Gypsum Board Antitrust Litigation | Lithium Ion Rechargeable Batteries | LIBOR | Behringer Harvard REIT I | Lowe's Home Centers | Home Depot | In Re Google Class C Shareholder Litigation | In re BP Securities Litigation | Ohio Public Employees Retirement System, et al. v. BP plc, et al | FriendFinder Networks, Inc. | In re K-Sea Transportation Sec. Litig. | Oppenheimer Global Resource Private Equity Fund I, LP | In Re Swisher Hygiene, Inc. Sec. and Deriv. Litig.
Block & Leviton has filed suit in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania against certain manufacturers of gypsum board for price fixing. Beginning in at least September 2011, the Defendants conspired to increase and artificially maintain the price for gypsum board in the United States. The suit is on behalf of a class of consumers that purchased gypsum board during the relevant period who, as a result of Defendants' misconduct, overpaid on their purchases. Plaintiffs in this action have asserted claims under Section 1 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1, and Section 4 of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C. § 15 for injunctive relief, and under applicable state law for damages and other relief provided by law. A copy of the complaint is available here. If you would like to learn more about the pending case or have any information relevant to our on-going investigation, please contact Whitney Street at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Block & Leviton has filed suit in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California against certain manufacturers of Lithium Ion Rechargeable Batteries for allegedly fixing prices. Beginning in 2002, Defendants allegedly conspired to increase and artificially maintain the price for Lithium Ion Rechargeable Batteries in the United States. As a result of Defendants’ misconduct, purchasers of Lithium Ion Rechargeable Batteries and products containing these batteries overpaid on their purchases. Plaintiffs have asserted claims under Section 1 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1, and Section 4 of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C. § 15, for injunctive relief and under applicable state law for damages and other relief provided by law. A copy of the complaint is available here. If you would like to learn more about the pending case or have any information relevant to our on-going investigation, please contact Whitney Street at email@example.com.
Block & Leviton has filed suit in New York federal court against a number of large banks for manipulation of the London Interbank Offered Rate (“LIBOR”). LIBOR, which is published under the authority of the British Bankers’ Association (the “BBA”), is defined by the BBA as the rate at which an individual contributor panel bank could borrow funds, were it to do so by asking for and then accepting interbank offers in reasonable market size, just prior to 11 a.m. London time. Beginning in 2008, the Defendants, who were members of the LIBOR U.S. Dollar (“USD”) panel during the relevant period, conspired to increase and artificially maintain the 6-month and 12-month USD LIBOR rates. The purpose of the conspiracy was to inflate the amount that borrowers paid on their adjustable rate mortgages and loans, the majority of which are indexed to the 6-month or 12-month USD LIBOR rates. As a result of Defendants’ misconduct, borrowers in the U.S. have overpaid billions of dollars on their adjustable rate loans.
Plaintiffs have asserted claims under Section 1 of the Sherman Act, 15 U.S.C. § 1, and Section 4 of the Clayton Act, 15 U.S.C. § 15. The case is on behalf of a class of all persons and entities throughout the United States who had an adjustable rate loan mortgage or loan indexed to six-month or twelve-month USD LIBOR that was set or adjusted during the period January 2008 through the present. If you would like to learn more about the pending case, please contact Whitney Street at firstname.lastname@example.org. You can click here to review a copy of the complaint.
Block & Leviton was recently appointed lead counsel on behalf of those who invested in the Behringer Harvard REIT I. The action charges that the REIT's management misled investors as to the true value of their shares and breached their fiduciary duties in managing the REIT. In appointing Block & Leviton, the Court was "convinced that the [Lead Plaintiffs'] chosen counsel [Block & Leviton] have the skill and knowledge that will enable them to prosecute this action effectively and expeditiously".
Block & Leviton has brought class action lawsuits in a number of states around the country charging that Lowe's misclassifies workers who install products as independent contractors rather than employees. These lawsuits allege that Lowe's controls and directs the installers' services and that the installations are part of Lowe's usual course of business. The actions seek to have Lowe's compensate its installers for the taxes, benefits, wages and insurance that Lowe's would have paid or provided, had these installers been properly classified as employees.
Block & Leviton has brought class action lawsuits in a number of states around the country charging that Home Depot misclassifies workers who install products as independent contractors rather than employees. These lawsuits allege that Home Depot controls and directs the installers' services and that the installations are part of Home Depot's usual course of business. The actions seek to have Home Depot compensate its installers for the taxes, benefits, wages and insurance that Home Depot would have paid or provided, had these installers been properly classified as employees.
Block & Leviton is co-lead counsel in this shareholder class action challenging Google’s attempt to recapitalize its outstanding stock and issue a new class of non-voting, Class C stock.
Under the plan, each of Google’s public shareholders who own Class A stock, and all holders of Class B stock, will have their stock split and will receive one share of non-voting Class C stock for each share of Class A or Class B stock they currently own. The lawsuit charges that the sole purpose of the plan is to entrench Google’s founders with majority voting control of the company and it is unfair to Google’s Class A stockholders.
