Mississippi employees retirement fund's securities lawsuit set for switch to federal court

By Nicholas Malfitano | Apr 14, 2017

PHILADELPHIA – Defendants in a securities fraud action brought by a public employee retirement organization have filed to remove the action from the Chester County Court of Common Pleas to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania.

On Feb. 28, the Public Employees’ Retirement System of Mississippi filed a class-action suit against a long list of defendants in Pennsylvania state court, including Endo International PLC, Rajiv Kanishka Liyanaarchchie de Silva, Suketu P. Upadhyay, Daniel A. Rudio, Roger H. Kimmel, Shane M. Cooke, John J. Delucca, Arthur J.Higgins, Nancy J. Hutson, Michael Hyatt, William P. Montague, Jill D. Smith and William F. Spengler (the removing defendants).

Subsequently, service was made on March 8 upon Goldman Sachs & Co., J.P. Morgan Securities, LLC, Barclays Capital, Inc., Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc., RBC Capital Markets, LLC, Citigroup Global Markets, Inc., Morgan Stanley & Co., LLC, Suntrust Robinson Humphrey, Inc., TD Securities (USA) LLC and MUFG Securities Americas, Inc. (the underwriter defendants).

In 1998, the Securities Litigation Uniform Standards Act (SLUSA) was enacted to make U.S. federal court the exclusive venue for securities class-action lawsuits, in effect amending the Securities Act of 1933 in this regard.

“Plaintiff and other members of the class purchased Endo common stock on the offering from the underwriter defendants pursuant to the registration statement at the offering price of $83.25 per share. However, plaintiff and the class were unaware that the registration statement contained untrue statements of then-present material fact and failed to disclose material information and negative trends about Endo’s generic division required by SEC regulations. When the truth about the false and misleading nature of the registration statement was revealed, Endo’s stock price plummeted, damaging plaintiff and members of the class,” the original lawsuit read, as its main claim.

Based upon this allegation, the removing defendants believe the common shares of Endo stock, as the securities at issue, fall under the auspices of SLUSA since they were and currently still are listed on the NASDAQ index, and are therefore removable to federal court.

The plaintiff is represented by Mark S. Goldman of Goldman Scarlato & Penny, in Conshohocken.

The defendants are represented by Laura Hughes McNally and J. Gordon Cooney Jr. of Morgan Lewis & Bockius, plus Kevin T. Kerns and Matthew C. Monroe of Spruce Law Group, all in Philadelphia.

U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania case 2:17-cv-01466

From the Pennsylvania Record: Reach Courts Reporter Nicholas Malfitano at nickpennrecord@gmail.com

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