conduct prohibit financial assistance to a client in connection
with pending or contemplated litigation.

Judge Recht presides over thousands of asbestos suits against
CSX by appointment of the Supreme Court of Appeals, where he
once served as Justice.

Mr. Williams filed with his report a motion to dismiss Mr.
Chambers from a suit the Peirce firm filed in 2002 on behalf of
100 plaintiffs.

Mr. Chambers has died. The Peirce firm blamed him for the
forgery and dropped him as a client but remained in the case to
resist CSX Transportation's investigation.

According to Mr. Williams, the firm encouraged Mr. Chambers'
fraud by providing preprinted forms and urging him to obtain a
doctor's signature. Mr. Williams said the firm could have
prevented the fraud by verifying the doctor's identity.

CSX lawyers discovered the forgery in 2006. The signature of
"Oscar Frye" with a Huntington address and telephone number
raised suspicion. The address does not exist, and the number
belonged to someone else. Oscar Frye existed, but he did not
practice medicine.

CSX asked Judge Recht to allow discovery on the forgery, and
Judge Recht granted it.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Sinisgalli Suspected of Disposal Violations
----------------------------------------------------------------
Sinisgalli, Inc., a demolition contractor, has been under
investigation since the summer of 2008 for alleged asbestos
disposal breaches, the Mesothelioma & Asbestos Awareness Center
reports.

Federal and state authorities have removed 48 boxes of evidence
from the home of Louis Sinisgalli in Pittsford, N.Y. One box
contained US$827,375 in cash they found in a bedroom closet. He
is the demolition firm's lawyer.

The focus of the initial investigation was alleged illegal
dumping of debris, including asbestos. Now the authorities are
also investigated alleged mail and wire fraud, and the Company's
failure to file federal income and corporate tax returns during
a five year period when the Company took in over US$8 million.
About US$5 million of that money came from contracts with the
city of Rochester, N.Y.

The court records also implicate Mr. Sinisgalli's wife, Donna
Caceci-Sinisgalli, as well as two other longtime employees of
the company.

Police believe the workers dumped asbestos and other demolition
debris in High Acres Landfill in Perinton, N.Y., without proper
permits or the landfill operator's knowledge.

In doing so, they pocketed money meant to pay for dumping fees.
In addition, they may have jeopardized the health of landfill
workers and the general public.

Some believe the asbestos dumping may have also happened in some
of the most destitute neighborhoods of Rochester.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Names of 10 Japan Firms w/ Risks Disclosed
----------------------------------------------------------------
Japan's Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry released the names of
10 facilities under ministry jurisdiction with potential risks
from airborne asbestos fibers, The Mainichi Daily News reports.

These facilities are:

-- Kasukabe Kousei Ryouyou Hospital (Saitama Prefecture),
-- Morishita Memorial Hospital (Kanagawa Prefecture),
-- Ichinomiya Municipal Hospital (Aichi Prefecture),
-- Hotoku National Health Insurance Hospital in Odai (Mie
   Prefecture),
-- Nishigunma National Hospital (Gunma Prefecture),
-- Hokuriku National Hospital (Toyama Prefecture),
-- Shizuokafuji Hospital (Shizuoka Prefecture),
-- Nagano Vocational Training School (Nagano Prefecture),
-- Mikasa-shi Kinro Seishonen Home (Hokkaido), and
-- Hiroo-cho Kinro Seishonen Home (Hokkaido).

According to a ministry survey held in May 2008, about 75
hospitals and five vocational training facilities from among
7,135 and 2,926 respective respondents were found to be at risk
of airborne fibers.

Among facilities with potential risks, affected areas were used
daily at seven hospitals and three vocational training
facilities.

The ministry has instructed these facilities to implement
asbestos removal measures by the end of fiscal 2009 or closed
down. Some hospitals have already taken cleanup measures.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Arguments in Travelers Case Heard March 30
----------------------------------------------------------------
The Supreme Court, on March 30, 2009, heard arguments in an
asbestos-related insurance case styled Travelers Indemnity Co v.
Bailey, Wired.PRNews.com reports.

As reported by Legal Times on Law.com, the case packed a full
house of legal professionals including insurance and bankruptcy
attorneys. As noted in the report, the proceeding pertained to a
past case in which 660,000 claimants were compensated over
US$2.8 billion in damages for injuries caused by asbestos
exposure.