The action is set for trial before Delaware Chancellor Leo E. Strine in January, 2013.
In April, 2010, the Deepwater Horizon, a drilling rig leased and operated by BP, exploded and sank in the Gulf of Mexico, killing 11 men on board. Although BP initially denied that any oil was leaking from the Macondo well, the sinking of the rig led to the largest oil spill in the history of the petroleum industry and was one of the largest industrial catastrophes the world had ever experienced. BP set aside $40 billion to cover the costs of the spill and more than $90 billion in stock market capitalization was wiped out.
Block & Leviton is counsel to the public pension funds of Ohio who were appointed co-lead plaintiffs with the New York State Common Retirement Fund. The shareholder class action charges that BP misrepresented to its investors the steps BP was purportedly taking to improve its process safety after the industrial disasters at BP's Texas City refinery in 2005 and the Alaskan pipe line leak in 2006. The lawsuit also charges that BP intentionally understated the known rate of oil flowing from the Macando well after the rig exploded.
In February 2012 the Court granted in part and denied in part BP’s motions to dismiss the class action complaint. Lead Plaintiffs filed an amended complaint adding additional specific facts to bolster their claims of securities fraud. Defendants’renewed motion to dismiss is pending before the Court.
Block & Leviton has filed suit against BP plc and certain of its affiliates, officers and directors for violations of Ohio statutory and common law on behalf of the Ohio Retirement Funds. The complaint alleges that the Defendants made materially false and misleading statements and omissions of material fact regarding BP's process safety. The truth regarding Defendants' false statements and omissions began to emerge on April 20, 2010, when the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig exploded in the Gulf of Mexico. The complaint further alleges that the Defendants made subsequent false and misleading statements regarding the amount of oil spilling into the Gulf and BP's ability to stop the flow.
The case was initially filed in Ohio State Court, but was removed to federal court by Defendants and currently is pending in the United States District Court for the Southern District of Texas. The claims arise out of the same operative facts as the BP Securities Litigation matter, but pertain to the Ohio Retirement Funds' purchases of BP's ordinary shares, which trade on the London Stock Exchange.
Block & Leviton has initiated a lawsuit against FriendFinder Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ: FFN) ("FFN" or the "Company") for making untrue statements in its IPO. On May 11, 2011, FFN held an initial public offering of 5.0 million shares of common stock (the "May Offering"). According to the offering documents, there were to be 26.7 million shares of FFN common stock outstanding after the May Offering, 20.9 million of which were subject to a 180-day lock-up period (the "Restricted Shares"). Contrary to these representations, a material number of Restricted Shares were allegedly sold on the day the stock commenced trading. FFN's stock price has dropped precipitously since the May Offering, falling over 20% in the first day of trading alone. At the time the lock-up period expired, the stock had fallen to less than $2.00 per share.
The lawsuit, captioned Greenfield Children’s Partnership v. FriendFinder Networks, Inc. et al., 9:11-cv-81270 (S.D.Fla.), alleges violations of Sections 11, 12(a)(2) and 15 of the Securities Act of 1933 on behalf of investors who purchased common stock in, or traceable to, the May Offering (the "Class"). A copy of the complaint is available here.
Block & Leviton is a co-lead counsel in this action pending in the District of New Jersey. The action charges that K-Sea, and its officers, made a series of false and misleading statements regarding K-Sea’s business prospects, which involved leasing vessels to transport oil, during the period May 1, 2009 through January 27, 2010. The lawsuit alleges that K-Sea’s senior management was told that “the wheels were falling off” K-Sea’s oil transportation business but the defendants in the action continued to tout the positive performance of the Company right up until a secondary offering of $59 million closed.
After the secondary offering closed, Defendants began to admit that K-Sea’s business prospects were not as rosy as they were previously portrayed.
Block & Leviton represents the Brockton Retirement Board and the Quincy Retirement Board in this action which charges that defendants misrepresented the rate of return on certain of the Fund’s investment causing the overall investor rate of return to be increased from negative 6% to a positive 38%.
The action alleges violations of Section 12(a)(2) of the Securities Act of 1933. Block & Leviton was appointed lead counsel in the action representing the two lead plaintiffs, the Brockton Retirement Board and the Quincy Retirement Board. An amended complaint was filed on June 20, 2012.
On March 28, 2012, Swisher Hygiene revealed that it would be delaying the release of its fourth quarter and year-end financial statements as the company's audit committee was investigating the claims of a former employee who claimed that Swisher was engaged in improper accounting concerning acquisitions. In 2011, Swisher acquired over 63 different companies. The company also advised investors not to rely on the company's first, second or third quarter financial results as those results may have to be restated. Swisher's stock price fell by 20% on the news.
Swisher has released its restated financial results and Lead Plaintiffs have filed an amended complaint, which is available here.
Block & Leviton is the lead counsel on behalf of the class.