CAR_Public/120309.mbx              C L A S S   A C T I O N   R E P O R T E R

              Friday, March 9, 2012, Vol. 14, No. 49

                             Headlines

AMBASSADORS GROUP: Judge Skeptical Over Class Action Legal Fees
APPLEILLINOIS LLC: Bid to Decertify Class in Wage Suit Rejected
BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Ruling on Dismissal of Securities Action
BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Ruling on Appeal in Antitrust Actions
BANK OF AMERICA: Court Rules on Writ of Certiorari Bid in IPO Suit

BANK OF AMERICA: Suits Related to Interchange Fees Remain Pending
BANK OF AMERICA: Continues to Defend Securities Class Suits
BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits District Court Ruling in "Montgomery" Suit
BANK OF AMERICA: Continues to Defend MBS-related Suit in Calif.
BANK OF AMERICA: CFC-related Class Suits Remain Pending

BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Final OK of Merrill Lynch Suit Settlement
CARDIONET INC: June 22 Settlement Fairness Hearing Set
CENTRO: Auditor Wants Directors Held Liable in Two Class Actions
CITY OF TULSA, OK: Four Plaintiffs Added in EMSA Class Action
FIRST UNION: Class Action Over Mortgage Payments Settled

GOOGLE: Beaumont Resident Files Class Action Over Mac Cookies
MEIJER INC: Discounters Resold Recalled Meijer Products
NETCO: Class Action Over Mortgage Fees Under Advisement
NEWS CORP: Faces Class Action in Del. Over Phone Hacking Scandal
NUTREX RESEARCH: Sued Over False Claims on Diet Supplement

RBC: Settles Class Action Over Earl Jones Fraud
STATE OF ARIZONA: ACLU Sue Over Inadequate Health Care in Prison
UNITED STATES: DSS Faces Class Action Over Food Stamp Process
W.L. GORE: Recalls 9,900 Ride-On Bicycle Brake Cables
WAL-MART STORES: Seeks Dismissal of Gender Bias Class Action

                         Asbestos Litigation

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Turnkey Waste Management Oblivious of Carcinogens
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Victims Guidance to Financial Rights
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Telemovie Based on James Hardie Story On the Mill
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Contractor Fined $18,000 for Illegal Disposal
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Crown Holdings' Campaign Wins Support In Idaho

ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Cases of Mesothelioma Stirs Namibia
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Upper Clyde Insurers Face GBP700,000 Lawsuit
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Examiner Assures Safety At Albany Mall Abatement
ASBESTOS UPDATE: 4 Cases Filed in St. Louis on Valentine's Day
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Motion Against Asbestos Mine Reopening Crumbles

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll at 32 Deaths in Sevenoaks
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cambridge U "Settles" Exposed Carpenter
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Macedon Council Orders Audit After Fibro Find
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Telemovie "Devil's Dust" to Grind March 19
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Jan Juc Parklands Is Up For Remediation

ASBESTOS UPDATE: NIC Seeks $16MM Surplus From Montana's Policy
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Chrysotile Industry Refuses "Natural Death"
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Medway Group Offers Help To Mesothelioma Victims
ASBESTOS UPDATE: WorkSafe Joins EPA & Surf Coast On Jan Juc Site
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Freight Co Sued For Exposing 20 People To Fibro

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Kingston at 28deaths/4yrs
ASBESTOS UPDATE: RBI Awards $100,000 for "The Block" Cleanup
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Luton at 29deaths/4yrs
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Accidental Fire Disrupts Control Tower Abatement
ASBESTOS UPDATE: School Chairs Urge Parents to Send SOS to MPP

ASBESTOS UPDATE: NZ Defence Force to be Asbestos-Free by 2014
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Town Of Union Seeks To Waive Removal Permit Fees
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in W Norfolk at 41deaths/4yrs
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Sunoco Refinery Begins Removal Of Old Equipment
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Renovation Releases Undetectable Toxic Materials

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Reforms Forcing Claimants To Pay GBP2,300 Slammed
ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Zealanders Secure With NDZF Fibro Management
ASBESTOS UPDATE: NED Director Assures Safety of NZ Water Supply
ASBESTOS UPDATE: SCC's Failure To Inform Parents Creates Stir
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Lancashire at 86deaths/5yrs

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Evergreen's Fine Dropped From $25,450 to $3,450
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Woman Exposed To Fibro On Husband's Clothes Dies
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Sedgemoor at 28deaths/4yrs
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ohio Ct. Allows Astar Claims to Proceed to Trial
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Pa. Ct. Dismisses Claims vs. Foster Wheeler

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fla. Ct. Junks Celotex PD Panel's Appeal on Fees
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mich. Ct. Sets Aside Hayes' Appraisal Request
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Del. Super. Ct. Clarifies File-Closing Protocol
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Pa. High Ct. Junks Summary Ruling for U.S. Supply
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Employer Has no Duty in Take Home Exposure Case

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Del. Ct. Allows Suit v. Pneumo Abex to Proceed
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Pa. Ct. Allows GRC Suit to Proceed to Trial
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Md. Ct. Allows Discovery on Bankruptcy Trusts
ASBESTOS UPDATE: Supreme Ct. Junks Claims as Pre-empted by LIA


                          *********

AMBASSADORS GROUP: Judge Skeptical Over Class Action Legal Fees
---------------------------------------------------------------
John O'Brien, writing for Legal Newsline, reports that a federal
judge is skeptical of the expenses being requested by a group of
class action lawyers and is threatening to impose sanctions on
them.

Judge Justin Quackenbush, of the Eastern District of Washington,
wrote in a memorandum filed Feb. 28 that he has several problems
with the law firm of Robbins Geller Rudman and Dowd's motion for
attorneys fees.  He gave the firm until March 19 to respond.

Attorneys are seeking 25 percent of a $7.5 million settlement with
Ambassadors Group, a publicly traded student-travel company.  The
attorneys were also seeking $224,211.21 in expenses in a motion
filed Oct. 27.

Declarations by two of the firm's attorneys, Joy Bull and John
Grant, said they paid $125,935 for an investigation conducted by
retired police officer Steven Peitler.  The expenses provided an
hourly rate of $445.

Ms. Bull and Mr. Grant later changed the amount to $31,710.15 in
late November, reducing Mr. Peitler's hourly wage by 75 percent.

"Further review of the claimed 'expenses' and 'disbursements' by
the Robbins firm in this case have raised additional questions as
to the reasonableness and appropriateness of other expenditures
which the Robbins firm proposes to have the members of the class
pay for," Judge Quackenbush wrote.

One of those was a $402 dinner for four the night before a
mediation session.  Included were two bottles of $72 wine and a
$60 tip for the waiter.

Also, there was $285 for one night in a hotel in Spokane that
included a $50 late checkout fee.  The firm also paid for three
hotel rooms before the mediation that combined to cost more than
$1,100.

"The airfares that the Robbins firm allegedly incurred include a
seemingly excessive charge of $1,676 for a round-trip ticket from
New York to Spokane for the investigator Peitler," Judge
Quackenbush wrote.  "Also included in the amounts requested from
the shareholder's recovery is an apparently excessive charge of
$2,169 for air transportation from New York to San Diego for
Darren Robbins."

At the mediation session, the attorneys say they spent more than
$15,000, even though the mediator's charge was to be equally
divided between the plaintiffs and defendants.  "This was a one-
day mediation and surely the mediator's fee could not have been
some $30,000," the judge wrote.

"While some, and certainly those making expense claims as herein,
may scoff at what they may consider nit-picking, the court, in its
fiduciary capacity, is required to view these matters in that
capacity and this court has done so," Judge Quackenbush wrote.

"As this court stated at the Nov. 30 hearing, the inaccurate or
false statements of 'disbursements' and 'expenses' are at a
'minimum inept and at a maximum smacks of fraud.'"

He said that a judge in California previously found that
statements made by Ms. Bull regarding expenses in a class action
were misleading.

Judge Quackenbush said that the expenses situation causes him to
view the claim for attorneys fees with skepticism.

"One would expect that the prior experiences of this law firm and
its attorneys, when known under its former name of Milberg Weiss,
et al, and Lerach, Coughlin, Stoia, et al, including Mr. Robbins
as a name partner, would dictate that members of the firm would
conduct themselves in representations to the court, with its
avowed 'highest level of integrity,'" Judge Quackenbush wrote.

Four former Milberg Weiss partners pleaded guilty to a scheme in
which the firm paid portions of its legal fees to plaintiffs in
exchange for their filing suit.  Among them were Melvyn Weiss and
William Lerach.

Ms. Bull is seeking fees in the amount of $96,525 even though she
was not involved in the case until after it settled.  The firm is
seeking payment for paralegals at the rates of $265 to $295 per
hour.

"If conduct of the type referenced is found, the court must
consider imposing appropriate sanctions, including at a minimum
written admonition," Judge Quackenbush wrote, adding that he may
be forced to initiate disciplinary proceedings.

"In its 32 years of experience on the federal bench, this court
has not previously initiated such disciplinary action.  However,
Mr. Grant and Ms. Bull, and the Robbins firm, are advised that the
court is considering either or both of the foregoing actions."


APPLEILLINOIS LLC: Bid to Decertify Class in Wage Suit Rejected
---------------------------------------------------------------
Jack Bouboushian at Courthouse News Service reports that a
franchise of Applebee's restaurants cannot decertify a class of
servers who claim they did not earn the minimum wage despite
performing tip-free duties, a federal judge ruled.

AppleIllinois LLC, which operates 34 Applebee's Neighborhood Bar &
Grill restaurants in Illinois, faces a federal class action over
the wages earned by servers and bartenders.  Though the franchise
pays these workers a reduced salary that accounts for tips, it
regularly assigns them to perform non-tipped work, like
dishwashing, cleaning, and kitchen operations, according to the
complaint.

The workers also claimed that they had to contribute 2.5 percent
of sales per shift to a tip pool, which often exceeded 15 percent
of total tips actually received.  But the tip-pool money allegedly
went toward cash-register shortfalls and other purposes.

U.S. District Judge Geraldine Brown certified the class in March
2010, but AppleIllinois moved to decertify a class of "dual-job"
employees in the wake of Wal-Mart Stores v. Dukes.  In June 2011,
the U.S. Supreme Court found that 1.5 million female employees
lacked sufficient commonality to collectively pursue
discrimination claims against Wal-Mart.

The dual-jobs servers worked as tipped employees who also
performed duties unrelated to their tipped occupation.

Judge Brown found last week that Wal-Mart did not change her
original decision because the servers did not allege employment
discrimination based on race or sex, under Title VII of the Civil
Rights Act.  Unlike a discrimination claim, the plaintiffs do not
need to probe "the motive or intent on the part of any defendant,"
Brown said.  "The answer to 'why,' which is critical to a Title
VII case, is irrelevant here."

"AppleIllinois argues on its current motion, as it did in
resisting certification, that the dual jobs claim will require
'detailed examinations of evidence unique to each class member,'"
the nine-page decision states.  "But that is not so if, as appears
to be the case, plaintiffs can demonstrate a practice -- whether
official or unofficial -- of using tipped employees in unrelated
tasks without separately recording the time and compensating them
as required by the IMWL [Illinois Minimum Wage Law]."

Judge Brown also rejected AppleIllinois' argument that "the
assessment of damages is not amenable to class-wide proof, citing
the Supreme Court's rejection of 'Trial by Formula' in Wal-Mart."

"The undisputed evidence on the certification motion showed that
all financial and sales records for AppleIllinois restaurants were
required to be maintained in a uniform electronic recordkeeping
'POS' system," she wrote.  "Accordingly, there is a centralized
source of information about the time and wage records for the
class members."

"In sum, plaintiffs here have submitted substantial evidence of
exactly what the Supreme Court found to be missing in Wal-Mart:
standardized conduct that could render AppleIllinois liable to the
class members for the claims alleged," the decision states.

"Plaintiffs have submitted proof that AppleIllinois systematically
used employees compensated at the tip credit wage rate to perform
untipped work.

"What remains is a determination as to whether this company-wide
practice violated the statutory rights of Plaintiffs and the class
that they represent," the court concluded.  "In other words, the
next step is to answer the common question identified by this
court on March 2, 2010; namely, whether these untipped duties were
unrelated to the tipped occupations such that they were required
to be compensated at a wage rate without a tip credit."

A copy of the Memorandum Opinion and Order in Driver, et al. v.
AppleIllinois, LLC, et al., Case No. 06-cv-06149 (N.D. Ill.), is
available at:

     http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/03/06/Applebees.pdf


BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Ruling on Dismissal of Securities Action
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corporation is awaiting court approval of the
voluntary dismissal of a purported securities class action lawsuit
captioned Bondar v. Bank of America Corporation, relating to the
sales of auction rate security, according to the Corporation's
February 23, 2012 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31, 2011.

The Corporation and Merrill Lynch & Co., Inc. face a number of
civil actions relating to the sales of auction rate security (ARS)
and management of ARS auctions, including two putative class
action lawsuits in which plaintiffs seek to recover the alleged
losses in market value of ARS securities purportedly caused by
defendants' actions.  Plaintiffs also seek unspecified damages,
including rescission, other compensatory and consequential
damages, costs, fees and interest.  The first action, In Re
Merrill Lynch Auction Rate Securities Litigation, is the result of
the consolidation of two class action suits in the U.S. District
Court for the Southern District of New York.  These suits were
brought by two Merrill Lynch customers on behalf of all persons
who purchased ARS in auctions managed by Merrill Lynch, against
Merrill Lynch and Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith
Incorporated (MLPF&S).  On March 31, 2010, the U.S. District Court
for the Southern District of New York granted Merrill Lynch's
motion to dismiss.  Plaintiffs appealed and on November 14, 2011,
the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit affirmed the
district court's dismissal.  Plaintiffs' time to seek a writ of
certiorari to the U.S. Supreme Court expired on February 13, 2012,
and, as a result, this action is now concluded.  The second
action, Bondar v. Bank of America Corporation, was brought by a
putative class of ARS purchasers against the Corporation and Banc
of America Securities, LLC (BAS).  On February 24, 2011, the U.S.
District Court for the Northern District of California dismissed
the amended complaint and directed plaintiffs to state whether
they will file a further amended complaint or appeal the court's
dismissal.  Following the Second Circuit's decision in In Re
Merrill Lynch Auction Rate Securities Litigation, plaintiffs
voluntarily dismissed their action on January 4, 2012.  The
dismissal is subject to the district court's approval.


BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Ruling on Appeal in Antitrust Actions
-------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corporation is awaiting a court ruling on the
appeals from an order dismissing two purported antitrust class
action lawsuits, according to the Corporation's February 23, 2012
Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission
for the year ended December 31, 2011.

The Corporation, Merrill Lynch and other financial institutions
were also named in two putative antitrust class actions in the
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.
Plaintiffs in both actions assert federal antitrust claims under
Section 1 of the Sherman Act based on allegations that defendants
conspired to restrain trade in ARS by placing support bids in ARS
auctions, only to collectively withdraw those bids in February
2008, which allegedly caused ARS auctions to fail.  In the first
action, Mayor and City Council of Baltimore, Maryland v.
Citigroup, Inc., et al., plaintiff seeks to represent a class of
issuers of ARS that defendants underwrote between May 12, 2003 and
February 13, 2008.  This issuer action seeks to recover, among
other relief, the alleged above-market interest payments that ARS
issuers allegedly have had to make after defendants allegedly
stopped placing "support bids" in ARS auctions.  In the second
action, Mayfield, et al. v. Citigroup, Inc., et al., plaintiff
seeks to represent a class of investors that purchased ARS from
defendants and held those securities when ARS auctions failed on
February 13, 2008.  Plaintiff seeks to recover, among other
relief, unspecified damages for losses in the ARS' market value,
and rescission of the investors' ARS purchases.  Both actions also
seek treble damages and attorneys' fees under the Sherman Act's
private civil remedy.  On January 25, 2010, the court dismissed
both actions with prejudice and plaintiffs' respective appeals are
currently pending in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second
Circuit.


BANK OF AMERICA: Court Rules on Writ of Certiorari Bid in IPO Suit
------------------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Supreme Court on January 17, 2012, advised an objector
who filed a petition for a writ of certiorari that the petition
was untimely and should not be resubmitted to the Supreme Court,
according to Bank of America Corporation's February 23, 2012 Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the year ended December 31, 2011.

Banc of America Securities, LLC, Merrill Lynch & Co., Merrill
Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, and certain of their
subsidiaries, along with other underwriters, and various issuers
and others, were named as defendants in a number of putative class
action lawsuits that have been consolidated in the U.S. District
Court for the Southern District of New York as In re Initial
Public Offering Securities Litigation.  Plaintiffs contend, among
other things, that defendants failed to make certain required
disclosures in the registration statements and prospectuses for
applicable offerings regarding alleged agreements with
institutional investors that tied allocations in certain offerings
to the purchase orders by those investors in the aftermarket.
Plaintiffs allege that those agreements allowed defendants to
manipulate the price of the securities sold in these offerings in
violation of Section 11 of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section
10(b) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and SEC rules
promulgated thereunder.  The parties agreed to settle the matter,
for which the court granted final approval.  Certain putative
class members filed an appeal in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the
Second Circuit seeking reversal of the final approval.  On August
25, 2011, the district court, on remand from the U.S. Court of
Appeals for the Second Circuit, dismissed the objection by the
last remaining putative class member, concluding that he was not a
class member.  On January 9, 2012, that objector dismissed with
prejudice an appeal of the court's dismissal pursuant to a
settlement agreement.  On November 28, 2011, an objector whose
appeals were dismissed by the Second Circuit filed a petition for
a writ of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court that was rejected
as procedurally defective.  On January 17, 2012, the Supreme Court
advised the objector that the petition was untimely and should not
be resubmitted to the Supreme Court.


BANK OF AMERICA: Suits Related to Interchange Fees Remain Pending
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Putative class action lawsuits relating to interchange fees in
Visa and MasterCard payment card transactions remain pending,
according to Bank of America Corporation's February 23, 2012 Form
10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for
the year ended December 31, 2011.

A group of merchants have filed a series of putative class actions
and individual actions with regard to interchange fees associated
with Visa and MasterCard payment card transactions.  These
actions, which have been consolidated in the U.S. District Court
for the Eastern District of New York under the caption In Re
Payment Card Interchange Fee and Merchant Discount Anti-Trust
Litigation (Interchange), name Visa, MasterCard and several banks
and bank holding companies, including the Corporation, as
defendants.  Plaintiffs allege that defendants conspired to fix
the level of default interchange rates, which represent the fee an
issuing bank charges an acquiring bank on every transaction.
Plaintiffs also challenge as unreasonable restraints of trade
under Section 1 of the Sherman Act certain rules of Visa and
MasterCard related to merchant acceptance of payment cards at the
point of sale.

Plaintiffs seek unspecified damages and injunctive relief based on
their assertion that interchange would be lower or eliminated
absent the alleged conduct.  On January 8, 2008, the court granted
defendants' motion to dismiss all claims for pre-2004 damages.
Motions to dismiss the remainder of the complaint and plaintiffs'
motion for class certification are pending.  In February 2011, the
parties cross-moved for summary judgment.

In addition, plaintiffs filed supplemental complaints against
certain defendants, including the Corporation, relating to initial
public offerings (the IPOs) of MasterCard and Visa.  Plaintiffs
allege that the IPOs violated Section 7 of the Clayton Act and
Section 1 of the Sherman Act.  Plaintiffs also assert that the
MasterCard IPO was a fraudulent conveyance.  Plaintiffs seek
unspecified damages and to undo the IPOs.  Motions to dismiss both
supplemental complaints, as well as summary judgment motions
challenging both supplemental complaints, remain pending.  The
Corporation and certain affiliates have entered into loss-sharing
agreements with Visa, Mastercard and other financial institutions
in connection with certain antitrust litigation, including
Interchange.  Collectively, the loss-sharing agreements require
the Corporation and/or certain affiliates to pay 11.6 percent of
the monetary portion of any comprehensive Interchange settlement.
In the event of an adverse judgment, the agreements require the
Corporation and/or certain affiliates to pay 12.8 percent of any
damages associated with Visa-related claims (Visa-related
damages), 9.1 percent of any damages associated with MasterCard-
related claims, and 11.6 percent of any damages associated with
internetwork claims (internetwork damages) or not associated
specifically with Visa or MasterCard-related claims (unassigned
damages).

Pursuant to Visa's publicly-disclosed Retrospective Responsibility
Plan (the RRP), Visa placed certain proceeds from its IPO into an
escrow fund (the Escrow).  Under the RRP, funds in the Escrow may
be accessed by Visa and its members, including Bank of America, to
pay monetary damages in Interchange, with the Corporation's
payments from the Escrow capped at 12.81 percent of the funds that
Visa places therein.  Subject to that cap, the Corporation may use
Escrow funds to cover 73.9 percent of its monetary payment towards
a comprehensive Interchange settlement, 100 percent of its payment
for any Visa-related damages and 73.9 percent of its payment for
any internetwork and unassigned damages.

Two actions, Watson v. Bank of America Corp., filed on March 28,
2011 in the Supreme Court of British Columbia, Canada, and
Bancroft-Snell v. Visa Canada Corp., filed on May 16, 2011 in
Ontario Superior Court, were filed by purported nationwide classes
of merchants that accept Visa and/or MasterCard credit cards in
Canada.  The actions name as defendants Visa, MasterCard, and a
number of other banks and bank holding companies, including the
Corporation.  Plaintiffs allege that defendants conspired to fix
the merchant discount fees that merchants pay to acquiring banks
on credit card transactions.  Plaintiffs also allege that
defendants conspired to impose certain rules relating to merchant
acceptance of credit cards at the point of sale.  The actions
assert claims under section 45 of the Competition Act and other
common law claims, and seek unspecified damages and injunctive
relief based on their assertion that merchant discount fees would
be lower absent the challenged conduct.  These actions are not
covered by the RRP or loss-sharing agreements previously entered
into in connection with certain antitrust litigation, including
Interchange.