In accordance with a settlement agreement, insurers were granted
immunity from a bankruptcy court in exchange for paying into a
compensation fund for victims.

Subsequently, lawsuits were filed by some of the insurers who
were supposed to be protected by the agreement.

A ruling by the 2nd U.S. Court of Appeals said that the
Bankruptcy Court did not have the authority to grant immunity to
insurers like Travelers Indemnity.

The Supreme Court has yet to rule on the case.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: 8 Cases Filed From March 23-27 in Madison
----------------------------------------------------------------
During the week of March 23, 2009 through March 27, 2009, eight
new asbestos-related lawsuits were filed in Madison County
Circuit Court, Ill., The Madison St. Clair Record reports.

These lawsuits are:

(Case No. 09-L-307) Richard L. and Loretta Bell of Texas
claim Mr. Bell contracted Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma after his
work as a laborer, as a loader, as a district manager, and as
president at Kaney Transportation. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and
Barry Julian, Esq., of Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton,
Ill., represent the Bells.

(Case No. 09-L-302) Valdis D. Bross of Indiana, a chemical
engineer, a maintenance engineer, a maintenance worker, a
maintenance and technical service engineer, a pump and
compressor salesperson, and a maintenance and repair
engineer, claims mesothelioma. Elizabeth V. Heller, Esq., and
Robert Rowland, Esq., of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and
Rowland in Edwardsville, Ill., represent Mr. Bross.

(Case No. 09-L-293) Ladd and Joan Butler of Arizona claim Mr.
Butler developed mesothelioma after his work as a meat
cutter, as a cook, as a general contractor, and as a home
remodeler. Randy L. Gori, Esq., and Barry Julian, Esq., of
Gori, Julian and Associates in Alton, Ill., represent the
Butlers. W. Mark Lanier, Esq., Patrick N. Haines, Esq., R.
Craig Bullock, Esq., and J. Kyle Beane, Esq., of The Lanier
Law Firm in Houston will serve of counsel.

(Case No. 09-L-299) William Fredrick and Jean Dolle of
Illinois claim Mr. Dolle developed mesothelioma after his
work as a laborer, bricklayer, drywaller, roofer and
floortiler. John A. Barnerd, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East
Alton, Ill., represents the Dolles. Aaron J. Deluca, Esq.,
and Erik P. Karst, Esq., of Deluca and Nemeroff of Spring,
Tex., will serve of counsel.

(Case No. 09-L-292) Thomas Fite of Missouri claims pleural
plaque on behalf of his deceased father, Wesley Fite, who
worked as a laborer, fireman and miner. Robert Phillips,
Esq., and Perry J. Browder, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East
Alton, Ill., represent Mr. Fite.

(Case No. 09-L-298) Jeff Hanson of Illinois claims
mesothelioma on behalf of his deceased father, Harry Hanson,
who worked as a laborer. John A. Barnerd, Esq., and W. Brent
Copple, Esq., of SimmonsCooper in East Alton, Ill., represent
Jeff Hanson.

(Case No. 09-L-301) Kat Kreag of Indiana claims mesothelioma
on behalf of her deceased mother, Margaret L. McCarthy, who
worked as a switchboard operator. Mrs. McCarthy was also
exposed to asbestos through her father's and husband's work
for Indiana Harbor Belt Rail Road. Elizabeth V. Heller, Esq.,
and Robert Rowland, Esq., of Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli
and Rowland in Edwardsville, Ill., represent Mrs. Kreag.

(Case No. 09-L-291) Elizabeth Manach of Massachusetts claims
mesothelioma on behalf of her deceased husband, Gregory A.
Manach, who served in the U.S. Army and worked as a
carpenter, a butcher, and an electrician's assistant.
Elizabeth V. Heller, Esq., and Robert Rowland, Esq., of
Goldenberg, Heller, Antognoli and Rowland in Edwardsville,
Ill., represent Mrs. Manach.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Suit v. Kansas City Southern Filed in Texas
----------------------------------------------------------------
Ebb Williams, Jr., on March 27, 2009, filed an asbestos lawsuit
against Kansas City Southern Railway Co. in Jefferson County
District Court, Tex., The Southeast Texas Record reports.

Mr. Williams, who worked as a locomotive engineer for the
Company from 1974 until 2002, claims throughout his career he
was exposed to hazardous substances. As a result, he alleges he
has developed asbestosis.

