A federal judge in New York has granted class-action status to a shareholder lawsuit against Alstom, Paris, claiming the firm violated securities law.
The lead plaintiffs include the $15.5 million Illinois State Universities Retirement System, Champaign; the $8.6 billion Louisiana State Employees Retirement System, Baton Rouge; and the $10 billion West Virginia Investment Management Board, Charleston.
The suit claims Alstom made numerous material misstatements and other violations of securities laws that caused its stock to fall more than 93% between 1999 and 2003, according to court filings.
U.S. District Court Judge Victor Marrero excluded several pension funds and foreign nationals from the class in his Aug. 27 order. French plaintiffs will have to pursue action against the company in French courts. English and Dutch plaintiffs were also partially removed.
Kevin Abikoff, an attorney at the law firm of Hughes Hubbard & Reed, which represents Alstom, did not return a call by press time seeking comment.