BANK OF AMERICA: Continues to Defend Securities Class Suits
-----------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corporation continues to defend itself from
securities class action lawsuits, according to the Corporation's
February 23, 2012 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31, 2011.

Plaintiffs in In re Bank of America Securities, Derivative and
Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) Litigation
(Securities Plaintiffs), a putative class action filed in the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of New York, represent
all: (i) purchasers of the Corporation's common and preferred
securities between September 15, 2008 and January 21, 2009 and its
January 2011 options; (ii) holders of the Corporation's common
stock as of October 10, 2008; and (iii) purchasers of the
Corporation's common stock issued in the offering that occurred on
or about October 7, 2008.  During the purported class period, the
Corporation had between 4,560,112,687 and 5,017,579,321 common
shares outstanding and the price of those shares declined from
$33.74 on September 12, 2008 to $6.68 on January 21, 2009.
Securities Plaintiffs claim violations of Sections 10(b), 14(a)
and 20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, and SEC rules
promulgated thereunder. Securities Plaintiffs' amended complaint
also alleges violations of Sections 11, 12(a)(2) and 15 of the
Securities Act of 1933 related to the offering of the
Corporation's common stock that occurred on or about October 7,
2008, and names Banc of America Securities, LLC, and Merrill
Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated, among others, as
defendants on certain claims.  The Corporation and its co-
defendants filed motions to dismiss, which the court granted in
part in August 2010 by dismissing certain of the Securities
Plaintiffs' claims under Section 10(b) of the Securities Exchange
Act of 1934.  Securities Plaintiffs filed a second amended
complaint which repleaded some of the dismissed claims as well as
added claims under Sections 10(b) and 20(a) of the Securities
Exchange Act of 1934 on behalf of holders of certain debt,
preferred securities and option securities.  In July 2011, the
court granted in part defendants' motion to dismiss the second
amended complaint.  As a result of the court's July 2011 ruling,
the Securities Plaintiffs were (in addition to the claims
sustained in the court's August 2010 ruling) permitted to pursue a
claim under Section 10(b) asserting that defendants should have
made additional disclosures in connection with the Acquisition
about the financial condition and 2008 fourth-quarter losses
experienced by Merrill Lynch.  Securities Plaintiffs seek
unspecified monetary damages, legal costs and attorneys' fees.  On
February 6, 2012, the court granted Securities Plaintiffs' motion
for class certification.  On February 21, 2012, the Corporation
filed a petition requesting that the U.S. Court of Appeals for the
Second Circuit review the district court's order granting
Securities Plaintiffs' motion for class certification.

Several individual plaintiffs have opted to pursue claims apart
from the In re Bank of America Securities, Derivative, and
Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) Litigation and,
accordingly, have initiated individual actions in the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of New York relying on
substantially the same facts and claims as the Securities
Plaintiffs.

On January 13, 2010, the Corporation, Merrill Lynch and certain of
the Corporation's current and former officers and directors were
named in a purported class action filed in the U.S. District Court
for the Southern District of New York entitled Dornfest v. Bank of
America Corp., et al.  The action is purportedly brought on behalf
of investors in Corporation option contracts between September 15,
2008 and January 22, 2009 and alleges that during the class period
approximately 9.5 million Corporation call option contracts and
approximately eight million Corporation put option contracts were
traded on seven of the Options Clearing Corporation exchanges.
The complaint alleges that defendants violated Sections 10(b) and
20(a) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and SEC rules
promulgated thereunder.  Plaintiffs seek unspecified monetary
damages, legal costs and attorneys' fees.  On April 9, 2010, the
court consolidated this action with the consolidated securities
action in the In re Bank of America Securities, Derivative and
Employment Retirement Income Security Act (ERISA) Litigation, and
ruled that plaintiffs may pursue the action as an individual
action.  In August 2011, plaintiff again asked the court for
permission to pursue claims on a class basis, which the court
again denied in an order issued in September 2011.  Plaintiffs
have attempted to appeal that ruling.


BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits District Court Ruling in "Montgomery" Suit
------------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corporation is waiting a district court ruling in
a putative class action lawsuit entitled Montgomery v. Bank of
America, et al., pending in New York, according to the
Corporation's February 23, 2012 Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31,
2011.

The Corporation, several current and former officers and
directors, Banc of America Securities, LLC, Merrill Lynch, Pierce,
Fenner & Smith Incorporated and other unaffiliated underwriters
have been named as defendants in a putative class action filed in
the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York
entitled Montgomery v. Bank of America, et al.  Plaintiff filed an
amended complaint on January 14, 2011.  Plaintiff seeks to sue on
behalf of all persons who acquired certain series of preferred
stock offered by the Corporation pursuant to a shelf registration
statement dated May 5, 2006.  Plaintiff's claims arise from three
offerings dated January 24, 2008, January 28, 2008 and May 20,
2008, from which the Corporation allegedly received proceeds of
$15.8 billion.  The amended complaint asserts claims under
Sections 11, 12(a)(2) and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933, and
alleges that the prospectus supplements associated with the
offerings: (i) failed to disclose that the Corporation's loans,
leases, CDOs and commercial MBS were impaired to a greater extent
than disclosed; (ii) misrepresented the extent of the impaired
assets by failing to establish adequate reserves or properly
record losses for its impaired assets; (iii) misrepresented the
adequacy of the Corporation's internal controls in light of the
alleged impairment of its assets; (iv) misrepresented the
Corporation's capital base and Tier 1 leverage ratio for risk-
based capital in light of the allegedly impaired assets; and (v)
misrepresented the thoroughness and adequacy of the Corporation's
due diligence in connection with its acquisition of Countrywide.
The amended complaint seeks rescission, compensatory and other
damages.  Defendants moved to dismiss for failure to state a
claim.  On February 9, 2012, the magistrate judge (to whom
dispositive motions were referred for a report and recommendation)
concluded that the amended complaint does not adequately plead
claims under the Securities Act of 1933 and recommended that the
district court dismiss the amended complaint in its entirety and
deny plaintiffs' request to amend the complaint without prejudice,
which the district court will consider.


BANK OF AMERICA: Continues to Defend MBS-related Suit in Calif.
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corporation continues to defend itself from a
consolidated class action lawsuit in California related to
mortgage-backed securities, according to the Corporation's
February 23, 2012 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31, 2011.

The Corporation and its affiliates, Countrywide entities and their
affiliates, and Merrill Lynch entities and their affiliates have
been named as defendants in a number of cases relating to their
various roles as issuer, originator, seller, depositor, sponsor,
underwriter and/or controlling entity in MBS offerings, pursuant
to which the MBS investors were entitled to a portion of the cash
flow from the underlying pools of mortgages.  These cases
generally include purported class action suits and actions by
individual MBS purchasers.  Although the allegations vary by
lawsuit, these cases generally allege that the registration
statements, prospectuses and prospectus supplements for securities
issued by securitization trusts contained material
misrepresentations and omissions, in violation of Sections 11, 12
and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933, Sections 10(b) and 20 of the
Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and/or state securities laws and
other state statutory and common laws.

These cases generally involve allegations of false and misleading
statements regarding: (i) the process by which the properties that
served as collateral for the mortgage loans underlying the MBS
were appraised; (ii) the percentage of equity that mortgage
borrowers had in their homes; (iii) the borrowers' ability to
repay their mortgage loans; (iv) the underwriting practices by
which those mortgage loans were originated; (v) the ratings given
to the different tranches of MBS by rating agencies; and (vi) the
validity of each issuing trust's title to the mortgage loans
comprising the pool for that securitization (collectively, MBS
Claims). Plaintiffs in these cases generally seek unspecified
compensatory damages, unspecified costs and legal fees and, in
some instances, seek rescission. A number of other entities
(including the National Credit Union Administration) have
threatened legal actions against the Corporation and its
affiliates, Countrywide entities and their affiliates, and Merrill
Lynch entities and their affiliates concerning MBS offerings.

On August 15, 2011, the Judicial Panel on Multi-district
Litigation ordered multiple federal court cases involving
Countrywide MBS consolidated for pretrial purposes in the U.S.
District Court for the Central District of California, in a multi-
district litigation entitled In re Countrywide Financial Corp.
Mortgage-Backed Securities Litigation (the Countrywide RMBS MDL).


BANK OF AMERICA: CFC-related Class Suits Remain Pending
-------------------------------------------------------
Putative class action lawsuits relating to Countrywide Financial
Corporation remain pending, according to Bank of America
Corporation's February 23, 2012 Form 10-K filing with the U.S.
Securities and Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31,
2011.

On November 14, 2007, David H. Luther and various pension funds
(collectively, the Luther Plaintiffs) commenced a putative class
action against CFC, several of its affiliates, Merrill Lynch,
Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated and certain former officers in
California Superior Court, Los Angeles County, entitled Luther v.
Countrywide Financial Corporation, et al. (the Luther Action).
The Luther Plaintiffs' complaint asserts certain MBS Claims in
connection with MBS issued by subsidiaries of CFC in 429 offerings
between 2005 and 2007.  The Luther Plaintiffs certified that they
collectively purchased securities in 63 of 429 offerings for
approximately $216 million.  The Luther Plaintiffs seek
compensatory and/or rescissory damages and other unspecified
relief.  On January 6, 2010, the court granted CFC's motion to
dismiss with prejudice due to lack of subject matter jurisdiction.
On May 18, 2011, the California Court of Appeal reversed the
dismissal and remanded to the Superior Court.  Defendants have
filed a motion to dismiss.

Following the previous dismissal of the Luther Action on
January 6, 2010, the Maine State Retirement System filed a
putative class action in the U.S. District Court for the Central
District of California, entitled Maine State Retirement System v.
Countrywide Financial Corporation, et al. (the Maine Action).  The
Maine Action names the same defendants as the Luther Action, as
well as the Corporation and NB Holdings Corporation, and asserts
substantially the same allegations regarding 427 of the MBS
offerings that were at issue in the Luther Action.  Plaintiffs in
the Maine Action (Maine Plaintiffs) seek compensatory and/or
rescissory damages and other unspecified relief.

On November 4, 2010, the court granted CFC's motion to dismiss the
amended complaint in its entirety and held that the Maine
Plaintiffs only have standing to sue over the 81 offerings in
which they actually purchased MBS.  The court also held that the
applicable statute of limitations could be tolled by the filing of
the Luther Action only with respect to the offerings in which the
Luther Plaintiffs actually purchased MBS.  As a result of these
standing and tolling rulings, the number of offerings at issue in
the Maine Action was reduced from 427 to 14.  On December 6, 2010,
the Maine Plaintiffs filed a second amended complaint that relates
to 14 MBS offerings.  On April 21, 2011, the court dismissed with
prejudice the successor liability claims against the Corporation
and NB Holdings Corporation.  On May 6, 2011, the court held that
the Maine Plaintiffs only have standing to sue over the specific
MBS tranches that they purchased, and that the applicable statute
of limitations could be tolled by the filing of the Luther Action
only with respect to the specific tranches of MBS that the Luther
Plaintiffs purchased.  As a result of these tranche-specific
standing and tolling rulings, the Maine Action was further reduced
from 14 offerings to eight tranches.  On June 6, 2011, the Maine
Plaintiffs filed a third amended complaint that related to eight
MBS tranches.  On June 15, 2011, the court denied the Maine
Plaintiffs' motion to permit immediate interlocutory appeal of the
court's orders on standing, tolling of the statute of limitations
and successor liability.  On October 12, 2011, upon stipulation by
the parties, the court certified a class consisting of eight
subclasses, one for each of the eight MBS tranches at issue.
On November 17, 2010, Western Conference of Teamsters Pension
Trust Fund (Western Teamsters) filed a putative class action
against the same defendants named in the Maine Action in
California Superior Court, Los Angeles County, entitled Western
Conference of Teamsters Pension Trust Fund v. Countrywide
Financial Corporation, et al. Western Teamsters' complaint asserts
that Western Teamsters and other unspecified investors purchased
MBS issued in the 428 offerings that were also at issue in the
Luther Action and asserts substantially the same allegations as
the Luther Action.  The Western Teamsters action has been
coordinated with the Luther Action.  Western Teamsters seek
unspecified compensatory and/or rescissory damages and other
unspecified relief.

On January 27, 2011, Putnam Bank filed a putative class action
lawsuit against CFC, the Corporation and several related entities,
among others, in the U.S. District Court for the District of
Connecticut, entitled Putnam Bank v. Countrywide Financial
Corporation, et al.  Putnam Bank's complaint asserts certain MBS
Claims in connection with alleged purchases in eight MBS offerings
issued by CFC subsidiaries between 2005 and 2007.  Putnam Bank
seeks rescission of its purchases or a rescissory measure of
unspecified damages and/or compensatory damages and other
unspecified relief.  On August 15, 2011, the case was transferred
to the Countrywide RMBS MDL.


BANK OF AMERICA: Awaits Final OK of Merrill Lynch Suit Settlement
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Bank of America Corporation is awaiting final court approval of a
settlement in a consolidated class action against Merrill Lynch &
Co., Inc., and its affiliates, according to the Corporation's
February 23, 2012 Form 10-K filing with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission for the year ended December 31, 2011.

Merrill Lynch, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith Incorporated,
Merrill Lynch Mortgage Investors, and certain current and former
MLMI directors are named as defendants in a consolidated class
action in the U.S. District Court in the Southern District of New
York, entitled Public Employees' Ret. System of Mississippi v.
Merrill Lynch & Co. Inc.  Plaintiffs assert certain MBS Claims in
connection with their purchase of MBS.  In March 2010, the court
dismissed claims related to 65 of 84 offerings with prejudice due
to lack of standing as no named plaintiff purchased securities in
those offerings.  On November 8, 2010, the court dismissed claims
related to one additional offering on separate grounds.  On
December 14, 2011, the court granted preliminary approval of a
settlement providing for a payment by the Corporation in an amount
not material to the Corporation's results of operations (which
amount was fully accrued by the Corporation as of December 31,
2011).


CARDIONET INC: June 22 Settlement Fairness Hearing Set
------------------------------------------------------
SCOTT+SCOTT LLP on March 6 issued a statement regarding the
CardioNet Securities Litigation Settlement.

SUPERIOR COURT OF THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA
COUNTY OF SAN DIEGO

WEST PALM BEACH POLICE PENSION FUND, Individually and on Behalf of
All Others Similarly Situated, Plaintiff, vs. CARDIONET, INC.,
ARIE COHEN, JAMES M. SWEENEY, MARTIN P. GALVAN, FRED MIDDLETON,
WOODROW MYERS JR., M.D., ERIC N. PRYSTOWSKY, M.D., HARRY T. REIN,
ROBERT J. RUBIN, M.D., RANDY H. THURMAN, BARCLAYS CAPITAL, INC.,
CITIGROUP GLOBAL MARKETS INC., LEERINK SWANN LLC, THOMAS WEISEL
PARTNERS LLC, BANC OF AMERICA SECURITIES LLC and COWEN AND
COMPANY, Defendants., Case No. 37-2010-00086836-CU-SL-CTL
SUMMARY NOTICE OF PROPOSED SETTLEMENT OF CLASS ACTION

TO:  ALL PERSONS WHO PURCHASED OR ACQUIRED CARDIONET, INC.
("CARDIONET" OR THE "COMPANY") COMMON STOCK PURSUANT AND/OR
TRACEABLE TO THE COMPANY'S REGISTRATION STATEMENTS AND
PROSPECTUSES, AS AMENDED, FILED WITH THE SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE
COMMISSION ("SEC") IN CONNECTION WITH CARDIONET'S MARCH 25, 2008
INITIAL PUBLIC OFFERING ("IPO") AND/OR ITS AUGUST 6, 2008
SECONDARY STOCK OFFERING ("SECONDARY OFFERING")
THIS NOTICE WAS AUTHORIZED BY THE COURT.  IT IS NOT A LAWYER
SOLICITATION.  PLEASE READ THIS NOTICE CAREFULLY AND IN ITS
ENTIRETY.

YOU ARE HEREBY NOTIFIED that a hearing will be held on June 22,
2012 at 8:30 a.m., before the Honorable Joan M. Lewis at the
Superior Court of California, County of San Diego, Department 65,
Hall of Justice, Fourth Floor, 330 W. Broadway, San Diego, CA
92101, to determine whether: (1) the proposed settlement (the
"Settlement") of the above-captioned action ("Action") for
$7,250,000 in cash should be approved by the Court as fair,
reasonable and adequate; (2) the Final Approval Order and Judgment
of Dismissal with Prejudice as provided under the Stipulation and
Agreement of Settlement ("Stipulation") should be entered,
dismissing the Amended Complaint filed in the Action on the merits
and with prejudice; (3) the release by the Class of the Settled
Claims, as set forth in the Stipulation, should be provided to the
Released Parties; (4) this Action satisfies the applicable
prerequisites for class action treatment under California Code of
Civil Procedure Sec 382; (5) to award Plaintiffs' Counsel
attorneys' fees and expenses out of the Settlement Fund (as
defined in the Notice of Settlement of Class Action ("Notice"),
which is discussed below); (6) to reimburse Plaintiff the costs
and expenses (including lost wages) it incurred in prosecuting
this action on behalf of the Class out of the Settlement Fund; and
(7) the Plan of Allocation should be approved by the Court.
IF YOU PURCHASED OR ACQUIRED CARDIONET COMMON STOCK PURSUANT
AND/OR TRACEABLE TO THE COMPANY'S REGISTRATION STATEMENTS AND
PROSPECTUSES, AS AMENDED, FILED WITH THE SEC IN CONNECTION WITH
CARDIONET'S MARCH 25, 2008 IPO AND/OR ITS AUGUST 6, 2008 SECONDARY
OFFERING, YOUR RIGHTS MAY BE AFFECTED BY THE SETTLEMENT OF THIS
ACTION.

To share in the distribution of the Settlement Fund, you must
establish your rights by filing a Proof of Claim on or before
April 27, 2012.  Your failure to submit your Proof of Claim by
April 27, 2012 will subject your claim to rejection and preclude
your receiving any of the recovery in connection with the
Settlement of this Action.  If you are a member of the Class and
do not request exclusion therefrom, you will be bound by the
Settlement and any judgment and release entered in the Action,
including, but not limited to, the Final Order, whether or not you
submit a Proof of Claim.

If you have not received a copy of the Notice, which more
completely describes the Settlement and your rights thereunder
(including your right to object to the Settlement), and a Proof of
Claim form, you may obtain these documents, as well as a copy of
the Stipulation (which among other things contains definitions for
the defined terms used in this Summary Notice), online at
http://www.CardioNetSecuritiesSettlement.comor by writing to:

         CardioNet Securities Litigation Settlement c/o GCG
         P.O. Box 9833
         Dublin, OH 43017-5733
         Telephone: (888) 313-1923

Inquiries should NOT be directed to Defendants, the Court, or the
Clerk of the Court.

Inquiries, other than requests for the Notice or for a Proof of
Claim form, may be made to Plaintiff's Counsel:

          Mary K. Blasy, Esq.
          SCOTT+SCOTT LLP
          707 Broadway, Suite 1000
          San Diego, CA 92101
          Telephone: (619) 233-4565
          Fax: (619) 233-0508

IF YOU DESIRE TO BE EXCLUDED FROM THE CLASS, YOU MUST SUBMIT A
REQUEST FOR EXCLUSION BY MAY 23, 2012, IN THE MANNER AND FORM
EXPLAINED IN THE NOTICE.  ALL MEMBERS OF THE CLASS WHO HAVE NOT
REQUESTED EXCLUSION FROM THE CLASS WILL BE BOUND BY THE SETTLEMENT
ENTERED IN THE ACTION EVEN IF THEY DO NOT FILE A TIMELY PROOF OF
CLAIM.

Dated:  JANUARY 13, 2012
HON. JOAN M. LEWIS, SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE FOR THE STATE OF
CALIFORNIA, COUNTY OF SAN DIEGO


CENTRO: Auditor Wants Directors Held Liable in Two Class Actions
----------------------------------------------------------------
Sarah Danckert, writing for The Australian, reports that former
Centro auditor PricewaterhouseCoopers has taken issue with
Centro's move to avoid liability in two class actions against it.

The accounting powerhouse has applied for former company directors
and executives to be held liable for any damages should Centro
Retail Australia be found not liable.

PwC's application to the Federal Court in Melbourne came on the
second day of class-action trials against Centro over a AUD3.1
billion error in the company's accounts in 2007.

The two Centro companies in the class actions, Centro Properties
and Centro Retail, have since been wrapped into a new company
called Centro Retail Australia.

The PwC application draws on a provision in the Corporations Act
and could see former company chairmen Brian Healey and Paul
Cooper, along with non-executive directors Jim Hall and Sam
Kavourakis, ordered to pay out any awarded damages.

Former executives Andrew Scott and Romano Nenna also could be made
to cover any court-ordered payments if PwC is successful in its
application.

Two other former company directors, Peter Wilkinson and Graham
Goldie, could be joined to the action if the court approves the
application.

Judge Michelle Gordon questioned whether company directors could
be held directly liable only if the liability were not existing.
She reserved her judgment until today, March 9.

Philip Crutchfield SC on behalf of Mr. Healey, Mr. Cooper,
Mr. Hall and Mr. Kavourakis opposed PwC's application, saying it
could delay the trial, which is due to run for at least 40 days.

