A U.S. District Court in Syracuse, N.Y., approved the appointment of State Street Bank as independent fiduciary of Crucible Materials Corp.s six retirement plans. The ruling was sought by the Labor Department.
Also, the Labor Department sued Crucible and the plans retirement committee for improperly converting corporate stock held by the plans to common stock in order to recapitalize the company. The DOL claimed the conversions violated ERISA because at least 50% of the converted stock was not held by independent investors. The suit also contends the defendants allowed the plan violations to continue and failed to correct the improper conversion to common stock.
The plans cover about 3,039 participants and had a combined $143 million in assets as of Dec. 31, 1999, the latest date for which numbers were available. The company suffered financial difficulties prior to 1994 and restructured its capital after it was unable to pay dividends on preferred stock holdings.