The suit says, "Plaintiff has been informed by his physicians
that as a result of his occupational exposure to the harmful
and/or hazardous substances with which he was required to work
with he is at a significantly increased risk of developing
various other medical ailments including, but not limited to,
progressive lung disease, bronchogenic carcinomas (including
mesothelioma) and gastro-intestinal carcinomas."

Mr. Williams seeks unspecified actual and special damages, plus
interest, costs and other relief the court deems proper.

J. Kirkland Sammons, Esq. of Vasquez and Sammons in Houston,
represent Mr. Williams.

Case No. D183-674 has been assigned to Judge Milton Shuffield,
136th District Court.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Reading Cites $8.1MM for Cleanup at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
Reading International, Ltd., as of Dec. 31, 2008, estimates that
the total site preparation costs associated with the removal of
this asbestos-contaminated soil at its 50-acre Burwood site in
Melbourne, Australia, will be US$8.1 million (AUD9.6 million).

As of Dec. 31, 2008, the Company had incurred a total of US$6.2
million (AUD7.4 million) of these costs.

As of Dec. 31, 2007, the Company had incurred a total of US$7.1
million (AUD8.1 million) of asbestos and environmental costs of
the Burwood site. (Class Action Reporter, April 18, 2008)

From time to time, the Company has claims brought against it
relating to the exposure of former employees of its railroad
operations to asbestos and coal dust. These are generally
covered by an insurance settlement reached in September 1990
with the Company's insurance carriers.

The Company is in the process of remediating certain
environmental issues with the Burwood site in Melbourne,
Australia. That property was at one time used as a brickworks
and the Company has discovered petroleum and asbestos at the
site.

During 2007, the Company developed a plan for the remediation of
these materials, in some cases through removal and in other
cases through encapsulation.

Headquartered in Commerce, Calif., Reading International, Ltd.,
is company that develops, owns and operates entertainment and
real property assets in the United States, Australia, and New
Zealand. The Company has two business segments: Cinema
Exhibition and Real Estate.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: NYMAGIC Reserves $48.8MM for A&E at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
NYMAGIC, INC.'s gross reserves for asbestos and environmental
policies were US$48.8 million at Dec. 31, 2008, compared with
US$52.4 million at Dec. 31, 2007.

The Company's ceded reserves for A&E policies were US$37.3
million at Dec. 31, 2008, compared with US$41.5 million at Dec.
31, 2007.

The Company's net loss and loss adjustment expense reserves for
A&E policies was US$11.5 million at Dec. 31, 2008, compared with
US$10.9 million at Dec. 31, 2007.

During the year ended Dec. 31, 2008, the Company reported 88 A&E
claims; settled, dismissed or otherwise resolved 105 A&E claims;
and recorded 367 pending A&E claims.

During the year ended Dec. 31, 2007, the Company reported 74 A&E
claims; settled, dismissed or otherwise resolved 91 A&E claims;
and recorded 384 pending A&E claims.

Headquartered in New York, NYMAGIC, INC. is a holding company
that owns and operates insurance companies, risk bearing
entities and insurance underwriters and managers.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: FutureFuel Unit Subject to Exposure Actions
----------------------------------------------------------------
FutureFuel Corp.'s subsidiary, FutureFuel Chemical Company, and
its operations may be parties to, or targets of, lawsuits,
claims, investigations and proceedings, including asbestos.

No other asbestos-related matters were disclosed in the
Company's annual report filed with the Securities and Exchange
Commission on March 16, 2009.

Headquartered in Clayton, Mo., FutureFuel Corp. develops,
manufactures, and markets products for two business units:
Biofuels and Specialty Chemicals.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Premix-Marbletite Facing Six Injury Claims
----------------------------------------------------------------
Imperial Industries, Inc.'s subsidiary, Premix-Marbletite
Manufacturing Co., is a defendant in six asbestos-related claims
(two of which include the Company as a defendant).

These claims allege bodily injury due to exposure to asbestos
contained in products manufactured in excess of 30 years ago.

The Company has identified at least 10 of its prior insurance
carriers that have provided liability coverage to the Company,
including potential coverage for alleged injuries relating to
asbestos exposure. Several of these insurance carriers are
providing a defense to Premix and the Company under a
reservation of rights in all of these asbestos cases.

Further, although certain of these underlying insurance carriers
have denied coverage to Premix and the Company on the basis that
certain exclusions preclude coverage under the subject insurance
policies, the Company said it believes that Premix and the
Company have more than adequate insurance coverage for these
asbestos claims and such policies are not subject to S.I.R.
requirements.