Hundreds of Centro investors have joined the two separate class
actions launched by Maurice Blackburn and Slater & Gordon.  The
claims are said to total more than $600 million.

The claims relate to errors in the 2007 financial accounts, where
$3.1 billion in short-term debt was classified wrongly as non-
current.  PwC has been joined to the suits and is cross-claiming
against Centro.

Earlier, PwC came under fire from Julian Burnside QC, for Slater &
Gordon, who said PwC had had ample knowledge of the company's
short-term debt position when preparing the faulty 2007 accounts.

"There at the very least is a document in the possession of
PricewaterhouseCoopers that showed billions of dollars in short-
term debts," he said.

In separate news, another of the more than 90 hedge funds that
hold Centro stock has moved to exit the shopping-center owner's
registry.

Taconic Capital Partners has offloaded just under a quarter of its
5.67 per cent stake.  Stock turnover indicates more sales will be
announced.


CITY OF TULSA, OK: Four Plaintiffs Added in EMSA Class Action
-------------------------------------------------------------
Ziva Branstetter, writing for Tulsa World, reports that a Tulsa
law firm representing EMSA was named as a defendant in a lawsuit
on March 5 seeking class-action status for patients enrolled in
the agency's utility fee program.

The Works & Lentz law firm was added as a defendant in the civil
lawsuit originally filed by two patients in EMSA's TotalCare
utility program.  The suit, filed in Tulsa County District Court,
also names the Emergency Medical Services Authority as a
defendant.

Four additional plaintiffs have joined the lawsuit, originally
filed Feb. 24 by Tulsa attorneys Robert Pezold and Joseph Woltz.

The suit claims the firm sued participants in the utility program
and obtained judgments against some, even though it knew they were
members of the program.

"In instances in which Works and Lentz commenced litigation
against a Class Member, Works and Lentz committed perjury, and
falsely took any judgment taken in all such cases," states the
lawsuit.

Records show Works & Lentz has filed at least 1,000 small-claims
lawsuits on behalf of EMSA against residents in Tulsa and Oklahoma
counties since Jan. 1, 2009.  At least two suits were filed
against Tulsans who were members of the utility fee program at the
time they were transported by EMSA, a Tulsa World investigation
shows.

EMSA is a government agency that provides ambulance service to
more than 1 million people in Tulsa, Oklahoma City and area
cities.  All residents who receive a utility bill are
automatically enrolled in the program, which covers emergency
ambulance services for a $3.64 monthly fee in Tulsa and $3.65 in
Oklahoma City.

Officials with Works & Lentz said they had not yet received a copy
of the amended lawsuit.

In an e-mail to the Tulsa World for an earlier story, Harry Lentz,
a spokesman for the firm, said: "If any person from whom we are
attempting to collect an EMSA bill asserts that they had 'water
bill coverage,' our responsibility to EMSA is to immediately cease
our collection efforts until EMSA determines whether or not the
patient was covered under the water bill program."

The suit alleges that the firm signed oaths in each case "that the
listed amount was true and correct, while knowing full well that
no money was owed because Class Members were participants in the
TotalCare Program and thus were not liable for any 'out-of-pocket'
expenses for ambulance services."

The lawsuit's original plaintiffs were Priscilla Johnson and Evan
Hughes.  It seeks class-action status for residents enrolled in
EMSA's monthly utility fee program "who received services provided
by EMSA, and who were subsequently charged for, paid, or were sued
by EMSA for fees arising from EMSA services."

Plaintiffs added on March 5 are Everidge Turner, Ellen Moore,
Judith Marshall and Robert Mitchell.

EMSA CEO Steve Williamson said the agency's billing practices are
"thorough and can be trusted."

"We feel very confident in the professionalism of our collection
practices," Mr. Williamson said.

He said about six months ago, the agency began working on a
redesign of the information sent to patients.

Kelli Bruer, a spokesman for EMSA, said anyone who has a question
or concern about a bill should call EMSA's hotline at 918-396-2888
or 405-396-2888.

The utility fee program covers ambulance service for all permanent
members of a household enrolled in it.  EMSA bills insurance and
says the program ensures those with insurance will have no out-of-
pocket costs.  EMSA also says the program covers all emergency
transport costs for people who are uninsured.

"EMSA has knowingly and intentionally engaged in the practice of
charging Class Members for 'out-of-pocket' expenses . . . and when
payment was not received, has proceeded with collection efforts,"
the lawsuit states.

"EMSA's use of process was primarily for the improper purpose of
extorting money from people EMSA knew were covered by the
TotalCare Program, and thus owed no money to EMSA.  . . . EMSA and
its collections counsel primarily pursued those people least
acquainted with the law and least able to protect themselves from
abuses both by EMSA and its collections counsel," the lawsuit
alleges.

Records show Ms. Johnson was transported by ambulance after a
drunken driver struck her car in October 2007, about four months
after the EMSA utility program started in Tulsa.  EMSA sued Ms.
Johnson in 2009 and won a judgment for more than $1,000.  Records
show she was enrolled in the utility program when it began in 2007
and never opted out of it.

Mr. Hughes, 32, was transported twice in 2010 for an illness and
lived in a condominium owned by his mother, Mary Pezold.  Ms.
Pezold said she had not signed a waiver form opting out of the
program, as required in multifamily housing units that want to opt
out.

Mary Pezold, who is married to Robert Pezold, said her son
received bills from EMSA for the transports and wrote a letter
stating the property was enrolled in the program.  She said EMSA
turned the account over to a collections agency anyway.

The suit claims breach of contract, "unjust enrichment" and
violation of plaintiffs' rights to due process under the 14th
Amendment.  It seeks damages in excess of $75,000.

"Each and every such judgment was procured by perjury and should
be vacated, and Works and Lentz required to refund to Plaintiffs
all funds wrongly taken from Plaintiffs."

The suit also seeks an order vacating court judgments against
class members.  It also seeks "disgorgement by EMSA of all profits
realized for EMSA's breaches" and an order requiring the agency
"to ensure that any person to whom a statement for services is
rendered has opted out of EMSA's TotalCare program."

A Tulsa World investigation of EMSA has found the agency bills all
patients, even those in the utility fee program.  Along with a
request for insurance forms, EMSA sends all patients a bill that
states "due from patient" at the bottom and "due upon receipt" at
the top, with an address where payments should be sent.

The forms do not contain information about the utility fee
program.  Once patients provide insurance information, EMSA sends
a bill stating the amount "due from insurance."

More than a dozen people interviewed by the World said when they
called to ask about their bills, EMSA employees did not tell them
they were in the utility program or offer to look up that
information.

EMSA also instituted, for the 2011-12 program year, a clause
stating that those who fail to provide their insurance information
within 60 days become responsible for the entire bill, usually
about $1,100 for emergency transports.

The clause was not approved by EMSA's board and is also not
authorized by city ordinance.

The World investigation has also found that EMSA files liens
against patients in nearly all cases involving transports from car
accidents, including those in the utility fee program.


FIRST UNION: Class Action Over Mortgage Payments Settled
--------------------------------------------------------
Christina Stueve, writing for The Madison St. Clair Record,
reports that a seven-year-old Madison County Circuit class action
over misapplied mortgage payments has settled.

Circuit Judge Dennis Ruth on March 2 dismissed without prejudice a
case brought by St. Louis attorney Stephen Tillery against First
Union Home Equity Bank, a division of Charlotte, N.C.-based
Wachovia.

Lead plaintiffs Paul and Connie Goewey, Mary A. Key and Rose M.
Jackson had alleged that misapplied mortgage payments caused
inflated interest fees and additional late charges.

On March 2, Judge Ruth also granted the plaintiffs' motion for
leave to amend the complaint.

Mr. Tillery and co-counsel Michael Klenov on Feb. 22 moved to
amend the complaint asking that class action allegations be
removed, to reflect that plaintiffs did not want to maintain the
suit as a putative class action.

According to Judge Ruth's order, the plaintiffs did not seek class
certification, and therefore, no notice to alleged class members
of the dismissal was required.

Mr. Tillery had also requested that an order be entered dismissing
all claims, because all claims had been settled and compromised.
Details of that settlement were not available in the case file.

First Union, represented by Roy Arnold of Pittsburgh and Robert
Schultz of Edwardsville, stipulated to an order dismissing the
plaintiffs' claims with prejudice.

The case is Madison Case number 05 L 205.


GOOGLE: Beaumont Resident Files Class Action Over Mac Cookies
-------------------------------------------------------------
Michelle Keahey, writing for The Southeast Texas Record, reports
that Beaumont resident has filed a class action claiming Google
inserted code into Google Ads that allowed Google to install
tracking cookies on iPhones, iPads and Mac computers.

Joseph F. Clark, on behalf of himself and all others similarly
situated, filed the class action against Google Inc. on March 2 in
the Eastern District of Texas, Beaumont Division.

The suit alleges Google, without authorization, installs tracking
cookies on the Apple products in order to harvest information
about Internet searches.

Mr. Clark argues that Google intentionally intercepted these
electronic communications and then intentionally disclosed that
information to his and other class members' detriment.

According to the suit, the alleged actions were discovered in
February when The Wall Street Journal reported that a Standford
University researcher had discovered that Google was inserting
code in the Google Ads in order to circumvent Apple's web
browser's default privacy settings, which blocked third-party
cookies.  The article stated that Google placed the cookies on
Apple devices in order to track their marketable browsing
activity.

In the recently filed federal class action, Google is accused of
violating the Federal Wiretap Act, the Computer Fraud and Abuse
Act and the Stored Electronics Communications Act.

According to the class action, Google had provided browser
instructions for Apple devices on its Web site that stated the
browser's default setting would block all third-party cookies.
Since the Wall Street Journal article, Google has removed these
instructions from its webpage.

"Google admits that it used code designed to ascertain whether
Apple Devices utilizing Safari were also signed into Google, and,
as a result, tracking cookies could be and were placed on Safari
web browser on Apple Devices," the lawsuit states.

The plaintiff is asking the court for an award of actual damages,
Google's profits or the statutory minimum of $1,000 per person,
punitive damages, attorney's fees and court costs.

Mr. Clark is represented by Richard L. Coffman of The Coffman Law
Firm in Beaumont.

A jury trial is requested.

U.S. District Judge Ron Clark is assigned to the case.

Case No. 1:12-cv-00105


MEIJER INC: Discounters Resold Recalled Meijer Products
-------------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Consumer Safety Commission (CPSC) is warning consumers
that certain recalled products, originally sold at Meijer, Inc.,
were resold after the recall date due to an error.  These recalled
products were improperly disposed of by offering them for sale at
discount retailers, dollar stores, liquidation firms, flea markets
and thrift stores nationwide at various prices.  The recalling
firms listed below fully complied with the negotiated terms of
their original recall.

Consumers should stop using these recalled products immediately
and contact the recalling firms listed below to participate in
their individual recall programs.  It is illegal to resell or
attempt to resell a recalled consumer product.

* Innovage Discovery Kids(TM) Animated Marine and Safari Lamps

   Recall Date: February 9, 2010

   Sale Dates: February 2010 through July 2011 (Black lamps were
            not included in this recall)

   Press Release #: 10-135
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10135.html]

   Hazard: A defect in the lamp's printed circuit board can cause
            an electrical short, posing a fire and burn hazard to
            consumers.

   Remedy: Full refund

   Contact: Call Innovage toll-free at (888) 232-1535 between
            9:00 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, visit
            the firm's Web site at http://www.lamprecall.org/or
            e-mail info@lamprecall.org

* Infantino "SlingRider" Baby Slings

   Recall Date: March 24, 2010

   Sale Dates: March 2010 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 10-177
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10177.html]

   Hazard: The slings pose a suffocation hazard to infants
            younger than four months of age.

   Remedy: Free replacement product

   Contact: Call Infantino toll-free at (866) 860-1361 between
            8:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. Pacific Time Monday through
            Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at
            http://www.infantino.com/

* Hoover(R) WindTunnel T-Series(TM) Bagless Upright Vacuum
   Cleaners with Cord Rewind Feature

   Recall Date: May 27, 2010

   Sale Dates: May 2010 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 10-248
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10248.html]

   Hazard: The power cord is not properly routed or securely
            seated in the cord rewind assembly allowing the power
            cord to be pulled loose.  This poses fire and shock
            hazards.

   Remedy: Free repair

   Contact: Call Hoover toll-free at (888) 891-2054 between 8:00
            a.m. and 7:00 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through
            Friday, or visit the firm's Web site at
            http://www.hoover.com/tseriesrewindrecall/

* Fisher-Price Ocean Wonders(TM) Kick & Crawl(TM) Aquarium
   (H8094)

   Recall Date: September 30, 2010

   Sale Dates: September 2010 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 10-362
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10362.html]

   Hazard: The valve of the inflatable ball on these toys can
            come off and pose a choking hazard to young children.

   Remedy: Free replacement kit

   Contact: Call Fisher-Price at (800) 432-5437 between 9:00 a.m.
            and 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday or
            visit the firm's Web site at
            http://www.service.mattel.com/


* Fisher-Price Little People Wheelies Stand 'n Play Rampway

   Recall Date: September 30, 2010

   Sale Dates: September 2010 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 10-360
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10362.html]

   Hazard: The wheels on the purple and the green cars can come
            off, posing a choking hazard to young children.

   Remedy: Free replacement cars

   Contact: Call Fisher-Price at (800) 432-5437 between 9:00 a.m.
            and 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday or
            visit the firm's Web site at
            http://www.service.mattel.com/

* Fisher-Price Barbie Tough Trikes (Model: M5727)
* Fisher-Price Kawasaki Tough Trikes (Model: N6021)

   Recall Date: September 30, 2010

   Sale Dates: September 2010 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 10-359
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml10/10359.html]

   Hazard: A child can strike, sit or fall on the protruding
            plastic ignition key resulting in serious injury,
            including genital bleeding.

   Remedy: Free replacement key

   Contact: Call Fisher-Price at (800) 432-5437 between 9:00 a.m.
            and 6:00 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday or
            visit the firm's Web site at
            http://www.service.mattel.com/

* Munchkin Bathtub Subs

   Recall Date: October 18, 2010

   Sale Dates: October 2010 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 11-012
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml11/11012.html]

   Hazard: The intake valve on the bottom of the submarine toy
            can suck up loose skin, posing laceration hazard to
            children.

   Remedy: Free replacement toy

   Contact: Call Munchkin at (877) 242-3134 anytime or visit the
            company's Web site at http://www.munchkin.com/.

* Sassy Refreshing Rings Infant Teethers/Rattles

   Recall Date: January 31, 2011

   Sale Dates: January 2011 through July 2011

   Press Release #: 11-114
         [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml11/11114.html]

   Hazard: Small pieces of the plastic ball can detach as a
            result of children chewing on the teether/rattle,
            posing an ingestion hazard.

   Remedy: Free replacement toy

   Contact: Call Sassy Inc. at (800) 323-6336 between 8:00 a.m.
            and 4:30 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday or
            visit the firm's Web site at
            http://www.sassybaby.com/

See Also 12-012
[http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12012.html]and 11-
277 [http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml11/11277.html]

Pictures of the recalled products are available at:

     http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12126.html


NETCO: Class Action Over Mortgage Fees Under Advisement
-------------------------------------------------------
Ann Maher, writing for The Madison St. Clair Record, reports that
Madison County Circuit Judge William Mudge has taken under
advisement a motion to certify a class action against Netco over
mortgage-related fees.

Judge Mudge had order parties to submit proposed orders by Feb.
10, however there are no such entries on the docket.

Lead plaintiffs Kerry and Sheila Tormino are suing on behalf of
borrowers who were allegedly charged higher amounts than necessary
for mortgage recording fees and courier services.

They claim the defendant charged them $70 to record a mortgage,
for example, when it cost the company $26 to do so.

Several similar class action suits were filed between 2003 and
2005 in Madison County over fees charged in real estate
transactions.


The Torminos, who filed suit in 2004, allege Netco is guilty of
violations of the state's consumer fraud statute, breach of
contract and other claims.

They are represented by attorney Phillip A. Bock of Chicago.

Netco is represented by Edward Bott of the Greensfelder firm in
St. Louis.

In Judge Mudge's Jan. 27 order, he set a status conference for 9
a.m. on April 25.

Madison County case number 04-L-238


NEWS CORP: Faces Class Action in Del. Over Phone Hacking Scandal
----------------------------------------------------------------
Courthouse News Service reports that a shareholders' derivative
class action claims Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch and others hurt
News Corp. by failing to prevent the phone hacking scandal, and
blew off the plaintiff's request for books and records about it,
in Chancery Court.

A copy of the Complaint in Cohen v. Murdoch, et al., Case No. 7299
(Del. Ch. Ct.), is available at:

     http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/03/06/NewsCorp.pdf

The Plaintiff is represented by:

          Carmella P. Keener, Esq.
          ROSENTHAL, MONHAIT & GODDESS, P.A.
          919 N. Market Street, Suite 1401
          P.O. Box 1070
          Wilmington, DE 19899-1070
          Telephone: (302) 656-4433
          E-mail: ckeener@rmgglaw.com

               - and -

          HARWOOD FEFFER LLP
          488 Madison Avenue
          8th Floor
          New York, NY 10022
          Telephone: (212) 935-7400


NUTREX RESEARCH: Sued Over False Claims on Diet Supplement
----------------------------------------------------------
William Dotinga at Courthouse News Service reports that a federal
class action claims a diet supplement maker sells a powerful and
dangerous stimulant banned by Major League Baseball and Canada,
and makes false claims about its effectiveness.

Lead plaintiff Stephen Rush sued Nutrex Research in Federal Court.

Mr. Rush claims that Nutrex's leading products, including "Hemo
Black Rage," "Hemo Black Rage Ultra Concentrate," "Lipo Black 6
Ultra Concentrate," "Lipo Black 6 Hers" and "Lipo Black 6 Hers
Ultra-Concentrate" contain dangerous levels of the stimulant DMAA,
also known as 1,3, dimethylamylamine, and as methylhexanamine, and
as geranamine.

DMAA, whose 1944 patent claims to be derived from the oil of the
geranium plant, is a dangerous central nervous system stimulant
that is on the World Anti-Doping Agency and Major League Baseball
lists of banned substances, according to the 37-page complaint.

"DMAA is totally banned in Canada and New Zealand.  Recently, DMAA
has gained popularity with young people as a designer drug used in
'party pills,'" according to the complaint.

DMAA was developed by Eli Lilly and marketed as a nasal
decongestant in the 1970s under the trade name Forthane, the
complaint states.

Mr. Rush claims that the DMAA in Nutrex's products is purely
synthetic.  "Significantly, recent studies have also concluded
that there is no DMAA in geranium oil at all, that DMAA cannot be
extracted from geranium oil, and that all DMAA on the market is
synthetic," the complaint states.

"Because DMAA is a wholly synthetic substance, it is not a
'dietary ingredient,' and Nutrex's products are therefore not
'dietary supplements' as those are terms defined by the federal
Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) and implementing rules and
regulations adopted by the US Food and Drug Administration -- all
of which are expressly incorporated into California's Sherman
Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act."

Mr. Rush claims that because DMAA was previously patented and
marketed as a drug, it cannot now be considered a dietary
ingredient for supplements under the FDCA.

"Although defendants have been extremely successful with the
marketing, sale and distribution of the products, their success
has been based on false, misleading and deceptive labeling and
advertising," the complaint states.  "Nutrex sells the products
through a deceptive marketing campaign claiming that they are
safe, all natural dietary supplements which can be used as a
pre-workout 'detonator' or as weight loss 'fat destroyer'
products."

"Defendants fail to inform consumers that the products do not meet
the definition of a 'dietary supplement,' and that DMAA does not
meet the FDA's definition of a 'dietary ingredient,' as those
terms are defined and adopted by California's Sherman Law," the
complaint states.

"The FDCA defines a dietary supplement as 'a product (other than
tobacco) intended to supplement the diet' that contains one or
more enumerated 'dietary ingredients,'" according to the
complaint.  The dietary ingredients in such 'supplements' may
include a number of enumerated naturally occurring substances;
such as vitamins, minerals, herbs or other botanicals, amino
acids, and substances such as enzymes, organ tissues, glandulars,
and metabolites.  Dietary supplements can also be extracts or
concentrates.  A purely synthetic substance cannot be a dietary
ingredient," the complaint says.

The plaintiff says all DMAA is synthetic.  "NSF International, a
world leader in standards development and product certification
for over 65 years, and widely recognized for its scientific and
technical expertise in product certification, has publicly stated
that it has tested geranium oil down to a parts per billion
screen, and DMAA is not derived from natural geranium oil; it is a
synthetic compound and not a natural constituent of the botanical
geranium," the complaint states.  "Furthermore, experts in the
industry have been extremely concerned that this potent stimulant
drug will lead to serious health issues and even death, as was the
case with ephedra before it was banned by the FDA in 2003.

"In addition, defendants make claims regarding the effects of the
products on the human body structure and function that are
essentially drug claims.  In other words, defendants market the
products as safe, over-the-counter dietary supplements, but ones
which also affect the structure and function of the body in the
same manner as drugs. Defendants fail to inform consumers that the
product labeling and Internet advertising make
'structure/function' claims without having adequate scientific
substantiation to support such claims.

"For example, the labeling for Hemo Rage Black Ultra Concentrate
claims that use of the product provides 'freakish blood-engorged
vascularity, tunnel-vision like mental focus and clarity, coupled
with record-shattering strength gains that will help propel your
physique to new heights.'  "The labeling for Hemo Rage Black
asserts the product '[i]nduces raging energy, expands blood
volume, increases strength, hyper-activates pump effect, detonates
fat, and provides serious muscle-building compounds all in one.'"

The labeling for the Lipo 6 Black Hers Ultra Concentrate and Lipo
6 Black Ultra Concentrate calls those drugs "'the world's first
one-pill-only fat destroyer that combines receptor cleansing and
reprogramming agents with an ultra concentrated fat destroying
complex . . . [And each] cleanses and reprograms receptor sites to
support maximum cell-to-cell communication . . . [and] hits the
fresh receptor with an ultra concentrated fat destroying complex
so powerful that all you need is a single pill," the complaint
states.

Mr. Rush claims that under the FDCA, diet supplement labeling may
include claims about the supplement's effect on the structure or
function of the human body only if certain requirements are met.

"One of these requirements is that the manufacturer must have
substantiation that the claims are truthful and not misleading,"
the complaint states.  "Plaintiff is informed and believes and on
that basis alleges that defendants do not have scientific
substantiation to support the structure/function claims made by
defendants regarding the products.

"The FDA has often warned manufacturers of 'fat burner' products
like RoxyLean that claims their products 'burn fat,' are
'thermogenic,' or 'suppress appetite' are structure/function
claims requiring adequate scientific substantiation (and possibly
even 'disease claims' which cannot be made about dietary
supplements at all, i.e. that so-called 'fat burner' products can
be used to cure or treat obesity).

"Some of the 'fat burner' products which the FDA has cited in the
past for making improper structure/function claims were products
which also contained synthetic stimulants, much like DMAA. Like
synthetic norephedrine, synthetic DMAA is not a 'dietary
ingredient' as that term is defined and adopted by California's
Sherman Law."

Mr. Rush claims that the products branded as "Ultra Concentrate"
violate the FDCA and Sherman Law because most ingredients do not
have established Reference Daily Intake (RDI) or Daily Reference
Value (DRV), and California law allows words such as "maximum,"
"high potency," or "ultra concentrate" to be used only to describe
nutrients present at 100 percent or greater of such values.

Mr. Rush says DMAA can have "extremely dangerous side effects."

"Significantly, Don Caitlin, preeminent anti-doping scientist, has
noted in a Washington Post news article that DMAA has a chemical
structure similar to amphetamine and ephedrine, and can cause
increases in heart rate and blood pressure, and even death.
Caitlin further states 'this substance should not be out there
. . . it's a dangerous material,'" the complaint states, citing
the Post article.

"The safety concerns associated with DMAA have been well
documented, including concerns that DMAA is a dangerous and
addictive substance that can cause headache, nausea, and stroke.
To make things worse, DMAA is widely used as a 'designer drug' in
dangerous 'party pills.'

"Despite defendants' knowledge of the dangers associated with DMAA
use, they continue to advertise and sell the products to unknowing
consumers as safe, dietary supplements. Defendants have failed to
warn consumers that DMAA use can potentially cause serious adverse
side effects, that DMAA is considered to be a potentially
dangerous, performance-enhancing stimulant in the sports world
and, as such, is classified as a banned substance by MLB, WADA,
and the United States Anti-Doping Agency.  Numerous athletes in
various sports throughout the world have been suspended or
disqualified for unknowingly using products containing DMAA.
However, despite having knowledge of these facts, defendants have
never specifically warned consumers that DMAA is actually banned
by certain sports organizations, as well as being completely
banned in Canada and New Zealand, and could cause users to fail
drug tests.

"Defendants not only promise consumers that the products are safe,
they also assure consumers the products are effective and can
produce amazing results.  Defendants promise these results knowing
that none of the products, nor any of the products' individual
ingredients at the levels contained therein, can produce these
promised results.  Plaintiff is informed and believes, and on that
basis alleges, that any existing efficacy studies are on
individual ingredients contained within the products, and none of
these studies are on healthy humans with equivalent dosing or
routes of administration.  Therefore, such claims are purely false
advertising to induce consumers to spend their hard earned money
on unproven products solely for defendants' monetary gain," the
complaint states.

Mr. Rush claims that he and his girlfriend used Nutrex's products
for about a month and a half and suffered adverse effects that
included "feeling jittery and anxious when using the products,
having a racing pulse rate and fast heartbeat, and feeling
exhausted when not using the products."

Mr. Rush also sued Nutrex's owners, Jeffrey McCarrell and Jens
Ingenohl.

He wants sale of products with DMAA enjoined and class damages for
violations of the Consumer Legal Remedies Act, California's Unfair
Competition Act and false advertising laws, breaches of implied
and express warranty, and unjust enrichment.

A copy of the Complaint in Rush v. Nutrex Research, Inc., et al.,
Case No. 12-cv-01060 (N.D. Calif.), is available at:

     http://www.courthousenews.com/2012/03/06/Nutrex.pdf

The Plaintiffs are represented by:

          Melissa Meeker Harnett, Esq.
          Gregory B. Scarlett, Esq.
          WASSERMAN, COMDEN, CASSELMAN & ESENSTEN, L.L.P.
          5567 Reseda Boulevard, Suite 330
          Post Office Box 7033
          Tarzana, CA 91357-7033
          Telephone: (818) 705-6800


RBC: Settles Class Action Over Earl Jones Fraud
-----------------------------------------------
Anne Sutherland, writing for Postmedia News, reports that with a
payment of $17 million, the Royal Bank of Canada has agreed to
settle -- and thus avoid a trial in a class-action lawsuit by the
victims of convicted scam artist Earl Jones.

The offer, first made in October, was accepted by the victims on
March 5.  They had previously rejected an offer of C$12.5 million.

"We were told that if it went to trial the bank would appeal and
the case would last 20 years -- it would go on till everybody in
the group was dead," said Denise Tesher, one of the many seniors
defrauded by Mr. Jones.

"We never thought we'd beat the Royal Bank and we never thought
we'd see the end of this.  I'm extremely happy," Ms. Tesher said.

A Quebec Superior Court hearing on the matter is to be held
March 14.  The settlement amount will not be finalized until court
approval has been obtained.

The initial claim in the class-action suit was C$40 million, for
alleged negligence by the Royal Bank in handling the slush account
that Mr. Jones maintained for decades at its branch in
Beaconsfield, Que.

Lawyers for the victims came across an internal message from a
bank employee sent in 2001 that warned superiors that Mr. Jones
was using his account improperly.  Mr. Jones was made to change
the account only in 2008.

The bank confirmed the settlement on March 6 but continues to deny
it was complicit in the Ponzi scheme that defrauded 150 people of
C$50 million.

"RBC has closely examined its role in providing Earl Jones with a
bank account and is satisfied that it was not negligent," the bank
said in a statement on March 6.

"The proposed settlement amount of C$17 million is the result of
many months of discussion between RBC and the class-plaintiffs and
seeks to address some of the financial difficulties the class-
plaintiffs faced as a result of entrusting Mr. Jones with their
financial affairs."

There was a substantial discrepancy between what the bank's
accountants evaluated as the victims' losses -- around C$24
million -- and the C$36 million the accountancy firm estimated.

It could still be October before checks are cut.  The capital-loss
claims for more than 100 victims that must now be settled are
anything but straightforward, with obstacles such as fictional
interest, fake loans and inflated mortgages.

Joanna and Bob Earle lost almost C$1 million to Mr. Jones.

"We won't have closure until we figure out exactly what we're
getting and it has been unsettling to live without our nest egg,"
Joanna Earle said.  "What we get back will be our security blanket
in case we need care.  It will be enough to make our lives less
worrisome.  We figure 35 to 50 cents on the dollar, and while
we'll never get all we lost back, that's still better than
nothing."

Mr. Jones's clients entrusted their life savings, estates and
inheritances to him, only to see the money vanish into a multi-
million dollar Ponzi scheme that paid for the disgraced
financier's four homes and the high-flying lifestyle which
Mr. Jones and his family long enjoyed, including jewelry, lavish
weddings, golf club memberships, and various trips and vacation
rentals.

In 2010, when Mr. Jones pleaded guilty, crown attorney Pierre
Levesque presented documents that showed just what kind of a
spendthrift Mr. Jones had been.

"We know for a fact that he spent at least $13.6 million on
himself and his family between 1987 and 2009," Mr. Levesque said.

By his own admission, in a deposition he gave to the bankruptcy
trustees, Mr. Jones admitted he began dipping into his clients'
funds as early as three years after he'd started his company in
1979.

Convicted for theft and fraud, Mr. Jones was sentenced to an 11-
year term in February 2010.  He will be eligible for parole in
2013.

Ginny Nelles was the claimant named on behalf of the other victims
in the class action suit.  Her late father worked with Mr. Jones
at Montreal Trust, and the families were close until the financial
deception came to light.

Mr. Jones is godfather to Ginny's brother Don.  Her father and
grandfather's estates were picked clean by Jones.  Her widowed
mother faces losing her home.

Ms. Nelles said she has mixed feelings now that the end of the
three year battle is in sight.

"I feel relieved to be at this stage and I feel very reflective
and validated.  The next battle will be to help the 12 people who
were saddled with mortgages they can't afford, even now with this
settlement."

Kevin Curran put his life and job in California on hold for 2
years to help the victims, including his mother, sort through the
mess that Mr. Jones left.

He will be working with the lawyers to settle the claims of the
victims.

"The shadow of the Earl Jones fraud and the Royal Bank negligence
is long, and it will never end," Mr. Curran said.

For Ms. Nelles, the battle was tough -- particularly when she was
facing lawyers for the Royal Bank -- but she said she never
considered capitulation.

"Did I ever think of giving up? No, never."


STATE OF ARIZONA: ACLU Sue Over Inadequate Health Care in Prison
----------------------------------------------------------------
Paul Rubin, writing for Phoenix New Times, reports that the
American Civil Liberties Union (and other public-service
organizations and law firms) filed a monumental class-action
lawsuit within the hour on behalf of 14 prisoners against the
Arizona Department of Corrections and its current direct, Charles
Ryan.

The state prison system was depicted as a hell hole in the suit
filed on March 6.  The 78-page complaint was filed at the federal
courthouse in downtown Phoenix.

Among its sweeping claims is that the state's correctional
officials continue to fail to provide even remotely adequate
medical, mental health and dental care to prisoners, and with
grossly over-using solitary confinement to house inmates in the
"special management" units.

One of the lawsuit's main talking points, i.e. allegations, is
this:

"For years, the health care provided by Defendants in Arizona's
prisons has fallen short of minimum constitutional requirements
and has failed to meet prisoners' basic health needs.  Critically
ill prisoners have begged prison officials for treatment, only to
be told 'Be patient,' 'It's all in your head,' or 'Pray' to be
cured.

"Despite warnings from their own employees, prisoners, and
advocates about the risk of serious injury and death to prisoners,
Defendants are deliberately indifferent to the substantial risk of
pain and suffering to prisoners, including deaths . . ."

The anecdotal evidence detailed in the class-action suit is
chilling.

"In recent years," the lawsuit claims, "Defendants ignored
repeated warnings of the inadequacies of the health care system
and of the dangerous conditions in their isolation units that they
received from inmate grievances, reports from outside groups, and
complaints from prison personnel, including their own staff.

"For example, in December 2009, a prison physician e-mailed
Defendant Ryan complaining that ADC officials were breaking the
law by not providing adequate health care.  Dr. James Baird, the
Director of Medical Services, responded on behalf of [ADOC
Director] Ryan and stated:

"The Department has not been found, as yet, to be deliberately
indifferent . . . . Is the Department being deliberately
indifferent?  Maybe.  Probably.  That would be up to a federal
judge to decide.  I do think that there would be numerous experts
in the field that would opine that deliberate indifference has
occurred."

Perhaps Dr. Baird was onto something.

The ACLU's local attorney, Daniel Pochoda, is listed as the lead
lawyer on the suit.


UNITED STATES: DSS Faces Class Action Over Food Stamp Process
-------------------------------------------------------------
Christine Stuart, writing for CT News Junkie, reports that the
Department of Social Services is coming under fire again.  This
time for its inability to process food stamp benefits in a timely
manner.

A class action filed in U.S. District Court on March 5 alleges
thousands of needy families have gone hungry because they don't
have prompt access to food stamp benefits, also known as
Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits.

In January, legal aid attorneys filed a similar lawsuit against
the department for failing to process Medicaid applications in a
timely manner.

In February 2011, DSS told lawmakers that between January 2010 and
December 2011 there were anywhere between 20 and 40 percent of
food stamp applications that had been pending for 30-days or
longer.  And their ability to process them has gotten worse, not
better over the years.

According to the lawsuit the agency's timeliness rate was 83.01
percent in 2008, 79.11 percent in 2009, and 59.49 percent in 2010.

DSS spokesman David S. Dearborn said it was disappointing that
Greater Hartford Legal Aid went to court rather than continuing to
work with department on practical solutions.  DSS is already
re-investing in technology and staffing, "reversing the trend of
inattention to the agency's infrastructure over the past decade or
more," he said in a statement.

"As Commissioner Bremby has emphasized, issues resulting from
antiquated computer systems and chronic understaffing can't be
solved in a matter of months, especially in light of growing
enrollment," Mr. Dearborn said.  "But we are committed to making
these improvements in a way that respects both public service
needs and fiscal responsibility."

Even with logistical challenges, over 375,000 residents are
currently receiving benefits under the SNAP program, he said.


W.L. GORE: Recalls 9,900 Ride-On Bicycle Brake Cables
-----------------------------------------------------
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and Health Canada, in
cooperation with W.L. Gore & Associates Inc., of Elkton, Maryland,
announced a voluntary recall of about 9,700 Bicycle Brake Cables
for Road Bikes in the United States of America and about 200 in
Canada.  Consumers should stop using recalled products immediately
unless otherwise instructed.  It is illegal to resell or attempt
to resell a recalled consumer product.

When the brake cables are installed on Campagnolo(R) style brake
levers, they can detach, causing the brakes to fail and posing a
fall hazard.

The Company is aware of one report of a brake cable detaching.  No
injuries have been reported.

This recall involves GORE(R) Ride On(R) Low Friction System brake
cables for road bikes and GORE(R) Ride On(R) Professional System
brake cables for road bikes.  The cables are silver and are
available with housings in black, white, blue or red.  "GORE Ride-
On" is printed on the housing for the Low Friction cable.  "GORE
Ride-On Professional" is printed on the housing for the
Professional System cables.  The cables are being recalled only if
they were installed on road bikes that use a Campagnolo-style
brake lever.  The ends, or attachment heads, on the Campagnolo
systems have the letters "C" "CC," or "RO" imprinted on them.  The
following UPC codes are listed on the back of the brake cable
boxes and are included in this recall:

          7331324 17926    7331324 74912
          7331324 74936    7331324 75148
          7331324 75131    7331324 45202
          7331324 75162    7331324 74912
          7331324 45066    7331324 75155

Pictures of the recalled products are available at:

     http://www.cpsc.gov/cpscpub/prerel/prhtml12/12125.html

The recalled products were manufactured in Taiwan and sold by
bicycle specialty shops, sporting goods retailers and Amazon.com
and other online retailers nationwide from January 2008 through
January 2012 for between $40 and $65.

Consumers should stop using their bicycles with these recalled
brake cables if they are installed on a Campagnolo-style brake
lever and contact Gore for a free replacement cable kit.  Gore
will reimburse consumers for the repair cost.  For additional
information, contact Gore toll-free at (888) 914-4673 between 9:00
a.m. and 5:00 p.m. Eastern Time Monday through Friday or visit the
firm's Web site at http://www.rideoncables.com/


WAL-MART STORES: Seeks Dismissal of Gender Bias Class Action
------------------------------------------------------------
Tom Korosec, writing for Bloomberg News, reports that Wal-Mart
Stores Inc. (WMT) asked a federal judge in Dallas to reject a
proposed class-action lawsuit in which women allege that the
world's largest retailer discriminated against Texas female
workers over pay and promotions.

The company said the claims are barred by the statute of
limitations.  "The time for asserting class allegations on these
claims has passed," it said on March 5 in court papers.

The case also can't be pursued as a class-action matter because
there is little in common among the claims made by the plaintiffs,
it said.

"The complaint does not allege any facts that would establish a
class-wide policy of discrimination," Wal-Mart said.  Some of the
women who sued allege denial of promotion opportunities but not
pay differences, the company said.  Others allege pay
discrimination but not promotion differences, it said.

"Some advanced quickly within Wal-Mart while others apparently
never pursued managerial advancement," it said.

The suit was filed in October on behalf of women working in Texas
Wal-Mart and Sam's Club stores from Dec. 26, 1998, until at least
June 2004.

It came in response to a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in June that
barred treatment of gender-bias claims against Wal-Mart as a
national class action.

                        Plaintiffs' Lawyer

"They claim that this is exactly the same case as the one the
Supreme Court looked at, and that's completely wrong," Hal K.
Gillespie, an attorney for the women, said on March 6 of the
company's motion.  "It's evident this is very different."
"We have a Supreme Court case that supports us, not them," he
said.

Certification as a class action would enlarge the number of
plaintiffs from seven to 45,000, according to the women's
complaint.  Otherwise they would have to sue individually.

Wal-Mart, based in Bentonville, Arkansas, said in its motion the
plaintiffs are attempting to take "a second bite at the
certification apple" after the Supreme Court decision.

"Walmart has strong policies against discrimination; many years
ago Walmart established these policies to help ensure women are
paid and promoted fairly," Greg Rossiter, a company spokesman,
said in an e-mailed statement.  "The claims by the women bringing
this case don't match the positive experience that so many other
women have had at Walmart."

The case is Odle v. Wal-Mart Stores Inc., 3:11-cv-02954, U.S.
District Court, Northern District of Texas (Dallas).

                        Asbestos Litigation

ASBESTOS UPDATE: Turnkey Waste Management Oblivious of Carcinogens
------------------------------------------------------------------
Ben Leubsdorf of the Concord Monitor reports that a Concord
construction firm was fined $18,000 in February for improper
disposal of asbestos removed from two city homes in 2005 and 2006.

Summer and Winter Construction LLC and owner Walter Jensen
violated state rules by removing asbestos from two Concord homes
and disposing the carcinogenic material at a Rochester landfill
without telling the facility that the material contained asbestos,
Merrimack County Superior Court Judge Richard McNamara wrote in a
Feb. 9 order.

McNamara wrote that as a result, "the asbestos had the potential
for harm to the general public."

The state attorney general's office announced the ruling and fine
on Feb. 22 in a news release.  Messages seeking comment were left
for Jensen and his attorney, Charlie Russell.

Jensen testified under oath at a deposition that he told officials
at the Turnkey Waste Management landfill that the material
contained asbestos, but a landfill engineer testified at a bench
trial last fall that there were no records indicating Jensen told
them about the asbestos, McNamara wrote.

"If waste containing asbestos was accepted by Turnkey, it was
treated separately because of the potential for public health
concerns," McNamara wrote.  "If asbestos was brought in without
Turnkey being told the waste contained asbestos, then the asbestos
would be treated like ordinary trash which could cause risk not
only to the public, but to employees."

McNamara wrote that "Jensen's conduct was, in addition to
dishonest, potentially injurious to public health," and imposed a
fine of $18,000.

State law allows a fine of up to $25,000 per offense.  In imposing
the lesser fine, McNamara noted Summer and Winter Construction is
"a small company" and received a total of $1,800 for the two jobs.
He also wrote that there's no way to determine how much asbestos
was removed.

"The statute provides for significantly higher penalties, and in a
case like this you'd normally like to see that," said Senior
Assistant Attorney General Allen Brooks.  "In this case, it sounds
like the judge was concerned about the viability of the business
if he fined much more than that."

The attorney general's office sent out an alert last summer asking
property owners to contact them if they'd hired Jensen to remove
asbestos.  Brooks said no additional property owners came forward
as a result of that appeal.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Victims Guidance to Financial Rights
------------------------------------------------------------------
The asbestos law firm of Clapper, Patti, Schweizer and Mason just
added information to their Web site to help anyone diagnosed with
mesothelioma or their family members understand the financial and
legal rights an asbestos victim has.  Mesothelioma is caused by
exposure to asbestos and therefore anyone diagnosed with this
disease has a right to compensation from the companies responsible
for the products that caused injury.

A diagnosis of mesothelioma comes with high costs to the victim --
loss of wages (if not retired), payments for doctor's bills and
treatments, and the many unexpected hidden expenses, such as
transportation, medicines, and home care -- that add up quickly.
Financial assistance is available to those diagnosed with
mesothelioma or to family members who have lost someone to
mesothelioma. However, there are statutes of limitations, so
seeking financial and legal advice as soon as possible after
diagnosis is essential.

As the statute of limitations vary from state to state, CPSM has
added state-specific information under the locations section of
their Web site to make it easier for victims to know what times
apply to their case.  Statute of limitations can be very complex
and confusing though, so it is recommended to consult with a
mesothelioma attorney who specializes in asbestos law to be clear
on what applies in each particular case.

If seeking to file a lawsuit or claim within the statute of
limitations, an experienced mesothelioma attorney can help explain
how to get financial compensation to pay for medical bills, lost
wages, home care, alternative treatments, treatments not covered
by insurance, travel and transportation costs, etc.  No legal fees
are collected until the case is settled in the client's favor, so
those seeking legal help do not have to worry about coming up with
a retainer fee or upfront money.

Financial compensation can come from asbestos bankruptcy trust
claims and/or mesothelioma lawsuits and settlements.  Veterans
diagnosed with mesothelioma, in addition to filing a VA claim, can
also file a lawsuit or asbestos bankruptcy claim.  CPSM are
experts in helping asbestos victims to get the compensation they
deserve in the least amount of time possible.