Further the Company and Premix have substantial umbrella/excess
coverage for these claims in addition to the underlying
insurance.

Headquartered in Pompano Beach, Calif., Imperial Industries,
Inc. manufactures and distributes building materials to dealers
and others located primarily in Florida, Mississippi, and
Louisiana and to a lesser extent, other states in the
Southeastern part of the United States. The Company has two
manufacturing facilities and five distribution facilities.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Katy Ind. Faces 10 Ala. Cases w/ 324 Claims
----------------------------------------------------------------
Katy Industries, Inc. is a defendant in 10 asbestos lawsuits
filed in state court in Alabama by 324 individual plaintiffs,
according to the Company's annual report filed with the
Securities and Exchange Commission on March 31, 2009.

There are over 100 defendants named in each case. In all 10
cases, the Plaintiffs claim that they were exposed to asbestos
in the course of their employment at a former U.S. Steel plant
in Alabama and, as a result, contracted mesothelioma,
asbestosis, lung cancer or other illness.

They claim that they were exposed to asbestos in products in the
plant which were manufactured by each defendant. In eight of the
cases, Plaintiffs also assert wrongful death claims.

The liability of the Company cannot be determined at this time.

Headquartered in Bridgeton, Mo., Katy Industries, Inc.
manufactures and distributes commercial cleaning products. The
Company also manufactures and distributes storage products.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: Katy Ind. Cites 2,600 Sterling Fluid Cases
----------------------------------------------------------------
Katy Industries, Inc. says that Sterling Fluid Systems (USA) has
tendered about 2,600 cases to the Company for defense and
indemnification.

These cases are pending in Michigan, New Jersey, New York,
Illinois, Nevada, Mississippi, Wyoming, Louisiana, Georgia,
Massachusetts, Missouri, Kentucky, and California. With respect
to one case, Sterling has demanded that the Company indemnify it
for a US$200,000 settlement.

Sterling bases its tender of the complaints on the provisions
contained in a 1993 Purchase Agreement between the parties
whereby Sterling purchased the LaBour Pump business and other
assets from the Company. Sterling has not filed a lawsuit
against the Company in connection with these matters.

The tendered complaints all purport to state claims against
Sterling and its subsidiaries. The Company and its current
subsidiaries are not named as defendants. The plaintiffs in the
cases also allege that they were exposed to asbestos and
products containing asbestos in the course of their employment.

Each complaint names as defendants many manufacturers of
products containing asbestos, apparently because plaintiffs came
into contact with a variety of different products in the course
of their employment. Plaintiffs claim that LaBour Pump Company,
a former division of an inactive subsidiary of the Company, and
Sterling may have manufactured some of those products.

With respect to many of the tendered complaints, including the
one settled by Sterling for US$200,000, the Company has taken
the position that Sterling has waived its right to indemnity by
failing to timely request it as required under the 1993 Purchase
Agreement.

With respect to the balance of the tendered complaints, the
Company has elected not to assume the defense of Sterling in
these matters.

Headquartered in Bridgeton, Mo., Katy Industries, Inc.
manufactures and distributes commercial cleaning products. The
Company also manufactures and distributes storage products.


ASBESTOS LITIGATION: LaBour Pump Has 120 Active Cases at Dec. 31
----------------------------------------------------------------
LaBour Pump Company, a former division of an inactive Katy
Industries, Inc. subsidiary, had 120 active asbestos cases as of
Dec. 31, 2008, according to the Company's annual report filed
with the Securities and Exchange Commission on March 31, 2009.

LaBour has been named as a defendant in about 400 of the New
Jersey cases tendered by Sterling Fluid Systems (USA). The
Company has elected to defend these cases, the majority of which
have been dismissed or settled for nominal sums.

Headquartered in Bridgeton, Mo., Katy Industries, Inc.
manufactures and distributes commercial cleaning products. The
Company also manufactures and distributes storage products.


                            *********

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

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

                            *********

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

Class Action Reporter is a daily newsletter, co-published by
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Pennsylvania, USA, and Beard Group, Inc., Frederick, Maryland
USA.  Glenn Ruel S. Senorin, Stephanie T. Umacob, Gracele D.
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Copyright 2009.  All rights reserved.  ISSN 1525-2272.

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