With successful verdicts and settlements, those injured by
asbestos can be awarded both compensatory and punitive damages.
Compensatory damages cover lost wages, medical costs, counseling,
treatment, and other forms of economic loss due to a mesothelioma
diagnosis or related death. Punitive damages can be quite
significant depending on the how much the jury decides to punish
the parties responsible for the asbestos illness.

                        About CPSM

Clapper Patti Schweizer & Mason has been exclusively and
successfully representing clients in mesothelioma lawsuits for
over 30 years.  CPSM has consistently won and negotiated multi-
million dollar verdicts and settlements.   CPSM's mesothelioma
lawyers travel to homes to make the legal process as easy as
possible.  CPSM welcomes clients' phone calls and attorneys and
staff are available for support and to answer legal and financial
questions.  Contact CPSM today at 1-800-440-4262.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Telemovie Based on James Hardie Story On the Mill
------------------------------------------------------------------
Fiona Byrne of the Herald Sun reports that Logie winner Don Hany
will lead a star cast in a new ABC telemovie telling of the
harrowing James Hardie asbestos saga.

Hany will be joined by Anthony Hayes and Ewen Leslie in the two-
part mini-series, Devil's Dust, which tells the story of Bernie
Banton, the James Hardie worker who gave a public face to the
battle for compensation for asbestos victims.

Hayes, known for roles in The Slap and Look Both Ways, will play
Banton.

Leslie will play investigative journalist Matt Peacock who wrote a
book about Banton's battle, while Hany, who earned great acclaim
for his roles on East West 101 and Offspring, has been cast as a
spin doctor.  Filming will get underway in Sydney on March 19.

"It is a very important story to tell," Hayes said.  "It is
something that shocked me when I read the script.  I knew parts of
it, but not the full extent.  By 2030 there will be more deaths in
Australia from asbestos than from WW1.

"It is horrific, it is absolutely horrific."

Hayes said Banton, who died in November 2007 aged 61 after a long
battle with the asbestos cancer mesothelioma, was an inspiring
figure.

"A lot of people fight for lots of causes, but to be directly
affected by the very cause that you are fighting for and to fight
for other people until the day you die is pretty extraordinary,"
he said.

"You know you are running out of time so you have to push harder,
despite the fact you can barely get out of bed, you can barely
breathe.  It takes quite an exceptional person to do that."

Devil's Dust will be produced by FremantleMedia Australia, and is
based on Peacock's book Killer Company.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Contractor Fined $18,000 for Illegal Disposal
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Associated Press reports that a New Hampshire contractor is
being fined $18,000 for illegally removing and disposing of
asbestos.

A judge has ruled that William Jensen -- owner of Concord-based
Summer and Winter Construction -- illegally dumped asbestos he
removed from two jobs that netted him $1,800 in pay.

Merrimack Superior Court Judge Robert McNamara said he was issuing
a penalty 10 times more than what Jensen made off the jobs because
he had been the subject of two prior enforcement actions.  The
judge also says Jensen lied when he said he told a waste disposal
company about the asbestos.

Jensen did the work in 2005 and 2006.  He was tried in October and
November.  McNamara's issued a ruling on Feb. 9.

Jensen and his lawyer did not immediately return calls seeking
comment.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Crown Holdings' Campaign Wins Support In Idaho
---------------------------------------------------------------
The Associated Press reports that a bill that would limit national
bottle-top maker's liability for asbestos-related health claims in
Idaho has won support in the Idaho House.

For years, Pennsylvania-based Crown Holdings has sought protection
at the state level from claims filed by lung disease patients.

Crown's ill-fated purchase of an asbestos-tainted company in 1963
has resulted in about $700 million in payouts, with 50,000 claims
still pending.

The House approved the bill 47-22 on Feb. 22.

The legislation would limit the liability of companies that
acquire other companies with assets tainted by asbestos.

If approved, the measure would nullify future Idaho payouts by
Crown.  Ten claims are pending in the state.

Rep. Clifford Bayer of Boise says the bill is fair and appeals
Idaho's pro-business philosophy.

Crown has won similar protections in 14 other states.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Cases of Mesothelioma Stirs Namibia
--------------------------------------------------------
Edson Haufiku of Informante reports that contrary to earlier
beliefs that there exists no real threat of asbestos-induced
cancer in Namibia, Informante came across a government building
that is highly contaminated with asbestos.  The cardboardbox-like
house is situated right next to the nurses training centre in
Windhoek Khomasdal.

Paradoxically, the building in question belongs to the Ministry of
Health used to house 15 employees of its social work department.
The contaminated structure is believed to be as old as the
Katutura state hospital and was earlier used -- even more
paradoxically -- as a Tuberculosis (TB) ward.

The occupants complained of breathlessness, dizziness and sore
eyes while at work, with the symptoms mysteriously disappearing
once they left the building.  Although the Khomas health
directorate had communicated the immediate need to evacuate the
cardboard-like structure already in 2010, the employees could only
vacate the contaminated house about three weeks ago due to a lack
of alternative office space.  Some worked for over ten years in
the building.

Staff is now cramped into smaller offices a few meters from their
former headquarters and one would think they are safe now.  But
not quite so: the social workers have to regularly enter the
asbestos house on a daily basis to collect patient's files which
are still stored there.  Besides staff, patients have for years
been sitting in the building waiting on their appointments and
inhaling dangerous asbestos fibers.

Of the 15 staff members, Informante can confirm that former intern
Inotila Mwafongwe and another social worker (still in the
employment of the ministry) suffers from asbestos-induced
diseases.  Mwafongwe could not even complete her assignment due to
health issues related to the hazards at her work place and has
meanwhile emigrated to Europe.  "Before we moved to the new
building, I used to experience symptoms of sleepiness and sore
eyes whenever I was at work.  Without being specific, my doctor
told me that my health is deteriorating because of my working
environment," says another social worker known to Informante.

According to cancer expert Dr. Annel Zietsmann, the other 13
social workers are not at all safe from the risks emanating from
the asbestos building and they might still fall sick and develop
cancer at a later stage.  Asked whether the possibility exists
that one can be exposed to asbestos for long periods without
getting cancer, she says: "It is possible but depends on the
individual."

These revelations of new cases in asbestos-related illnesses in
Namibia not only add to those of the three patients diagnosed with
the deadly asbestos-induced Mesothelioma during 2011 but also
rekindle this newspaper's concerns with regard to the country's
freshwater supply network made from asbestos pipes, potentially
exposing more than a quarter of the country's population to
asbestos contamination (Informante reported).

Mesothelioma is a non-curable cancer caused by exposure to
asbestos, which can take up to 40 years to develop.
Breathlessness is one of the major symptoms of Mesothelioma and a
patient diagnosed with the disease can succumb to the illness in
less than six to 18 months.

One single asbestos fiber can cause cancer when inhaled.  One
square meter of asbestos building material (as used in the
Ministry of Health building) consists of billions of asbestos
fibers.

Asbestos is a set of six naturally silicate minerals used
commercially for their desirable physical properties.  The
European Union has banned the use of most forms of asbestos.  Only
six African countries -- Algeria, Egypt, Gabon, Mozambique,
Seychelles and South Africa -- have followed suit.  No such law
has been passed or discussed in Namibia.

The Ministry of Works would neither deny nor confirm whether there
are other (government) buildings in the country that are
contaminated with asbestos.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Upper Clyde Insurers Face GBP700,000 Lawsuit
-------------------------------------------------------------
Kirsty Topping for Deadline News reports that a Scottish
shipbuilder died from asbestos-related cancer after the toxic
substance "fell on him like snow", a court will hear.

The widow of Ian MacLeod is suing for GBP700,000 in what lawyers
claim is one of the most extreme examples yet of how a worker was
exposed to asbestos.

Mr. MacLeod spent a decade working for Upper Clyde Shipbuilders
Ltd, moving on in 1963 to an office-based job as a draughtsman.

But his legal team claim massive exposure to asbestos caused the
cancer which killed him 16 months ago at the age of 73.

Although Upper Clyde Ship Builders closed in 1971, lawyers for Mr.
MacLeod's widow, Elizabeth, are suing the firm's insurers in the
Court of Session.

Mr. MacLeod worked on huge ocean liners, such as the Saxonia and
the Ivernia, as an apprentice engineer in the fifties.

Lawyers for his family state in the court papers: "While he was
working in the engine rooms he had to work alongside insulators
known as the 'white mice men.'

"They were working above the deceased . . .  They cut up sheets of
asbestos with a saw.

"The dust fell down on top of [Ian] like snow landing on his hair
and his overalls."

They continue: "They also used a paste known as monkey dung.  They
applied this to pipe work with a trowel.

"They used to throw the monkey dung around like snowballs.

"All of these operations generated substantial quantities of
asbestos dust in the atmosphere of the engine room."

The court papers describe how Mr. McLeod suffered before his death
in October 2010.

"He had an X-ray which discovered fluid on his lungs.  This was
drained.

"In 2010 the deceased found he was experiencing severe chest pain.
In May 2010 he had a further scan and biopsy this time disclosing
the presence of malignancy.

"He continued to suffer severe pain requiring strong medication to
bring it under control.

"He lost appetite and lost weight.  He was unable to continue with
his previous activities including coaching table tennis and
playing bowls."

Mrs. MacLeod, from Helensburgh, Argyll and Bute, is suing for
GBP400,000 for herself, for 'the deceased's pain and suffering and
loss of life expectancy' and for loss of financial support.  Six
other relatives of Mr. MacLeod are named as seeking GBP50,000 each
in the action.

She said: "This has been very hard for all of us.  He was a lovely
person.  He wasn't the only one [at the shipyard], there were
other men from the area who worked there."

Dr. Martin Hogg, an expert on asbestos legal cases, said: "It does
sound like one the most extreme cases, even for the time.

"You don't often get blizzard-like conditions."

Dr. Hogg said that, if proved, the allegations would be a "clear
case of oversight by the employer of working conditions".

Thompsons Solicitors are representing Mrs. MacLeod.  Their
asbestos expert Laura Blane said: "Mrs. MacLeod's case is
understandably very distressing for the family -- it is impossible
to imagine what they're going through.

"Asbestos has cast a dark cloud over Scotland's industrial history
and torn families apart."

Ms. Blane suggested the case was not the only one they are working
on that involves extreme exposure to asbestos.

She said: "In a number of cases those involved describe piles of
asbestos around them, like snow.  This shows just how serious
asbestos exposure could get back then.

"When exposed to the dust the victims had no idea that it would
end up cutting their life short.  The victims and their families
deserve support and justice and at Thompsons we do everything
possible to make sure that happens."

Small fibers of asbestos, originally used as fire insulation, can
attach to the inner walls of lungs when inhaled.  This can lead to
cancer, and cause other harmful conditions such as asbestosis.

Last year the UK Supreme Court upheld the right for victims of
asbestos who have pleural plaques, a scarring of the lungs from
asbestos, to claim for damages.

Mr. MacLeod's lawyers are seeking damages from the Financial
Services Compensation Scheme, which is effectively an insurance
fund for defunct employers.

Law firm Biggart Baillie, which is defending the action, is
seeking for the case to be dropped, denying Mr. MacLoed contracted
mesothelioma from working for the company.

They are asking for Mr. MacLeod's full employment history and
medical records to be revealed and information about whether Mr.
MacLeod smoked.

After Upper Clyde Shipbuilders collapsed, trade unionist Jimmy
Reid led shipbuilders in a work-in at the site.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Examiner Assures Safety At Albany Mall Abatement
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Ashley Knight of Fox 31 Online reports that it looks like folks in
Albany are inching closer to a new kind of Italian cuisine.

Demolition has begun to make way for the new Olive Garden.

Construction crews are tearing up what used to be the Inn at the
Albany Mall.

But with other old structures set for demolition like the Heritage
House, many worry about asbestos or other harmful materials being
disturbed.

Senior Plans Examiner, Tracy Hester, says there's nothing to worry
about.

"We actually have a form called a contractor's agreement that they
have to go through to make sure all the infrastructure has been
removed and safeguarded in some fashion before demolition and part
of that process is notification to the state that they have done
due diligence to make sure there is no environmental issues
there," says Hester.

Construction is set to begin in April.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: 4 Cases Filed in St. Louis on Valentine's Day
--------------------------------------------------------------
Kelly Holleran of The Madison / St. Clair Record reports that an
additional four asbestos cases have been added to the docket in
St. Louis Circuit Court.

On Feb. 14, four new complaints were filed in the 22nd Judicial
Circuit in the City of St. Louis.

Randy Cohn, Myles Epperson and Shane Hampton of the Simmons,
Browder, Gianaris, Angelides and Barnerd law firm in Alton were
among the attorneys that brought them.

Bert L. and Gloria Dobson sued 63 defendant corporations while
Janice Kassman filed a lawsuit against 11 defendant corporations.
Stella Lambert named 38 companies as defendants.  Danielle Wolfe
listed 38 defendant corporations in her complaint filed on behalf
of her deceased mother, Barbara Kuhl.  None of the plaintiffs
specify where they reside.

In their complaint, the Dobsons allege the defendant companies
caused Bert L. Dobson to develop mesothelioma after his exposure
to asbestos-containing products throughout his career as a
mechanic, laborer and farmer at various locations from 1959 until
2007.

In her complaint, Janice Kassman alleges her recently deceased
mother, Phyllis Armo, developed mesothelioma after she worked as a
welder at the Brooklyn Naval Shipyard from 1941 until 1945.

Robert Lambert developed mesothelioma after working as a laborer
and manager at various locations throughout the United States,
according to his wife's complaint.

Danielle Wolfe claims her mother, Barbara Kuhl, developed
mesothelioma after her exposure to asbestos products during her
career as a bookkeeper, dental assistant and waitress at various
locations from 1960 until 2002.

Kuhl was also secondarily exposed to asbestos fibers through her
husband, who worked as a contractor, builder, carpenter and
foreman from 1977 until 1980 and through her brother-in-law, who
worked as a mechanic from 1950 until 1962.

The defendants should have known of the harmful effects of
asbestos, but failed to exercise reasonable care and caution for
the plaintiff's safety, the suits state.

As a result of their asbestos-related diseases, Bert L. Dobson,
Armo, Robert Lambert and Kuhl became disabled and disfigured,
incurred medical costs and suffered great physical pain and mental
anguish, the complaint says.  In addition, they became prevented
from pursuing their normal course of employment and, as a result,
lost large sums of money that would have accrued to them, the
plaintiffs claim.

Because of Armo's, Robert Lambert's and Kuhl's deaths, their
family have incurred funeral costs and have been deprived of their
support and society.

In their four-count complaint, the Dobsons are seeking actual and
compensatory damages of more than $50,000, and punitive and
exemplary damages of more than $50,000, plus other relief the
court deems just.

In her four-count complaint, Kassman is seeking punitive and
exemplary damages of more than $50,000 and actual and compensatory
damages of more than $50,000.

In her four-count complaint, Stella Lambert is seeking actual and
compensatory damages of more than $50,000 and punitive and
exemplary damages of more than $50,000.

In her four-count complaint, Danielle Wolfe is seeking actual and
compensatory damages of more than $50,000 and punitive and
exemplary damages of more than $50,000.

St. Louis Circuit Court case numbers: 12-L-841, 12-L-842, 12-L-
840, 12-L-839.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Motion Against Asbestos Mine Reopening Crumbles
----------------------------------------------------------------
Kevin Dougherty at The Montreal Gazette reports that Lisette
Lapointe, wife of former Parti Quebecois premier Jacques Parizeau,
who now sits in the Quebec legislature as an independent, used her
lack of party ties on Feb. 23 to present a motion calling on the
province to withdraw its offer to finance the reopening of
Quebec's only remaining asbestos mine.

But while she had the support of pro-sovereignty independents,
including Louise Beaudoin, Pierre Curzi and Jean-Martin Aussant,
who left the PQ with Lapointe last year, as well as Amir Khadir,
the only elected member of Quebec solidaire, no one else supported
her motion.

"What disappoints us very much, to see that here the Liberal
party, the Parti Quebecois, they don't say a word today," said
Lapointe.  "They refused to support our motion."

Lapointe's motion noted that the International Agency for Research
on Cancer, affiliated with the World Health Organization, has
concluded after a full review of the scientific research that
asbestos, including chrysotile asbestos mined in Quebec, "is
carcinogenic in all its forms."

Quebec's Industry Department has offered Balcorp Ltd. of Montreal
a $58-million loan guarantee, provided it finds $25 million in
financing to reopen the Jeffrey Mine, an underground mine in the
Quebec town of Asbestos.

Balcorp intends to sell the Quebec asbestos in India, where it is
mixed with cement to make low-cost concrete piping.

Khadir held up photographs showing workers in India manipulating
asbestos without safety equipment.

Breathing in the fibrous mineral can cause various cancers,
including mesothelioma, a cancer of the lung linings.  A slow-
developing cancer, mesothelioma can strike 20 years or longer
after exposure to asbestos.

"Stop exporting sickness and death," Lapointe said.  "Those are
harsh words, I know, but that's the reality."

Curzi suggested that the $58-million loan guarantee could be
better spent creating alternate jobs in the region.

Khadir said the Liberal government, in power for almost nine
years, should show leadership in developing alternatives to jobs
in the Jeffery Mine, blaming the "mining lobby" for supporting
efforts to reopen the asbestos mine.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll at 32 Deaths in Sevenoaks
------------------------------------------------------------
Sevenoaks Chronicle at thisiskent.co.uk reports that more
Sevenoaks residents die of asbestos-related cancer than almost
anywhere else in England and Wales.

New figures show 32 people in the district died from mesothelioma
-- a terminal lung cancer caused by exposure to the silicate
fibers, which occur naturally and are used in building materials
-- from 2006 until 2010.

The statistics, released by the Association of Personal Injury
Lawyers (APIL), means an average of 3.7 deaths per 10,000 people
-- far above the national average of 2.5 -- meaning more people
die of mesothelioma in Sevenoaks per head of the population than
in most other parts of the country.

And nobody knows this better than the family of Andrew Harry
Barber.

A former chartered quantity surveyor, the Otford resident died
from mesothelioma in February last year aged 83.  He had worked
for years in the building trade, eventually opening his own
workshop in Meopham.

But son Richard said his diagnosis still came as a shock.

He explained: "With hindsight, it's perfectly clear he had been
exposed to asbestos for many years and then he opened his own
shop.

There are different types of asbestos, different color ratings --
and he had worked with blue, one of the most deadly.  But while we
knew all that, it wasn't as though we were expecting the
diagnosis.  It was just that the bullet eventually came to Dad."

His father had been in good health, but then developed a cough and
chest pain that led to his diagnosis.

His son continued: "It, unfortunately, is a terrible disease and
once you have it there is very little they can do."

Following Mr. Barber's death, Richard, acting on his mother's
behalf, went through Thompson Law, a legal practice with a
mesothelioma case-dedicated lawyer, to see if there was any
compensation available.

But because of his father's long and varied career, little
paperwork could be found, although Richard said Thompson Law
"turned over every stone for us".

He said people need to be more aware of the risks of asbestos
exposure, adding: "A year after Dad's loss, we can take a step
back and miss him.  There may have been ten more years left in him
and we have lost out on them."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Cambridge U "Settles" Exposed Carpenter
--------------------------------------------------------
Julian Sturdy of BBC News Cambridgeshire reports that Cambridge
University has paid compensation to one of its carpenters who
contracted an asbestos-related cancer.

Bob Murphy, who has terminal mesothelioma (a cancer of the lung
lining caused by inhaling asbestos dust), takes a cocktail of 30
drugs a day to controls his pain.

He worked in the estates department between 1989 and 2006 and
claims he was given insufficient protection.

The university has denied liability and said the payout is not an
admission of negligence.

Mr. Murphy, 65, told BBC Look East: "I was just a worker.  At the
end of the day you're given a job and you just get on with it and
now in hindsight I would have touched nothing.

"I am suffering because of my ignorance.

"All we was given was a paper mask -- and also a special hoover
which we thought was an asbestos one."

A BBC investigation has discovered other breaches in the
university's handling of white asbestos.

As a major property owner, Cambridge University, like many
institutions, has a program of asbestos eradication.

In 2008 during the construction of the GBP4 million Kavli
Institute for Cosmology, workmen demolished an asbestos concrete
barn without proper precautions.

A university worker secretly filmed workers smashing the building
with scaffolding poles, and breaking up roof sheeting.

A worker who witnessed the demolition and gave his name as
Russell, said: "I was just horrified because these sheets were
just crashing to the ground...

"We couldn't believe that the university was not protecting us as
employees and it was even broken up outside the door where we
walked into."
In the same month, in an unconnected incident, King's College was
fined GBP16,000 for exposing employees to asbestos.

In a statement, Cambridge University said: "The construction
company contracted to dismantle the barn in question in 2008 were
negligent.

"That company is no longer on the university's supplier list.

"Since this incident asbestos management procedures have been
revised and all contractors are audited on a regular basis.

"A payout to a mesothelioma victim is an insurance matter in
recognition of the illness which may have been contracted in the
workplace, not an admission of any negligence on the part of the
employer."

The Health and Safety Executive said an investigation into the
barn demolition had identified shortcomings in the way the work
had been carried out, but there had been no prosecution.

A spokesperson said: "HSE inspectors accepted that the university
and others involved took this matter very seriously and have acted
robustly to prevent repetition.

"Given that the risks were so low, it was not considered necessary
or appropriate for HSE to take further action."

Mr. Murphy said he has already outlived the prediction of his
terminal illness.

He had left the university before the barn demolition but claimed
he was exposed to white asbestos many times.

"I've got a terminal illness.  So how can it not be dangerous when
you're told you've got eight to 18 months?

"I was looking forward to a long and happy retirement," he said.




ASBESTOS UPDATE: Macedon Council Orders Audit After Fibro Find
--------------------------------------------------------------
ABC News reports that the Macedon Ranges Shire has ordered an
asbestos audit of all its kindergartens, after a small amount of
the material was found in one of them.

The asbestos was removed from the Woodend kindergarten on Feb. 23
and the building has been declared safe to reopen.

However, the council's Dale Thornton says it is a concern the
material was not found when the last asbestos audit was done.

"Yes we had an asbestos audit done in 2006 and that was intended
to be a complete audit but the asbestos that was uncovered on Feb.
23 wasn't on the asbestos register," he said.

"When you're dealing with the health and safety of the community
and children you can't be too careful, so we've ordered another
complete audit."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Telemovie "Devil's Dust" to Grind March 19
-----------------------------------------------------------
Encore Magazine Online reports that a two part mini-series about
the James Hardie asbestos tragedy goes into production on March 19
for the ABC.

Produced by FremantleMedia Australia, Devil's Dust will star Don
Hany of East West 101 and Offspring, Anthony Hayes of The Slap and
upcoming Beaconsfield and Ewen Leslie of Sleeping Beauty and Mabo.

The mini-series is based on the book Killer Company by ABC
journalist Matt Peacock, who is played by Leslie.

Synopsis: Devil's Dust follows the story of three men, Bernie
Banton, asbestos sufferer, Adam Bourke and Matt Peacock whose
lives and careers are bound together by a tragedy that becomes a
scandal, and then a fast-moving battle through the corridors of
corporate, political and media power.  At the heart of the story
are the 60,000 Australians likely to die of asbestos disease by
2030.

ABC TV Head of Fiction, Carole Sklan said: "This is a powerful,
inspiring drama which has attracted an outstanding cast and
creative team.  ABC TV is proud to present the human story at the
heart of this on-going national tragedy."

FremantleMedia Australia and Asia Pacific CEO, Ian Hogg, said:
"Devil's Dust is a powerful story of greed, subterfuge and
perseverance.  It's a story that will resonate ever so strongly
with all Australians.  Our Creative Director, Jason Stephens /
Bravado has been instrumental in bringing the project to the small
screen."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Jan Juc Parklands Is Up For Remediation
--------------------------------------------------------
Tom Bennet of the Geelong Advertiser reports that Surf Coast Shire
has dismissed suggestions it knew asbestos was present in Jan Juc
parklands six weeks before any action was taken.

Emails from concerned residents in Torquay and Jan Juc have been
circulating, accusing the shire of knowing about the asbestos at
Jan Juc Reserve since Jan. 9.

Shire Mayor Brian McKiterick said the council initially reported
its concerns over the state of the worksite to the RACV in
December.

A pipeline has been put through the park to bring stormwater from
Jan Juc Creek for use on the fairways of the upgraded RACV Torquay
Golf Club resort.

"Council has, since December, repeatedly asked the RACV to clean
away debris, including broken glass and rubble from its worksite,"
he said.

"The presence of asbestos fragments was only suspected on Feb. 20,
after which testing was commissioned and the site fenced off.

"Small amounts of non-friable (uncrushed) asbestos have been found
on the site.  These amounts of undisturbed asbestos present a low
health risk.

"A full assessment is being undertaken by a qualified occupational
hygienist to ensure the safety of nearby residents and the public
at large."

The true extent and source of the asbestos-contaminated soil may
remain unknown for another week.

RACV golf club site project manager Bruce Van Every said core
samples were being taken and would be scientifically analyzed.

He said the contaminated soil either came from the original
excavation, was brought in by the contractor or had been dumped
there by a third party.

"We need to know how much asbestos we are dealing with and its
possible origin," he said.

"I expect it will be at least a week before we know the answers."

Mr. Van Every said environmental experts had been engaged to
provide a master plan for remediation of the site.



ASBESTOS UPDATE: NIC Seeks $16MM Surplus From Montana's Policy
--------------------------------------------------------------
The Associated Press reports that a Nebraska insurance company has
filed a lawsuit against the state of Montana to recover $16
million that was used primarily to cover a sweeping financial
settlement of asbestos-related claims from residents of the
Superfund town of Libby.

The lawsuit from the Omaha-based National Indemnity Co. asks a
Montana judge to order the return of any payments in the
settlement that fell outside the state's insurance policy.

Most of the money from National Indemnity went toward a $43
million settlement in September with more than a thousand asbestos
victims.  Claimants in the case said the state knew for decades
that asbestos dust from a W.R. Grace vermiculite mine was
sickening people in Libby, but failed to act.

An estimated 400 people have been killed and 1,750 sickened in and
around Libby, considered the country's deadliest Superfund site.

The settlement money was put into a trust that was not named as a
defendant in the case.  That means the dispute is not expected to
take away from payments to victims.

"I don't think this has any effect on the trust," said Bill
Gianoulias, chief legal counsel for the Montana Department of
Administration, which oversaw the settlement.

Gianoulias declined to comment further on the lawsuit and said the
state will respond in court filings.

National Indemnity said in the lawsuit that it paid into the
settlement under a 2005 agreement that reserved the company's
right to seek future recovery of the money.  The company claims
the state failed to properly notice the company about the
lawsuits, and that an outside counsel for the state decided to
fight the claims without notifying National Indemnity.

The insurance policy at the center of the case was a comprehensive
general liability policy effective from July 1973 to July 1975,
when it was cancelled one year early for unknown reasons.

"National and the state have ongoing disputes about the parties'
respective rights and obligations" under the terms of the policy,
the lawsuits states.

National Indemnity attorney John Maynard declined to discuss the
suit.

In addition to the money from National Indemnity, the settlement
was covered by $26.8 million from the state's self-insurance
reserve fund and $100,000 from the Montana Insurance Guaranty
Association.

More than 60% of the claimants in the Libby settlement, or 764
people, had received settlement checks through mid-February,
according to Nancy Gibson, the Missoula-based attorney who is
overseeing the settlement trust.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Chrysotile Industry Refuses "Natural Death"
-----------------------------------------------------------
Tim Povtak of The Mesothelioma center relates that a motion to
withdraw the government's offer of a $58 million loan guarantee to
revitalize the asbestos mining industry in Canada was dropped
because of a lack of support in the Quebec National Assembly.

Despite a growing anti-asbestos sentiment throughout Canada, the
majority in the Quebec Assembly failed to support the motion made
by independent lawmaker Lisette Lapointe.

The last two asbestos mines in Canada were closed late in 2011 for
environmental and financial reasons, but Premier Jean Charest has
dangled that loan guarantee to Balcorp Ltd. if it can raise the
$25 million in financing to reopen the Jeffrey Mine in Quebec.

An exposure to asbestos fibers can cause of variety of respiratory
illnesses, including mesothelioma cancer.

Once prevalent in a wide variety of products, its use has been
reduced dramatically in recent decades because of its toxic
reputation.  It is banned in more than 50 countries, but not in
Canada or the United States.

"It's disappointing -- and disgusting -- that members of the
National Assembly did not stand with Ms. Lapointe," Canadian
activist Stacy Cattron told Asbestos.com.  "The people of Quebec
deserve politicians who are not corrupted by junk science from
asbestos industry lobbyists."

Cattron, whose father died from mesothelioma, is co-founder of the
Canadian Voices of Asbestos Victims.  Like many activists around
the country, she was dismayed to hear of this week's events in the
General Assembly.

"This is a perfect opportunity to let this appalling industry die
a natural death while there are no miners employed there," Cattran
said.  "This is an industry that has used deceit to promote its
agenda.  Not only does it not deserve government funding, but
(those that run it) deserve prison time."

Balcorp, which continues to pursue the loan guarantee, has assured
government officials that none of the asbestos mined would be used
in Canada.

It also has said that the asbestos mined there would be handled
safely.  It expects to export much of it to India, where it is
used in cement for building purposes.

"Stop supporting sickness and death," Lapointe said during her
motion.  "Those are harsh words, I know but that's the reality."

Lapointe is the wife of former Parti Quebecois premier Jacques
Parizeau, now an independent legislator.  As part of the motion,
Lapointe noted that the International Agency for Research on
Cancer already concluded that the chrysotile asbestos mined in
Quebec, "is carcinogenic in all forms."

One of her few supporters suggested that the $58 million loan
guarantee would be better spent creating other jobs in the region.

Balcorp is run by businessman Balit Chadha.  His wife, Roshi
Chadha, is a corporate executive of Seja Trade, an exporting
business.  She recently resigned from her position with the
Canadian Red Cross Board of Directors because of pressure from
various anti-asbestos groups.

Also on Feb. 23, former Quebec legislator Pat Martin joined a
group protesting Charest's support of the loan guarantee.  Charest
has said previously that it is only promoting the "safe use," of
chrysotile asbestos."



ASBESTOS UPDATE: Medway Group Offers Help To Mesothelioma Victims
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The Medway Messenger reports that the rate of deaths from a cancer
caused by asbestos will rise in the next three years.  Already,
the devastating condition has caused at least 104 deaths in the
Towns.

Mesothelioma is incurable and the patient usually dies within a
year of diagnosis.  Medway has the second highest death rate from
the disease in England and Wales.  The disease can linger
undetected for up to 45 years.

Asbestos was widely used as a construction insulation material.
At Chatham Dockyard, one of the biggest employers, it was
instrumental in all aspects of ship building and ship repairs.

At the British Uralite factory in Higham, chimney pots, pipes and
tiles were made from raw asbestos.  Similarly, it was also used in
power stations and heavy engineering plants in the Towns.

Asbestos was also used as a building material in schools and homes
between the 1950s and 1980s.  While the dockyard and British
Uralite have long since closed they have left behind a legacy of
death.

The increasing number of fatalities prompted nurse Frances McKay,
a nurse based at Medway Maritime Hospital's lung cancer and
mesothelioma unit, to start a monthly support group for patients
and their families.

Symptoms are shortness of breath, chest pains, weight loss and
unexplained tiredness

Mrs. McKay said: "While there is still no cure, five years ago
there was nothing we could do.  But today, because of the advance
in medicine, if the patient is well enough we can use
chemotherapy.

"It is not like other cancers.  It is not a solid substance that
is easily visible like a tumour.  It is a paste which wraps itself
around the lining of the lungs."

She feels any predicted number of those who may fall victim to the
illness is unreliable.

She said: "It is not just those who have worked directly with the
material who may be affected.  The dust would have been in the air
so it is also those who have worked alongside them.  Men and women
used to work all day long handling asbestos and then they would
travel together on the bus to and from work in their work clothes.

"Asbestos particles would be in the air around them at all times."

Mrs. McKay has organized a series of conferences to raise
awareness, including one in the former naval base which attracted
200 visitors.

Her unit, which she runs with fellow nurse Caroline Williams and
Pat Cameron from the Wisdom Hospice, won the Department of
Health's health and social care certificate in 2008.

She said: "In Medway, we have the expertise.  We are good at
detecting it and we know how to support the patient and victim.

"Our unit is the only one of its kind in Kent.  It is the best
place to be if you do contract the illness."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: WorkSafe Joins EPA & Surf Coast On Jan Juc Site
----------------------------------------------------------------
Tom Bennett of the Geelong Advertiser reports that a farm near
Waurn Ponds has been identified as the source of the asbestos-
contaminated soil that has forced the closure of much of Jan Juc
Creek Reserve.

WorkSafe Victoria spokesman Michael Birt said a house and other
buildings had been recently demolished on the farm.

"The back-fill taken from the property contained chunks of
concrete, broken bricks, glass and some asbestos," he said.

The alarm was raised in December when a Jan Juc resident noticed
"bodgey back-fill material" had been used to cover a pipeline and
trench installed by a drainage contractor.

The pipeline was constructed to bring storm water from Jan Juc
Creek for use on the fairways of the upgraded RACV Torquay Golf
Club resort.

EPA tests confirmed the presence of asbestos on Feb. 23 and a
fence was erected around the site.

WorkSafe has become the third government agency after the EPA and
the Surf Coast Shire to become involved in investigating the
contamination.

Mr. Birt acknowledged residents' concerns that they, their
families and council workers may have been exposed to asbestos.

"There is no safe level of exposure to asbestos, however, that is
not to say everyone who is exposed will become ill," he said.

"Initial test results indicate there is only a small amount of
asbestos present and it is only a low-level risk."

Mr. Birt said his team would investigate how long the RACV and
council staff had worked at the site.

"It is too soon to know whether the RACV, its contractor or the
shire will face charges (under the Occupational Health and Safety
Act)," he said.

A recently convened residents group has aired its fears and
concerns about the issue.

Group spokesman Kevin Mercer said there was anger the council did
not fence-off the contaminated area sooner.

"We feel the council has let us down," he said.

"It has divided loyalties and does not have residents' safety as
its No. 1 concern."

"We need to know how to monitor and access the degree of danger.
And we need to know what the early signs of exposure are."

The RACV said a firm of environmental experts had been engaged to
conduct further tests to gauge the extent of the problem.

The results will be known within the first week of March.  A
remediation plan will be drawn up and submitted to the EPA and
council for approval.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Freight Co Sued For Exposing 20 People To Fibro
---------------------------------------------------------------
Tim Clarke of the Redditch Standard reports that a Redditch
freight firm, its managing director and a Birmingham contractor
have been fined a total of GBP62,500 for putting at least 20
people at risk of lung disease from asbestos fibers.

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) prosecuted Avon Freight
Group Ltd (AFG) and its managing director Simon Poole, together
with builder Ronald MacPhee, over the exposure during work to
convert the unit in Hemming Road, Redditch, into a new storage
centre and headquarters for AFG.

AFG's architect commissioned a survey that identified asbestos
insulation board in a number of partition walls, which the company
wanted to demolish, and got estimates for its removal from three
licensed contractors.

But Worcester Crown Court heard on Wednesday, Feb. 22, how Poole
instructed builder MacPhee, who was carrying out minor
refurbishment work on the premises, to carry out the work even
though he did not have a license.

MacPhee and two other workers removed almost 1.5 tons of asbestos
insulation board from the site and disposed of it as asbestos
cement, which can be removed without a license, sometime between
April 24 and May 16, 2008.

Five months later, two other companies, who had been commissioned
to demolish parts of the building and build an extension,
discovered pieces of asbestos insulation board on the floor and
still attached to retaining screws on the walls and alerted HSE.
An analysis of the area revealed it was contaminated with asbestos
fibers and required decontamination by a specialist licensed
asbestos contractor.

HSE's investigation found at least 20 people, including contract
workers on the project, employees of AFG and workers for a tenant
who had been using the site for storage, could have inhaled
asbestos fibers during the five months.

AFG pleaded guilty to breaching the Health and Safety at Work Act
1974 and was fined GBP30,000 and ordered to pay GBP26,147 costs.

Poole, of Streetly Lane, Sutton Coldfield, pleaded guilty and was
fined GBP30,000 and ordered to pay GBP26,147 costs.

MacPhee, of Birmingham, also pleaded guilty and was fined GBP2,500
and ordered to pay GBP500 costs.

Speaking after the hearing, HSE inspector Tariq Khan said: "This
type of exposure could cause life-threatening illnesses in years
to come but because it takes so long to develop, these people will
be left with years of uncertainty."




ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Kingston at 28deaths/4yrs
---------------------------------------------------------------
Tom Barnes of Your Local Guardian reports Nearly 30 people have
died of asbestos-related cancer in Kingston in a four-year period
-- well above the national average.

The figures, relating to 2006-10, showed 28 deaths in the borough
were because of mesothelioma -- a terminal cancer of the lung wall
caused by asbestos exposure.

Symptoms from asbestos inhalation usually develop years after
coming in contact with the mineral.

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers wants the Government to
set up a fund for sufferers as many can no longer trace the
employer who exposed them to asbestos.

There have been several asbestos scares in the borough in recent
years, including the potentially deadly mineral being found at
Tiffin Girls' School in 2007.



ASBESTOS UPDATE: RBI Awards $100,000 for "The Block" Cleanup
------------------------------------------------------------
Megan Dombroski of Mountain Xpress, Ashvill, N.C., posts an
excerpt of a press release from the Land of Sky Regional Council:

Land of Sky Regional Council's Regional Brownfields Initiative
(RBI) is pleased to announce the award of a $100,000 sub-grant to
Mountain Housing Opportunities (MHO) and Eagle Market Development
Corporation (EMDC).

Funds from the RBI Revolving Loan Fund (RLF) will be used for a
sub-grant to assist with the cleanup of lead paint and asbestos at
the Glen Rock Hotel in Asheville's River Arts District and the Del
Cardo and Collette buildings in the historic African American
business district, known as "The Block" in Asheville.

The Glen Rock Hotel is Phase III of MHO's Glen Rock Development
Project; plans for renovation of the building include 22
affordable housing units and approximately 14,000 sf. of
commercial space.  The DelCardo and Collette buildings are part of
the collaborative effort between MHO and the Eagle Market
Development Corporation.

The Eagle Market Place project is a mixed use residential and
commercial project which includes commercial space and 70 units of
affordable housing.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Luton at 29deaths/4yrs
------------------------------------------------------------
Luton News Herald & Post reports that a campaign group says a
compensation 'safety net' is needed for people suffering from
abestos-related cancer.

Figures obtained by not-for-profit campaign group the Association
of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL) show that the death rate in
Luton from mesothelioma is higher than the national average.

From 2006 to the end of 2010, mesothelioma, a terminal cancer of
the lung wall, was recorded as the underlying cause of 29 deaths
in the area.

It is the equivalent to three deaths in 100,000 people. The
average for England and Wales during the same period was 2.5.

APIL president David Bott said: "What many people don't realise is
that hundreds of sufferers across the UK cannot get the
compensation they need to help them through the last days of their
life.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Accidental Fire Disrupts Control Tower Abatement
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Patrick Cassidy of Cape Cod Online reports that work to remove
asbestos from the old air traffic control tower at Barnstable
Municipal Airport sparked a small fire on Feb. 24.

Firefighters responded to the gutted 50-year-old building shortly
before 10 a.m..

They spent an hour and a half cutting into the old tower to expose
an area that was smoldering, at times hacking at the roof with an
ax and sawing into the metal edge with an electric saw.  Small
amounts of smoke periodically puffed out from the roof as they
worked in the cold rain.

The fire began as a worker was cutting vertical lines into the
metal walls of the building to remove caulk that is potentially
contaminated with asbestos, Hyannis Deputy Fire Chief Dean
Melanson said.

The torch touched off a fire in the roof, which is covered with
tar and gravel, Melanson said.  Several layers of fiberboard
beneath the surface caught fire, he said.

"We spoke with the asbestos abatement guys and what we were doing
was fine," he said, adding that firefighters were not working in
an area where asbestos is located.

An Occupational Safety and Health Administration official on the
scene said he would have to wait for firefighters to finish
working on the building before getting inside.

Melanson said work being done on the building had proper permits
and workers had appropriate safety equipment in place, including
hoses to put out a potential fire.

Firefighters took extra time to access the fire so as not to
destroy a safety railing around the roof that was still being used
by workers, he said.

The old air traffic control tower was replaced at the end of 2011
by a new, taller tower.  Work on the demolition of the tower and
the old terminal next door has been slowed by the discovery of
additional asbestos in the buildings.

Airport officials received approval earlier this month from the
Barnstable Town Council to spend $365,000 to remove the asbestos
from the tower.

Officials have now asked for a little more than $200,000 to remove
asbestos found in the old terminal, according to airport manager
Roland "Bud" Breault.  The demolition of the terminal building is
already under way.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: School Chairs Urge Parents to Send SOS to MPP
--------------------------------------------------------------
Robert Sibley of The Ottawa Citizen reports that parents concerned
about conditions at Broadview Public School should contact their
local MPP because there is little the Ottawa Carleton District
School Board can do to remedy the situation, board chairwoman
Jennifer McKenzie says.

"There are a number of schools across the district of a similar
age and vintage, and Broadview is certainly one of the ones that
could use a significant renovation," McKenzie said Feb. 23.

However, she suggested the only way Broadview would get the
renovation money it needed was if the Ontario government came up
with the cash.  "The province has not felt the need to provide the
funding for that renovation to this point," McKenzie said, adding
the school board included the school on its capital priority list
last year.

The school on Broadview Avenue, near Carling Avenue, is on the
board's priority list for much-needed renovations: to the tune of
about $4 million.

However, the board, which has schools scattered throughout the
Ottawa area, has a backlog of about $380 million in deferred
renovation and maintenance projects and only $11.7 million
available for such work.

Broadview is a large school with two gymnasiums, computer and
science labs, a library and resource centre, an art room,
instrumental music room and a daycare centre.  It's various
programs include, among others, an English and Core French program
for students from Junior Kindergarten to Grade 8, plus an early
French immersion program for students from Senior Kindergarten to
Grade 5.

However, the co-chairwomen of the Broadview School Council, Liz
Burgess and Claire Todd, toured the school this week and didn't
like what they saw.

"We were shocked at the conditions," Burgess and Todd said in a
report to fellow council members.  "Structural issues are causing
a wall in the large gym to bulge.  It has been reinforced by
rebar, but the underlying issues have not been addressed."

The twosome expressed dismay at what some students had to endure.
"In the primary wing, two classrooms of students are being housed
in the basement.  Even though it was a warm, springlike day, the
ancient boiler was running at full tilt, making conditions in some
of the classes unbearably hot.

"We also saw where there had been serious flooding in the basement
school rooms.  There are, we suspect, asbestos-covered water pipes
on the ceilings of some classes and asbestos floor tiles in
others."

They also reported leaky windows and "the development of mould" in
some classrooms.

Burgess and Todd concluded their report, urging parents with
children in the school to "take action," with petitions and
letters to Ottawa Centre MPP Yasir Naqvi and Minister of Education
Laurel Broten.  McKenzie seemed to agree with that strategy.

"The money is not going to come easily," she said, "but we have to
see our schools as long-term investments and hope the province
sees it that way as well."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: NZ Defence Force to be Asbestos-Free by 2014
-------------------------------------------------------------
Voxy News Engine posts that the New Zealand Defence Force welcomed
a Ministry of Defence evaluation report on its management of
asbestos on Feb. 27.

The review looked at the NZ Defence Force's approach to the use,
management and storage of asbestos and products containing
asbestos.  The Ministry of Defence (MoD) evaluation concludes:
"The NZ Defence Force has appropriate policies for the management
and handling of asbestos, whether it is in building materials or
in equipment componentry."

Chief of Defence Force, Lieutenant General Rhys Jones, says the
Ministry of Defence's report is a useful evaluation of current
NZDF policy and procedures to meet the Government's legislative
requirements for work place management of asbestos products.

"We welcome the report's findings that the NZ Defence Force has
the appropriate polices in place, however we acknowledge that
further policy development is needed to align with the
requirements of Hazardous Substances and Health and Safety
legislation.

"The NZ Defence Force accepts the report's recommendations and a
number of actions have been taken, including measures to improve
the identification and recording of items containing asbestos,
utilizing existing NZ Defence Force linkages with Australian
Defence Force asbestos experts."

The MoD found that while the NZ Defence Force has some inventory
that contains asbestos, it is not regarded as a significant risk.
There is no current New Zealand government policy or directive to
remove asbestos containing materials.

However, for a number of years the Royal New Zealand Navy has
adopted a deliberate policy of not buying components with
asbestos; the New Zealand Army has removed asbestos brake linings,
asbestos grinding disks and welding blankets from its inventory;
and the Royal New Zealand Air Force believes it has no significant
inventory lines which may contain asbestos.

The MoD evaluation report also confirms that, "the NZ Defence
Force is aware of, and takes appropriate steps to mitigate the
risk presented by legacy asbestos building materials".

For example, a previously announced $7 million upgrade of
ammunition storage facilities at Kauri Point includes the
construction of new storage bunkers that will enable all old
buildings to be demolished, removing legacy asbestos completely.
The redevelopment expected to be completed by 2014.



ASBESTOS UPDATE: Town Of Union Seeks To Waive Removal Permit Fees
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Steve Reilly of The Ithaca Journal reports that Broome County's
largest municipality is pushing the state Department of Labor to
remove an expensive piece of red tape from the flood recovery
process.

The Town of Union has requested that the state Department of Labor
waive its costly asbestos removal notification fees for properties
that are demolished as part of the Federal Emergency Management
Agency (FEMA) buyout process.

While FEMA will ultimately decide which properties can participate
in the program, scores of Southern Tier residents have been
applying for buyouts.  Municipalities are responsible for
demolitions after they take control of a property.

"We are up to 180 applications right now," Union Deputy Supervisor
Rose Sotak said of the buyout process.  "For every one of them
that would be (approved) ...The asbestos removal permit fee can be
up to $4,000.  That could be $720,000."

Other area towns, including the Town of Vestal, are in support of
the measure.

A resolution introduced by Sotak at last week's meeting of the New
York State Association of Towns put the issue on the group's 2012
legislative agenda.  The association is requesting an amendment to
state labor law that would waive the fees for municipalities that
are recovering from disasters.

"We are trying to get some relief," Sotak said.  "That's a big
chunk of money."

In a statement, Department of Labor spokesman Joe Morrissey
acknowledged the request but said the fee is required by state law
and cannot be waived.

"The notification gives DOL information about where asbestos
activities are occurring, and allows us to schedule and prioritize
our work," Morrissey said.  "We follow this notification fee with
a thorough inspection of the site to ensure that the community is
protected from any asbestos."

When the amount of asbestos cannot be quantified -- such as when a
structure is unsafe to enter -- the maximum fee is set at $4,000,
he said.

"The Department of Labor is currently investigating ways to reduce
that cost for the Town of Union," Morrissey said.



ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in W Norfolk at 41deaths/4yrs
----------------------------------------------------------------
Lynn News reports that new statistics have shown that the death
rate in West Norfolk for asbestos-related cancer is well above the
national average.

The figures were collected by campaign group, the Association of
Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL).

They showed that from 2006 to the end of 2010, mesothelioma, a
terminal cancer of the lung wall, was recorded as the cause of 41
deaths in the area.

This is equivalent to 3.1 deaths in 100,000 people; the average
for England and Wales during this time was 2.5.

David Bott, APIL president, said: "This is bad enough, but the
number of men dying from this disease is expected to peak during
the next five years.

"What many people don't realise is that hundreds of sufferers
across the UK cannot get the compensation they need to help them
through the last days of their life.

"We need the Government to bring forward proposals for a fund of
last resort as a safety net for injured workers who cannot pursue
justice."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Sunoco Refinery Begins Removal Of Old Equipment
----------------------------------------------------------------
Gina Bittner of the Gloucester County Times reports that Asbestos
removal has begun at the Sunoco Eagle Point Refinery, signaling
the beginning of an $11.5 million partial dismantling process.

In two phases, Sunoco will remove 22 pieces of processing
equipment from the Crown Point Road site within the next 18 to 30
months.

"Eagle Point may not be a working refinery any longer, but it's
still an important part of our business," Sunoco Communications
Specialist Joe McGinn said.  "It's an operating -- and growing --
fuel terminal that we continue to invest money in.  Right now,
there are nearly 200 people (employees and contractors) working to
upgrade the infrastructure so it can be a world-class terminal
where we can store and supply fuel to the East Coast.  We're
installing new pipes, expanding docks, upgrading our ability to
unload rail cars, and expanding storage for refined products."

In order to complete the process, Sunoco had to apply for two
permits: asbestos removal and demolition.

According to township Administrator Eric Campo and Public Works
Director Phil Zimm, no buildings will be removed from the
property.  Additionally, the dismantling will not disturb any
ground or foundation.

"It's just the processing equipment used in the refining
operation," Campo said.  "While that is a large operation, there
will still be all of the tanks and foundations and other buildings
that are on that property."

NCM -- a Westville based demolition and remediation firm -- has
been contracted by Sunoco to dismantle and salvage the processing
equipment, a matter which required township approval.  McGinn said
it also required state approval; however, a New Jersey Department
of Environmental Protection (NJDEP) spokesman said Sunoco required
no permits from them to dismantle equipment.

"They have been and will continue to work with DEP on
contamination cleanup-related issues," Lawrence Hajna said.

First, NCM will remove all asbestos-containing thermal system
insulation (TSI) from horizontal tanks and vessels, and from
vertical towers and tanks up to 30 feet above ground level.  Also,
any asbestos-containing TSI from all areas and up to about 30 feet
above ground on all towers, all transite panels from buildings,
and other asbestos that may be found.  Zimm said a licensed New
Jersey certified asbestos contractor would be present at all times
during this phase.

The next phase will begin only after all asbestos-contaminated
material is gone.

"The project is ongoing, and NCM expects to complete the work by
April 2014," said McGinn.  "Dismantling the equipment potentially
paves the way for future remediation and reuse of the former
processing area of the site."

Before Sunoco filed the permits, Zimm and township police Chief
Craig Mangano sat down with NCM.

"We need to have answers for the people," Zimm said of his desire
to discuss exactly what was happening at the site.

Additionally, NCM sent a letter to all adjoining properties
surrounding Eagle Point, notifying them of the construction.

As far as activity on the site, Zimm said the "worst case
scenario" would be 10 trucks per day on the site, but that won't
always be the case.

Following completion of both phases, Zimm will be asked to inspect
and approve the project.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Renovation Releases Undetectable Toxic Materials
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Stephanie Hoenig of Monsters and Critics reports that Homes built
or extensively renovated between 1960 and 1990 could contain toxic
substances likely to be released in significant quantities when
being refurbished.

Gone are the days when asbestos, certain products for preserving
wood or adhesives based on carbolineum were widely used, but they
remain impregnated in many homes and can be released when work is
done.

A thorough check needs to be carried out before renovation, says
Eva Reinhold-Postina, who works for an association of private
construction companies in Berlin.  Particular care should be taken
with buildings built or renovated during the 1970s and 1980s, she
says.

Hans Ulrich-Raithel of the Environment Institute in Munich says
this advice should be extended to cover the 1960s as well,
particularly in the case of homes containing a lot of wood.  He
points to products containing DDT, Lindane and PCP that were
widely used and have since been taken off the market.

"Harmful substances in home interiors cannot always be smelt or
seen," Ulrich-Raithel says, noting that wood preservation toxins
tend to have a long half-life.  His advice is to enquire carefully
from the construction company involved and when in doubt to have
an analysis done.

In the event of renovation, the paneling and beams need to be
removed as far as possible, and where not possible to be painted
with a protective coating.  This prevents the toxins from being
released into the interior.

Old parquet floors may be a source of so-called polycyclic
aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) or polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs).
These toxic substances found widespread use from around 1900 up to
the early 1970s and even longer in some countries.

"Whether or not parquet with toxic adhesive needs to be ripped up
depends on the state of the parquet," says Dirk Petersen of a
consumer watchdog in Germany.  If the floor has been properly
sealed there are few grounds for concern.

But if there are gaps in the flooring, tiny particles of glue
containing the toxins could come to the surface, and in this case
removal should be considered.  Analysis of house dust or of
remnants of the adhesive will show whether PAHs or PCBs are
present.


Older PVC flooring could contain asbestos fibers.  If the flooring
is intact and stuck down to the surface beneath, a new floor
covering can simply be fitted over the top.

The old flooring should under no circumstances be worked with
machinery, as this results in fine dust containing asbestos
fibers, Ulrich-Raithel says.  Only specialist firms are allowed to
remove floors of this kind.

Floors made of flexible PVC tiles laid between the 1940s and 1960s
present a similar problem and need to be covered, if still in good
condition, or be removed by specialists for disposal.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Reforms Forcing Claimants To Pay GBP2,300 Slammed
------------------------------------------------------------------
The Daily Mirror reports Asbestos victims will have to fork out
thousands of pounds to claim compensation for their fatal
illnesses.

Sufferers are demanding Justice Secretary Ken Clarke ditches his
"abhorrent" reforms that would force them to pay two new fees.

Mr. Clarke says the changes -- which would affect anyone seeking
damages for an industrial disease -- are needed to halt the rising
number of claims from drivers who falsely say they have whiplash.

But campaigners warn that thousands of people dying from asbestos-
related cancer mesothelioma would be put off from pursuing claims.

In the current system the defendant, such as a big company, picks
up the cost of insurance and pays the legal fees if they lose the
case.

Mr. Clarke now wants claimants to pay an upfront insurance fee of
around GBP2,300 so if they lose they are protected from having to
pay the defendant's costs.

The new rules would also mean if victims win their case they would
then have to hand 25% of the compensation to their lawyer.

An alliance of Labour, Tory and Lib Dem peers has tabled a series
of amendments to derail Mr. Clarke's plans.

Crossbench peer Lord Alton of Liverpool said it would be a
"tragedy and a profound injustice" if they did not fight the
proposals.

Shadow justice minister Andy Slaughter said: "The Government says
their reforms will stop whiplash claims.  But they're not just
stopping whiplash cases, they're also trying to stop serious
industrial disease and workplace injury cases.

"This is all part of a campaign to protect insurance companies and
badly behaving industrial giants at the expense of people who
worked hard all their lives and did nothing wrong.

"I've met many mesothelioma sufferers and they say all say Ken
Clarke just doesn't understand."

The Asbestos Victims Support Groups Forum UK has written to Tory
Mr. Clarke urging him to rethink his reforms.

Their letter says: "The vast majority of occupationally-related
respiratory diseases are asbestos-related.  Of those diseases,
mesothelioma accounts for some 50%.

"It is considered abhorrent that dying asbestos victims should
have to surrender any of their damages in legal costs.

"We urge you to make an exception for those who suffer so badly
and are completely faultless."

The Mirror's Asbestos Timebomb campaign is calling for better
protection and faster compensation for asbestos victims.

A Ministry of Justice spokesman said: "Valid cases will still be
able to be pursued.

"There will be a 10% increase in damages awarded to claimants such
as those suffering from asbestosis.

"Under our proposals claimants will not generally have to pay the
other side's costs if their claim fails so they will not need to
take out indemnity insurance."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: New Zealanders Secure With NDZF Fibro Management
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Shane Cowlishaw of The Dominion News relates that asbestos-lined
Defence Force ammunition dumps that could spread toxic dust across
nearby homes and a school need to be fixed as soon as possible, a
report says.

The Management of Asbestos in the NZDF report, prepared by the
Defence Ministry in June last year but made public on Feb. 27,
identified a risk of the release of asbestos fibers into the air
in the case of fire at several buildings across New Zealand,
including the Kauri Point ammunition storage facility in Auckland.

The site, which is surrounded by bush and close to a primary
school and the suburb of Chatswood, contains storehouses with
asbestos roofing.  Cladding could explode and send a cloud of
fibers into the air that could be "widely dispersed" over the
residential area.

The report recommended removing the asbestos immediately in spite
of the existence of a safety plan between the Defence Force and
Fire Service.

"Despite the mitigating steps taken by the Armament Depot, we
think that the risk of asbestos dispersal should an explosive
storehouse at Kauri Point be damaged through an explosion should
be removed.  The cost of remediation, both in environmental and
health costs, and reputational damage, may well be far greater
than the cost of replacing asbestos cladding."

There were also many other Defence Force buildings across New
Zealand that contained asbestos, including the Trentham, Linton
and Waiouru army camps, which could also pose a danger to
communities in the event of a fire.

The report said that policies in place within the force regarding
the use and management of asbestos were appropriate.

The chief of the Defence Force, Lieutenant General Rhys Jones,
said that since the report a $7million upgrade to Kauri Point had
been announced that would replace all storehouses by 2014.

In the interim, explosives had been removed from 29 of the
storehouses, starting with those closest to the residential areas.

Quotations were being sought to remove the asbestos as quickly as
possible.

"The New Zealand Defence Force accepts the report's
recommendations and a number of actions have been taken, including
measures to improve the identification and recording of items
containing asbestos, utilizing existing New Zealand Defence Force
linkages with Australian Defence Force asbestos experts."

The Defence Force did not respond to a request for a full list of
asbestos buildings or further questions about costs involved.

Kauri Point residents spoken to by The Dominion Post were unaware
of the asbestos risk, but were not worried.

Chelsea Primary School principal Sue Mulcahy, whose school is
across the road from the depot, said it would have to be a huge
explosion with a strong prevailing westerly wind to affect them.

"We were more concerned if the ammo dump went up that we would be
in the firing line."

She did not know about the asbestos but said the community had a
good relationship with the Defence Force, which would have warned
residents if there was a risk.

Paul Ninness, who had lived on nearby Onetaunga St. for 30 years,
said he had no problem with the asbestos.  "I think the
probability is that the volcano here might blow up before that
happens."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: NED Director Assures Safety of NZ Water Supply
---------------------------------------------------------------
Radio New Zealand International reports that The director of the
Niue Environment Department, Sauni Togatule, says the precautions
planned for the burying of asbestos on the island exceed
requirements in New Zealand.

Niue has been struggling for years to clear asbestos waste and has
decided, in principle, to bury it.

There are concerns this could threaten the water lens under the
island but Mr. Togatule says an Environmental Impact Assessment is
looking at that issue.  He says they are planning substantial
efforts to contain the asbestos to ensure it doesn't affect the
water supply.

"We are actually looking at lining the bunker with approved
polyethylene plastic and putting a cap on top once that is
finished.  We are also looking at the other option of a concrete
bunker, and that will have a final decision at the end of the
week, pending the consultation with the general public on Feb.
29."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: SCC's Failure To Inform Parents Creates Stir
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Leatherhead Advertiser at thisissurreytoday.co.uk reports that
a concerned parent is demanding answers after asbestos was found
at St. Martin's Primary School in Dorking during half term.

Surrey County Council (SCC) says it knew some asbestos was present
prior to recent work to build two classrooms and a playground, but
more was found while improvement work was being carried out in the
main building.  SCC conducted thorough safety checks and found no
health risk.

One parent, who did not want to be named, said: "I was at the
school when the discovery was made.  Parts of the building were on
lockdown and tents were put up to block off areas.

"We then received an e-mail from the head teacher on Sunday night
saying that everything was fine, which I just found hard to
believe.

"There was no explanation as to the condition of the building,
what precautions had been put in place and no advice to parents,
so we are all very concerned.

"It doesn't seem right."

The school reopened as normal on Feb. 20 following the half-term
break.

The concerned parent told the Advertiser she has spoken to other
people whose children attend the school, and many expressed
concern.

She added: "Parents should have been called in straight away and
given a seminar or something by the county council or an expert,
telling us exactly what was going on.

"I love the school.  St Martin's is a great school but at the same
time parents have been put in a situation where we are sending our
children to school, where they should be safe, yet we do not have
enough information to give us peace of mind."

But SCC, which is responsible for Surrey's schools, stressed that
there is no health risk at the Ranmore Road school.

A spokeswoman said: "We understand that asbestos is a very emotive
and alarming issue, but we have carried out air tests in the parts
of the school that are to be used and all tests have come back
negative for the presence of asbestos fibers.

"In accordance with our procedures, we will continue to monitor
the situation.

"SCC would not allow the school to remain open if there were a
present risk to the students or staff."

Speaking on Feb. 21, executive head teacher Jane Gorecka told the
Advertiser: "The work at St. Martin's has been led by SCC, which
has been actively supporting the school since the discovery of
asbestos-containing materials.

"The council's head of strategic risk management was at the school
this morning and has spoken to parents and to staff personally.

"A briefing letter has gone out to all parents today and a meeting
for parents has been planned for later in the week.  Obviously it
is the safety of the children that is at the centre of our
thinking as we work together to resolve this problem as quickly as
possible."

Asbestos was widely used as a building material from the 1950s
until the mid-1980s.  Breathing in asbestos fibres can lead to
fatal lung conditions.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Lancashire at 86deaths/5yrs
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Sam Chadderton of the Lancashire Telegraph reports that there
have been 86 asbestos related deaths in East Lancashire in the
last five years, according to new figures.

Statistics show that Blackburn with Darwen has a higher than
average death rate from mesothelioma, a terminal cancer of the
lung wall caused by exposure to asbestos.

The not for profit Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL)
obtained the number of deaths from 2006 to 2010 and have warned
that the alarming figures will continue to rise.

Blackburn with Darwen had 23 deaths, the equivalent to three
deaths in 100,000 people.  The average for England and Wales
during the same period was 2.5.

In the same time, there were 17 deaths in Chorley, 13 in Pendle,
nine in Burnley, nine in Hyndburn, nine in the Ribble Valley, and
six in Rossendale.

Several local asbestos-related deaths have been linked to working
at the Garden Street gas mask factory during the war and the
Huncoat Power Station.

APIL president David Bott said: "More people die of mesothelioma
in Blackburn with Darwen per head of the population than in most
other parts of the country.

"This is bad enough, but the number of men dying from this disease
is expected to peak during the next five years and what many
people don't realise is that hundreds of sufferers across the UK
cannot get the compensation they need to help them through the
last days of their life.

"What is needed is for the Government to bring forward proposals
for a fund of last resort which would act as a safety net for
injured workers who are otherwise unable to pursue the justice
they deserve."

Many workers who have developed mesothelioma are sometimes unable
to pursue a claim for damages because they can no longer trace the
employer who exposed them to asbestos, or the employer's insurance
company.

This is because the onset of symptoms often comes decades after a
worker has inhaled asbestos fibers, during which time employers go
out of business and insurance documents can be lost or destroyed.

"The Government proposed to set up a fund of last resort shortly
before the general election, but 18 months has now passed and
nothing has been heard about it since," added Mr. Bott.

"In the meantime, sick and dying workers who are prevented from
bringing valid cases are left effectively subsidizing insurance
companies.

"This unacceptable situation simply cannot go on.  Something must
be done before more dying victims of mesothelioma go
uncompensated.

"A similar fund exists for victims injured by uninsured drivers.
The Government must do the right thing and introduce one for
injured workers."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Evergreen's Fine Dropped From $25,450 to $3,450
----------------------------------------------------------------
Dee Riggs of The Wenatchee World reports that the state has upheld
a ruling that a Cashmere company did not properly remove asbestos
from Solomon's Porch youth center in downtown Wenatchee but has
reduced the company's fine.

The fine was reduced from $25,450 to $3,450 because the company
has made a good faith effort to improve its practices, said Hector
Castro, a spokesman for the state Labor & Industries.

Evergreen Asbestos Solutions had appealed the 14 violations that
state officials considered serious, Castro said.  A state L&I
hearings officer upheld the violations earlier in February.

Castro said his agency was concerned for the safety of workers,
who may have been exposed to the cancer-causing asbestos.  He said
he did not know if there would be any danger to nonworkers who
used the center right after the asbestos was removed, or to anyone
using the center today.

The May asbestos removal was done to prepare for a youth shelter
in the lower level of the building at 17 S. Mission St.  The work
included creating a new stairwell to that lower level.  Desiree
Knemeyer, program director at the youth center, said in January
that the center was closed during the asbestos removal work.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Woman Exposed To Fibro On Husband's Clothes Dies
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The Derby Telegraph reports that a wife who washed her husband's
asbestos-covered work clothes for a decade died because she was
exposed to the deadly dust -- even though he was not affected.

Every week, Jill Bolstridge would shake off the dirt from overalls
worn by her husband James -- who worked at Derby engineering firm
S Robinson and Sons -- before putting them in the washing machine.

The 56-year-old had been in good health until last May, when she
started becoming out of breath and was given an inhaler, an
inquest heard.

Doctors confirmed she was suffering from a malignant mesothelioma
of the pleura -- an asbestos-related cancer affecting the lining
of the lungs -- and she had major surgery.

But Mrs. Bolstridge, of Athol Close, Sinfin, died in October, two
days after her family helped her put together a statement about
her condition -- which was read out at the inquest.

After the hearing, her daughter Carla, 22, paid tribute to her
mother.  She said: "My mum was a loving, affectionate, warm and a
beautifully-giving woman who was always willing to put others
before her.

"She was strong role-model to her sons and daughters and was
highly dedicated as a carer to one of her sons, who has severe
special needs.

"She was also regularly helping out her own mum, was keen on
sewing and knitting and had a love for animals.

"My mum was greatly loved and is missed by her family and
friends."

She also had sons Paul, 38, Earl, 34, and Natalya, 21.

South Derbyshire Coroner's Court heard how Mr. Bolstridge started
working at the construction company, off Ascot Drive, in 1981.  He
told the inquest his job initially included sweeping up in the
asbestos yard and moving asbestos sheeting.

He was later promoted and worked on a press indoors but his work
bench was near doors to the yard and, he said, dust would blow
through and settle on his bench.

He described how early in his career he would go to work in his
old clothes before he was later supplied with a one-piece overall.

Mr. Bolstridge, 62, said: "There was no cleaning system.  It was a
matter of taking them home and my wife used to clean them for me."

In later years, he said, this was changed so that overalls were
sent to cleaners in Nottingham but, for 10 years, his wife washed
them.

"She shook them to get as much of the dust off as possible before
putting them in the washing machine," he recalled.

The inquest also heard how Mr. Bolstridge would take off his
clothes in the kitchen and Mrs. Bolstridge would shake them before
putting them in the washer.

In her statement, which was read out at the court, Mrs. Bolstridge
said the clothes were "dirty and dusty".

She said: "I could easily have inhaled some of the dust from Jim's
working clothes.

"Thinking about this in detail now, my face would not be far away
from the clothes I was shaking.  I did this week in, week out, for
years."

She also said in her statement how she had been out shopping one
day last May when she was suddenly out of breath.  She said she
"panicked" and "had to sit down".

Despite being given an inhaler, her condition became worse and,
following a chest x-ray, fluid was discovered on her lungs.

She said: "I was warned right from the outset it could be
something sinister."

Doctors asked her if she had worked with asbestos and she told
them how she had washed her husband's work clothes, before she
received the diagnosis of malignant mesothelioma.

Mrs. Bolstridge added: "I had never heard of the condition
before."

After describing the operation she underwent two months later on
her chest, she said in her statement: "Hopefully, the surgeon has
extended my life."

She died three months later at Royal Derby Hospital.

Mrs. Bolstridge was born in Derby and left school at the age of
17. Her father, who was Polish, worked in mines in France.

In 1972, she joined Leys Malleable Castings, in Derby, as a
purchasing clerk.

She met her husband in the same year and they first lived together
in Byron Street, Derby.  Mrs. Bolstridge left work when pregnant
with her first child.

Dr. Andrew Hitchcock, consultant pathologist at the Royal Derby
Hospital, said a postmortem examination revealed Mrs. Bolstridge's
right lung was incased in scar tissue and there was a pleural-
based tumour "in keeping with malignant mesothelioma".

When asked if the cause of her death was in keeping with it being
asbestos-related, he said: "Yes".

Assistant deputy coroner Paul McCandless said it was of "extreme
importance" he should record a verdict of death due to the
industrial disease of malignant mesothelioma of the pleura.

He said: "Even though this is as a result of secondary exposure,
it is an opportunity for such a verdict."

He added that recording a verdict of accidental death would not
"properly convey the importance" of the background to Mrs.
Bolstridge's death, while the verdict of misadventure would not
accurately describe her normal routine.


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mesothelioma Toll in Sedgemoor at 28deaths/4yrs
----------------------------------------------------------------
This is The West Country News reports that Sedgemoor has an above
the national average death rate for an asbestos related cancer,
according to figures by a campaign group.

The not-for-profit Association of Personal Injury Lawyers (APIL)
show that from 2006 to the end of 2010, mesothelioma, a terminal
cancer of the lung wall, was recorded as the underlying cause of
28 deaths in the area.

It is the equivalent to 2.9 deaths in 100,000 people.  The average
for England and Wales during the same period was 2.5.

APIL president David Bott said: "More people die of mesothelioma
in Sedgemoor per head of the population than in most other parts
of the country.

"This is bad enough, but the number of men dying from this disease
is expected to peak during the next five years and what many
people don't realise is that hundreds of sufferers across the UK
cannot get the compensation they need to help them through the
last days of their life."

He has called for a Government fund to help sufferers get
compensation.

He said many workers who have developed mesothelioma are sometimes
unable to pursue a claim for damages because they can no longer
trace the employer who exposed them to asbestos, or the employer's
insurance company.

A Department for Work Pensions spokesperson said: "The issues
raised by the consultation in the Employers' Liability Insurance
Bureau are complex and we are in active discussions with
stakeholders to make sure we get this right.

"We are still carefully considering all the issues and will bring
forward our proposals in due course."


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Ohio Ct. Allows Astar Claims to Proceed to Trial
-----------------------------------------------------------------
Astar Abatement, Inc., has sued Cincinnati School District Board
of Education and Pinnacle Environmental Consultants, Inc., to
recover payment and damages arising from asbestos abatement
services it provided for CPS.  Astar asserts breach of contract
and unjust enrichment claims against CPS and a negligence claim
against Pinnacle.  Both Defendants have moved to dismiss the
claims against them pursuant to Rule 12(b)(6) of the Federal Civil
Rules of Procedure.

In a Feb. 14, 2012 order, Chief Judge Susan J. Dlott of the U.S.
District Court for the Southern District of Ohio, Western
Division, denied the Defendants' motion allowed each of Astar's
claims to proceed to litigation.

The Court found that, with respect to the breach of contract
claims, the language in the contract between Astar and CPS is
ambiguous that the Court may need to rely on extrinsic evidence to
determine the intent of the parties' regarding the identity of the
persons who can be sued as parties to the Contract.

With regards to the unjust enrichment claim, the Court if the
State of Ohio is the contracting party, but CPS the beneficiary of
the work provided by Astar, then circumstances may exist to
support an unjust enrichment claim against a non-contracting party
who benefits from the uncompensated work of one of the parties to
the contract."

Judge Dlott also allowed Astar's negligence claim against Pinnacle
holding that Astar's allegation that Pinnacle served as a design
professional and agreed to properly design, prepare, administer
and oversee the asbestos abatement work as well as properly
inspect and approve the work, and also to recommend payment and
compensation, and to review and approve change order requests, all
in a professional and unbiased manner, is sufficient to state a
negligence claim against Pinnacle which falls within the excessive
control exception to the economic-loss doctrine.

The case is Astar Abatement, Inc., v. Cincinnati City School
District Board of Education, et al., No. 1:11-cv-587 (Ohio).  A
copy of Judge Dlott's Order is available at http://is.gd/nmisHW
from Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Pa. Ct. Dismisses Claims vs. Foster Wheeler
------------------------------------------------------------
Foster Wheeler Corporation has moved for summary judgment in 19
cases originating in North Dakota, all of which are part of a
consolidated asbestos products liability multidistrict litigation
pending in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania.  Foster Wheeler asserted insufficient evidence as
grounds for dismissal.

In a Feb. 14, 2012 memorandum, Judge Eduardo C. Robreno of the
U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania
granted summary judgment in favor of Foster Wheeler after finding
that there is no evidence that any decedent was exposed to
asbestos from a product of -- or as a result of work performed by
-- Foster Wheeler in the so-called Amoco refinery in Mandan, North
Dakota.

The case is Various v. Various, No. MDL 875 (E.D. Pa.).  A copy of
Judge Robreno's Decision is available at http://is.gd/HTLoG5from
Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Fla. Ct. Junks Celotex PD Panel's Appeal on Fees
-----------------------------------------------------------------
The Property Damage Advisory Committee appealed from the
Bankruptcy Court's March 24, 2011 Order denying the Committee's
Motion to Compel Payment of Counsel's Fees and July 8, 2011 Order
denying the Committee's Motion for Reconsideration of the
March 24, 2011 Order.

In a Feb. 3, 2012 order, Judge James S. Moody, Jr., of the U.S.
District Court for the Middle District of Florida, Tampa Division,
affirmed the Orders of the Bankruptcy Court finding that he Orders
of the Bankruptcy Court are thorough and well reasoned.

The case is In re Celotex Corporation, No. 8-11-cv-2223-JSM
(Fla.).  A copy of Judge Moody's Decision is available at
http://is.gd/L0BmVHfrom Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Mich. Ct. Sets Aside Hayes' Appraisal Request
--------------------------------------------------------------
Homeowners Reginald and Cassandra Hayes allege that Liberty Mutual
Group Inc. was obligated to pay for their temporary living
arrangements while their asbestos-contaminated home is being
repaired.  Liberty Mutual disputes that the homeowners are
entitled to receive benefits beyond the 12 consecutive months
following the date of loss and also filed a Counterclaim seeking a
declaration that it is entitled to rescind the homeowners'
insurance policy on the basis of material misrepresentations made
in the Policy Application.  On January 20, 2012, the homeowners
filed a motion to compel an appraisal as to the amount of
loss/damage to their home.

In a Feb. 17, 2012 opinion, Magistrate Judge Laurie J. Michelson
of the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan,
Southern Division, denied the Motion without prejudice pending a
ruling on the existence and scope of the insurance coverage.  The
Magistrate Judge said the coverage issues and disputes should be
resolved prior to compelling an appraisal.

The case is Hayes v. Liberty Mutual Group Inc., Case No. 11-15520
(E.D. Mich.).  A copy of Magistrate Judge Michelson's Decision is
available at http://is.gd/Mb0GaGfrom Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Del. Super. Ct. Clarifies File-Closing Protocol
----------------------------------------------------------------
Judge Peggy L. Ableman of the Superior Court of Delaware, New
Castle County, made a response, dated Feb. 20, 2012, to the
Supreme Court following its second remand to the Superior Court
for the purpose of clarifying the Court's dismissal procedures in
connection with the large volume of cases that comprise its
asbestos docket.

Judge Ableman explains that the Superior Court implemented a file-
closing procedure because of the steadily increasing volume of
asbestos cases in their dockets.  The file-closing procedures has
been in effect since January 2007, and, according to Judge
Ableman, has worked remarkably well, and has never been challenged
until recently when the Jacobs and Crumplar firm wrote a letter
objecting to the procedure on December 22, 2011.

"The importance of certainty and clarity with regard to dismissing
the asbestos cases and of the entry of an express final Order
cannot be underestimated.  Given the breadth of the Delaware
asbestos docket, unimaginable chaos would result if plaintiffs
were permitted to keep these cases open until they saw fit to
close them, not to mention the potential for the precise
difficulties that have arisen in this appeal," Judge Ableman says.

In response to the Supreme Court's inquiries, the Superior Court
pointed out that:

   (a) There is a specific procedure in place for the dismissal of
       multiple defendants and the issuance of final, appealable
       Orders in asbestos litigation.

   (b) The procedure was instituted in January 2007.

   (c) The procedure does not deviate from practice as it has been
       conducted since January 2007.

   (d) The practice employed in the case handled by the Jacobs and
       Crumplar firm has been the same since January 2007 and has
       not been modified since.

   (e) Asbestos counsel, including Jacobs and Crumplar, were
       notified in 2006 of the change, were invited to participate
       in a hearing before the change was implemented,
       participated at the hearing, and have been operating under
       this procedure for more than five years without objection
       until the issue of the timeliness of this appeal was
       presented.

The case is Plummber v. R.T. Vanderbilt Company, Inc., C.A. No.
08C-08-247-ASB, Supreme Court No. 482, 2011 (Del.).  A copy of
Judge Ableman's reply is available at http://is.gd/JdrRLpfrom
Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Pa. High Ct. Junks Summary Ruling for U.S. Supply
------------------------------------------------------------------
The case involves an appeal by allowance, asking whether the
separate disease rule, which also has been referred to as the
"two-disease" rule, allows an individual to bring separate
lawsuits for more than one malignant disease which allegedly
resulted from the same asbestos exposure.

In a Feb. 21, 2012 opinion, the Supreme Court of Pennsylvania,
Eastern District, concluded that the "two-disease" rule does, and,
accordingly, affirmed the order of the Superior Court, which
reversed the trial court's grant of summary judgment in favor of
appellants U.S. Supply Co. and Duro-Dyne Corp.

The Supreme Court explained that the separate disease rule, as
adopted in Pennsylvania, allows a plaintiff to file an action for
a malignant asbestos-related disease, even if he previously filed
an action for a different malignant asbestos-related disease,
provided the second or subsequent action is based on a separate
and distinct disease which was not known to plaintiff at the time
of his first action, and is filed within the applicable statute of
limitations period.

The case is Daley v. A.W. Chesterton, Inc., No. 27 EAP 2010 (E.D.
Pa.).  A copy of the Feb. 21 Opinion is available at
http://is.gd/zuchkXfrom Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Employer Has no Duty in Take Home Exposure Case
----------------------------------------------------------------
Janine McCoy, wife of Marvin McCoy, was diagnosed with
mesothelioma in 2010 and alleges it was caused by laundering her
husband's work clothes.  Mr. McCoy, between 1974 and 1983, cut
asbestos-cement board creating asbestos-containing clouds of dust.

This is a take home asbestos exposure case in which Pennsylvania
law must be applied.  At issue on this case is whether, under
Pennsylvania law, a premises owner/employer owes a duty to its
employee's spouse for take home asbestos exposure.

In a Feb. 21, 2012 memorandum opinion, Judge John A. Parkings,
Jr., of the Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle County, granted
the Defendants' motion for summary judgment holdings that
relationship analysis, consequence of imposing a duty, and overall
public policy favor a finding of no duty and social utility
analysis and foreseeability analysis do not tip the scale in
either direction.

The Court finds the relationship analysis the most persuasive
factor.  In weighing the factors as a whole the scale tips in
favor of no duty existing, Judge Parkings held.  Therefore, the
court finds under Pennsylvania law an employer/premises owner does
not owe a duty to the spouse of an employee in the take homes
asbestos exposure context.

In re Asbestos Litigation: Janine McCoy and Marvin McCoy Limited
to: PolyVision Corp., C.A. No. N10C-04-203 ASB (Del.).  A copy of
Judge Parkings' Decision is available at http://is.gd/GmvroGfrom
Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Del. Ct. Allows Suit v. Pneumo Abex to Proceed
---------------------------------------------------------------
Donald Bruce alleges that he was exposed to asbestos while working
in a variety of jobs during his career.  He said he worked at
three gas stations in the 1960's, when he was exposed to asbestos
dust from Pneumo Abex, LLC's brakes at those stations.  Abex
argues there is no evidence in the record that Mr. Bruce was
exposed to asbestos from Abex brakes and, even if he was, it was
not to a sufficient degree to survive summary judgment under
Massachusetts law.  The question before the court is whether a
reasonable jury could find that Mr. Bruce was exposed to Abex's
asbestos containing products sufficient to meet the Massachusetts'
standard.

In a Feb. 21, 2012 memorandum opinion, Judge John A. Parkings,
Jr., of the Superior Court of Delaware, New Castle County, denied
Abex's motion for summary judgment after finding that Mr. Bruce
has shown he was exposed to asbestos dust from Abex's brakes to a
sufficient amount to meet the Massachusetts standard.

The case is In re Asbestos Litigation. Donald Bruce Limited to:
Pneumo Abex, LLC, C.A. No. N10C-01-196 ASB (Del.).  A copy of
Judge Parkings' Decision is available at http://is.gd/CKkb9vfrom
Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Pa. Ct. Allows GRC Suit to Proceed to Trial
------------------------------------------------------------
General Refractories Company, a manufacturer and supplier of
asbestos-containing products, sues all of its insurance carriers
for a declaration of excess liability insurance coverage for
underlying asbestos-related claims.  GRC is a defendant in
numerous asbestos-related suits throughout the United States.  The
insurance policies were issued between 1979 and 1985.  GRC moves
for partial summary judgment asserting that the exclusions were
not submitted to and formally approved by the Insurance
Commissioner as required by Pennsylvania's insurance laws -- in
particular 40 P.S. Sec. 477b.

In a Feb. 22, 2012 memorandum, Judge Edmund V. Ludwig of the
United States District Court for the Eastern District of
Pennsylvania denied GRC's motion for summary judgment and the
defendants' cross-motions for summary judgment.

Judge Ludwig held that summary judgment as a matter of law is not
appropriate pointing out that the issues in the case present mixed
questions of fact and law, which will turn primarily on the
credibility of the parties' experts and the factual foundation for
their opinions.

The case is General Refractories Company v. First State Insurance
Co., Civil Action No. 04-3509 (E.D. Pa.).  A copy of Judge
Ludwig's Decision is available at http://is.gd/pnxdkofrom
Leagle.com



ASBESTOS UPDATE: Md. Ct. Allows Discovery on Bankruptcy Trusts
--------------------------------------------------------------
A series of objections were filed to subpoenas issued by National
Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh, PA and American Home
Assurance Company.  The subpoenas seek information from non-party
bankruptcy trusts and claim processing facilities about claims
submitted by individuals who also made claims to the Insured,
Porter Hayden Bodily Injury Trust.  On April 19, 2011, victims of
asbestos-related diseases represented by the Law Offices of Peter
G. Angelos and Weitz & Luxenburg filed a Joint Objection to
Disclosure of Certain Claim Information Filed with Certain Third
Party Bankruptcy Trusts, arguing the subpoenas should be quashed
in their entirety.  Since then, victims of asbestos-related
diseases represented by various attorneys have filed motions for
joinder, incorporating and joining the objections set forth by
Weitz & Luxemburg and the Law Offices of Peter G. Angelos in their
initial motion, as well as a subsequent motion objecting to
another set of the Insurers' subpoenas on the same grounds.  The
Insurers responded to these objections.  On December 15, 2011, the
U.S. District Court for the District of Maryland held a hearing on
the motions to quash the subpoenas.

In a Feb. 24, 2012 memorandum, Maryland District Judge Catherine
C. Blake denied the Objectors' motions to quash the subpoenas.
Discovery will continue subject to the limitations previously set
forth in the stipulated protective orders, and the Insurers will
bear the costs of production.

The Court found that the information sought in the Insurers'
subpoenas meets the standard for relevance set forth by Rule 26 of
the Federal Rule of Civil Procedure.  To the extent the requested
material is sensitive, the Court further found that the protective
measures already in place sufficiently address the Objectors'
privacy concerns.  Moreover, the Court related that at the
December 15, 2011, hearing, the Insurers represented to the Court
that litigation would move forward without delay on account of the
discovery.

The case is National Union Fire Insurance Company of Pittsburgh,
PA v. Porter Hayden Company, No. CCB-03-3408 (Md.).  A copy of
Judge Blake's Decision is available at http://is.gd/gH18elfrom
Leagle.com


ASBESTOS UPDATE: Supreme Ct. Junks Claims as Pre-empted by LIA
--------------------------------------------------------------
In an opinion dated Feb. 29, 2012, the Hon. Justice Clarence
Thomas of the U.S. Supreme Court agreed with the U.S. Court of
Appeals for the Third Circuit that the state law tort claims for
defective design and failure to warn asserted by Gloria Gail
Kurns, as executrix of the estate of George Corson, deceased, et
al., fall within the field pre-empted by the Locomotive Inspection
Act, as that field was defined by this Court's decision in Napier
v. Atlantic Coast Line R. Co., 272 U.S. 605 (1926).

George Corson and his wife filed a lawsuit in Pennsylvania state
court against 59 defendants, including Railroad Friction Products
Corporation and its successor-in-interest Viad Corp.  The Corsons
alleged that RFPC distributed locomotive brakeshoes containing
asbestos and that Mr. Corson handled this equipment resulting to
him being exposed to asbestos.  Mr. Corson died of mesothelioma
immediately after filing the complaint.

Petitioners suggest that Napier no longer defines the scope of the
LIA's pre-empted field because that field has been narrowed by
Federal Railroad Safety Act of 1970.  The Supreme Court ruled that
petitioners' reliance on the FRSA is misplaced.  The FRSA, he
said, does not alter pre-existing federal statutes on railroad
safety.  Because the LIA was already in effect when the FRSA was
enacted, the Supreme Court concluded that the FRSA left the LIA,
and its pre-emptive scope as defined by Napier, intact.

Petitioners alternatively argue that their claims do not fall
within the LIA's pre-empted field, even as that field was defined
by Napier.  The Supreme Court rejected the petitioners' attempt to
redefine the pre-empted field and held that because the
petitioners' common-law claims for defective design and failure to
warn "are directed to the same subject" as the LIA, Napier
dictates that they fall within the pre-empted field.

The case is Kurns v. Railroad Friction Products Corp., No. 10-879
(U.S.).  A copy of the Feb. 29 Decision is available at
http://is.gd/nm38F5from Leagle.com



                           *********

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

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